57.8 F

Davis, California

Sunday, May 26, 2024

Cross Country Preview

Event: Big West Conference Championship

Where: Riverside, Calif.

When: Saturday, all day

Who to watch: Junior Jonathan Peterson is having a stellar season.

The Clovis, Calif. native set a course record at the Bronco Invitational two weeks ago with a time of 23:45.1 in the 8k race.

Did you know? The Aggies captured their first Big West Conference individual title last year when Sarah Sumpter topped the women’s division.

Preview: Coming off a great showing at the Bronco Invitational, the Aggies are only two days from the meet they have been preparing for all season – the Big West Conference Championship.

On the men’s side, Jonathan Peterson is one of the favorites as he set a course record in Santa Clara two weeks ago and looks to continue his dominance at the conference finale. Jonathan Sees was not far behind in Bronco Invitational, earning 10th place.

Coach Drew Wartenburg pointed out these two as the runners who will lead the way for the men on Saturday.

“Our team goal is a conference title,” said Wartenburg. “This is the first time for the men where it’s really been tangible and our guys will be ready for it. We can just about taste it.”

At the 2009 Big West Championship, Peterson and Sees placed seventh and 12th, respectively, leading the men to a third place finish in the conference.

This year, Wartenburg looks to those two standouts along with senior Calvin Thigpen to lead UC Davis to its first team conference championship in the coach’s tenure.

For the women, the story reads just the same. Krista Dreschler and Caitlin Fitzgerald have been the frontrunners for the Aggie women all season long, and it is their time to shine in front of the entire Big West.

The women have big shoes to fill after Sumpter’s individual title last year, but Wartenburg is fully confident in this year’s squad to continue dominating the trails on Saturday.

“Our goal for the women is the same as the men: we want the title,” reported Wartenburg.

Though the Aggies may have fallen just short of their team goals earlier in the year, this weekend is the perfect chance to capture the redemption they seek.

“It boils down to a one meet season,” Wartenburg said. “All it takes is to put it together this weekend and the team can do great things.”

The timing has never been more perfect for the Aggies to raise the Big West Championship trophy on Saturday.

“There is no time to be nervous anymore, that part is over,” Wartenburg said. “This is what we’ve been preparing for all year and we finally get to go out and cut loose.

“It’s time to take care of business.”

– Johnny Parsons


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