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Outdoor season to open.

Byline: Curtis Anderson The Register-Guard

The annual Oregon Preview will open the 2007 outdoor track and field season at Hayward Field on Saturday.

TRACK AND FIELD

The meet is scheduled to begin at 11:15 a.m.

This week's theme is `meet the Ducks,' with UO athletes greeting people at the entrance gates and also signing autographs from 1-2 p.m. during the meet and after the competition has concluded.

UO director of track and field Vin Lananna said nearly everyone on the UO roster would compete on Saturday.

The most notable exceptions are senior pole vaulter Tommy Skipper, who is still nursing a calf injury, and junior Galen Rupp, who is recovering from a double in the 5,000 and 3,000 at the NCAA Indoor Championships this past weekend.

`The kids are all in good shape,' Lananna said. `We'll treat this as an opportunity to get the cobwebs off, but a lot of our athletes are really quite interested and intrigued about getting going.'

One group to keep an eye on is the UO women's 4x400 relay with junior transfer Kavina Hall, sophomores Rebekah Noble and Leah Worthen and freshman Keshia Baker. They set the UO indoor mark of 3 minutes, 37.64 seconds this year, only a few seconds shy of the 1995 outdoor record of 3:33.11.

A group of Oregon Track Club Elite runners also plan to compete: Brandon Shaw and Sean O'Brien in the 800, Sean Graham and Elliott Blount in the 1,500, Tom Brooks in the 3,000 and Cack Ferrell in the women's 3,000.

Runners planning

to make Kenya trip

Ferrell and UO freshman Kenny Klotz are still planning to represent the U.S. at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Mombasa, Kenya on March 24.

Jordan Hasay, a 15-year-old from California, withdrew from the women's junior team last week after the U.S. Embassy issued a statement about the possibility of terrorist threats at the meet.

In the statement, the U.S. Embassy said it `was aware of public statements by leaders of Kenya's Coastal Muslim community threatening to disrupt, through unspecified means, the World Cross Country Championship if the government of Kenya does not satisfy various demands.'

OTC Elite coach Frank Gagliano confirmed Monday that Ferrell was still planning to compete in Kenya, while UO director of track and field Vin Lananna said: `At this point, I have no reason to believe that (Kenny) is not going.'

Former Ducks clears

Olympic Trials mark

Former UO standout Kyley Johnson cleared a lifetime best of 7 feet, 3 1/4 inches in the high jump at the Husky Indoor meet in Seattle recently to qualify for the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials at Hayward Field.

Johnson, who won a Pac-10 high jump title for the Ducks in 1998 and competes for Team XO, cleared that height on his first attempt. He followed that effort with three narrow misses at 7-4 1/4 .

`This has been my career goal ever since I started high jumping in high school,' said Johnson, a North Valley graduate from Grants Pass.

`To finally achieve it and get a chance to compete at the Olympic Trials is a dream come true.'

Register-Guard reporter

wins 50-kilometer race

Lewis Taylor, features reporter for The Register-Guard, took first place out of a field of 450 competitors in the Way Too Cool 50K in Cool, Calif., on Saturday.

Taylor's winning time, 3 hours and 41 minutes, earned him a spot in the Western States Endurance Run, a 100-mile race on June 23.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Mar 13, 2007
Words:594
Previous Article:SPORTS BRIEFLY.
Next Article:Pac-10 sends four teams to tourney.


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