Cal Competes at NCAA West Regional

Nov. 10, 2003

BERKELEY, Calif. -

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CAL TRAVELS TO NCAA WEST REGIONAL: After two strong weeks of practice, Cal travels to the University of Portland-hosted NCAA West Regional Saturday, Nov. 15 at Blue Lake Park in Gresham, Ore. The men's 10,000m begins at 11 a.m., and the women's 6000m follows at 12:15 p.m. The course is flat and run mostly on grass. The top two teams from each of the nine regionals earn an automatic berth to the NCAA Championships Nov. 24 in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The Cal men are in search of their first-ever NCAA team invitation, while the women have competed as a team in 1984 (15th) and 1988 (9th).

A LOOK AT THE CAL LINEUP: Cal will likely be at full strength on the men's side this week but may opt to not run sophomore Kevin Davis, who has been hampered by an illness. Junior Girmay Guangul, senior Carlos Carballo and sophomore Giliat Ghebray are expected to lead the way for the Golden Bears. Guangul advanced to the 2000 NCAA Championships as a freshman. Newcomers David Torrence (freshman) and Ozzie Pina (junior) are coming off solid efforts at the Pac-10 Championships. The Cal women are hopeful that freshman Christy Borak will be cleared to run after being hit by a car on her bicycle in early October. Before the injury, she was the team's No. 2 runner. Sophomore Bridget Duffy and junior Abby Parker, the women's team co-captains, will be counted on for fast times and leadership. Eva Markiewicz, who finished 50th at Pac-10s, leads a group of five possible freshmen in Cal's lineup. Sophomore Maja Ruznic is out with a stress fracture in her foot.

2002 NCAA WEST REGIONAL IN REVIEW: The Cal men placed 12th (325 points) and the women took 13th (394) at the 2002 NCAA West Regional at Stanford's Golf Course. Stanford won both team competitions. Carlos Carballo led the Bears with a 21st-place showing (31:21) to earn all-region honors and narrowly miss qualifying for nationals. On the women's side, Bridget Duffy paced the Bears in 48th (22:56) in her rookie season.

2003 PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS RECAP: Injuries and illnesses led to Cal's struggles at the Pac-10 Championships Nov. 1. The Bears grabbed eighth (192 points) in the men's competition and ninth (202 points) in the women's event. Bridget Duffy had the Cal women's best Pac-10 finish in five years, placing 13th in a time of 22:15.70 on the 6,000m course. The Oakland, Calif., product improved on her freshman year showing of 35th, which was also the Bears' top result in 2002. This year, Abby Parker was the Bears' next best runner in 41st (23:47.00), followed by Eva Markiewicz in 50th (24:13.30). Leading the way for the Cal men was Girmay Guangul who took 28th place in a time of 25:56.90 on the men's 8,000m course. Guangul was slowed by a recurring knee injury on the hilly course but treatment has helped him heading into regionals. Giliat Ghebray and David Torrence followed Guangul in 39th (26:14.80) and 44th place (26:28.60), respectively.

DID YOU KNOW?: Cal's 2003 roster features three runners of East African decent - Girmay Guangul (Ethiopia), Giliat Ghebray (Eritrea) and Abadir Barre (Somalia). Bridget Duffy owes her running start to the Saint Mary's High School (Berkeley) volleyball coach, who suggested she had a brighter future as a runner.

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