Cross Country Runs at NCAA West Regional This Weekend

Courtney Rolando

Nov. 9, 2011

MALIBU, Calif. - The Pepperdine men's and women's cross country seasons are winding down as this Saturday (Nov. 12) the Waves take part in the NCAA West Regional, hosted by Stanford. The Waves have nine seniors who may be running in their final cross country race.

NCAA WEST REGIONAL - The meet will be held at the Stanford Golf Course. The men's 10k race is at 10 a.m. and the women's 6k is at 11:15 a.m. There are 27 men's teams and 34 women's teams from across the West set to take part.

RADNOTI SAYS - Pepperdine sixth-year head coach Robert Radnoti on the NCAA West Regional: "I think the team is really excited to go back up to Stanford. Part of our strategy was to go up to the Stanford Invitational, run that and learn the course where the regional championship would be. Everyone's got their times and marks and they know the course really well. Everybody's excited to go up there."

LAST MEET - BYU, in its first season as a member of the West Coast Conference, ended Portland's run of 32 straight men's conference titles, while San Francisco won its third straight women's crown at the WCC Championships on October 29. The Waves placed eighth on the women's side and ninth in the men's race. Lauren Lodge finished in 19th place overall in the women's 6k at the Crystal Springs course with a time of 21:57. Kenny Smith (Willits, Calif./Willits HS) was the top men's finisher as he took 31st place with a time of 25:56 in the 8k.

LODGE - Pepperdine's top returner is senior Lauren Lodge (Hopkinton, Mass./Hopkinton HS). Though she sat out the first two meets while recovering from a leg injury and hasn't quite been able recapture her form from the 2010 season, she's been the top finisher on the women's side at the three events since. Lodge finished in fifth place at the 2010 WCC Championships, which led to All-WCC first team honors. She was the winner at the 2009 Malibu Oceanside Open and the 2010 Santa Clara Bronco Invitational. In track, she is the Waves' school-record holder in the 1,500, 3,000 and 5,000 meters and the steeplechase.



LEADERS - Kenny Smith (Willits, Calif./Willits HS) was the Waves' top finisher at five of the six men's races, while Jonathan Rahaeuser (Irvine, Calif./Calvary Chapel HS) took top honors at the Titan Invitational. Aneasha Lawrence (Sun Valley, Calif./Village Christian HS) was the top female at the first two meets (including a win in the season-opening Malibu Oceanside Open), and Lauren Lodge took top honors at the third, fourth and fifth races.

EXPERIENCE - Pepperdine's women's roster has nine returners (seven of whom are seniors), while the men's roster has six returners (two of whom are seniors).

ACADEMICS - Pepperdine's cross country program is perhaps the school's most accomplished in the classroom. In the 2010-11 school year, 22 student-athletes (those with grade-point averages above a 3.0) were named to the WCC Commissioner's Honor Roll, and 10 of them collected WCC All-Academic awards. This fall, 12 of the 13 non-freshmen that ran at the WCC Championships earned WCC All-Academic honors, including Hannah DeWalt, Lauren Lodge and Kenny Smith on the first team.

ABOUT PEPPERDINE - Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won NCAA Division I championships in five different men's sports - one of just 16 schools to have accomplished this feat - and nine overall. Of this elite group, Pepperdine has the smallest enrollment and is the only school not in a major conference. Located in scenic Malibu, Calif., the university overlooks the Pacific Ocean and its campus and athletic facilities are regularly voted among the nation's most beautiful. Pepperdine, which is affiliated with the Church of Christ, ranks #55 overall on U.S. News and World Report's list of America's best colleges. The 2011-12 school year marks Pepperdine's 75th anniversary.

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