Oregon's Vollmer, Washington's Rusnak post historic wins at 2019 Pac-12 Track & Field multis
TUCSON, Ariz. - OREGON's Max Vollmer became only the fourth freshman to win the decathlon, while WASHINGTON's Hannah Rusnak became just the second Husky to win the heptathlon as the Pac-12 Track & Field Combined Events Championships concluded at Arizona's Drachman Stadium on Sunday.
After closest challenger Hakim McMorris of CALIFORNIA narrowed the gap with a win in the 110-meter hurdles to open Sunday's events, Vollmer put the title away with victories in the pole vault, javelin and 1,500-meter run to join former Ducks Tommy Skipper (2004) and Craig Brigham (1973) and Washington's Mike Ramos (1983) as the only freshmen to win the decathlon in Conference history.
It also marks the league-leading 18th all-time Conference decathlon title for Oregon's program, with Vollmer the 10th different Duck to win the event.
The Ulm, Germany native narrowly missed becoming just the sixth decathlete to break 8,000 points at the meet, setting a personal best in the 1,500 (4:34.57) finale to post a PR of 7,964 points - the highest total at the Championships since former Duck Dakotah Keys (8,001) became the most recent to eclipse 8,000 in 2013.
It was an all-freshman podium as McMorris took second with a PR of 7,259 points and COLORADO newcomer Josh Farmer placed third and also set a personal best with 7,089.
Vollmer climbed to third on the NCAA leaderboard behind USC freshman Ayden Owens (8,130) and STANFORD fifth-year Harrison Williams (8,112), while McMorris climbed to 23rd and will have to await other conference championships for a potential fourth Pac-12 decathlon bid to the NCAA Championships June 5-8 at Texas' Myers Stadium.
Behind Vollmer's 10 points and another four from fifth-place junior Dalen Hargett, the Ducks will take 14 points and the team lead into their quest for a 13th consecutive Pac-12 men's title at next weekend's Championships at Drachman Stadium.
Rusnak joined Sonja Forster in 1992 as the only Washington heptathletes to win the Conference crown, finishing with a personal best and UW program record 5,762 points.
Rusnak opened Sunday's competition with a win in the long jump and runner-up finish in the javelin to take a 274-point advantage into the 800-meter run finale. Despite finishing 10th in the 800, Rusnak still managed a 162-point victory over runner-up Maja Wichhart-Donzo of Colorado, who also PR'd at 5,600 points.
Colorado though will take 13 points and the lead in the team standings entering next weekend's Championships with Wichhart-Donzo's second-place showing and fourth place from classmate Michaela Wenning (5,548). Washington will be in second with 10 points behind Rusnak's event victory, while UCLA will sit in third thanks to a podium finish from Christina Chenault in third (5,556).
Rusnak's 5,762 points move her into fourth on the national leaderboard and comfortably secured her spot in the heptathlon field for the NCAA Championships. Chenault, Wenning and Wichhart-Donzo all currently rank in the top 15 and three other Pac-12 heptathletes - Kolbi Sims, UTAH; Skylar Sieben, ARIZONA; Saskia McNairy, OREGON STATE - climbed into the top 24 and will await their national's fate.
For the second time in event history, both days of the Championships will be televised live on Pac-12 Network. Saturday's coverage will begin at 7:30 p.m. PT and Sunday's broadcast starts at 6 p.m. PT.
1. Max Vollmer, ORE - 7,964
2. Hakim McMorris, CAL - 7,259
3. Josh Farmer, COLO - 7,089
4. Parker Kennedy, WASH - 6,872
5. Dalen Hargett, ORE - 6,827
6. Ray Littles, WSU - 6,772
7. Dominic Gehr, ARIZ - 6,400
8. Wyatt Rhoads, COLO - 6,172
9. Gregory Fernandez, ASU - 5,987
10. Mohammad Almarhoun, ARIZ - 5,822
11. Tyler Brendel, CAL - DNF
MEN'S TEAM STANDINGS (Thru Decathlon)
1. Oregon - 14
2. California - 8
3. Colorado - 7
4. Washington - 5
5. Washington State - 3
6. Arizona - 2
7. Arizona State - 0
Stanford - 0
UCLA - 0
USC - 0
1. Hannah Rusnak, WASH - 5,762
2. Maja Wichhart-Donzo, COLO - 5,600
3. Christina Chenault, UCLA - 5,556
4. Michaela Wenning, COLO - 5,548
5. Kolbi Sims, UTAH - 5,477
6. Skylar Sieben, ARIZ - 5,383
7. Saskia McNairy, OSU - 5,379
8. Keira McCarrell, ORE - 5,118
9. Isa Vedelar, UCLA - 5,043
10. Lindsay Schauble, WSU - 5,028
11. Allie Jones, STAN - 4,980
12. Drianna Mustin, COLO - 4,824
13. Claire Corbitt, OSU - 4,628
14. Elinor Jones Toutant, WASH - 4,574
WOMEN'S TEAM STANDINGS (Thru Heptathlon)
1. Colorado - 13
2. Washington - 10
3. UCLA - 6
4. Utah - 4
5. Arizona - 3
6. Oregon State - 2
7. Oregon - 1
8. Arizona State - 0
California - 0
Stanford - 0
USC - 0
Washington State - 0