Pac-10 Rivals Help Huskies Open 2005 XC Season at Lincoln Park

Sept. 13, 2005

On the Course: More than 900 athletes from 41 teams will make West Seattle's Lincoln Park their home Saturday, helping the host Washington Huskies open the 2005 collegiate cross country season with the 14th-Annual Sundodger Invitational. This year's field is one of the deepest in recent years, with full teams from UCLA, Washington State, Idaho and Cal State Fullerton, a men's team from Portland, a women's team from Oregon State and full squads from dozens of the Northwest's top small-college and club prorgrams. Racing begins at 9:00 a.m. with the women's open race, followed by the men's open race at 9:40. The women's invitational race -- featuring the defending champion Vandals and other invited teams --begins at 10:25, before the Huskies' men defend their 2004 Sundodger title in the men's invitational at 11:00 a.m. Distances for women will be 6,000 meters for both the open and invitational races, while the men will run at 8,000 meters.

Titles Up For Grabs: For the second-straight year, both individual invitational titles will be up for grabs Saturday, as neither of last year's champions will compete. Husky senior Mark Mandi earned the men's invitational victory last September -- his first cross country win at any level -- completing the 8,000-meter course in 24 minutes, 6 seconds, the seventh-fastest time in meet history. History was also made on the women's side, where former Husky Sabrina Monro became just the second individual to win three-career Sundodger titles, capturing her third crown since 2001 in a 6,000-meter course record time of 20:10. Whilwe the individual titles are vacant this year, both 2004 team champions return, including the UW men and the Idaho women.

Four-Peat Possible?: The Husky men's squad that toes the line at Lincoln Park on Saturday will have the chance to do something no team in meet history has ever accomplished -- win a fourth-straight Sundodger Invitational title. While several teams have won back-to-back titles since the meet's inception in 1992, only the 2002-04 UW men and the 1999-2001 UW women have managed three-straight crowns. While the women were foiled by Idaho in their bid for four-straight last season, the Husky men will be challenged by UCLA, Portland and 2001 Sundodger champ Washington State, the last team other than UW to win a men's invitational title. Interestingly, none of the current Huskies ran in the UW's top-seven at each of the previous three victories, and in fact only two -- senior Andy Fader and junior Travis Boyd -- have been top-seven runners twice in that span, each doing so in 2003 and 2004.

Driving Directions: Exit I-5 at the West Seattle Bridge (#163-A), and continue up the hill into West Seattle where the freeway becomes Fauntleroy Way SW. Proceed on Fauntleroy Way SW for approximately three miles, following signs to the Vashon Ferry Terminal. The park will come up on your right.

Meet Results: Results will be available for coaches only at the conclusion of all four races. Complete results will be faxed to participating schools, and posted online at www.gohuskies.com, no later than 90 minutes following the conclusion of the final race. Coaches and SIDs wishing to have results e-mailed should contact assistant communcations director Brian Beaky at the address on the following page.

Meet History: The Sundodger Invitational has become an annual fixture on the Northwest distance running schedule since its inception in 1982. The first major course changes were made in 2004, with the women's course being extended to 6,000 meters from its standard 5,000-meter length. Washington's teams have dominated the event, winning seven women's titles and five men's titles, including a team sweep in 1994, 2000 and 2003. Huskies Tara Carlson and three-time champion Sabrina Monro are the only women to win the Sundodger title more than once, while Portland's Uli Steidl was a repeat winner on the men's side from 1994-95. Monro set the 6,000-meter meet record of 20:11 last season, while Western Washington's Paul Kezes boasts the men's meet record of 23:42.

Streaking The Field: When Washington's women's team was awarded an at-large berth to the NCAA Championships in November, the nation's sixth-longest active streak of NCAA Championships appearances was preserved. During the Huskies' streak, now the sixth-longest of its kind in the nation, the UW women have earned an automatic bid just one time -- in 1999 -- having been named a provisional qualifier on each of the other occasions. Three times over the previous eight years the Huskies have finished among the top-14 teams in the country, including an all-time best ninth-place finish in 1998. Interestingly, prior to 2004, Washington had been led at the NCAA meet by a different runner in each of the streak's first seven seasons. Senior co-captain Lindsey Egerdahl brought that streak-within-a-streak to an end last season, leading all UW finishers at the national meet for the second time in as many years to become the first Husky since Tara Carlson in 1994-95 to lead the UW at nationals in two-straight years.

, Team, Streak, Year Began
1. Brigham Young, 16 years, 1989
1. Providence, 16 years, 1989
3. Colorado, 13 years, 1992
4. Stanford, 12 years, 1993
5. North Carolina State, 10 years, 1995
6. Washington, 8 years, 1997
7. North Carolina, 7 years, 1998
7. Villanova, 7 years, 1998
7. Arizona State, 7 years, 1998

New Faces Abound: Husky followers may need a media guide to cheer for the UW's women's team this weekend -- only two members of the team's top-seven, and only five letterwinners in total, return from the Huskies' 2004 squad. Senior Angela Wishaar and junior Brianna McLeod each ran in UW's top-seven last season, while sophomore Amy Lia -- a top-seven runner in 2003 -- returns from a one-year injury layoff. Those three, however, will break in a group of mostly freshmen and redshirt freshmen including 2005 California prep 5,000-meter champ Tori Tyler, 2005 Harrier Magazine Prep All-American Annaliese Chapa, and 2005 NCAA Indoor All-American Amanda Miller. Youth is no reason, however, to doubt the Huskies' ability to keep their streak of NCAA appearances alive -- a 2003 UW squad including five freshmen in its top-seven placed third at the Regional meet, and 19th at the NCAAs.

Meet the Coaches: Former Husky All-American Greg Metcalf is in his fourth year as Washington's head coach of track and field and cross-country, and his ninth year overall at the University. Metcalf has guided the women's cross-country team to eight-straight NCAA appearances, and in 2003 led the UW men to their first NCAA appearance since 1993. Metcalf has coached 17 All-Americans, six Pac-10 champions, 74 NCAA qualifiers and 13 school-record setters. A 1993 UW graduate, Metcalf was a two-time All-American in the steeplechase. Metcalf is joined on the coaching staff by former All-Americans David Bazzi, the UW's school-record holder at both 5,000 and 10,000 meters, and Kelly (MacDonald) Strong, a five-time All-American and three-time Pac-10 Champion at ASU.

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