The Santa Clara track team, looking to re-write the all-time list this season, traveled to Turlock, Calif last weekend to compete in the Kim Duyst Track and Field Invitational hosted by California State University on March 2.
Sophomore Mary Kriege, fresh off a school record 3,000-meter performance one week ago, continued to invade the Bronco all-time list with the fourth fastest 5k time in school history, covering the 3.1 mile race in 17:18.70. Kriege, who also holds the school's 10k record, took the lead 200 meters into the race and never relented.
"Mary is a very uniquely mentally tough athlete," said Bronco assistant coach Pete Cushman. "She can run and perform well in races in a variety of ways. She does best off a fast pace from the gun, but she can fly ahead solo or tuck into a pack and let the race unfold for her and find equal success. She has a very innate racing skill, and coupling that with her talent, she will continue to earn more success and more record performances this season and on."
The Broncos flooded the top 10 of the 26-person field for the 5K with all seven of the Bronco women entered in the race finishing in the top 10. Senior Hayley Ney, in her 2013 5k debut, finished fourth in 17:54.09. Junior Lauren Germany chopped off over a minute of her previous best, dipping under 18 minutes for the first time in her career with a fifth place finish in 17:55.29. Germany's twin sister, Kayla, followed close behind in a personal best of 18:07.57.
"It was great to see Lauren run aggressive like that," said Bronco head coach Felipe Montoro. "She's a big talent and works very hard. All of the women did a good job competing today. It bodes well for the season."
Senior Kevin Oliver chopped two seconds off the men's 5,000 meter school record with an impressive performance of 14:44.41. The race went out at a relatively pedestrian pace, with the lead pack cruising through 3k in 9:00 (15:00 5k pace) before things got going. Chico State's Geoffrey Bogan put a gap on the leaders, a move Oliver matched 200 meters later down the homestretch with four laps remaining in the race. With 700 meters left, Oliver again surged ahead, this time creating his own lead gap of over 10 meters. He managed to hang onto his lead until 300 meters remained where NCAA DII 1500-meter All-American Dawson Vorderbruegge kicked him down.
"Kevin ran a great race, and did everything he could to try and win it all," said Montoro. "While he fell short of winning, this is a great early season mark. It's one he'll continue to improve on it, especially if he keeps sticking his nose in races like this."
Oliver was followed by freshman Sam Holeman, debuting in the 5k at 15:07.65. He finished 10th overall.
"This was a great debut race for Sam," said Montoro. "He's has good skills for racing, and we think he has a lot of room for growth."
In the women's 1500m, junior Allie Sibole paced the team running a 4:49.19 for fourth place. Freshman Adrian Hinojosa led the men, running 4:07.37. Amia Nash, who made her return to competition after a long layoff in the women's 400m, finished in 1:01.54 for ninth.
Both Bronco teams will have athletes competing next weekend at the Aggie Open, hosted by UC Davis.