2011 California Collegiate Athletic Association Championships
Saturday, October 22, 2011 • 8:00 a.m.
Spring Lake Regional Park • Santa Rosa, Calif.
First Things First
After an impressive showing at the Triton Classic Invitational two weeks ago, the UC San Diego cross country teams will head to Santa Rosa for the 2011 California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Championships on Saturday. Hosted by Sonoma State, the conference meet will be held at Spring Lake Regional Park and feature a women's 6k race beginning at 8:00 a.m. and a men's 8k at 9:00 a.m.
What's At Stake
A total of 20 teams from the CCAA's 12 member institutions will compete Saturday, with each squad entering up to 10 runners. In addition to the men and women's team championships, the top 15 finishers in each race will earn a spot on the All-CCAA team and conference Coach of the Year, Freshman of the Year and Newcomer of the Year accolades will be awarded at the conclusion of the men's competition.
In addition to UCSD, Chico State, Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State Stanislaus highlight the women's field as all four squads are currently ranked in the top 10 of this week's USTFCCCA West Regional Poll. Chico currently holds the top spot in the region, followed by the Tritons at No. 4, Pomona at No. 5 and Stanislaus at No. 9. The Wildcats are currently ranked No. 4 nationally and will be favored to bring home the CCAA crown again after capturing their seventh title in nine years in 2010.
The teams to watch on the men's side will be Chico State, San Francisco State, UCSD and Cal Poly Pomona. The Wildcats, who have won the last nine CCAA Championships, enter Saturday's competition ranked No. 1 in the West (and fifth overall) and will be the team to beat once again this season. The Gators are currently ranked fifth in the region, while the Tritons are sixth and the Broncos are eighth.
Put Me In Coach!
Leading the women's contingent in Santa Rosa will be sophomore Chia Chang and freshman Michelle Le Roux. The two underclassmen have been UCSD's top two finishers each time they have raced this season. Joining Chang and Le Roux will be seniors Elena Inouye, Aaryn Kobayashi and Kathryn Turner, juniors Catherine Crisp and Ximena Cruz and three other rookies in Alia Bales, Dani Brabender and Madison Tanner.
On the men's side, junior Matt Lenehan will look to lead the Tritons' pack once again, having paced the squad three times in his four races so far in 2011. Lining up beside Lenehan will be a strong senior group that includes Alex Corliss, Dustin Harris, Anthony Heredia, Jeremy Riley and John Svet, as well as sophomore standouts Mario Flores, Kellen Levy, Ryan Lok and Ben Rich.
Peaking at the Right Time
UCSD is coming off its best all-around performance of the season as both squads recorded victories at the Triton Classic Invitational on their home course on October 8. The Triton women had six of the top 15 finishers en route to a commanding victory in a field that featured Central Arizona, San Diego State and CCAA foes Cal Poly Pomona, Cal State L.A. and Cal State San Bernardino, among others. UCSD posted five of the top 10 times in the men's race to best Central Arizona, Pomona, Fort Lewis and Cal State Monterey Bay. The Triton women climbed one spot to No. 4 in the West Region following their performance, while the men moved up two places to No. 6. For a complete recap of the 2011 Triton Classic Invitational, click here.
CCAA's, 2010 Style
UCSD had a solid showing at the CCAA Championships in 2010, as head coach Nate Garcia led his charges to a pair of top-five finishes at Legg Lake in Whittier Narrows Regional Park. The Tritons finished third out of seven teams in the men' s competition, with senior Jesse Morrill leading the pack with an 11th place time of 25:11.6 in the 8k. Levy earned conference Freshman of the Year honors after finishing 18th overall at 25:38.6, while Flores (25:46.8) and Lenehan (25:58.4) were also scorers after finishing 21st and 26th, respectively. UCSD took fifth out of 11 squads on the women's side, as Jackie Sikkema placed 25th overall with a 6k time of 23:14.0, Chang finished 28th at 23:19.4 and Heather Hisgen came in 32nd at 23:37.2.
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