As a final tune-up before the Stanford Invitational on Sat., Sept. 25, the Santa Clara's cross country teams head to Riverside, Calif. on Sat., Sept. 18 to compete in the UC Riverside Invitational. It's a 5K for the women (7:30 am) and an 8K for the men (8:15 am).
The men and women both finished fourth in their first race of the season on Sat., Sept. 5 at SF State. Head coach Tom Service (TS), who coaches the women's team, and associate head coach Felipe Montoro (FM), who coaches the men's team, sat down and talked with www.SantaClaraBroncos.com to talk about the team's training in the early going and their expectations.
SCU: After looking over the first weeks results at USF, were you pleased? What is one thing you want the team to work on this week in the race at Riverside?
TS: The first race of the season is always a chance to take a good look at our freshmen. I was very pleased with their competitive spirit at USF. Riverside will be very interesting since it is such a fast 5k course. You have to "get out".
FM: I was very pleased with our results at USF. The team ran well. Riverside is still a pre-season race so we will be working on running a smart race tactically as well as becoming as proficient as possible at budgeting our effort evenly throughout the race.
SCU: What is your training like right now - in the early part of the season with a week off between your first and second races?
TS: In Sept. and early Oct. our training is not really affected by our race schedule. We are in a scheduled cycle of training and the early Invites are part of that cycle.
FM: Our training is still very focused on building aerobic strength and learning how to run our most efficient races possible in the post season.
SCU: In the early going, is there a freshman that is standing out?
TS: I am impressed with all 5 of our newcomers. Erin hicks ( Los Altos ) appears to have an early edge in being ready to race at the collegiate level.
FM: I have been very impressed with freshman Ben Demaree's adjustment to college training and racing. He was very well prepared.
SCU: You are pretty young on both sides. Who is the leader of the team?
TS: We instituted a new tradition this year. We have chosen a Sr, Jr, and So as Tri-Captains. This way we will insure a positive link for leadership in the near future. Our Captains are Stephanie Wilson, Nicole Giove, and Erin McCarthy.
FM: Senior Chris Mosier is a team captain and a leader on the team. Chris is also a leader at Santa Clara University as the president of the student-body. Sophomores Austin Jones and Kevin Oliver have taken a more active roll leading the team as well.
SCU: How do you get the freshmen to understand it's really all about pushing towards being ready at the end of Oct. and not what happens in every race now?
TS It is a challenge that we work on each day.
FM: They are pretty aware of that already, since HS XC championships are determined the same way. Aside from that, they hear it from the coaching staff all the time as well as the veterans on the team.
SCU: Any other notes you want to make about the team or its training?
TS: Both the men and the women have great attitudes. Next week they will have an additional challenge when they become "Student Athletes"
FM: It has been great having Priscilla Bayley on the coaching staff. She is a great coach and a nice addition to our program.