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Cross Country

Cross Country Features Light Slate in Week 2

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Only two clubs are in action this weekend on the Big West Cross Country slate, with one of those teams hosting its first meet of the young season.

UC Irvine has its first action of 2013 as it welcomes clubs to Orange County for the adidas/UCI Invitational. The men will run an 8K jaunt, while the women will compete in a 5K. Eleven schools and a total of 128 runners are entered for Saturday’s men’s race, while there are 13 schools and a total of 169 runners entered for Saturday’s women’s race.

Meanwhile out in the islands, Hawai’i will head to     Waipio, O`ahu for the Chaminade Invitational. Central Oahu Regional Park will be the setting for UH and other clubs looking for a fast start to their 2013 season.

• UC Davis swept the team titles at its season-opening Aggie Open, a dual meet showdown with rival Sacramento State. On the men’s side, Brandon Pugh and Trevor Halsted ran 18:22.2 and 18:22.3, respectively, to lead a 1-4 Aggie showing at the finish of the 6K race. In the women’s 4K, Alycia Cridebring claimed first in 13:50.2 with teammate Sarah Sumpter came in at 13:51.3. The meet win doesn’t count towards the schools’ Causeway Cup competition, the squads’ finishes at the NCAA Regionals determine those points.

• Cal Poly swept UC Santa Barbara in the season-opening Lagoon Open hosted by the Gauchos. The Mustangs’ Laura Hollander ran a course-record 16:36.0 in the 5K, which shattered her previous mark set last season at 16:42.12. UCSB’s Anthony Ortolan came in first in the men’s 6K with a time of 24:21.90.

Hollander’s effort not only netted her Big West Women’s Athlete of the Week honors, but the sophomore was also named U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Association (USTFCCCA) National Female Athlete of the Week.

• Cal State Fullerton hosted the Mark Covert Invitational over the weekend, honoring former Titan great Mark Covert. Long Beach State’s Jake Dawson lead all Big West finishers in the men’s 8K with a third place showing in 25:51.0, while the 49ers’ Hillary Zator was fourth in the women’s 5K at 18:10.8. Homestanding CSF was led by Gilbert Solorza (25:53.5) on the men’s side and Lauren McIntyre (18:56.7) in the women’s race.

• After five consecutive seasons, Big West Cross Country Championships will move from Riverside to San Luis Obispo. Fairbanks Cross Country Course will host the championship meet, the same site that hosted the event back in 2007. During that championship, the Cal Poly men won their fifth straight title thanks to a clean sweep of the first five positions. UC Santa Barbara took the women’s title, its fourth in five seasons.