Waves Host Large Cross Country Meet
91 high schools and 14 colleges will attend Saturday's Pepperdine Invitational, held at Alumni Park.
UPCOMINGÂ The Pepperdine men’s and women’s cross country teams will host one of the largest cross country meets in the nation this Saturday, Sept. 22 in Alumni Park. Ninety-one high schools and 14 colleges are expected to participate in the Pepperdine Invitational. Among the college entries are UCLA, USC, Fresno State University and San Jose State University. High school teams from Rhode Island, Washington and New York will be represented in the high school division. The college race will begin at 7:30 a.m. with the men running first followed by the women at 8:30 a.m. The high school races will begin shortly after the men’s race and will continue throughout the day.
PIER POINT PREVIEWÂ The Pepperdine men’s cross country team placed fourth and the women’s team finished third at the Pier Point Preview last Friday (Sept. 14).
The 6k race was run in the late afternoon under overcast skies at Pier Point Park in Portland, Oregon. In the women’s race, Junior Brieanna Carroll, of Portland, took off near the leaders in front of a hometown group of supporters and broke her 23:00 barrier for the first time ever, finishing in 22:38 (12th). The women ran strong as the next five finishers ran under 24:00. Freshman Chelsea Wishard led the "orange pack" finishing in 20th place with a time of 23:14. Finishing third for the Waves was freshman Lilly Spratt (25th) in 23:30, who ran an excellent race despite feeling ill earlier in the day. Juniors Courtney Young and Amanda Gordon finished in 29th and 32nd place with times of 23:38 and 23:53, respectively.
The men’s 8k race started off with four Pepperdine runners among the top ten for the first mile. Surprising more than a few teams with their newly found depth and strength, the 2007 Waves proved that they were a team that came to race.
Senior Chris Ogle stayed with the front pack for most of the race, yet fatigue from a difficult workout week set in over the last mile. Ogle finished 12th in 25:07, followed by freshman Conrad Wozniak (17th) in 26:04 and sophomore Garrett Reim, who ran his best race this season, finishing 22nd in 26:29. Rounding out the top five were freshman David Williams (22nd) in 26:40 and freshman Seth Allison (28th) in 26:45.
Both Pepperdine teams beat WCC rival Gonzaga, which finished sixth in both races.
Following the race, the Waves were treated to an excellent pasta dinner at the home of the Carroll’s.
HEAD COACHÂ Robert Radnoti begins his second season as head coach of the Pepperdine men’s and women’s cross country program. Radnoti previously coached at Thousand Oaks High School where his girls’ team won the Division I state cross country title in 2005. Radnoti brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to the program.
ASSISTANT COACHES Â Four-time Olympian and U.S. national 800-meter record holder Johnny Gray joins the Pepperdine cross country program this season. Gray will work primarily on speed and technique. Dick Kampmann, the former Wave’s cross country coach for 17-years, returns as a volunteer coach. Karen Costello, a 17-year veteran at the high school and community college levels, begins her first season at Pepperdine. Jan Radnoti, who has coached alongside her husband at Thousand Oaks High School, also begins her first year with the Waves as a volunteer assistant.
PEPPERDINE HISTORY ÂPepperdine’s cross country program dates back to the 1960s when Ron Pettigrew and Harry Skandera were both All-American runners. The program was dropped when Pepperdine moved its campus to Malibu. However, men’s and women’s cross country was reinstated in the mid-1970s. This year’s women’s squad is the largest in the history of the Pepperdine program.
2007 OUTLOOK Â Due to Radnoti’s extensive recruiting efforts, the Waves roster includes strength and depth this season. With 18 recruits from Indiana to Hawaii, this year’s men’s and women’s freshman class should be one of the strongest in Pepperdine history.
On the men’s side, nine new harriers join returners Josh Stutzman and Tim Hatters. Chris Ogle, Conrad Wozniak, Seth Allison, Henri Flores, David Williams, Garrett Reim and Eric Magna are among the newcomers looking to challenge for one the top seven spots on the team.
Returning from last year’s squad are Courtney Young, Amanda Gordon, Ashley Burt, Jessica Heckman, Lauren Carfioli, Brie Carroll, Taylor Gamble, Katie Hyten, Liz Lyons, Abby Uhrinak and Caitlin White. Freshmen Chelsea Wishard, Paige Knudsen, Lily Spratt, Anna Honig, and Kelli Binder are expected to contend for Varsity slots on the women’s team.
PEPPERDINE INVITATIONALÂ A high school division was added to the annual Pepperdine Invitational this year. Ninety high school from all over the United States will travel to Malibu to compete at the Pepperdine Invitational. Fifteen colleges and universities will lead off the competition at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 22.