Ducks Chasing More History at the NCAA

EUGENE, Oregon – Oregon’s track and field team travels to Birmingham, Alabama this weekend for the 2022 NCAA Indoor Championships. The Ducks have 14 national entries – seven men, seven women – for the national meet of two days that begins Friday, March 11 at the CrossPlex.

This is the third time the NCAA Indoor Championships will be held in Birmingham, Alabama. The Ducks won the men’s and women’s tag team titles in 2016, the first year the competition was held there. The NCAAs returned to the CrossPlex in 2019.

NCAA weekend begins Friday at 8 a.m. (PT) with UO standout Max Vollmer in the heptathlon. Click on HERE for the full meeting schedule.

How to watch

The 2022 NCAA Indoor Championships will be broadcast live on ESPN3 with separate links for each of the three daily sessions – multis, men’s program, women’s program. The commentary team includes Dwight Stones, Jill Montgomery and Dan O’Brien with John Anderson handling post-race interviews.

Day 1: Friday March 11 – Multis | Men | Women
Day 2: Saturday March 12 – Multis | Men | Women

Additionally, a three-hour delayed broadcast of the NCAA Indoor Championships will air Sunday, March 13 at 6:30 p.m. (PT) on ESPNU. Click on HERE for live results.

NCAA Indoor Championships

The Oregon men are the defending NCAA indoor champions and recorded 79 points and six individual titles a year ago in Fayetteville, Ark. The program has won eight of its 12 indoor national titles under the guidance of head coach Robert Johnson.

Oregon Men (5): 2009, ’14-16, ’21
Oregon Women (7): 2010-14, ’16-17

#TougherTogether

The OU men and women will each have seven scoring opportunities at this weekend’s national meet with multiple scoring opportunities in one event for each team – men’s mile, women’s 60 metres.

Oregon men

60 meters: Micah Williams

800 meters: Luis Peralta

Mile: Reed Brown, Jack Yearian

5000 meters: Aaron Bienenfeld

Triple jump: Emmanuel Ihemeje

Heptathlon: Max Vollmer

Oregon Women

60 meters: Jadyn Mays, Kemba Nelson

200 meters: Iman Brown

Mile: Aneta Konieczek

4x400m relay
Medley relay distance
Long jump: Alysah Hickey

One more chance

Seven of Oregon’s 14 NCAA entries have come from last qualifying weekend at the Pac-12 Invitational and BU Last Chance meetings. In Seattle, the Ducks had four national qualifying efforts with Jadyn Mays in the women’s 60 meters, Max Vollmer in the UO and DMR women’s heptathlon and 4×400. In the BU meet, the OU men earned NCAA berths with Reed brown and Jack Yearian in the mile to accompany Aaron Bienefeld in the 5,000 meters.

The champions are here

Oregon returns four NCAA indoor champions from a season ago with Reed Brown (mDMR), Emmanuel Ihemeje (mTJ), Kemba Nelson (w60) and Micah Williams (m60). Brown will seek his first individual title as a qualifier in the mile for the fourth time in his UO career. Ihemeje and Williams are both ranked No. 2 overall in their respective event and Nelson is tied for the fifth fastest time in the NCAA heading into this weekend’s encounter.

Ready for a start

Among the Ducks’ list of national qualifiers, Iman Brown (w200), Alysah Hickey (wLJ), Jadyn Mays (w60) and Jack Yearian (mMile) are set to make their NCAA Indoor debut. Hickey finished fifth at the NCAA outdoor championships last June, while Mays was a member of the OU 4×100-meter relay that advanced to the NCAA finals last year. Brown is the first UO woman to qualify in the 200 meters since 2017.

Flying in the PNW

Since 2009, Oregon women have had at least one national 60-meter qualifier in 13 of the past 14 years with multiple entries eight times (2010, ’13-17, ’21-22) during that time. . Reigning National Champion Kemba Nelson is joined on the pitch by a teammate Jadyn Mays; each with a season best time of 7.15 from the Pac-12 Invitational (February 26). The UO women have three NCAA titles in the 60 meters with English Gardner (2012), Hannah Cunliffe (2017) and Nelson (2022).

One mile away

For the eighth straight year, Oregon will have multiple entries into the NCAA men’s mile field. In this year’s lot, the duo of Reed Brown and Jack Yearian will continue the streak for the Oregon Men. In his three previous appearances, Brown was a two-time NCAA runner-up in the mile, including last year’s fifth-place finish (3:57.62) at Fayetteville. Yearian, making his NCAA debut, is No. 8 in college history at 3:54.54 with his effort at BU Last Chance (February 27); Brown is No. 11 all-time with a time of 3:54.77 in the same race.

freshman four by four

The Ducks’ first-ever 4×400-meter relay secured a spot in the NCAA with a season-best 3:32.64 at the Pac-12 Invitational (February 26) in Seattle. With this performance, the quartet of Ella Clayton, Shaniya Hall, Katrina Wright and Shana Grebo became the eighth fastest stint in program history. Racing for the first time together at the Razorback Invitational, the team has cut time in each of the last three meetings. Oregon has the only freshman roster in the NCAA field this year.

Razorback Invitational (January 29) – 3:35.13
Windy City Invitational (February 12) – 3.33.83
Pac-12 Invitational (February 26) – 3:32.64

For the record(s)

Entering the NCAA Championships, the Ducks have combined to record 27 of the top 10 indoor marks in the current schedule, including 10 of the top five performances with school records per Micah Williams in the men’s 60 meters (6.48) and Alysah Hickey in the women’s long jump (6.66m/21-10.25). Williams bettered her own record, set by winning the NCAA title last year, while Hickey replaced Jenna Prandini’s 6.65m/21-10 jump in the 2015 NCAA competition. Click HERE for full lists of the UO Indoor Top 10.

World ducks

The 19 OU student-athletes on the NCAA’s travel roster represent 10 countries. Three Ducks set national records for their respective countries during the indoor season: Aaron Bienenfeld (GER – 5,000 meters | 13:21.99), Ella Clayton (CAN – 600 meters/U20 – 1:28.61) and Luis Peralta (DOM – 800 meters – 1:47.32)

United States (8): Iman Brown, Reed brown, Shaniya Hall, Alysah Hickey, Jadyn Mays, Micah Williams, Katrina Wright, Jack Yearian

France 2) : Emilie Girard, Shana Grebo

Germany (2): Aaron Bienenfeld, Max Vollmer

Australia (1): Izzy Thornton Bott

Canada (1): Ella Clayton

Denmark (1): Mia Moerck

Dominican Republic (1): Luis Peralta

Italy (1): Emmanuel Ihemeje

Jamaica (1): Kemba Nelson

Poland (1): Aneta Konieczek

The Bowerman watches

For a second consecutive update, defending and defending NCAA 60-meter champion Micah Williams earned a spot on the pre-NCAA version of The Bowerman Watch List. Williams lowered her own school best to 6.48 in the Cougar Classic season opener (January 15) and tied that time two weeks later at the Razorback Invitational (January 29). The Portland, Oregon native has five performances of 6.55 or faster this season.

In the rankings

The OU men moved up two spots to rank 4th on the season in the March 7 release of the USTFCCCA Scoring Index. The Oregon Women also reached a season high with 11th place entering the national competition.

For more Oregon cross country and track and field news and information, follow @OregonTF on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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