Pac-10 Track and Field Honors Announced

June 22, 2009

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WALNUT CREEK, Calif. -- Galen Rupp of OREGON was named the Pacific-10 Conference Men's Track Athlete of the Year, while Duck teammate Ashton Eaton collected Pac-10 Men's Field Athlete of the Year honors. Charonda Williams of ARIZONA STATE was tabbed Pac-10 Women's Track Athlete of the Year, while Sun Devil teammate Sarah Stevens was named Pac-10 Women's Field Athlete of the Year, Commissioner Tom Hansen announced today.

Oregon's Matthew Centrowitz was tabbed the Pac-10 Men's Track and Field Newcomer of the Year, while WASHINGTON's Mel Lawrence was named Pac-10 Women's Track and Field Newcomer of the Year.

Also announced were the Conference Coach of the Year honors. OREGON's Vin Lananna garnered both men's and women's Coach of the Year honors.

Lananna guided the Oregon men and women to the Pac-10 titles. Oregon becomes the second Pac-10 school to sweep both titles, joining UCLA which accomplished the feat eight times (1987-89, 1993-95, 1998, 2004). For the men, it was the school's fifth in seven years, and tenth overall. The Ducks posted 158 points to distance themselves from second-place finisher USC (117) and collected six individual titles in the process. The men went on to finish in a tie for second at the NCAA Championships, coming up two points shy of national champion Texas A&M (48-46), while collecting four individual titles.

On the women's side, Lananna led the Ducks to their third Pac-10 crown, and first since 1981. Oregon tallied 165.50 points to edge Stanford (138). The Oregon women collected seven individual titles at the Pac-10 Championships. At the NCAA Championships, like the men, Oregon finished second to Texas A&M (50-43) and had two individual champions.

Rupp, a senior from Portland, Ore., closed out his storied collegiate career by capturing NCAA titles in both the 5,000 meters (14:04.12) and the 10,000 meters (28:21.45) at the NCAA Championships. At the Pac-10 Championships, Rupp captured the Pac-10 crown at 10,000 meters (29:01.93) and then finished second in an Oregon 1-2-3 finish in 1,500 meters. It marks the fourth time a Duck has been named Pac-10 Track Athlete of the Year, and the first since Joaquim Cruz in 1984. Rupp concludes his collegiate career as a 14-time All-American.

Eaton, a junior from Bend, Ore., successfully defended his decathlon title at the Pac-10 Championships (8,091 points) and at the NCAA Championships (8,241 points). Eaton becomes the second Oregon student-athlete to earn Pac-10 Field Athlete of the Year honors, joining former Duck Tommy Skipper who earned the honor in 2006.

Rupp and Eaton were recently named the NCAA Division I Men's Track Athlete and Field Athlete of the Year, respectively, by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.

Williams, a senior from Richmond, Calif., successfully defended her Pac-10 titles at 100 meters (11.14) and 200 meters (23.05), becoming the first woman in Pac-10 history to defend her titles in both events. At the 2009 NCAA Championships, Williams finished sixth in the 100 meters (11.37) and second in the 200 meters (22.84 - an Arizona State school record).

Stevens, a senior from Ft. Collins, Colo., turned in an impressive performance at the Pac-10 Championships with titles in the shot put (17.32m/56-10) and discus throw (57.21m/187-08), followed by a second-place finish in the hammer throw (63.92m/209-08). At the NCAA Championships, Stevens picked up a pair of second-place finishes in the shot put (17.58m/57-08.25) and discus throw (53.98m/177-01).

Centrowitz, a redshirt freshman from Arnold, Md., won the 1,500 meters at the Pac-10 Championships (3:51.00). He was the first Duck to capture the Pac-10 title at that distance since Dub Myers in 1986. On May 2 at the Payton Jordan Invitational, he ran the fastest 1,500 meter time in the nation this season, 3:36.92. It was third-fastest in school history, trailing only Joaquim Cruz (3:36.48 in 1984) and his father Matt (3:36.70 in 1976). The time ranks fifth all-time in Pac-10 history and seventh all-time in NCAA history. It's the fourth time in 10 years that an Oregon student-athlete has earned Pac-10 Men's Newcomer of the Year honors.

Lawrence, a redshirt freshman from Reno, Nev., captured the 3,000-meter steeplechase crown at the Pac-10 Championships with a time of 9:54.13, took top honors at the NCAA West Regionals with a time of 9:52.77, then went on to finish third at the NCAA Championships with a Pac-10 record time of 9:40.98.

The honors were decided by a vote of the Conference's track and field coaches.

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