UC Santa Barbara Men, Cal Poly Women Claim Cross Country Titles
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2015 Big West Cross Country Championships Central
Central Coast squads took home the hardware at the Big West Championships as the Cal Poly women and UC Santa Barbara men claimed the 2015 cross country titles.
The Mustangs claimed the title for the third time in four years, posting 39 points on their way to the title. UC Santa Barbara was second with 59 points, while defending champion UC Davis finished up in third with 69 points. Fourth place belonged UC Riverside with 109 points, Cal State Fullerton fifth with 164 points, Long Beach State sixth with 169 points and Hawai'i seventh with 186. Rounding out the standings were CSUN (186) and UC Irvine (225).
Three runners finished in the top 10 for Cal Poly, led by freshman Peyton Bilo's second place finish in 20:36.87 over the 6K course. Senior Sara Van Dyke was seventh for the Mustangs in 20:59.27 and teammate freshman Katie Izzo was ninth in 20:59.84.
Homestanding UC Riverside was represented atop the 6K for the second straight season as Faith Makau claimed the individual title in 20:57.5. She is the second straight Highlander to win the 6K, the first time that UCR has claimed the top spot in back-to-back years.
UCSB won the title for the second straight year, the first time since 1992-94 that a club other than Cal Poly has won consecutive titles. The Gauchos had to battle for the crown as they posted 31 points, five points more than Mustangs. Third place was UC Davis with 107 points, fourth was Long Beach State with 109 points and fifth was UC Irvine was 132 points. Sixth place was Cal State Fullerton at 152 points, seventh was UC Riverside at 168 points and CSUN completed the men's standings with 209 points.
The top three spots in the 8K men's individual race were claimed by UCSB as Bryan Guijarro (24:01.94), Anthony Ortolan (24:04.07), Shyan Vaziri (24:04.68) went 1-2-3. The Mustangs nearly climbed back in the race thanks to fourth finishers in the next five runners, but the Gauchos were able to finish off the crown with two more finishers in the top 15.
UC Irvine also picked up its highest individual finisher since 2012 as Isaiah Thompson finished the 8K in 24:24.22.
Complete results are available at the link provided above.
FAITH MAKAU - UC RIVERSIDE
“Coming into the race, I was confident in my training and my experience from last year, so I just knew if I ran smart and patient, it would go in my favor. The first two miles were very comfortable, it was an honest pace, it was comfortable for me. Then right before the 1200 I was just like, it’s time to take it home now.”
(On Rocky winning last year)
“It was everything she left in the past. She left me with great experience.”
(Crossing the line)
“I kept seeing this moment of me just crossing the line and coming in first and it was just a matter of just running through it and making it happen.”
BRYAN GUIJARRO - UC SANTA BARBARA
“It feels very relieving, just to do it again and get it out of the way.”
“We’re trying to defend the title and everyone has expectations.”
“We push each other in workouts and we tell each other we’re doing it for each other. We’ve done it before, we did it for each other back then, and that’s what we told each other this time.”
CAL POLY HEAD COACH MARK CONOVER
(Championship in 2013 and now)
“To strive for consistency in sports is what you want to do. We always try to put ourselves in contention for a title, but it’s sports. There are tough runners in this conference so to return to championship is a testament to the old and new. It’s a mix of some veterans and some very talented freshman. It’s a total team effort, we have a lot of depth.”
“Part of the Mustang way is wanting to honor those who came before you and that’s one of the tenets so they think about the alums when they’re out here too. Really a great day for the Mustangs.”
“Everybody wants to step up for each other.”
UC SANTA BARBARA HEAD COACH PETE DOLAN
“It’s a relief to have it done. It’s the first time we’ve repeated – we had a target on our back. Cal Poly has the lineage, we left the door open and I think we’re a little fortunate they didn’t catch us at the end there.”
“We made it through, that’s what champions do.”
“He changed the while dynamic of our program four years ago when he was fifth place as a true freshman. He just wanted to win and its so simple, but when you want to win and the whole team understands that, that’s how we went back-to-back. I’ll give him the credit.”
“My favorite phrase is, ‘Take what’s yours, don’t give anything away.’ They were nervous today, more than last year. They were more excited than nervous last year, but I could see it come over them. But they came through.”