Rupp and many other at US championships

There will be a large contingent of current and former Oregon collegiate athletes at the US championships. The top three competitors with World Championship "A" qualifying marks will be qualified to compete at the World Championships in Osaka, Japan in the month of August. Especially interesting is the chance for Galen Rupp to qualify for the World Championships.

Galen Rupp is one of the top two current US 10,000 meter runners. His run of 27:33.48 at the Cardinal Invitational put him seventh on the all-time US list and he has the second best mark of US athletes this year and the second best personal record of any athlete in the meet. At the Cardinal Invitational he defeated last year's US champion, Jorge Torres, fourth placer Anthony Famiglietti, 5k sixth placer Ed Moran, former NCAA champions Irishman Alistair Cragg (Arkansas), Torres (Colorado – Cross Country), Alan Culpepper (Colorado – 5k), and Josh Rohatinsky (BYU – XC).

After his performance at the Cardinal Invite he put in heavy mileage to make certain he was still strong for US and World Championships. His impressive double at Pac-10 (wins at 5k and 10k) and win at the West Regional 5k showed he was still in great shape. The coaching team's (Vin Lanana and Alberto Salazar) decision to not have him double at the NCAA meet and wait for a long kick in the 10k allowed him to not be as worn out as if he had doubled or made an extended push to defeat the competition in the 10k. He should be prepared to compete for a championship here.

His competition will include the aforementioned Torres, the defending champion, two–time US champ (2001 and 2005) Abdi Abdirahman, 2005 NCAA 5k champ Ryan Hall, Dathan Ritzenhein – ranked tenth all-time in the US, and Culpepper. Abdirahman has the fastest US time this year at 27:31.46 and has experience in two World championships ('01 and '05) and the 2004 Olympics. Torres has steadily improved every year and pr'd behind Rupp at the Cardinal Invitational at 27:42.91 (fifth). Ryan Hall recently had the best debut ever for an American in the Marathon at 2:08.24 in the London Marathon after last fall setting a road American record in the 20k. The favorite, Dathan Ritzenhein, has had injury problems off and on but is considered the most talented of the post-collegians. Ritzenhein held the American Collegiate record (27:38.50 - 2004) until Rupp broke it and recently defeated Prefontaine two-mile champion Craig Mottram in a road 10k. Also entered is Dan Brown, 2004 Olympian in the 10k and Marathon, ex-Duck all-American Jason Hartmann.

Nick Symmonds of Oregon Track Club Elite is on a role the last year. He was second in the US championships last year, won the US indoor championship, and beat a championship field at the Prefontaine meet. The seven-time NCAA Division III champion at Willamette University in Salem has burst onto the US scene and turned heads by meet promoters. He will be the underdog to two-time defending champion (three times overall) Khadevis Robinson. An interesting story is the comeback of Jonathan Johnson, the 2004 Olympic trials champ and Olympic Games semifinalist. If he is back to form he will be tough to beat. Also entered are a bevy of OTC Elite runners – Kevin Elliot, Elliot Blount, Brandon Shaw, and nine-time Duck all-American Matt Scherer. Expected to make a splash at this meet is two time NCAA champ Ryan Brown (he had an inflamed nerve to his foot at the NCAA meet).

Other expected Ducks include Brittney Henry in the Hammer throw, seventh in this meet last year, Rachel Yurkovich in the javelin, fifth at this meet last year, Rebekah Noble, the US junior champ last year in the 800 now running in the senior event, Ashley McCrea in the Javelin Throw, possibly AJ Acosta, Mike McGrath, and Scott Wall in the 1500, Tommy Skipper in the Pole Vault, Brian Richotte in the Hammer Throw, Ryan Brandel in the Javelin Throw,

Ex-Oregon or Washington related male athletes include Alex McClary in the 800, Chris Lukezic in the 1500, Sean O'Brien, John Jefferson and his brother Sean of OTC elite and Jordan McNamara from Lane Community College in the 1500, Adam Goucher, Ian Dobson, Jonathon Riley, and Sean O'Brien in the 5,000, Eric Mitchum in the 110 hur, Carl Moe of Washington and Kyle Alcorn in the Steeplechase, Jesse Williams and Kyley Johnson in the high jump, Brad Walker in the Pole Vault, Norris Frederick of Washington in the Long Jump, Jarred Rome and Ian Waltz will have a huge battle in the Discus throw, Tom Pappas in the Decathlon.

Female athletes with local ties include Nicole Teter of OTC elite in the 800, Brianna Felnagle of North Carolina in the 1500, Kara Goucher, Lauren Fleshman, Sara Slattery, and Cack Ferrell of OTC elite in the 5k, Kara Goucher and Sara Slattery in the 10k, Ashley Lodree in the 100 hurdles, Kelly Strong and Jane Rudkin in the Steeplechase, Nicole McEwen and Becky Holliday in the Pole Vault, Grace Upshaw in the Long Jump, Simidele Adeagbo in the Triple Jump, Loree Smith of NYAC, Brittany Hinchcliffe and Cari Soong of Team XO in the Hammer throw, Jeeni Schantin and Mallory Webb in the Javelin Throw, one of the favorites Diana Pickler in the Heptathlon and her sister Julie.

In the last few years there have been a handful of University of Oregon junior athletes at this meet. This year there will be a large number of representatives. On the men's side Ashton Eaton and AJ Acosta are the Oregon headliners. Eaton was the Pac-10 runner-up who just missed an NCAA spot will try to get a US junior championship and continue to hone his skills in the high hurdles, throws and jumps in preparation for next season. AJ Acosta will try to defend his championship from last year and get a try to Sao Paolo, Brazil for the PanAm junior championships. Marshall Ackley is also trying to gain experience after missing much of fall and winter due to injury and illness. Ryan Waite is competing in the 800, Matthew Dettman is entered in the 1500, Eric Dettman, Isaac Stoutenburgh, Kenny Klotz, (doubling?) AJ Acosta and Matt Dettman are entered in the 5,000 (Oregon could go 1-3 in this race), also possibly doubling are Isaac Stoutenburgh and Kenny Klotz in the 10,000 (possible 1-2), Ashton Eaton in the long jump,.

Junior male athletes with interesting Oregon or Washington college (or potential college) or high school connections at the US Junior meet: Ryan Bailey of McKay in the 100 and 200, Chase Dalton of Tigard in the junior Decathlon and javelin (6900+ with hs implements – going to BYU), Michael Chinchar of Federal Way, Matthew Centrowitz, and Nathan Mathabane in the 1500, Alex Crabill of UCLA in the 5k, Scott Roth of Washington in the pole vault, Korion Morris of Arizona and Cameron Elisara in the Shot Put, Morris in the Discus, and Jordan Stray in the hammer throw.

On the women's side there will be fewer Oregon representatives. Melissa Owens of Portland State will run in the 800 and 1500, Jessica Pixler of Seattle Pacific in the 1500, Nicole Blood of Oregon in the 3000 and 5000, Ilsa Paulson in the 5,000, Jamesha Youngblood in the 400 hurdles, long jump and triple jump, Melissa Gergel in the pole vault, Katherine Tripp of Concordia in the Shot Put and Discus Throw, Gabriella Midles in the hammer throw, Amanda Peterson and Stephanie Ralls in the Javelin Throw

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