SAN FRANCISCO – Santa Clara cross country began its 2019 season on Saturday at the USF Invitational. The men took third place in the 8k and women took sixth place in the 6k at Hellman Hollow; both fields featured seven teams.
James Konugres crossed the finish line in 25:57.5, good for 11th place as the top Bronco men's finisher. Jorge Estrella (13th – 26:02.8), Nicholas Russell (16th – 26:06.2 in his team debut), Ben Davidson (17th – 26:13.7) and Aditya Mohan (22nd – 26:23.9) rounded out Santa Clara's scoring group. Christian Raslowsky, Drew Burns, Brennan Lagerstrom, Ian Kirk and Luke Davies also raced for the men.
Santa Clara tied UC Davis with 78 points and the Aggies won the tiebreaker on the strength of their top three finishers (2-12-14) against SCU's (11-13-16). Cal notched 56 points to claim the team title. San José State's Jose Pina was the top individual finisher.
Janie Nabholz clocked a 22:19.5 and finished in 15th place to lead the women. Newcomers Maiya Fujiwara (25th – 22:29.4) and Hannah Aguirre (38th – 22:58.6) scored in their Bronco debuts alongside Sarah King (41st – 23:10.3) and Noelani Obermeyer (42nd – 23:10.7). Hannah Covington, Ellie Kopf, Emma McCurry, Lucie Semone, Claire Cocales, Luciana Lenth, Jackie Cruz, Adelaide Vergnolle, Emma Eikelberner, Marisa Sanchez, Kalen Abe and Kaitlyn Twadell also raced for the women.
Cal placed five runners in the top 12 to win the team title with 38 points. San José State's Jenny Sandoval was the top individual finisher.
"I'm happy with how we competed today," head coach Felipe Montoro said. "The guys that raced did a good job of sticking together and staying in control. I'm looking forward to the next month of work."
The women split the squad between The Stump Invitational (Davis, California) on Sept. 13 and the Vanderbilt Commodore Classic (Nashville, Tennessee) on Sept. 14. Both teams are in action on Sept. 28 at the Capital Cross Challenge (Sacramento, California) and the men travel to Springfield, Oregon for the Oregon Bill Dellinger Invitational on that day.
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