Murphy Leads Slugs in Shoreline Open
MOUNTAIN VIEW , CA -- The Banana Slugs of UC Santa Cruz wrapped up their regular season on Saturday at the Shoreline Open, a mostly post-collegiate race, in Mountain View, CA. As a NCAA DIII Independent, the Slugs have no conference meet in the weeks preceding the West Region Championships. This race acted as their finale before the Regional meet in three weeks.
It was hard to accurately gauge performances due to a slightly long course, but the team worked on pack strategies that hope to play out well at the Region meet.
Sophomore standout Mikayla Murphy (San Luis Obispo, CA) broke the 18 minute mark for the third race in a row, finishing 10th overall in 17:59. Ahead of her were no less then three 2008 Olympic Trials Qualifiers! One of the most impressive races of the day went to Carina Hendricks (Sr, Santa Rosa, CA) who ran a lifetime best 18:46 en route to a 14th place finish. Jenny Cain (Fr, Newport Beach, CA), Maggie McManus (Fr, Santa Rosa, CA), and Hailey Stiers (So, Fresno, CA) worked on grouping up and finished just 23 seconds apart in 19:42, 19:54, and 20:04 respectively.
Kelsey Shields (Fr, Ramona, CA) continued her solid first year with a 20:24 clocking over the "long" 5k. Adrienne Bell (So, Northridge, CA) fought off a cold and ran a tough 20:43, good for 44th overall. Cynthia Toth (So, Carmel, CA) continued her strong end to the season, running 21:01 in another season best time. Team captain Raeann Davis (Jr, Willits, CA) was 57th in 21:20, with Jennifer Jones (Fr, West Covina, CA) close behind in another lifetime best 21:39. Malia Nanbara (So, Lakewood, CA) was on her heels in 21:42.
In just over two weeks the 6th ranked Slugs will be in Salem, OR for the NCAA DIII West region Championships. Mikayla and the rest of the squad are looking towards a Top 5 finish and can't wait for the gun to go off!