UCI, UH Host Season-Opening Meets In Cross Country Action
2014 Big West Cross Country Weekly Release No. 2
The second week of the cross country schedule is light as only two schools will be in competition, but both of those meets will be home affairs.
UC Irvine kicks off the 2014 campaign with the adidas/UCI Invitational, held at the Anteater Recreation Center fields. The 8K men’s race has 129 competitors, while the 5K women’s jaunt features an impressive total of 191 entries.
Meanwhile, Hawai’i also hits the trails for the first time in 2014 as the Rainbow Wahine host the 14th Big Wave Invitational at the Kane’ohe Klipper Golf Course on Marines Corps Beach Hawai’i. UH will welcome most of the state’s cross country clubs including BYU-Hawai’i, UH-Hilo and Chaminade as well as competition coming in from stateside. A 5K will be on the docket for the women’s race, with UH senior Louise Mulvey leading the way after coming in 12th a year ago.
• UC Riverside’s Raquel Hefflin got her senior season off to a great start last weekend, winning the 4K race at the Nevada Twilight Classic in 14:06, crossing the finish line 23 seconds ahead of the next runner. Her time was a course record and led UCR to a third place at the event. Hefflin was also named the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Assocation (USTFCCCA) NCAA Division I women’s national athlete of the week for her efforts.
• UC Santa Barbara’s men’s team put up a dominating effort in the season-opening Lagoon Race last weekend, sweeping the top six spots in the 8K race. Bryan Guijarro (24:50.36), Anthony Ortolan (24:53.77), Shyan Vaziri (25:15.15), Brad Littooy (25:19.21) and Andrew Farkas (25:20.60) were the winning contingent for the Gauchos.
• Long Beach State’s season-opening run at the Mark Covert Classic was a success as the men’s team captured the men’s title by five points over Loyola Marymount. Sophomore Emilio Nunez was the top finisher for the Beach, crossing the finish of the 8K race in 26:04.5. LBSU recorded 4th, 6th, 10th and 14th place finishes to nab the team title.
• CSUN’s Elizabeth Nelson won her first DI collegiate race as the transfer from Glendale College finished first in the 5K at the USF Invitational. Nelson finished in 17:54.1, five seconds better than the second place finisher.
• The Big West Championships return to the Inland Empire this season as UC Riverside will host the event at the Ag/Ops Course. This will be the sixth time in the last eight seasons that UCR has hosted the league meet. Last season in San Luis Obispo, homestanding Cal Poly swept the men’s and women’s championship. The Mustangs also swept the teams titles in 2012, the last time UC Riverside hosted the meet.