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September 18, 2010

Cross Country competes at Aztec Invitational

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (Sept. 18, 2010) – On what turned out to be a pristine day in America's finest city, the Tigers took to the course in Balboa Park to compete in the Aztec Invitational.

First up were the women's open runners, followed by the Tigers' top seven women runners competing against a myriad of Division I schools including UCLA, Long Beach State and the University of San Diego. Sadie Mohler led the pack across the finish line in a time of 20:05.8 with Meghan Whalen and Anna Dalton close behind, finishing in 20:22.3 and 20:28.3, respectively. Next across the line, in 20:46.2, was Casey Warendorf.

Sally Landefeld (21:04.1), Eliza Dornbush (21:07.8) and Deanna Dupuy (21:24.9) brought up the rear after battling through the five kilometer course.

In a post race interview Landefeld described the course as, "The hardest mental race I've ever run," while many other runners commented on the daunting hills riddled with switchbacks throughout the race.

Meanwhile during the men's race, Eric Kleinsasser, in his first race back from a broken left clavicle, took a spill 300 meters into the course onto his injured shoulder. Contrary to what most would have done, Kleinsasser bounced right back up, composed himself, and managed to finish first for the Oxy men with a time of 27:11.8 as the 27th man across the line.

Afterwards, bandaged and bruised, he described the incident as nothing more than an incidental foot tangling with another runner, seemingly un-phased by what had happened. 

Charlie Sauter (27:19.6) and Sebi Devlin-Foltz (27:49.7) were the only other two Tigers to finish sub-28 minutes in the 8K.

Mario Castillo (28:24.5), Javier Quiroz (29:16.3), Ryan Kammerman (29:29.8) and Thomas Cahuzac (29:59.7) also represented Oxy in the invitational race. 

Across the board, runners all commented on the overall difficulty of the course, both mentally and physically. 

Next up for the Tigers cross country teams will be the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational on Saturday, October 2 at 8:30 a.m.

Article by Duncan Marks, Student Reporter