SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The San José State University men’s and women’s cross country teams begin the second half of their 2015 season this Saturday, October 17 at the Santa Clara University Bronco Invitational.
Spartans cross country coach Brad Wick is looking for his squads to apply what they have learned from the first half of the season where they competed in three September races.
“The first half of the season is all about learning and improving so that you can run in the second half well. Its about trying to figure out the best way to race for the young runners on the team and getting comfortable with training at a higher level with the increase in running volume,” said the third year coach.
“Going into the second half of the season, hopefully they can execute the races a little bit better by getting out fast enough at the start to position themselves better in the race. Also to be more race sharp and ready to put down some good race times and places,” said Wick looking ahead to the three remaining meets on the schedule. They include Saturday’s meet along with the Mountain West Conference Championship and the NCAA West Regional.
Wick expects this weekend's Baylands Regional Park course in Sunnyvale, Calif. to be a fast course with its hard packed dirt paths and low cut grass. However, his focus is improving the ‘spread’ times between the first and the fifth Spartans finishers to continue with the season's theme in establishing team depth.
“On the men’s side, they did a great job of keeping the spread pretty short at the Stanford Invite,” said Wick referring to the 28 second difference between the Spartans’ top finisher Jose Piña and fifth place finisher Raul Rodarte.
“On the women’s side, we can shorten that up,” referring to the 79 second average spread in the three meets this year.
The Spartans men’s 8K race is scheduled to start at 9:00 a.m. PT with the same starting lineup as all its races this season: Ben Branagh, Jannik Ernst, Josue Gonzalez, Craig Huff, Jose Piña, Raul Rodarte, and Huruy Zeratsion.
The Spartans women’s entries for the 6K race, which start at 9:50 a.m. PT, include ten runners: Adilene Aldapa, Morgan Bailey, Jennifer Beckingham, Ashley Cahalan, Melanie Fujiwara, Jenay Jauregui, Lalida Maokhamphiou, Karina Nunes, Diana Orozco and Jeanette Zambrano.
Click here for results to the Santa Clara Invitational.
LAST TIME OUT:
The Spartans last competed on September 26 at the Stanford Invitational. The men’s team finished the 8K course in fourth place out of 14 Division I schools and the women were seventh out of 14 in the 6K race.
BECKINGHAM LEADS THE WAY FOR THE WOMEN:
Graduate student Jennifer Beckingham has been the top Spartans finisher in each of the three women’s meets this year. The England native has finished 12th or better in each meet placing 8th overall at the USF Invitational, 12th at the Fresno State Invitational and 12th at the Stanford Invitational.
FIRST YEAR RUNNERS CONTINUING TO SHINE:
Freshman Jose Piña was the top Spartans finisher for the first time this season at the Stanford Invitational. Piña finished second among Spartan finishers in the first two meets, including being edged out by two-tenths of a second by teammate Ben Branagh at the Fresno State Invitational.
SF State transfer Raul Rodarte has placed within the top-five Spartans finishers in each of the meets this year.
Freshman Jeanette Zambrano made her Spartan debut at the Stanford Invitational finishing third among the Spartans women between two freshmen, Adilene Aldapa and Ashley Cahalan. Aldapa has been the second Spartans finisher in each of its meets this season. Cahalan has placed in the top-four Spartans finishers in each meet this year.
LAST YEAR AT THE SANTA CLARA INVITATIONAL:
The men’s team finished 6th out of 15 Division I schools with Josue Gonzalez leading the way for the Spartans finishing ninth overall with a time of 23:59.0 in the 8K race.
The women finished 10th out of 14 led by Jennifer Beckingham’s 21:12.9 time, good for 30th in the 6K race.
Keep up with your San José State men's and women's cross country teams this season on social media!
Get highlights and upcoming events via Twitter by following @SanJoseStateTF
Get highlights and see post-meet pictures on Instagram by following @sjsudistance
The team is active on Facebook. See the workout and meet videos via facebook.com/sjsudistance