Oregon Harriers Look Ahead to NCAA Championships
Nov. 18, 2002
EUGENE, Ore. - With Monday's official announcement of the upcoming NCAA Cross Country Championships fields, the No. 6-ranked Duck men and women's individual Carrie Zografos look ahead to the collegiate finale next Mon., Nov. 25, scheduled for the LaVern Gibson Championships Course in Terre Haute, Ind. The No. 35 Duck women, up for one of 13 women's at-large team bids Monday were not selected since two other West Region teams, No. 21 UCLA and No. 24 Washington, were picked just ahead of them late in the selection process.
The Men of Oregon will make their 28th NCAA team trip since its first bid in 1963 - a span that has featured four individual and team NCAA crowns, seven runner-up team finishes, and a total of 15 top-three team placings. The Ducks will likely pick their seven-man unit from a combination of eight runners - senior and two-time All-American Jason Hartmann (37th in '99, 35th in '00), juniors John Lucas, Brett Holts and Noel Paulson, redshirt sophomores Ryan Andrus and Eric Logsdon, and freshmen Shane Ahlers and Will Viviani.
'Our runners clearly showed they deserve a chance to compete against the nation's best,' Oregon men's coach Martin Smith. 'They ran their best race of the year at regionals and are peaking at the right time of the year. It's a credit to the hard work they've put in all year. We're ranked sixth nationally going into the meet, and the pollsters have been very kind to us this year, but our goal all along has been to finish top 10 at the NCAA Championships, and it's not going to be an easy task. Yet, our guys have shown great maturity this year and have raised their level when the competition has, and we're looking forward to next Monday.'
The Duck men come off their highest Western Regional placing under Smith, in his fourth year as the Duck men's head coach, after taking second overall with 43 points, behind the host No. 1 Stanford (1st, 21 points). The Ducks put four runners in the top 12 overall - Hartmann (second, 30:18), Andrus (sixth, 30:37), Holts (seventh, 30:41) and Logsdon (12th, 30:49), and their fifth runner Lucas was also top 20 (16th, 31:00). Hartmann's runner-up finish matched his best ever placing from his 2000 sophomore season, while the Rockford, Mich., native added third last year. For the remaining Duck unit, all five returnees scored their highest ever regional finishes.
After a strong fifth-place regional showing last weekend, the No. 35 Oregon women came up just shy of an NCAA at-large invite Monday - only the fourth time in head coach Tom Heinonen's 28 years that the team hasn't qualified. Reshirt senior Carrie Zografos will still attend the meet as an individual qualifier - the highest individual from the Western Regional from a non-qualifying team - after taking sixth on the Stanford Golf Course last weekend. Among those four seasons that the Ducks missed the NCAA finale, they still qualified an individual in three of them (Marie Davis, 1996; Stephanie Wessell, 1989), leaving only one year that the Ducks were not represented in the collegiate finale (2001).
'I'm sad that we didn't make it as a team because we've worked so hard this year,' Zografos said, 'It's not going to be easy to go there alone and fully concentrate on being relaxed and comfortable. However, I know Tom has me physically ready to go, and I've felt great in my races at Pac-10s and Regions. Although I didn't place particularly high at Pre-Nationals a month ago, that got the ball rolling the right direction, and I know I can run a lot faster there this time around. It's sad that this is my last cross country race as a Duck, but it will also help me stay focused so I can give it my best.'
The Oregon women positioned themselves for a potential berth after putting four individuals in the top 30 in the regional and finished only nine points behind No. 24 Washington (fourth, 120). The squad improved by seven places from the 2001 regional with virtually the same scorers, and looking ahead to 2002 features lose one senior (Zografos).
Breaking down the NCAA men's field, other automatic teams besides Oregon and Stanford include Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Eastern Michigan, Georgetown, Iona, Iowa, Minnesota, N.C. State, Northern Arizona, Providence, SMU, Tennessee, Villanova, Wisconsin, and William and Mary.
Also among the 31-team field, 18 men's at-large teams were selected Monday based on their regional finishes and prior wins against other NCAA qualifiers - those included BYU, Butler, Central Michigan, Colorado State, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Montana State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Texas, Texas A&M, and Weber State.
Looking back over the season, the Ducks have competed only once this season outside of the West and won the Roy Griak Invite on Sept. 29 in St. Paul, Minn. Oregon beat 12 squads in that race from across the nation that made the NCAA field - five were against automatic qualifiers (No. 3 Wisconsin, No. 7 Eastern Michigan, No. 12 Providence, No. 24 Iowa and No. 27 Minnesota), and seven were at-large selections (No. 10 BYU, No. 11 Central Michigan, No. 14 Weber State, No. 17 Ohio State, No. 28 Michigan State, No. 36 Texas and No. 37 Texas A&M). The only squad that beat the Ducks this season was No. 1 Stanford who won the Pac-10 and Western Regional with the Ducks finishing second in both.
On the women's side, NCAA automatic qualifiers included Arizona State, Arkansas, BYU, Colorado, Columbia, Florida State, Georgetown, Michigan, Missouri, N.C. State, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Providence, Stanford, Tennessee, Texas, Villanova, and Wake Forest.
Monday's women's at-large team additions included Ball State, Duke, Indiana, Marquette, Michigan State, North Carolina, Northern Arizona, Penn State, Virginia, Washington, William & Mary, Wisconsin, and UCLA.
Altogether, the Pac-10 and West Regional again stood as one of the strongest nationally among Monday's M&W fields. The men's field featured two regional and Pac-10 teams - No. 1 Stanford and No. 6 Oregon - and the women's field included four conference members - No. 2 Stanford, No. 17 Arizona State, No. 21 UCLA and No. 24 Washington.
Among Monday's NCAA men's favorites, No. 1 Stanford looks to avenge a one-point loss (90-91) last season to Colorado and is the overwhelming favorite. No. 2 Arkansas returns four All-Americans from last season, and No. 3 Wisconsin led by sophomore All-American Matt Tegenkamp, featured a three-second gap from its first through fourth runners in Saturday's Great Lakes region win. The men's individual chase could be one of the fastest ever with three of last year's top four back - 2001 champion Boaz Cheboiywo of Eastern Michigan, Jorge Torres (second) of Colorado, and Alistair Cragg (third) of Arkansas - not to mention 1999 NCAA champ David Kimani of Alabama, and Kenyan Kip Kangogo, a BYU sophomore who outkicked Cheboiywo earlier this year in the Roy Griak Invite.
In the women's NCAA team picture, No. 1 BYU has won three of the past team titles (2001, 1999 and 1997), and received 12 of 13 first-place votes in this week's final season poll. No. 2 Stanford featured three of the top five individual placers in their Pre-Nationals race on the same course as the NCAA Championships. Other top-five ranked teams include No. 3 Colorado, the NCAA champion in 2000, No. 4 Wake Forest and No. 5 Notre Dame. Women's individual favorites include Pre-Nationals individual champions Shalane Flanagan of North Carolina and Vicky Gill of Florida State, Stanford's Lauren Fleshman (third last year, and a two-time NCAA outdoor 5K champion), 2002 NCAA 10K champ Kristen Price of N.C. State, and Colorado's Molly Austin.
2002 NCAA Cross Country Championships Fields
Monday, Nov. 25, 2002
Indiana State University
LaVern Gibson Championship Course
Indiana State University
Terre Haute, Ind.
AlabamaArkansasBYU*Butler*Central Michigan*ColoradoColorado State*Eastern MichiganGeorgetownIndiana*IonaIowaMichigan*Michigan State*MinnesotaMontana State*N.C. StateNorthern ArizonaNotre Dame*Ohio State*OregonProvidenceSMUStanfordTennesseeTexas*Texas A&M*VillanovaWeber State*WisconsinWilliam and Mary
* - at-large selection
Arizona StateArkansasBall State*BYUColoradoColumbiaDuke*Florida StateGeorgetownIndiana*Marquette*MichiganMichigan State*MissouriNorth Carolina*N.C. StateNorthern Arizona*NorthwesternNotre DamePenn State*ProvidenceStanfordTennesseeTexasVillanovaVirginia*Washington*Wake ForestWilliam & Mary*Wisconsin*UCLA*
* - at-large selection
Men's Automatic Team Qualifers
Great Lakes: Wisconsin and Eastern MichiganNortheast: Iona and ProvidenceMid-Atlantic: Villanova and GeorgetownMidwest: Iowa and MinnesotaMountain: Northern Arizona and ColoradoSouth: Tennessee and AlabamaSouth Central: Arkansas and SMUSoutheast: N.C. State and William and MaryWest Region: Stanford and Oregon
Men's At-Large Team Qualifiers
Colorado State, MountainBrigham Young, MountainMontana State, MountainWeber State, MountainButler, Great LakesCentral Michigan, Great LakesIndiana, Great LakesMichigan, Great LakesMichigan State, Great LakesNotre Dame, Great LakesOhio State, Great LakesTexas, South CentralTexas A&M, South Central
Men's Automatic Individual Qualifiers
Great Lakes: Jerry Calunch (Miami (OH)), Chris Reis (Cincinnati)
Mid-Atlantic: Todd Witzleben (LaSalle), Dusty Lieb (Pennsylvania), Erick Too (Fairleigh Dickinson), Ryan Sheehan (St. Francis)
Midwest: Christian Goy (Illinois State), Mike Mwangong (Iowa State), Robert Wade (Loyola), James Bowler (Nebraska)
Mountain: Anthony Ford (Montana), Basha Ibrahim (UTEP), Matt Gonzales (New Mexico), Delfino Arevalo (Utah)
Northeast: Tom McArdle (Dartmouth), Jochen Dieckfoss (Boston), Daniel Hocking (New Hampshire), Steve Sundell (Columbia)
South: William Kemey (Belmont), Joep Tigchelaar (Florida State), Gediminas Banevicious (UT-Chattanooga), Andrew Smith (South Florida)
South Central: Westly Keating (Texas-Pan Am), Brent Corbitt (Arkansas-LR), Mike OLaque (Houston), Kyle King (Baylor)
Southeast: Jason Meany (Clemson), Scott Shaw (Clemson), Terah Kipchiris (Coastal Carolina), Chris Williams (Duke)
West: Matt Harriman (Portland), Joseph Duke (ASU), Fasil Bizuneh (ASU), David Jackson (Cal Poly)
Men's At-Large Individual Qualifiers
Mike Altieri (Wake Forest), Jason Bill (Illinois), Mark Manefee (Kansas), Kietil Ramstad (Drake)
Women's Automatic Team Qualifiers
Great Lakes: Notre Dame and MichiganNortheast: Columbia and ProvidenceMid-Atlantic Region: Georgetown and VillanovaMidwest: Missouri and NorthwesternMountain: BYU and ColoradoSouth: Tennessee and Florida StateSouth Central : Arkansas and TexasSoutheast: Wake Forest and N.C. StateWest: Stanford and Arizona State
Women's At-Large Team Qualifiers
Ball State, Great LakesIndiana, Great LakesMarquette, Great LakesMichigan State, Great LakesWisconsin, Great LakesDuke, SoutheastNorth Carolina, SoutheastVirginia, SoutheastWilliam & Mary, SoutheastUCLA, WestWashington, WestPenn State, Mid-AtlanticNorthern Arizona, Mountain
Women's Individual Automatic Qualifiers
Great Lakes: Briana Shook (Toledo), Adriana Zaluka (Akron), Sara Vergote (Toledo), Kim Hemstreet (Detroit-Mercy)
Mid-Atlantic: Megan Metcalfe (West Virginia), Julie Culley (Rutgers), Samia Akbar (American), Maureen McCandless (Pittsburgh)
Midwest: Amy Mortimer (Kansas State), Erin Moffett (DePaul), Marie Nilsson (Oklahoma State), Darja Vasiljeva (Minnesota)
Mountain: Rachael Cuellar (New Mexico State), Katie Yemm (Colorado State), Ariana Lee (Montana State), Jessica Winters (Weber State)
Northeast Region: Kate O'Neill (Yale), Maria Cicero (Boston College), Laura O'Neill (Yale), Jennifer Payne (Stony Brook)
South Region: Christa Benton (South Florida), Catherine Wanyoike (Auburn), Lauren Burks (Georgia), Channon Wommack (UT-Chattanooga)
South Central: Karin Van Rooyen (SMU), Emily Field (SMU), Melissa Gulli (Texas A&M), Meredith Crane (Texas A&M)
Southeast Region: Mollie DeFrancesco (James Madison), Olga Cronin (Western Kentucky), Caity Phillips (Kentucky), Stacey Vidt (Virginia Tech)
West: Carrie Zografos (Oregon), Victoria Chang (Hawaii), Brooke Thomas (USC), Jessica Zarndt (UNLV)
Women's At-Large Individual Qualifiers
Emily Kroshus (Princeton), Jessica Huff (Iowa State)
- www.GoDucks.com -
RELATED NEWS & VIDEOS
TOMORROW | 5:00pm PTLive