On Saturday, the women's 6,000-meter race will start at 9:40 a.m. PDT while the men's 8,000-meter race will begin at 10:40 a.m.
Oct. 25, 2012
University of Arizona Wildcat No. 5 women's and men's cross country teams will begin the championship portion of the season on Saturday, Oct. 27 at the Pac-12 Championships. The competition will be held at Robson Ranch Golf Course. The women's 6,000-meter race will start at 9:40 a.m. PDT while the men's 8,000-meter race will begin at 10:40 a.m. Two points will be on the line in the 2012 Territorial Cup Series. Whoever finishes higher on the men's and women's side will receive one point, respectively.
"The Pac-12 is such a strong conference in cross country," head coach James Li said. "Four of the top six women's teams in the country are in this meet and the men have three teams in the top eight. It's going to be a great meet and a challenge for us. The women are definitely in the mix to challenge for the top spot but we could just as easily finish in fourth or fifth place. It'll be very close but I'm really happy with where we are right now. I think our ladies are confident and have had some good training for this upcoming meet but also for regionals and the NCAA Championships. We'll go there to compete and hopefully be able to answer the challenge. All I ask is that we go there and compete."
Arizona will compete against Arizona State (M: NR, W: NR), California (M: NR, W: NR), Colorado (M: 2, W: 21), Oregon (M: 8, W: 3), Oregon State (W: NR), Stanford (M: 3, W: 4), UCLA (M: 15, W: 24), USC (W: NR), Utah (W: NR), Washington (M: NR, W: 6), and Washington State (M: NR, W: NR).
In the latest USTFCCCA regional poll, the Arizona women fell two spots to No. 3. Stanford is first, Oregon sits at second, Washington is fourth, UCLA is fifth, Arizona State is tenth and California is 15th.
The Wildcat men are No. 8 in the west regional poll. Stanford sits at No. 1, Oregon is No. 2, UCLA is No. 3, Arizona State is No. 5, Washington is No. 6, Washington State sits at No. 7 and California is No. 11. Colorado holds the No. 1 spot in the mountain region.
On the women's side, senior Elizabeth Apgar, senior Jen Bergman, sophomore Stephanie Bulder, freshman Molly Callahan, sophomore Nicci Corbin, sophomore Clea Formaz, junior Elvin Kibet, junior Melanie McGrath, junior Erin Menefee, junior Hannah Moen, sophomore Kate Penney and junior Amanda Russell will toe the line for Arizona.
For the men, sophomore Kenji Bierig, junior James Eichberger, freshman Nathan Kandie, sophomore Lawi Lalang, sophomore Jonas Legernes, sophomore Sam Macaluso, senior Rory McLeod, freshman Michael Parkes, senior Stephen Sambu, freshman Christopher Tansey, junior Braden Timpe and sophomore Thomas Valente will don the cardinal and navy for the Wildcats.
"We obviously have Lawi and Stephen, who are the top runners in the nation," Li said. "Then we have a bunch of younger guys who are ready to step up and I think we will have a considerably better showing at this meet. There are definitely some very strong teams in the conference but I think we will do well. The guys are fired up and I think the Pac-12 Championships will be an important step for them to work towards making the NCAA Championships."
At the 2011 Pac-12 Championships, the women's squad earned a fifth-place finish and the men's squad finished in eighth place. Lalang claimed the individual title while setting a course record. Bergman was the top finisher for the women, taking sixth place and earning All-Pac-12 honors.