Nov. 16, 2002
STANFORD, Calif. - The Santa Clara University men and women's cross country teams completed their 2002 season Saturday at the NCAA West Regional Championships hosted by Stanford at the Stanford Golf Course.
The Bronco men finished 14th out of 23 teams in the regional meet with 381 points. The SCU women finished 15th out of 28 teams with 455 points, just 18 points behind Cal Poly. Both teams improved on their finishes at last year's regional championships. In last year's meet at Tucson, Ariz., the men finished 16th, while the women were 21st.
Senior Michael Helms led the SCU men, placing 61st overall in the 160-person field with a 10,000-meter time of 32:31. Underclassmen Benjamin Gauen and John Hinman were the nos. two and three finishers for the Broncos, completing the course in 32:37 and 32:50, respectively. Senior Thomas Chapman was 86th overall in a time of 33:02. Dominic Ricci finished 104th with a time of 33:41.
"I was pleased with the team's performance today," said Men's Head Coach John Maloney. "We set goals to be competitive with Portland State, Fullerton State, Idaho, and Boise State. We needed everyone in our top five to be 'on' in order to reach our goals and we beat two and lost to two of those schools.
"We had good days from Ben Gauen and Dominic Ricci who exceeded their goals and really helped the team. It was slightly disappointing for our fifth year seniors to go out today without a higher finish, but we have come a long way from where they started as freshmen. They have provided a great deal to the improvement of the team and have set a high bar for this year's freshmen class to achieve. The guys today ran fast times from what appeared to be a slow course from the 6k times run yesterday. We are pleased to finish with both a competitive placing and quick times."
On the women's side, transfer Kim Bates led the Broncos with a 59th-place finish in a 6,000-meter time of 23:12. Robin Bell was 86th in 23:50, while Milena Basile finished 90th with a time of 23:53. Courtney Daniels finished 107th and Katie Hansen was in 124th place overall. Last season, Bell was the top finisher for the Broncos with a 79th-place effort.
"I'm really pleased with the improvement our team has shown over the last year," said Women's Head Coach Tom Service. "Last year, we finished 21st and felt that we really had a great chance to move up this year. To finish six places higher this year is quite an accomplishment and is a great indication of how we expect our program to continue to move forward.
"I think a combination of the talent of our underclassmen and our recruiting going well gives us a great opportunity to continue to move into a position as one of the top teams in our region. We would have like to have been a little closer to Cal Poly and Cal today, but with our focus being so heavily on the conference meet two weeks ago, I'm really pleased with the way we finished.
"We only lose two seniors so we are excited about our potential next year and I think our team will be anxious for next season to get here."