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Cross Country

UC Riverside Set to Host 34th Annual UCR Invitational


Big West Cross Country Weekly Release No. 3

UC Riverside welcomes a talented field to the Inland Empire this weekend as the UC Riverside Invitational will take place on the Ag/Ops Course adjacent to campus.

The 34th UC Riverside Invitational will consist of two men’s and two women’s races. The women’s races will consist of a 5K collegiate open and a 6K invitational, while the men’s collegiate open and invitational are both 8K events. The Highlanders will see some familiar faces as CSUN, Long Beach State, UC Santa Barbara and Hawai’i will be among the competing clubs. In all, 1,067 runners are entered across the four races in the event.

Elsewhere in the Big West, Cal Poly and UC Davis head to Santa Clarita, Calif., for the WCC Preview Meet held hosted by Santa Clara. The 8K men’s race has a field of 90 runners, while the women’s competition will have a sizable field of 129 harriers from 11 instiutions.

• UC Riverside’s Raquel Hefflin added to her recognition list this week by being featured in the ‘Faces in the Crowd’ section of the latest issue of Sports Illustrated. Hefflin was recognized for her record-setting performance at the Nevada Twilight Classic, a showing that also garnered her Big West Female Athlete of the Week and national female Division I Athlete of the Week accolades.

• UC Irvine’s season-opening adidas/UCI Invitational was a success for the homestanding Anteaters as the men were second while the women finished third. Alex Tebbe led the UCI men with a second place finish in the 8K, crossing the line with a time of 25:40.8. Tebbe led three UC Irvine runners in the top 10 as teammates Isaiah Thompson (25:56.0) and Munir Kahssay (26:30.5) finished fifth and ninth, respectively.

Kaycee Holcomb was UCI’s top finisher in the women’s 5K, placing 12th with a time of 19:02.0. Alice Yang gave the Anteaters a second top 20 finisher, wrapping up the race in 19th at 19:14.7.

• Hawai’i was missing three of its top runners, but still was able to finish fourth in the season-opening Big Wave Invitational. The host Rainbow Wahine saw North Dakota State transfer Montana Martinez finish as its top runner, placing 19th at 21:09.30 after the 5K jaunt. UH had three more runners finish in the top 25 as Hayley Musashi (21:29.30), Louise Mulvey (21:42.50) and Melissa Chadwick (22:03.70) finished 22nd, 24th and 25th, respectively.

• 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.