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Cross Country

UCR Invitational, Pre-National Invite Highlight Final Major Meet Weekend


Big West Weekly Release No. 8



The last major meet weekend of the 2016 regular season marks the two week mark until the Big West Championships. The Highlander Invitational brings the spotlight to the Island Empire, while a few squads will also take a shot at the course that will host the national championship meet.

UC Riverside will host the fifth annual Highlander Invitational at the Ag/Ops Course this Saturday, an event that will consist of a women’s 5K and men’s 6K. Among the teams scheduled to compete are Cal State Fullerton, CSUN, Long Beach State and UC Irvine. UCR has a strong history in the meet, having won the women’s race in back-to-back years while the men took home the crown in 2014.

• Teams from all over the country will participate in arguably the largest meet of the regular season in the Pre-National Invitational this Saturday. LaVerne Gibson Championship Cross Country Course in Terre Haute, Ind., will be the site of the race, which will also host the national championship on Saturday, November 19. Cal Poly and UC Davis will send contingents to compete against some of the nation’s top clubs in a women’s 6K and men’s 8K. The Mustangs will compete in the Blue Race which features 41 teams that are all ranked in each of their respective regions.

• Speaking of the Mustangs, the squad will also host the Cal Poly Invitational this weekend. The meet will consist of a women’s 5K and men’s 8K on the Fairbanks Memorial Course in San Luis Obispo.

• Several teams will also make their way to the Bay Area this weekend for the Bronco Invitational in Sunnyvale. The Santa Clara hosted meet will consist of a men’s 8K and women’s 6K Saturday. Among the team scheduled to compete are UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara and Hawai’i.

• The season will end in the islands as Hawai’i hosts the 2016 Big West Cross Country Championships at Kahuku Golf Course on the North Shore of O’ahu. The league championship will be return to the Aloha State for the first time since 1992, while UH hosts its first conference meet since the WAC Championship of 2011.

The UC Santa Barbara men and Cal Poly women will be looking to defend their titles. The Gauchos are seeking their third consecutive crown, while the Mustangs are in search of a second straight title and fourth in the past five seasons. The men will have the first run through the Kahuku course as they run the 8K at 7:00 local time, while the women’s 6K championship race will be run 45 minutes later.

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