The weekend was busy with loads of running action. Without a significant American presence at the Berlin Marathon, our focus turns to collegiate cross country where many of the top teams in the Pac-12 conference competed in their first major meets of the season.
KROEGER, HATTON LEAD CARDINAL VICTORY AT STANFORD INVITATIONAL
The Stanford women proved themselves as a bona fide podium contender on Saturday with a strong showing at their home Stanford Invitational. The team’s top four women – senior Kathy Kroeger, freshman Cayla Hatton, sophomore Aisling Cuffe and junior Jessica Tonn – ran as a pack for the first half of the race before Kroeger and Hatton started ratcheting up the pace past 3k. Kroeger pulled from her freshman teammate over the last kilometer to win her third straight Stanford Invite title in a time of 20:13. Hatton finished her first collegiate race in second place in 20:21 with Utah’s Amanda Mergaert third in 20:23.
“We went out really controlled and gradually picked it up throughout,” Hatton told Flotrack after the race. “I’m really excited to have my first college race under my belt.”
Hatton’s early success should not be surprising. The Andover, Mass. native ran 50-60 miles a week with long runs of 13-15 miles in high school and arrived on The Farm with unprecedented prep bests of 15:50.32 for 5000 meters and 33:17.28 for 10,000 meters.
Find full results from the women’s 6k at the Stanford Invitational here.
Interview with Cayla Hatton after her collegiate debut
DIVISION II POWERHOUSE ADAMS STATE NEARLY UPSETS STANFORD MEN
A rebuilding Stanford men’s team was nearly upset by number one ranked Division II team Adams State Saturday on their home course. The Cardinal, led by sophomore Joe Rosa in third place, scored 34 points ahead of 40 points for Adams State. The individual win was claimed by NAIA standout John Gilbertson of The Master’s College in Santa Clarita, Calif.
Find full results from the men’s 8k at the Stanford Invitational here.
PAPPAS DOMINATES IN OREGON DEBUT AT DELLINGER INVITATIONAL
Alexi Pappas dominated in her opening race as an Oregon Duck at the Bill Dellinger Invitational, running away from the field over the final mile to break the tape in 16:23. The Aladema, Calif. native was 36 seconds ahead of her closest collegiate competitor. Pappas arrived at Oregon as a fifth-year transfer from Dartmouth where she had a breakthrough track season last spring that culminated with a third place finish in the steeplechase at the NCAA championships.
“Being in a place where there’s so much support for the sport is incredible,” Pappas said about her debut in Eugene. “It makes it fun to race.”
Oregon star senior Jordan Hasay appeared to struggled in the latter stages of the race, finishing as the Ducks’ fifth runner in seventh place.
Oregon’s Trevor Dunbar won the men’s race while BYU edged the hosts in the team scoring, 32 to 49.
Full results from the Dellinger Invitational here.
Interview with Alexi Pappas after her win
PAC-12 PICTURE COMPLICATES IN LOUISVILLE
In a showdown of Pac-12 rivals, the number 12 ranked Arizona women upset top-ranked Washington at the Greater Louisville Cross Country Classic, 71 to 80. Junior Elvin Kibet led the way for the Wildcats with the individual win while top Husky Katie Flood was third. It is worth nothing Washington was without last year’s number two runner Megan Goethals, the NCAA outdoor 5k runner-up.
The men’s race in Louisville went to form as the Arizona duo of Lawi Lalang and Stephen Sambu dominated the field, finishing first and second, respectively, over 20 seconds ahead of their nearly competitor.
UCLA BOLSTERS COACHING STAFF WITH OLYMPIANS GREENE, DAY
Mike Maynard, director of track and field at UCLA, announced a number of additions to the team’s coaching staff this week, notably volunteer assistants Maurice Greene and Sharon Day. Greene will bring his experience as a four-time Olympic medalist and former 100 meter world record holder to assist with the men’s short sprints while Day, heptathlon specialist, will work with the men’s and women’s jumpers and multi-event athletes.
GOV. JERRY BROWN SIGNS ‘STUDENT-ATHLETE BILL OF RIGHTS’ INTO LAW
Last week, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 1525, known as the “Student-Athlete Bill of Rights,” into law. The bill, sponsored by State Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) requires universities in the state that generate more than $10 million annually in media revenues to provide certain protections to student-athletes. The provisions include providing academic scholarships to those who lose athletic scholarships due to injury and paying health care premier for low-income students. The schools required to comply with the regulations are California’s four Pac-12 conference institutions – Stanford, Cal, UCLA and USC.