Two of the best female sprinters in Oregon State track and field history have decided to transfer from the school.
Twin sisters Kerissa and Venessa D’Arpino will be attending the University of Oregon. Kerissa made the announcement Wednesday on Twitter and Instagram.
The sisters, from North Valley High in Grants Pass, have put their names prominently on the OSU record book during their three years in Corvallis.
Venessa is first in the 100 meters (11.70 seconds), 200 (23.60) and 400 (54.14). She broke the 200 school record five times this spring and qualified for the NCAA regionals in the 200 and 400.
Kerissa is second on the all-time school list in the 100 (11.77), fourth in the 200 (24.25), fifth in the 400 (56.44) and third in the 400 hurdles (1:00.2). During a redshirt season this spring, she ran a 200 time of 24.06.
Venessa used a redshirt for the 2015 outdoor season. Both have two years of outdoor track and field eligibility remaining.
The sisters’ transfers add to a list of graduated seniors this month that also made a significant impact on the program. The Beavers also lose school record-holders in Devin Collins (100 hurdles, 400 hurdles), Helen Ann Haun (pole vault) and Rachel Picknell (hammer, second in the discus), in addition to Kara Hallock, second on the school’s all-time list in the heptathlon, long jump and 100 hurdles.
Kerissa posted the following Tuesday on social media along with a picture of her family all in Oregon shirts: “After 3 years at Oregon State, I learned a lot, I am thankful for the donors that helped me finish three years of school, loan free, and the memories that I have made there, but Venessa and I have decided to leave and pursue the remaining two years of eligibility as a Duck! I am so thankful for this opportunity and I can't wait to see what I can accomplish here! #GoDucks”
The news comes three weeks after the announcement of the retirement of Kelly Sullivan, the Beavers’ head coach for cross-country and track and field.
Oregon State assistants said the announcement caught them by surprise.
The retirement was made public May 31, and Sullivan was not involved in coaching Hallock at the NCAA championships June 9-10 in Eugene.
Sullivan has been the head coach of OSU’s cross-country and track programs since he was hired in January 2004, when the school ended an 18-year hiatus from the two sports and began competing in the 2004-05 school year.
Oregon State has slowly grown the programs — from a distance-only roster to a full track lineup — and the facilities during Sullivan’s tenure. Hallock was the Beavers’ second athlete to compete in the NCAA track championships since the program’s rebirth.