Just two weeks into a fresh outdoor season with a number of personal bests under their belts, the Santa Clara track team travels to UC Davis on Saturday to compete in the Aggie Open.
Bronco head coach Felipe Montoro was pleased with the team's opening weekend performance last weekend at Cal State Stanislaus. "I was pleased with a number of performances last weekend. We ran about what we expected and maybe even a bit better. Erin McCarthy ran well. Erin Hartwig ran really well. Mary Kriege did a good job. The women are really fit. Austin Jones also had a good meet and Moises Venegas also ran really well. A lot of people ran well, it was a good day."
This week Montoro said the team will compete in about the same type of races with most of the same athletes because it's still very early in the season. He expected more runners to compete in the middle distances this week after running the 5K last weekend because USF and Chico will be at UC Davis and they are both strong competition. "We don't run indoors so we might not be as sharp as those who have been racing already. It's nice to ease into the outdoor season."
Pleased with the way the team has been training and then competed in its first races last weekend, Montoro said it's still early so it's hard to know where everybody's fitness level is and that is why it's fun. "We are finding out who responded well to the winter training and who is ready. This will help us when planning for the championship season in May and beyond."
He said the goal is to get back into being competitive. "There is nothing quite like racing as compared to practice. It's nice to be able to be competitive again."
After this weekend's race, a small group will compete next weekend at Sac State at the Hornet Invite because the next week is finals. Finals week a few runners will compete in a low-key meet at San Francisco State, the Johnny Mathis Invite. "Everyone will run at the Bulldog Invite hosted by Fresno State March 30-31. There will be a lot of good teams there including Fresno State, Stanford, Davis, USF, etc. It should be a very competitive meet."