Duck Men Sweep Top Six Spots, Women Take Top Two at Pre

EUGENE, Ore. – The Oregon men’s team swept the top six spots while the Oregon women claimed the top two places in the season-opening Pre’s Trail Run before an enthusiastic crowd Thursday evening at Alton Baker Park.

"It was good to get out and run in front of a great crowd who came out to welcome the teams back and help us open our season," said Associate Athletic Director Vin Lananna. "It’s always special to run on Pre’s Trail and our thanks goes out to Portland State and Oregon State for coming down and being a part of this meet."

The defending NCAA Champion men led from the gun, with senior Chris Winter pacing a pack of four Ducks who crossed the line together. Winter, a senior from North Vancouver, B.C., got the win by covering the 7,000 meter course in 22:29.44.

"It was just good to get out and run, especially after sitting out last fall," said Winter, who redshirted the 2007 cross country season. "I didn’t even know I won, and it’s really not that important to me. It’s all about where the team finishes."

Crossing the line four abreast with Winter, and officially less than half-a-second behind him, were sophomore Isaac Stoutenburgh (22:29.73), sophomore Eric Dettman (22:29.91) and junior All-American Daniel Mercado (22:30.07). Sophomore Kevin McNally was the fifth Duck to the finish line in 22:36.90, while sophomore Matt Dettman completed the sweep with a sixth place finish in 22:45.31.

In team scoring, the Duck men defeated Portland State 15-48. Nathan Endicott was the Vikings’ top finisher, taking seventh in 22:47.42.

In the women’s race, a pair of Oregon rookies took the top two spots.

Senior Melissa Grelli grabbed the lead early and never relinquished it as the All-America transfer from Georgetown finished the 4,850 meter course in 16:25.50.

"I felt good from the beginning and just went with it," said Grelli, who was nearly overwhelmed by the fan turnout for Thursday’s race. "I can’t believe how many people came out to watch us run and they were cheering for us every lap and that really got me fired up. They told me Oregon has great crowds, but wow."

"It’s been such a great experience coming here," she said. "From day one, everyone has made me feel so welcome."

Finishing second for Oregon was senior Mattie Bridgmon. The transfer from Eastern Washington came across the line in 17:01.06, seven seconds better than Oregon State’s Casey Masterson (17:08.29). Oregon sophomore Betsy Bies was sixth in 17:39.12, while fellow sophomore Hayley Belli was ninth in 17:51.71.

In the dual meet team scoring, Oregon and Oregon State tied 28-28, Oregon defeated Portland State 15-47 and the Beavers beat the Vikings 15-50.

In addition to Masters, OSU got a fourth-place finish from Hayley Oveson (17:24.62) and a fifth-place finish from Sylvia Veal (17:33.18).

The Oregon teams now head to their fall training camp in Sunriver, Ore., before returning for their next home meet, the Bill Dellinger Invitational on Oct. 4 at Springfield Country Club. The UO men will actually run at Stanford the week prior to the Dellinger meet.