Titan Women Place Fourth at Big West Championships
Oct. 29, 2005
Riverside, Calif., -
Cal State Fullerton's women's cross country team had its best team finish since 1994 Saturday morning at UC Riverside as the Titans placed fourth at the 2005 Big West Conference Championship meet. The men, running the minimum of 5 runners, settled for sixth place.
"The women didn't feel awesome today, but they toughed it out and I'm very proud of them," said Head Coach John Elders. "Karina Ortiz set a school record (21:50.3 for the 6K), breaking Maria Blazquez' record set earlier this season. She ran 12th and was our highest individual finisher since Heather Garretson ran eighth in 1999.
"Maria (25th in 22:21.4) felt like she put too much pressure on herself, maybe over preparing and over thinking.
"Carolyn Ellis (20th in 22:09.1) and Juliane Masciana (21st in 22:12.1) each ran personal bests. Kirsten Drake was running well but went off course for about 50 meters at the 2-mile mark. She was having a break-through performance.
"The men just didn't run well. There was a really fast early pace and they were not prepared for that and didn't handle it well. But I'm proud of how hard they worked. Jason Graney hurt his foot in the middle of the race and hobbled to the finish. Damien Nieves (20th in 24:49.9) ran a respectable race and was close to his personal best. I'm encouraged by their work ethic."
UC Irvine won the women's title by a wide margin with the Anteaters' Amber Steen finishing first. UC Santa Barbara was second and Long Beaach State was a close third. Trailing the Titans were the host Highlanders, Cal Poly, Cal State Northridge and Pacific.
In the men's race, Cal Poly had four runners in the top six to overcome UC Santa Barbara, which had individual champion Chris Ashley. Long Beach State was third followed by UCR, UCI, Fullerton and Cal State Northridge.
All of the teams compete again in the NCAA Regional meet at Stanford on Nov. 12.
For complete results: http://www.flashresults.com/flashwest/