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Field Efforts Highlight Day One in Corvallis

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EUGENE, Ore. – The Oregon track and field team recorded six personal bests and four top-three finishes including a win Friday at the OSU High Performance in Corvallis, Ore. For the third time this year, Kiana Phelps won the discus while Austin Tharp finished second overall—first among collegians—in the men’s hammer.
 
Competition at the High Performance meet resumes Saturday at 11 a.m. (PT) with the women’s javelin. The Ducks also have a contingent of sprinters in Tucson, Ariz., for the Desert Heat Classic with running events slated to begin at 5:40 p.m.
 
Phelps led a 1-3 UO finish in the women’s discus with freshman teammate Christalee Kirby in third place. All five of Phelps’ legal marks would have won the competition but she ended the day with a best of 52.70m/172-10 in the sixth round. Kirby established a personal best of 46.97m/154-1 with her attempt in the fifth round, surpassing her previous best by nearly four feet.
 
In the fifth round of the men’s hammer, Tharp got out to a new lifetime best of 60.41m/198-2 to solidify a runner-up position. He finished only behind Brock Eager (69.83m/229-1) from Ironwood TC. Tharp, five feet clear of the other collegiate entries, entered the weekend with a best of 59.44m/195-0 from the Hayward Premiere (April 2).
 
Lucas Ribeiro (52.60m/172-7) finished third in the men’s discus. Two of the Ducks’ four entries in the event tallied personal bests Friday with Travis Brewster Jr. at 49.85m/163-6 and multi-eventer Nathan Poff at 36.29m/119-0.
 
Notable: Kirby began her day with a PR of 46.98m/154-1 in the hammer, adding nearly 16 feet to her mark from the West Coast Classic … for a third-consecutive result, Meagan Kiefer (3.53m/11-7) had a personal-best clearance in the pole vault … Francesca Ierulli ran 10:35.01 in her career debut in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
 
OSU High Performance | Day 1 Results
MEN
Pole Vault
5. J Kai Yamafuji – 4.59m/15-0.75
 
Long Jump
8. Nathan Poff – 6.71m/22-0.25
 
Discus
3. Lucas Ribeiro – 52.60m/172-7
8. Travis Brewster Jr. – 49.85m/163-6 (PR)
19. Jett Kinder – 38.94m/127-9
22. Nathan Poff – 36.29m/119-0 (PR)
 
Hammer
2. Austin Tharp – 60.41m/198-2 (PR)
7. Jared Briere – 53.99m/177-1
 
WOMEN
5,000 Meters / invitational
16. Caramia Mestler – 16:36.46
 
3,000m Steeplechase / invitational
8. Francesca Ierulli – 10:35.01
 
Pole Vault
7. Meagan Kiefer – 3.53m/11-7 (PR)
 
Long Jump
20. Taylor Chocek – 4.74m/15-6.75
 
Discus
1. Kiana Phelps – 52.70m/172-10
3. Christalee Kirby – 46.97m/154-1 (PR)
 
Hammer
13. Christalee Kirby – 46.98m/154-1 (PR)
 
For more news and information about Oregon Track and Field, follow @OregonTF on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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Ducks Open Series with Extra-Inning Win

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TEMPE, Ariz. – After losing an early lead, Oregon responded by scoring single runs in the sixth and ninth innings to open a big series at No. 12 Arizona State with a 6-5 win in extra innings Friday at Farrington Stadium.
 
Allee Bunker paced the offense by driving in four runs, including the tying run, while Makenna Kliethermes and Raegan Breedlove combined for six innings of one-run relief while allowing just two hits and striking out five.
 
How it Happened: Terra McGowan led off the ninth inning with a single to right field before being sacrificed over to second base. After a pop up, Rachel Cid legged out an infield single to bring up Mya Felder with two outs. Felder hit a first-pitch grounder to shortstop that was booted, allowing McGowan to score from third and make it 6-5.
 
Breedlove came out of the bullpen to start the bottom of the ninth and got the first two batters she faced before hitting the next to put a runner at first with two outs. She came right back and pounded the zone, getting the batter to ground out to end the game.
 
Bunker put the Ducks in front right off the bat, blasting a two-run shot out to left field two batters in to score Haley Cruse, who led off with a single. Shaye Bowden added to the lead with a homer to left field to start the second inning, before Bunker again delivered with an RBI single to make it 4-0, Ducks.
 
The Sun Devils (28-12, 9-7 Pac-12) struck for five runs in the fourth inning to take the lead. Maddi Hackbarth led off the inning with a homer before Makenna Harper hit a three-run shot to chase Oregon starter Brooke Yanez. ASU added another solo homer off Kliethermes to go in front, 5-4.
 
The Ducks (31-10, 9-7 Pac-12) answered with a run in the sixth inning to tie things up at five. Bowden led off the inning with a single before pinch-runner Hannah Galey moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and to third on a flyout. Bunker came up with two outs and delivered once again by dropping a single down the right field line to score Galey.
 
Kliethermes (7-4) worked out of some trouble in the seventh and eighth innings. She stranded a one-out double in the seventh to send it to extras before working around a leadoff walk in the eighth with a couple of lineouts, the first of which was a double play to give the Ducks a chance to take the lead in the ninth.
 
Quotable: Senior Shaye Bowden
On opening the series with a win…
“We talked about having that passion and joy for the game, and I really think we came out and left it all out there. We’ve been really working through things this week so I really enjoyed seeing that today.”

Notable: The Ducks played an extra inning game for the first time this year and the first time since March 8, 2020 … Oregon improved to 5-0 in one-run games this season … The Ducks are also 16-3 in games decided by three runs or less … Oregon won when trailing after five innings for the first time this year … Cruse moved into a tie for eighth in career runs scored at Oregon, matching Kaylan Howard (2010-13) with 146 … Bunker drove in at least four runs for the third time this year and at least three runs for the sixth time … Bowden turned in her third multi-hit game in the her last four, going 2-for-5 with the homer … The top four in Oregon’s order – Cruse, Bunker and McGowan – combined to go 7-for-14 with four RBIs and four runs scored.
 
On Deck: The two teams continue the series with a doubleheader Saturday beginning at 4 p.m. on Pac-12 Network.

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Holland Selected 36th Overall By Dolphins

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EUGENE, Ore. — Jevon Holland became the first safety and second Duck off the board in the 2021 NFL Draft on Friday, going to the Miami Dolphins early in the second round with the No. 36 overall selection.
 
Holland is the eighth defensive back in program history to be drafted in the first two rounds of the NFL Draft, and the first since T.J. Ward went 38th overall to Cleveland in 2010. No. 36 overall is the sixth-highest an Oregon defensive back has ever been taken.

The Coquitlam, Canada, native follows left tackle Penei Sewell, who was taken No. 7 overall by the Detroit Lions on Thursday. Holland becomes the 38th player in program history to be selected in the first two rounds, and 12th since 2010.
 
This is the first time since 2015 that two Oregon players have been drafted in the first two rounds of the same NFL Draft, and the seventh time since 2000. The Ducks have now had multiple players drafted for the fourth straight year.
 
One of only four FBS players with four or more interceptions in both 2018 and 2019, Holland was a Pro Football Focus all-Pac-12 first-team selection as a sophomore before opting out of the 2020 season. He picked off five passes in 2018 and four in 2019, becoming the first Duck since Jairus Byrd (2006-07) to lead the team in interceptions in back-to-back seasons.
 
A standout both on defense and special teams, Holland was a 2019 PFF all-Pac-12 first-team selection as a safety and a third-team honoree as a punt returner. He racked up 110 total tackles as a Duck, and in the 2019 opener vs. Auburn became the first FBS player with 130 punt return yards and an interception in a game since 2007.

2021 Oregon NFL Draft Picks
1. OT Penei Sewell (1st Round, No. 7 overall, Detroit Lions)
2. S Jevon Holland (2nd Round, No. 36 overall, Miami Dolphins)
 
UO Defensive Backs Drafted in Rounds 1-2
2021 – Jevon Holland, No. 36 (Miami Dolphins)
2010 – T.J. Ward, No. 38 (Cleveland Browns)
2009 – Patrick Chung, No. 34 (New England Patriots)
2009 – Jairus Byrd, No. 42 (Buffalo Bills)
1996 – Alex Molden, No. 11 (New Orleans Saints)
1988 – Anthony Newman, No. 35 (Los Angeles Rams)
1976 – Mario Clark, No. 18 (Buffalo Bills)
1968 – Jim Smith, No. 12 (Washington)
1964 – Mel Renfro, No. 17 (Dallas Cowboys)
 

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Jackie Nared Hairston Returns To Oregon As Assistant Coach

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EUGENE, Ore. — Oregon women’s basketball head coach Kelly Graves added a familiar face to his staff on Thursday, announcing the hiring of Jackie Nared Hairston as an assistant coach.
 
Oregon’s director of creativity and video during the 2017-18 season, Nared Hairston returns to Eugene after spending the last two seasons as an assistant coach at Arizona, where she helped lead the Wildcats to the 2021 national championship game.
 
“We are very excited to welcome Jackie back to Oregon,” said Graves. “She brings a championship mindset and a strong understanding of both our program and the Pac-12. She is one of the nation’s best recruiters, and her ability to teach and build relationships with student-athletes will be a tremendous asset to our staff.”
 
Prior to her move to Tucson, Nared Hairston worked as an assistant coach at Washington State for the 2018-19 season after helping Oregon reach the Elite Eight in 2017-18. She also spent two seasons (2014-16) at Washington as director of player development, going to the Final Four in 2016.
 
“I am thrilled to return to Oregon,” said Nared Hairston, “where I have the privilege of working alongside Coach Graves. He has been an incredible mentor and is a proven winner. I look forward to contributing to the continued success of this elite program, and playing a key role in developing these outstanding young women both on and off the court.”

Nared Hairston_Assistant
 
Nared Hairston has played a key role in Arizona’s recent success, helping the Wildcats to a 21-6 overall record and the first Final Four and NCAA title game appearances in program history this past season. She was crucial in the skill development of Arizona’s guards, including 2021 Pac-12 player of the year and two-time defensive player of the year Aari McDonald.
 
An elite recruiter, Nared Hairston helped Arizona sign two-time Gatorade North Dakota state player of the year Lauren Ware, a top-25 recruit by ESPN. She also played a big role in bringing in transfers such as Bendu Yeaney and Trinity Baptiste, the 2020 ACC sixth player of the year.
 
A 2014 graduate from St. Mary’s, Nared Hairston was a two-time first-team all-WCC selection for the Gaels. She led the league in scoring in each of her final two seasons, recording the sixth-best scoring season in WCC history with 21.8 points per game as a senior.
 
Nared Hairston spent two seasons on Washington’s staff after graduating, and then played professionally overseas in 2016-17 in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland, and Waregem, Belgium. She was named guard of the year and also earned first-team all-league recognition.
 
Nared Hairston and her husband, Josh, were married in August 2020.
 

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Beach Season Ends with Loss to Cal

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LOS ANGELES – Oregon again fought hard against a highly-ranked opponent, but ultimately fell to No. 11 California, 3-0, in the elimination bracket of the Pac-12 Championships Friday at Mapes Beach.
 
The Ducks finish the season at 8-11, setting a program single-season wins record and winning a match at the Pac-12 Championships for the second time in program history. It was also the first time that Oregon went through a season with a roster made up entirely of beach-only players.
 
How It Happened: Oregon showed no signs of backing down from another challenge to start, with Zoe Almanza and Vivian Donovan taking their opening set at the No. 3 spot. The pair were in control the whole way in the first frame, leading 15-9 at one point before winning the set 21-16. After dropping the second, they led 5-2 in third set before Cal went on a 5-0 run to go up 7-5 on the way to finishing off a 16-21, 21-14, 15-12 win over Almanza and Donovan.
 
Just prior to that, Oregon’s No. 5 pair, Savannah Siegrist and Delaney Hopen also put up a good fight before falling 21-12, 21-16. After losing the first set, they went back-and-forth through the first half of the second cutting it to 14-13 at one point before a late run by Cal ended the match to put up the first point for the Bears.
 
Madelyn LaFollette and Carly Wallace dropped their opening set, 21-10, after leading 7-5 early on at the No. 1 spot. The pair were down 8-3 in set two when Wallace sustained an injury and could not continue, ending the match and giving the dual victory to Cal.
 
No. 11 California 3, Oregon 0
1. Mima Mirkovic/Caroline Schafer (CAL) def. Carly Wallace/Madelyn LaFollette (ORE) 21-10, 21-3 (injury forfeit)
2. Josie Cole/Anastasia Lima (ORE) vs. Jordan Polo/Ainsley Radell (CAL) 13-21, 1-5 (unfinished)
3. Alexia Inma/Ava Mann (CAL) def. Vivian Donovan/Zoe Almanza (ORE) 16-21, 21-14, 15-12
4. Bea Wetton/Ashley Schroeder (ORE) vs. Maddie Micheletti/Maya Gessner (CAL), 7-11 (unfinished)
5. Brooke Buchner/Grace Paulson (CAL) def. Savannah Siegrist/Delaney Hopen (ORE) 21-12, 21-16
Order of finish: 5, 3, 1
 

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Sewell Taken Seventh Overall In 2021 NFL Draft

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EUGENE, Ore. — Penei Sewell became the highest-drafted offensive lineman in Oregon football history on Thursday when the left tackle was taken seventh overall by the Detroit Lions in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft.
 
Sewell is the 19th player in program history and the third offensive lineman to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft, joining Kyle Long (2013, No. 20) and Tim Drougas (1972, No. 22). He is the ninth top-10 pick ever to come out of Oregon, and fifth since 2013.
 
Oregon has now had a first-round pick in back-to-back years for the third time in program history, with quarterback Justin Herbert going sixth overall in the 2020 NFL Draft. This marks the second time (2015-16) the Ducks have had a top-10 pick in back-to-back drafts.

No. 7 is the second-highest the Lions have ever drafted an offensive lineman. Only Lomas Brown, a seven-time Pro Bowler, was selected higher at No. 6 in 1985.

Sewell was dominant in two seasons protecting Herbert’s blind side before opting out of the 2020 season, and now will be charged with doing the same in Detroit for new quarterback Jared Goff. In 1,376 total snaps as a Duck, Sewell allowed just one sack.
 
A native of Malaeimi, American Samoa, Sewell finished 2019 as the top-graded offensive lineman in Pro Football Focus history at 95.5, becoming the first player in Oregon history and the first-ever sophomore offensive lineman to win the Outland Trophy as the nation’s top interior lineman. Sewell also led the nation with a PFF run-blocking grade of 95.3, and was third with a pass-blocking grade of 91.1.
 
Sewell joined LaMichael James (2010) and Marcus Mariota (2014) as the only unanimous first-team all-Americans in program history. He was named the 2019 Morris Trophy winner, AP Pac-12 co-offensive player of the year, and PFF Pac-12 player of the year after allowing no sacks and just seven quarterback pressures with a team-high 58 knockdowns in 926 snaps.
 
After coming to Oregon as the No. 1 prospect in the state of Utah, Sewell was the top freshman offensive lineman overall, the No. 2 offensive lineman in the Pac-12, and the No. 7 tackle in the nation with an 84.0 grade from PFF in 2018. He became the first offensive lineman in UO history to earn all-conference honors as a true freshman while also earning freshman all-America honors by USA Today and 247Sports.

Oregon First Round Picks
2021 – OT Penei Sewell, No. 7 (Detroit Lions)
2020 – QB Justin Herbert, No. 6 (Los Angeles Chargers)
2016 – DE DeForest Buckner, No. 7 (San Francisco 49ers)
2015 – QB Marcus Mariota, No. 2 (Tennessee Titans)
2015 – DT Arik Armstead, No. 15 (San Francisco 49ers)
2013 – OLB Dion Jordan, No. 3 (Miami Dolphins)
2013 – OG Kyle Long, No. 20 (Chicago Bears)
2008 – RB Jonathan Stewart, No. 13 (Carolina Panthers)
2006 – DT Haloti Ngata, No. 12 (Baltimore Ravens)
2002 – QB Joey Harrington, No. 3 (Detroit Lions)
1999 – QB Akili Smith, No. 3 (Cincinnati Bengals)
1996 – DB Alex Molden, No. 11 (New Orleans Saints)
1987 – QB Chris Miller, No. 13 (Atlanta Falcons)
1976 – DB Mario Clark, No. 18 (Buffalo Bills)
1975 – TE Russ Francis, No. 16 (New England Patriots)
1972 – WR Ahmad Rashad, No. 4 (St. Louis Cardinals)
1972 – OT Tim Drougas, No. 22 (Baltimore Colts)
1968 – DB Jim Smith, No. 12 (Washington)
1955 – QB George Shaw, No. 1 (Baltimore Colts)

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Win Over Utah Highlights First Day at Pac-12s

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LOS ANGELES – Oregon split its opening two matches of the Pac-12 Championships Thursday at Mapes Beach, winning 3-2 against Utah in the first round before falling, 3-0, to No. 1 USC. The Ducks’ win over the Utes was just their second-ever in the Pac-12 Championships with the other coming the last time the tournament was held in 2019.
 
The loss to the top-ranked Trojans in the second match of the day sends Oregon into the contenders’ bracket of the double elimination tournament. The Ducks will face No. 11 California in an elimination match Friday morning at 8 a.m.
 
How It Happened – Match 1, Oregon 3, Utah 2: Oregon split the first two duals of the match, falling at the No. 2 spot but tying it up with a win at No. 4. After Josie Cole and Anastasia Lima fell, 21-12, 21-18, Ashley Schroeder and Bea Wetton picked up a straight-sets win at the No. 4 spot, 21-14, 21-14 make it 1-1.
 
Savannah Siegrist and Delaney Hopen quickly put up the second point for the Ducks to give them a 2-1 lead with a 21-11, 21-12 win at the No. 5 spot to open the second flight of matches. The Utes answered, though, with a win at the No. 1 spot as Carly Wallace and Madelyn LaFollette bounced back from an opening set loss to force a third, but dropped the dual, 21-15, 18-21, 15-12.
 
That put the outcome of the match on the No. 3 spot, where Zoe Almanza and Vivian Donovan were in a third set against the Utes’ Keana Smalls and Camille Lee. The Duck duo cruised to a first set win before losing a close second set to send it to a deciding frame. Almanza and Donovan held a commanding 8-4 lead in the third, but the Utes went on a 10-5 run to get match point, up 14-13. The Ducks, however, closed on a 3-0 run with Donovan putting down a kill to clinch a 21-11, 17-21, 16-14 match victory.
 
Match 2 – No. 1 USC 3, Oregon 0: Facing a tall task against the No. 1 team in the country, Oregon fell into early holes in the first two matches and couldn’t dig out of it as the Trojans took a 2-0 lead. Schroeder and Wetton fell at the No. 4 spot, 21-12, 21-10, before Cole and Lima dropped their match at the No. 2 position, 21-9, 21-9.
 
USC continued its dominance in the second set of matches, rolling to a 21-9, 21-10 win at the No. 1 spot over Wallace and LaFollette to clinch the match. The Ducks were also behind in the other two matches when the dual was clinched. Siegrist and Hopen dropped their opening set, 21-13, and were facing match point at 20-8 when the match was halted. Donovan and Almanza put up a good fight in the opening set at the No. 3 spot, getting to within 16-14 before falling 21-17.
 
Oregon 3, Utah 2
1. Marissa Koch/Grace Andrews (UTAH) def. Carly Wallace/Madelyn LaFollette (ORE) 21-15, 18-21, 15-12
2. Sage Patchell/Olivia Teerlink (UTAH) def. Josie Cole/Anastasia Lima (ORE) 21-12, 21-18
3. Vivian Donovan/Zoe Almanza (ORE) def. Camille Lee/Keana Smalls (UTAH) 21-11, 17-21, 16-14
4. Bea Wetton/Ashley Schroeder (ORE) def. Mia Kowalczyk/Joana S. Mondragon (UTAH) 21-14, 21-14
5. Savannah Siegrist/Delaney Hopin (ORE) def. Macy Rideout/Hannah Stahle (UTAH) 21-11, 21-12
Order of finish: 2, 4, 1, 5, 3
 
No. 1 USC 3, Oregon 0
1. Tina Graudina/Megan Kraft (USC) def. Carly Wallace/Madelyn LaFollette (ORE) 21-9, 21-10
2. Julia Scoles/Sammy Slater (USC) def. Josie Cole/Anastasia Lima (ORE) 21-9, 21-9
3. Hailey Harward/Haley Hallgren (USC) vs. Vivian Donovan/Zoe Almanza (ORE) 21-17, 14-7, unfinished
4. Joy Dennis/Delaynie Maple (USC) def. Bea Wetton/Ashley Schroeder (ORE) 21-12, 21-10
5. Audrey Nourse/Nicole Nourse (USC) vs. Savannah Siegrist/Delaney Hopin (ORE) 21-13, 20-8, unfinished
Order of finish: 4, 2, 1
 
Up Next: The Ducks will look to keep their season alive when they take on No. 11 California Friday morning at 8 a.m. (Pac-12 Network) in an elimination match.

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Ducks return to Pac-12 play at Washington State

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Somers on Stopper of the Year watch list

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EUGENE, Ore. – The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association named Oregon closer Kolby Somers to the midseason Stopper of the Year watch list this week.
 
Somers, a junior from Hillsboro, Ore., is 1-0 with a 1.54 ERA with seven saves in 11 appearances this season with 15 strikeouts in 11.2 inning pitched. The Ducks’ lefty has not allowed a run in 10 of his 11 outings in 2021, with both of his runs allowed coming in an 18-13 win at Arizona.
 
Somers, who is one of 65 relief pitchers on the list, picked up a pair of saves against nationally-ranked UC Santa Barbara in early March, before adding a save against Arizona State for his third save in as many games. He added saves against New Mexico State and Oregon State in back-to-back outings, before picking up two more saves in back-to-back appearances against USC and UCLA. Somers notched a win in his last trip to the mound, a 3-2 victory over UCLA to clinch the series against the Bruins.
 
Two former Ducks have been finalists for the Stopper of the Year Award. Jimmie Sherfy was a finalist in both 2012 and 2013, while Kenyon Yovan was a finalist in 2017. Former Ducks Drew Gagnier (2010), Jake Reed (2014), Garrett Cleavinger (2014), Stephen Nogosek (2014) and Ryne Nelson (2019) have all been on the awards watch list since baseball returned to Oregon.
 

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Won steps down as A&T coach

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EUGENE, Ore. – After four seasons at the helm of the Acrobatics & Tumbling program, Keenyn Won has stepped down as head coach to pursue other interests.
 
Won, who compiled an 18-11 record at Oregon, led the Ducks to the National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association (NCATA) national tournament three times, including a runner-up finish in 2019 and semifinal berths in both 2018 and 2021. COVID-19 canceled the 2020 tournament.
 
“The University of Oregon is where the sport of Acrobatics and Tumbling started for me, and changed my life,” Won said. “It has been a pleasure and a blessing to serve as the head coach here for the past four seasons. We always say that Oregon is a special place, but what truly makes this place special is the people.
 
“Thank you to the administration and staff for believing in such a young coach and the continued growth of women’s athletics,” Won added. “I’m grateful for all the student athletes I’ve been able to coach along the way, the impact they’ve left on my life will be everlasting. Although it is bittersweet to be leaving, I am excited for this next chapter of my life in Boise, Idaho. Oregon will always hold a special place in my heart. ONCE A DUCK, ALWAYS A DUCK!”

A national search is underway to replace Won. 
 

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