Teams Head To Inland Empire For 2011 Big West Cross Country Championship
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Big West Championship Information
The 2011 Big West Cross Country Championship is slated for Saturday, Oct. 29 at the UC Riverside Ag/Ops Course for the fourth consecutive year, seventh time overall. The men's 8K begins at 8:45 a.m. and is followed by the women's 6K at 9:35 a.m. An awards ceremony will begin shortly following the conclusion of the womens race.
Admission to the 2011 Big West Cross Country Championships is $5 per person over five years old, including Big West students. Event parking for spectators will be in Lot 30, on the northwest corner of Canyon Crest and Martin Luther King. The parking fee is $5 per car.
UC Davis men, headlined by Jon Peterson's top time of 23:40.2, won the 2010 title and looks to be a top contender once again this year. Peterson is back for his final season and is primed to lead the Aggies to a repeat championship after posting the second fastest time of the season in the conference for the 8K (23:22) on Sept. 24.
Also look for host UC Riverside to make a run for its first-ever Big West Men's Cross Country Championship. Aside from having a slight edge with the event taking place on their home course, the Highlanders recorded three of the top 10 performances in the Big West this year, including Chad Halls peak performance of 23:18.91 at the Bill Delinger Invitational. Hall owns the fastest time in the conference, while teammates Talal Khan and Seth Totten rank seventh and ninth. The Highlander men's program finished second in 2010 and has been in the top four the three years prior.
On the women's side, UC Santa Barbara took home the title with the help of Amanda Moreno, Breanne Strenkowski and Crystal Reed, who finished one-two-three in last year's event. Unfortunately the trio of superstars graduated, living the Gauchos a huge void to fill. UC Santa Barbara seems to have a successful recovery from the loss in the offseason as the Gauchos own five of the top 10 performances of the season. Headlining the defending champions is junior Andrea Jacobs with a time of 21:09.8 in the 6K, good enough for fifth in the league. Sarah Vitug, Ashley Beechan, Callie Mulgannon and Ari Selix follow close behind with only Cal Polys Meghan Breadmore interrupting the UC Santa Barbara domination in the lower half of the top ten with a seventh place time.
UC Riverside's Katy Daly holds the top time of the season in the women's 6K with a mark of 20:56.5 at the Riverside Invitational, which was run on the same course as the upcoming Big West Championship. The UCR women's team is looking to win its second conference title as the Highlanders claimed the 2008 championship but finished 5th in 2009 and 4th in 2010.
Keep an eye on Cal Poly to try and make a run for the crown. The Mustangs finished just two points behind UC Santa Barbara in the 2010 championship and hold two of the top 10 performances this year in Leanne Fogg and Meghan Breadmore. The Mustangs last women's title was in 2001 when they claimed their second straight championship.