Eaton sets collegiate record in heptathlon
A slew of NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships provisional and automatic qualifying marks was headlined in grand fashion by Ashton Eaton, who set an NCAA record in the heptathlon over Friday and Saturday at the Texas A&M Challenge.
Eaton set personal bests in the first three events of the competition (60-meter dash, long jump and shot put) en route to 6,256 points, ahead of former Texas star Trey Hardee’s 6,208 points recorded in 2006. Eaton’s score is the fifth-best by an American athlete in the heptathlon.
Oregon’s Brianne Theisen made it a multi-events sweep for the Ducks after winning four of the five pentathlon events Friday, posting an automatic-qualifying 4,198 points on Friday.
The Ducks followed those performances up with a pair of distance medley relay automatic qualifiers. Jordan Hasay (1,200 meters), Keshia Baker (400 meters), Anne Kesselring (800 meters) and Nicole Blood (1,600 meters) combined on a 10:59.64 finish, the fastest in Oregon history and the fifth-fastest in collegiate history. The quartet of Mac Fleet (1,200m), Chad Barlow (400m), Elijah Greer (800m) and A.J. Acosta (1,600m) won the relay in 9:29.82, the third-fastest time in school history.
The Oregon men and women followed up with strong performances across the board on Saturday. Amber Purvis and Keshia Baker combined to produce three school records for the Ducks, with Purvis finishing second in the 60m dash (7.33) and Baker winning the 400m (52.79). Both women joined forces with Michele Williams and Jamesha Youngblood to set the 4×400-meter relay school record of 3:36.16, the winning time in the event and an NCAA provisional time.
Nicole Blood recorded the only other NCAA automatic mark after Eaton on Saturday, winning the 3,000 meters in 9:12.54. In all, 11 provisional qualifying marks were set by Oregon athletes, including two each in three separate events.
One of those provisional marks belongs to freshman Jordan Hasay, who made her indoor debut in an Oregon uniform by posting a 4:38.48 mile. The race-winning time was the best by a Duck in 28 years, just five seconds off Leann Warren’s school record.
In the meet scoring, the Big 12 Conference (Baylor, Texas, Texas A&M) took home both the men’s and women’s trophies, with the Pacific-10 Conference (Oregon, Stanford, Washington State) finishing second both times.
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