Cross Country Dominates WSC Competition

Brandon Hensley

The Vaqueros cross country team continued their winning ways this season as both the men’s and women’s teams finished first in the Western State Preview Meet Friday at Verdugo Park.

Both teams remain undefeated in Western State Conference competition.

The women’s team finished their 3-mile race with a total time of 1:39:54, ahead of second-place Bakersfield College, which finished with a total time of 1:49:47.

So dominating were the Lady Vaqueros that the top six finishers in the women’s race belonged to Glendale, including freshman Katie Dunn, who finished first overall with a time of 19:03.

What may have provided Dunn with some inspiration was the bike guide, who helped lead the runners through the windy Verdugo course.

“Usually when we have a bike guide leading the course I run a lot better – because I love chasing people,” said Dunn.

Dunn was also candid about her mood before the running. “I wasn’t in the mood to race today. But we did good.”

Sophomore Vaquero team captain Justina Sadauskatie placed second overall, behind Dunn, with a time of 19:41.

“It was a really good race. I think the whole team did really well,” said Sadauskatie.

Head coach Eddie Lopez was impressed with his Lady Vaqueros.

“The gap was almost a minute and a half. Just what we wanted too,” Lopez said. “Considering this is our home course, we ran very well, probably the best we’ve ran all year.”

On the men’s side, sophomore team captain Nathan Sellers was the highest placed Vaquero, finishing fourth overall with a time of 21:12.69.

Glendale finished their 4-mile race with a total time of 1:49:05, beating second place Cuesta College, which came in at 1:51:13. The men’s overall top finisher was Andrew Salg of L.A. Valley College, with a time of 21:00.

“Nathan was up their in front. And then our fifth guy, [Manuel Blanco], moved up. We’re running better as a pack,” Lopez said.

There was some confusion towards the end of the men’s race, as the bike guide took an apparent wrong turn, stretching the race .3 miles more than originally designed.

Lopez didn’t seem too fazed by the turn of events. “We improvised,” he said.

Lopez said he felt good about both the men’s and women’s teams at the moment. “We ran smooth. No one got hurt. Everything’s going well right now.”

Both the men’s and women’s team will run Oct. 18 at the Santa Barbara Invitational in Santa Barbara and Oct. 28 at the WSC Championships at Allan Hancock.