Sports Today

by Frank Baldwin November 13, 2015

 

Basketball Tonight

On Friday night, the Ducks begin their quest for a fourth straight NCAA Tournament appearance. They open their regular season against Jackson State in Matthew Knight Arena (7 p.m., Pac-12 Networks).

Oregon will play the first few weeks of the season without sophomore post Jordan Bell, who set a UO record with 94 blocked shots last season. His absence was a significant concern entering this season – until Chris Boucher blocked 12 shots in the Ducks’ two exhibition games. “It’ll be interesting to see how it translates with bigger, stronger teams,” UO coach Dana Altman said. “But he’s working hard in practice.”

Boucher, on whose behalf the Ducks will petition for another year of eligibility after this season, has enjoyed a meteoric rise over the past few years – and not just in terms of his height. He didn’t play organized basketball until four years ago, instead focusing on other sports. The skill and coordination he brought to the hockey ice and football field didn’t fade as Boucher grew in stature. He remains a nimble athlete despite standing 6-10, and is skilled enough to be considered by coaches as dangerous a three-point shooter as he is a shot blocker.

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REGIONAL TEST KEY TO NCAA MEET

COURTESY: GODUCKS.COM

 

EUGENE, Ore. – Oregon will look to qualify for the 2015 NCAA Championships by finishing among the top two teams at the NCAA West Regional Championships this Friday at Jefferson Park Golf Course in Seattle, Wash. The women’s 6,000 meter race begins the day at noon, while the men, who move up to 10,000 meters for the first time this fall, run at 1 p.m. The top two men’s and women’s teams from the West Regional earn automatic bids to the NCAA Championships Nov. 21 in Louisville, Ky., while a number of at-large bids will also be up for grabs.

The Duck women, tied for fourth nationally, are the highest-ranked women’s team in the region, while the men are ranked seventh, behind only No. 4 Stanford. Other ranked teams in the women’s race are No. 9 Boise State, No. 11 Stanford, No. 11 Washington and No. 30 Gonzaga. On the men’s side, the Ducks and Cardinal will be joined by No. 17 Washington, No. 20 UCLA and No. 24 Boise State.

The men have two-time defending NCAA Champion Edward Cheserek leading the way. He’ll be backed by a seasoned squad that includes seniors Chris Brewer, Ryan Gil and Matthew Melancon, junior Jake Leingang, sophomores Jackson Darland, Bryan Fernandez, Blake Haney, Travis Neuman and Sam Prakel, and freshmen Tanner Anderson and Matthew Maton.

The women also have an experienced group headed to Seattle with seniors Molly Grabill, Annie Leblanc, Abbey Leonardi, Waverly Neer and Brianna Nerud, juniors Ashley Maton and Maggie Schmaedick, sophomores Frida Berge, Alli Cash and Emma Abrahamson, and freshmen Sarah Baxter and Jessica Hull. 

DUCKS AT THE NCAA WEST REGIONAL
 Women: Oregon has won this event 14 times, which is tied with Stanford for the most in West Region history. The Ducks’ team titles came in 1976-81, 1983, 1985, 1987-88, 1990-91, 1995, 2012 and 2014. Oregon has also produced the individual champion on 11 occasions, including recent three-time winner Jordan Hasay (2010-11-12). Penny Graves won twice (1986, 1988), while Robin Baker (1978), Molly Morton (1979), Kathy Hayes (1983), Annette Hand (1987), Lucy Nusrala (1991), Milena Glusac (1994) and Alexandra Kosinski (2008) each claimed one crown. The women won this meet last season for the second time in three years to advance to the NCAA Championships.
 Men: Oregon has won this event nine times. Stanford has won the most with 14 titles, followed by the Ducks. Oregon’s titles have come in 1983-83, 1988-89, 2006-08, 2010 and 2014. The Ducks have also produced eight individual champions, including Edward Cheserek in 2013 and Galen Rupp in 2007 and ’09. Other individual winners for Oregon include two-time champs Jim Hill (1982-83) and Karl Keska (1995-96), as well as Brad Hudson (1989) and Steve Fein (1999). Last season, the Ducks won the West Regional for the first time in four years to advance to the NCAA Championships.

SCORING
The place of the first five finishers counts toward the team score. The next two runners may displace runners from opposing teams. First place is worth one point, second place two points, etc. Low score wins.

NCAA WEST REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS WOMEN’S RACE
Time: 12:00 p.m. PT
Length: 6,000 Meters
Live Stream: None
Twitter: @OregonTF / @UWTrack
Results: http://www.rtspt.com/events/ncaa/d1westxc15/ / www.goducks.com
Teams (37): Arizona, Arizona State, Boise State, California, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Riverside, UC Santa Barbara, Cal Poly, Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Northridge, Eastern Washington, Gonzaga, Hawaii, Idaho, Long Beach State, Loyola Marymount, Oregon, Oregon State, Pacific, Pepperdine, Portland, Portland State, Sacramento State, Saint Mary’s, San Diego, San Diego State, San Francisco, San Jose State, Santa Clara, Seattle U., Stanford, UCLA, UNLV, USC, Washington, Washington State.
Rankings: No. 4 Oregon, No. 9 Boise State, No. 11 Stanford, No. 12 Washington, No. 30 Gonzaga.
Oregon Entries: Seniors Molly Grabill, Annie Leblanc, Abbey Leonardi, Waverly Neer and Brianna Nerud, juniors Ashley Maton and Maggie Schmaedick, and sophomores Frida Berge, Alli Cash and Emma Abrahamson, and freshmen Sarah Baxter and Jessica Hull.

NCAA WEST REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS MEN’S RACE
Time: 1:00 p.m. PT
Length: 10,000 Meters
Live Stream: None
Twitter: @OregonTF / @UWTrack
Results: http://www.rtspt.com/events/ncaa/d1westxc15/ / www.goducks.com
Teams (32): Arizona, Arizona State, Boise State, California, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Riverside, UC Santa Barbara, Cal Poly, Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Northridge, Eastern Washington, Fresno State, Gonzaga, Idaho, Long Beach State, Loyola Marymount, Oregon, Pepperdine, Portland, Portland State, Sacramento State, Saint Mary’s, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose State, Santa Clara, Seattle U., Stanford, UCLA, Washington, Washington State.
Rankings: No. 4 Stanford, No. 7 Oregon, No. 17 Washington, No. 20 UCLA, No. 24 Boise State.
Oregon Entries: Seniors Chris Brewer, Ryan Gil and Matthew Melancon, juniors Edward Cheserek and Jake Leingang, sophomores Jackson Darland, Bryan Fernandez, Blake Haney, Travis Neuman and Sam Prakel, and freshmen Tanner Anderson and Matthew Maton.

“KING” CHESEREK’S INCREDIBLE RUN
Edward Cheserek, the first man in Pac-12 history to win three consecutive Pac-12 titles, has now won 11 of his last 13 cross country races, as well as 12 of 16 career starts overall. Cheserek has never finished lower than fourth in a collegiate cross country competition.

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Drew Hunter, nation's top-rated distance runner, commits and signs with Oregon Ducks

By Andrew Nemec

While most Oregon Ducks fans spent Thursday anxiously awaiting the announcements of Ryan Kelley, the nation's top uncommitted class of 2017 quarterback, and five-star power forward T.J. Leaf, an equally talented, but less recognizable athlete was also planning to make headlines.

Kelley picked OregonLeaf chose UCLA. And Drew Hunter, the nation's top distance runner according Saucony Flo50 cross country rankings, signed a National Letter of Intent to the University of Oregon.

TrackTown USA, indeed.

 




Frank Baldwin
Frank Baldwin

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