LA JOLLA, Calif. - The UC San Diego cross country teams completed the 21st Annual Triton Classic with a pair of second-place finishes Saturday. Marie Diaz was the top finisher for the Triton women in third place overall, while Scott Acton crossed the finish line in the seventh spot as the top finisher for the UCSD men.
Chico State, ranked No. 5 on the men's side and No. 6 on the women’s, won both races as a team and had both individual winners. The Wildcats’ Ayla Granados won the women’s race with a time of 22:06.8 and Alfonoso Cisneros set a new course record with a time of 25:40.8 for the win.
In the women’s 6k run, the Tritons totaled an impressive time of 1:54:21, good for 35 points, to finish just behind Chico State’s time of 1:53:40 and 33 points.
“For our women to run as close as they did, only falling two points short of one of the best teams in the country, is a huge step forward for us,” said head coach Nate Garcia.
Diaz finished with a time of 22:35.9 to power the Tritons and was followed by three more UCSD runners to finish within the top-10.
Ximena Cruz was final scorer for the Tritons, placing 14th with a time of 23:07.2.
Western New Mexico placed third in the team standings at 1:58:39 and fellow CCAA school Cal State San Bernardino finished in fourth with a time of 1:58:23. Rounding out the team finishers, Regis placed fifth (2:01:52), Cal Poly Pomona finished sixth (2:02:34), California Baptist came in seventh (2:02:37) and Dixie State rounded out the field in eighth (2:07:48).
On the men’s side in the 8k race, Chico dominated with the top-five finishers for a time of 2:08:51 and a mere 15 points. The Tritons finished with a total time of 2:12:06, good for 50 points.
Acton and Kellen Levy led UCSD in the event, both finishing inside the top 10. Acton crossed the finish line with a time of 26:05.6 and a seventh-place finish, while Levy placed 10th with a time of 26:15.8.
Senior Matt Lenehan wasn't far behind as the next Triton finisher to place 12th with a time of 26:24.6. Fellow senior Mario Flores was the ensuing finisher for the Tritons, placing 15th at 26:34.2. The final scorer for UCSD was Daniel Hauptman in 20th place (26:46.0).
“It really came together for [Scott] today, which was good in the race,” said Garcia. “It was good to see some of our guys pushing hard through the later portion. Obviously we have some work to do before we see Chico again in two weeks at conference.”
Cal Poly Pomona finished with 87 points with a time of 2:15:21 to place third, while California Baptist came in fourth with 136 points and a time of 2:19:59. Rounding out the placing, Regis finished fifth (2:22:15), Dixie State placed sixth (2:26:34), Western New Mexico came in seventh (2:23:51) and Christian Brothers grabbed eighth (2:24:32).
The 2013 Triton Classic served as the last tune-up before the CCAA Championships, scheduled for Oct. 26 in Chico. The race is slated to begin at 9 a.m.