Lions Look to Make History at WCC Championships on Saturday.
LMU Cross Country will show off their potential at Crystal Springs Cross Country Course.
Oct. 30, 2008
Los Angeles, Calif -
After being ranked second in the WCC preseason cross-country poll, LMU Cross Country is hitting their stride at just the right time for the WCC Championships on Nov. 1. The Lions will face the likes of defending champions Portland, Gonzaga, Pepperdine, St. Mary's, San Diego, San Francisco, and Santa Clara. Four out of the top seven runners for LMU will be freshmen.
"There is no question that the conference is the best it's ever been top to bottom." 2007 WCC Co-Coach of the year, Scott Guerrero said. "It truly is a difficult race to predict this year. All I know is that it will be a dogfight and I can't wait. We'll see who's left standing once the dust settles."
Sophomore Tara Erdmann will lead the Lions' charge on the women's side. The defending WCC Freshman of the Year ran the women's 6k in 21:26 placing 5th overall at Crystal Springs last year. Freshman Brieanna Delaney will hope to duplicate that success. Delaney has been a solid #2 for LMU cross country all season. Also look for newcomers Stephanie Felix, Marissa Diehl and Megan Fairley to make an impact for LMU. Veterans Abby Fall and Annie Holden will provide additional experience for the Lions. Senior Fall finished the championships last year in 22:06 placing 15th overall while junior Holden placed 26th overall with a time of 23:00.
"On the women's side we expect Tara to compete for the individual championship. We will have 5 of our 7 who are frosh-soph so again we are very young and somewhat inexperienced." Guerrero commented. "But just like on the men's side sometimes that can actually be a blessing in disguise. We have been beaten twice during the regular season by USF so I think the expectation is that we will finish no better than third. Our women are hungry, healthy and they are peaking nicely so I am happy to take that bet."
Freshmen Phillip Benavides, Daman Coffman, Thomas Finnigan and red-shirt freshman Connor Pastoor will provide the depth and leadership to finish at the top for the Lions. Benavides finished first for the Lions at the Stanford Invitational and Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival while Pastoor led the Lions at the UC Irvine and San Diego State Aztec Invitationals.
The men's 8k race will start off the championships at 9:00 a.m. The women's 6k will follow immediately after at 9:45 at Crystal Springs Cross Country Course in Belmont, CA. To follow the race as it goes on listen to live broadcast from 2005 LMU alums Andy Thompson and Dan Judnick on our website, www.lmulions.com. The "pre-race" show will begin at 8:45 and will continue through both men and women's championships and later archived to the website. To get a feel of the competition in the WCC, listen to 2007's championships at http://lmulions.cstv.com/multimedia/loyo-audio.html. Go Lions!
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