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Ducks Sweep (Technically?) As Records Fall at Pepsi Invite

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Women sprinters obliterate the record books en route to team title.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Oregon men's and women's track teams nearly outright swept the Pepsi Invite Saturday, with a dominating performance put forth by both sprint units. Alaysha Johnson and Ariana Washington led the women Ducks to a team title, both winners of multiple events. Johnson clocked a meet-record 13.06 in the 100 hurdles, while also running the lead leg for the victorious 4x400 relay in yet another meet-record 3:32.07.

Washington claimed hardware in both the 100 and 4x100 meter relay with a meet-record 11.34 dash before teaming up with Hannah Cunliffe, Jasmine Todd and Deajah Stevens for another record-breaking performance of 42.88. The Ducks were also able to get a 400 meter win out of Ashante Horsley in 54.67, narrowly defeating USC standout Cameron Pettigrew.

On the men's side, Devon Allen was a force to be reckoned with. Allen took both hurdles events, winning the 110 meter hurdles in a meet-record time of 13.40, nearly a full second ahead of the next finisher. The 400 hurdles were a tighter race with Allen edging out Duck teammate Ben Thiel in 52.25. Allen continued his exhausting day by competing on both relay teams, namely the victorious 4x100 team featuring Duck football players Kirk Merritt and Tony Brooks-James. Anchor Marcus Chambers contributed a solo victory in the 400 meters (46.82). Greg Skipper rounded out the scoring with a 224 feet, 10 inch hammer toss.

In an otherwise stellar day, disappointment came in the least likely of places. Edward Cheserek was upset by Washington's Colby Gilbert in the men's 5,000. Cheserek finished second in 13:50.82.

The myriad of great performances wasn't enough to propel the men to victory as they tied Penn State. Nittany Lion sprinter Xavier Smith's 100/200 double victory combined with a 4x400 relay win left the score knotted at 181.5.

The meet served as a great gauge of how this team will fare post-season wise, considering this marked one of the only meets where the entire team will compete. Next week gets complicated as the Ducks will send some athletes to the Mt. Sac Relays while the rest will stay at home to host the Oregon Relays. Both meets get underway Thursday, April 14.