Oregon track and field lead Pac-12 Championships after first day

Posted by Christopher Keizur on Saturday, May. 17 at 7:24 pm.

During a day full of track preliminary heats, it was the field events that shined for Oregon during day one of the Pac-12 Championships at Mooberry Track in Pullman, Wash.

After the first day, the Oregon men lead with 70.25 points while the women lead with 64.

The highlight for Oregon came via Jenna Prandini. The sophomore, usually known for dominating the sprints, looked impressive in the women’s long jump.

Prandini was able to win the event with a jump of 20-11.25, a personal record as well as a tie for the third best mark in Oregon history.

“I went in confident and I just really wanted to score some points for the team,” Prandini said of her victory in the long jump. “I’m not surprised with what I jumped, I’ve been able to do it in practice and it was a matter of me putting it together at the meet.”

Now Prandini will focus on Sunday when she competes in four events on the track.

“I feel good,” Prandini said. “We’ve had a lot of hard training weeks coming into this, so I feel really good after this. It wasn’t too bad of a day.”

The men’s hammer throw answered one of Oregon’s biggest questions coming into the meet. Greg Skipper competed for Oregon after some concern as to whether injuries would keep him out. He looked to be healthy Saturday, en route to a second place finish. His best throw of the day was 225-2.

“I was happy with the series,” Skipper said. “I wanted something bigger, but it is what it is. I’m glad I was able to get some points for the team.”

Four women competed in the javelin for Oregon, with three recording scoring marks on the day. Liz Brenner finished third (160-10), Haley Crouser fourth (157-3) and Rachel Sherrell seventh (152-11).

Returning to Pullman was Dakotah Keys, who is coming into the weekend on the heels of his third straight Pac-12 Championship in the decathlon. He joined teammate Sam Crouser in the javelin. Crouser won the event (247-7) while Keys finished 10th (179-5).

“It was pretty special getting that third one today,” Crouser said. “Especially getting to help out the team get extra points and hopefully get another Pac-12 title.”

During the competition Crouser had to deal with a pain in his right patella that prevented him from throwing to his full potential.

“I hurt it about three weeks ago and it’s just been really aggravating,” Crouser said. “It was really hard to get into the throws and turn that right knee.”

Oregon freshman Brittany Mann finished second, crushing the school record along the way. Her throw of 55-5 gives her a comfortable cushion over previous record holder Bree Fuqua’s mark of 53-11.25 set in 2005.

“Coach got more excited than I did, because I wasn’t exactly sure how far it was,” Mann said of her record mark. “When coach screams you know it is a good throw.”

Oregon’s Trevor Ferguson finished second in the long jump with a final mark of 24-9.75. He placed behind California senior Hammed Suleman who had a final jump of 26-0.75.

Colorado’s Shalaya Kipp, who came into the meet ranked second in the world this year, won the women’s 3000 steeplechase. She finished with a time of 10:04.19. Oregon’s Megan Patrignelli finished second with a time of 10:14.62.

On the men’s side Oregon junior Tanguy Pepiot finished fifth (9:06.22) after leading for most of the race.

The final two events of the day were the men and women’s 10,000. Both events had Oregon athletes finish in scoring positions. For the men Parker Stinson, who was the favorite heading into the event, finished second (29:18.33). Freshman Maggie Schmaedick had the top finish for the women, finishing fifth (34:55.51).

Click here for a full list of results from the meet.

The Pac-12 Championships will conclude Sunday.

Follow Christopher Keizur on Twitter @chriskeizur