Campbell, Mandi Lead UW To Top-Four Finishes at NCAA West Regional
Nov. 12, 2005
STANFORD, Calif. - Anchored by top-11 finishers Mark Mandi and Anita Campbell, Washington's cross country teams each earned top-four finishes Saturday at the NCAA West Regional Championships on the Stanford Golf Course.
Ninth-ranked Arizona upset No. 4 Stanford to win its first regional title since 1994, while the No. 2 Cardinal women edged fifth-ranked ASU for their seventh-consecutive regional crown. All four earned automatic berths to the Nov. 21 NCAA Championships, with the remaining teams - including both Washington squads - hoping for one of the 13 at-large berths to be awarded Sunday at NCAASports.com.
With early-season wins and strong performances Saturday, head coach Greg Metcalf says both of Washington's teams deserve be among those selected Sunday.
'Both our men's and women's teams have done everything we've asked them to do to put themselves in position to go to NCAAs,' Metcalf said. 'Hopefully, it will be enough.'
Seven Huskies earned All-West Region honors with top-25 finishes, led by senior Mandi's fifth-place effort in 30 minutes, 22 seconds - the fifth-highest regional finish ever by a Husky men's runner. Mandi, who has led UW at eight of his last nine races, was joined in the top-25 by sophomore Jeremy Mineau (16th in 30:43) and junior Mike Sayenko (25th in 30:56), with juniors Travis Boyd 29th and Kevin Peters 31st.
Having failed to pack runners in behind the All-Pac-10 Mandi in a disappointing fourth-place Pac-10 Championships two weeks ago, Washington logged just a 47-second gap between its first and fifth runners en route to equaling its best regional finish since 1994.
'Mark just did his thing, and the rest of our guys were able to close those gaps and stay up at the front,' Metcalf said. 'I told our team at the start of the year that if we ran a 45-second gap at Regionals, and everyone was healthy, that we'd be third. Well, we ran 47 seconds and were fourth.'
On the women's side, it was British Columbia freshman Anita Campbell - not Bay Area native Tori Tyler - leading the UW at the tape, her 11th-place finish in 20:35 the second-highest of any freshman in the field. Tyler - UW's leader at three of the team's first four races - was just 13 seconds behind Campbell in 15th, while sophomore Amy Lia ran 17th in 20:56. Freshman Brooke Lademan rounded out the team's All-Region performers with a 22nd-place finish in 21:11, with senior Angela Wishaar rounding out the team's scoring in 52nd.
'Anita Campbell ran the best race of her college career today,' Metcalf said, 'and Tori ran great, too. Amy Lia also came back in a big way for us. This is a team that can definitely be dangerous at the NCAA meet if we're lucky enough to get in.'
Arizona's Robert Cheseret won his second-straight regional crown in 30:04, the first of four Wildcats runners to cross the line before any runners from the 10-time defending champion Cardinal. Stanford's Arianna Lambie added the women's regional title to the Pac-10 crown she won two weeks ago, her time of 19:30 nearly 30 seconds ahead of defending regional champion Amy Hastings of ASU.
Washington's women have qualified for the NCAA Championships in each of Metcalf's eight years as coach, the nation's sixth-longest active streak of NCAA appearances, while the UW men are seeking their second NCAA berth in the past three seasons. Washington last sent both its men's and women's teams to the same NCAA Championships in 2003, but have done so just three times since women's sports were added by the NCAA in 1977.
'It's a lot more fun to go the NCAA meet with two teams,' Metcalf said. 'If we're fortunate enough to have that happen, we'll have a great time, I'm sure.'
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