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Oregon’s Cheserek a back-to-back champion

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Edward Cheserek pulled clear of the field with 2,000 meters remaining and sprinted home to win the NCAA Men’s Cross Country title Saturday at the LaVern Gipson Championship Course.

The sophomore from Newark, N.J., won his second consecutive NCAA title, joining Steve Prefontaine (1970-71) as the only Ducks to accomplish that lofty feat, covering the 10,000 meter course in 30:19.4

The Oregon men and women both finished sixth in the final team standings.

Cheserek and Jenkins were among a massive lead pack that stayed together for the first 7,000 meters. The field finally began to string out after Cheserek jumped to lead with 2,000 meters to go. Jenkins was in the top 10 rounding the last curve, and then the senior sprinted up the final hill to clip a number of runners, including Northern Arizona’s Futsum Zienasellassie at the line, to give the Ducks an impressive 1-2 finish. Jenkins finished in 30:23.2, with Zienasellassie at 30:25.3.

Oregon also had solid showings from seniors Tanguy Pepiot, who was 47th in 31:09.9, and Daniel Winn, who was 60th in 31:11.1.

Colorado won with 65 points, followed by Stanford with 98, Portland with 175, Northern Arizona with 188, Syracuse with 206 and Oregon with 221.

As they have done all season, the Ducks women ran well as a pack, with just a 10 seconds spread between their first and sixth runners, to finish sixth with 249 points.

Michigan State, which won the season-opening Bill Dellinger Invitational, won the 2014 title with 147 points, followed by Iowa State with 147, New Mexico with 188, Georgetown with 189 and Arkansas with 209 to round out the top five.

Freshman Alli Cash was the first Duck to cross the finish line, taking 59th in 20:56.4. Junior Waverly Neer was 62nd in 20:57.0, followed by senior Megan Patrignelli in 64th (20:58.3), junior Molly Grabill 77th (21:05.4), freshman Frida Berge 79th (21:06.2) and junior Annie Leblanc 82nd (21:06.5).