Cross Country Set To Host Stanford Invitational

Sept. 25, 2008

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    2008 Stanford Invite
    The 35th edition of the Stanford Cross Country Invitational will continue the tradition of one of the top college cross country meets of the season taking place at the Stanford Golf Course. Approximately 40 teams will compete in the 6,000-meter women's race and the 8,000-meter men's race. The meet will showcase some of the top individuals and teams from around the country.

    Ranked Teams
    The men's race should be highly competitive with four nationally ranked teams. The No. 11 Cardinal headline the competition, which also includes No. 19 California, No. 21 Cal Poly, No. 22 Arkansas and No. 37 UCLA. In addition, west regionally ranked teams that will compete include UC Santa Barbara, UC Davis, UC Irvine and Loyola Maramount. The No. 4 Cardinal women enter Saturday's meet as one of two nationally ranked teams with the other being No. 37 UC Riverside. However, several regionally ranked teams from the west including UC Santa Barbara, UC Irvine, UC Davis, California, Cal State Fullerton and UCLA will be competing.

    Last Season at the Stanford Invite
    Last season both the men's and women's teams won the meet in dominating fashion. The men scored 37 points to better second place California who had 65 points. The Cardinal were led by Neftalem Araia who finished fourth with a time of 23:40. The top returning runner at the Stanford Invite last season is Hari Mix who finished fifth with a time of 23:46. The women won the meet with just 27 points, bettering second place Adams State who had 78. Arianna Lambie captured the individual title for the Cardinal in a time of 19:48. Stanford's top returner from last season's Stanford Invitational is Alicia Follmar who finished fourth with a time of 20:52.

    For Starters
    The Cardinal opened their season, August 30, at the USF Invitational in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Running limited squads the men took the meet title, while the women finished fourth. Jacob Riley led the men with a second place finish with an 8,000-meter time of 25:31.30. The women ran just five runners, led by Alicia Follmar who took the individual meet title with 5,000-meter time of 17:57.90.

    New Leader
    Stanford cross country has a new head cross country coach with the hiring of Jason Dunn over the summer of 2008. Dunn comes to Stanford from the University of Virginia where he was the ACC Coach of the Year last year. During his eight seasons at Virginia, he led eight teams (four men's and four women's) to the NCAA Championships. He takes over a Stanford women's team that has won three consecutive NCAA titles and four out of the last five and a men's team that has finished in the top-six at the NCAA Championships 13 out of the last 14 seasons.

    Returning Women's All-Americans
    Stanford returns four All-Americans from either cross country or track. Katie Harrington returns for her final season after being a 2007 cross country All-American for her 40th place finish at the NCAA Championships. Alex Gits returns after a stellar freshman season that saw her earn her first All-America honor after placing third in the 10,000 meters at the 2008 NCAA Outdoor Track Championships. Alicia Follmar earned a pair of All-America honors during the 2008 indoor season when she finished tenth in the mile and was a member of the distance medley relay team that finished third. Finally, Lindsay Flacks returns for her final season on The Farm after being a cross country All-American in 2006 when she finished 56th at the NCAA Championships.

    Returning Men's All-Americans
    The Cardinal also return four All-Americans on the men's side. They are led by seven-time All-American on the track, Garrett Heath. He is coming off a track season where he was an All-American twice indoors, once outdoors, and a semifinalist in the 1,500 meters at the U.S. Olympic Trials. Also returning is two-time All-American, Hakon DeVries, who earned his second All-America honor last season as a member of the distance medley relay team that finished fourth at the NCAA Indoor Championships. Jacob Evans also returns after earning his first All-America honor as a member of the same distance medley relay team. Finally, Hari Mix is back for his final year on The Farm. He earned his All-American honor during the 2007 track season in the 5,000 meters.

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