Murakami Leads Bruin Women to 11th-Place Finish in Oregon

Sept. 29, 2007

Freshman Shannon Murakami was UCLA's No. 1 runner on Saturday at the Bill Dellinger Invitational in Eugene, OR as the Bruins finished 11th overall in the team competition. Murakami finished 44th overall in a time of 21:21. Oregon won the meet with 65 points.

'Obviously our team result is lower then what we are willing to accept,' said head coach Eric Peterson. 'We felt 7th or 8th would have been a good performance for us, and although it's lower then what we were shooting for, we saw some good signs of improvement.

Senior Claire Rethmeier was the No. 2 runner for UCLA finishing 61st in a time of 21:34. Juniors Lauren Jirges (72nd, 21:43), Ciara Viehweg (81st, 21:48) and Olga Aulet-Leon (100th, 22:04) round out the top five Bruin finishers.

'One of the goals for our team which was accomplished was to get our time spread between our No. 1 and No. 5 runner to under one minute, and we were able to do that today,' noted Peterson. 'We want that to be even closer but it's a step forward and improvement from where we've been. It was great to see Shannon run with more confidence then I've seen her run with in the previous two races. I can tell that she's feeling better and willing to run the early stages of the race more aggressively and been competitive in the end of the race.

'It's great for our team to have Claire back after a stress fracture from the spring, ran well, a little tentative, but can work it out with more meets. We have a lot to work on but we did show some signs of improvement and we are going hang our hat on that and move forward.'

Team Results (top 5 of 15 teams)
1. Oregon, 65 points; 2. Arkansas, 90 points; 3. Washington, 93 points; 4. Colorado State, 95 points; 5. BYU, 104 points; 11. UCLA, 322 points.

UCLA Individual Results
44. Shannon Murakami, 21:21; 61. Claire Rethmeier, 21:34; 72. Lauren Jirges, 21:43; 81. Ciara Viehweg, 21:48; 100. Olga Aulet-Leon, 22:04; 129. Nicole Pennes, 22:50; 132. Hannah Roeder, 23:03; 133. Cobbie Jones, 23:13; 136. Annie Adams, 23:34.

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