RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The Cal State Fullerton men's team finished in second place, while the women finished in third at the Highlander Invitational at the Ag/Ops Course on Saturday morning. Host UC Riverside swept both the men's and women's cross country invitational races.
The Highlander men were led by individual champion Seth Totten who completed the 6k course in 17:27.7. UC Riverside collected a dominating 1-3-4-7-8 for 23 points to clinch the title. The Highlanders posted five runners within the top-10 finishers.
UC Riverside's Raquel Hefflin led the Highlanders at the top of the women's standings, earning the individual title in the 5k race posting a mark of 16:46.6. CSUN's Elizabeth Nelson (17:01.4) and the Highlanders' Faith Makau (17:13.9) rounded out the top-three.
Fullerton was second in the men's standings with 63 points, three points ahead of Long Beach State (66). Fullerton sophomore Danny Ramirez finished sixth among collegians at 18:05.0 and was followed by freshman Samuel Garcia in 11th with a time of 18:20.3 on the 6k course. Sophomore Jose Penaloza rounded out the top-three CSF participants at 18:22.9, good for 14th place overall. Five Titan men finished within the top-20 competitors while the team collected its third second-place finish of the season.
"We had some good performances from our top-three finishers, while Sam Garcia continues to improve from week to week," said head coach John Elders. "Positive meet overall as we look to gain momentum heading into the conference championships here at the Ag/Ops Course in Riverside."
The Titans were third in the women's scoring led by fifth place collegian Emily Taylor in 17:47.3 on the 5k course. Taylor posted her best 5k performance of the season both in overall time and finish. Junior Ana Valdovinos was the next Titan runner with a season-best finish in 15th overall with a time of 18:14.8. Anaheim, Calif., native Arianna Fuentes rounded out the top-three Fullerton participants concluding the invite in 20th while carding a time of 18:26.2, continuing the trend with another pair of season-best marks.
For the second consecutive meet, the trio of Taylor, Valdovinos and Fuentes finished their respective invite race 1-2-3 among CSF runners. Five Titan women concluded the race within the top-30 participants as the team recorded its best finish of the season.
"Emily Taylor ran strong for us out front while we had several of the Titan women complete their races posting personal bests for the season," stated Elders. "We are really optimistic that our training will make us sharp for the upcoming Titan Invitational followed by the Big West Championship."
The Titans wrap up the regular season next week when they host the Titan Invitational in Fullerton, Calif., on Friday, Oct. 24 on the campus of Cal State University, Fullerton.