By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications, (503) 370-6110
CHICO, Calif. -- Led by a pair of second place finishes from Hope Duenas (So., Covina, CA/Covina HS) and two more from Keaton Beckmann (Fr., Salem, OR/Sprague HS) the Willamette University track and field teams earned second place or third place in eight events at the Chico State Invitational on Saturday, March 10. Duenas placed second in the women's discus throw and the women's hammer throw, while Beckmann earned second place in the men's long jump and the men's 400-meter dash. Hannah Swanson (Sr., Seattle, WA/Roosevelt HS) took second place for the Bearcats in the women's 1,500-meter run.
Swanson also grabbed third place in the women's 800-meter run. Bridgette Peirce (Sr., Reno, NV/Earl Wooster HS) was third in the women's 400-meter dash. Jewell Sparks (Sr., San Francisco, CA/Lick Wilmerding HS) earned third place in the women's 400-meter hurdles.
Duenas took second in the women's discus with a top throw of 130' 1". She was less than one foot out of first place, which went to Melissa Favorite from De Anza College (Calif.) with a toss of 131' 0". In the women's hammer, Duenas was second at 142' 10".
Beckmann finished second in the men's long jump with a top mark of 22' 9". First place went to Zach Beltz from Southern Oregon University with a leap of 23' 8.25". Beckmann registered a time of 51.06 seconds to place second in the men's 400-meter dash. Travis Thoma of Oregon Institute of Technology won the 400 in 49.97 seconds. Two other Bearcats place in the top nine out of 41 runners in the 400. Jack Wellman (Sr., Alameda, CA/Alameda HS) was fifth in 51.32 seconds and Connor Giannini (So., Veradale, WA/Gonzaga Prep.) placed ninth at 51.69 seconds.
Beckmann's strong day began with the men's 110-meter hurdles, as he took sixth place in the prelims with a time of 16.43 seconds. He did not compete in the finals and was eighth overall.
Swanson registered a time of 4:40.94 to take second in the women's 1,500-meter run. She dropped three seconds from her time at the Willamette Opener a week ago. The winner of the race on Saturday was Alex Burkhart from Chico State in 4:38.47. Swanson placed third in the women's 800-meter run in 2:20.97.
In the women's 400-meter dash, Peirce placed third in 1:01.22, just 0.30 out of first place. Sherise Robinson from Hartnell College (Calif.) won the 400 in 1:00.92.
Sparks achieved third in the women's 400-meter hurdles. Her time was 1:05.26.
Other Top Performances for the Bearcats
Saige Swan (So., Crescent City, CA/Del Norte HS) was fifth in the men's shot put and took sixth in the men's discus. Swan's top distance in the shot put was 46' 7.50". His best throw in the discus went 148' 4"
Elijah Hall-Crockett (So., Phoenix, AZ/Cesar Chavez HS) tied for fifth in the men's high jump after clearing 6' 1.25". He was ninth in the triple jump with a top mark of 42' 2.25".
Swanson was one of three Bearcats in the top nine in the women's 800-meter run. In addition to Swanson's third place finish, Grace Crookham-Guy (Fr., Boise, ID/Boise HS) was sixth in 2:24.04 and Hazel Carr (Jr., Seattle, WA/The Northwest School) was ninth in 2:27.00.
Isabel Solano (So./Fr., Newport, OR/Newport HS) placed ninth in the women's 400-meter run with a time of 1:04.04.
Josh Martin (So., Medford, OR/St. Mary's School) was seventh in the men's hammer throw. His top distance was 143' 0".
Sparks competed for the Bearcats in the women's 100-meter dash for the first time. She was timed at 13.15 seconds and placed 10th out of 38 runners.
Brian Peck (So., Reno, NV/Reno HS) was 10th in the men's 110-meter hurdles with a time of 16.83 seconds.