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XC | SMC Travels To Bronco Invite

Oct. 13, 2017

MORAGA, Calif. — The Saint Mary’s men’s and women’s cross country teams will compete in one of the biggest races of the year Saturday, making their annual trip to the Bronco Invitational in Sunnyvale at Baylands Park, their final tune-up before the WCC Championships at the end of the month.

Saturday, 8:00 a.m. – Men’s Collegiate Invitational 8 km
Saturday, 8:45 a.m. – Women’s Collegiate Invitational 6 km
Saturday, 9:30 a.m. – Men’s Open 8 km
Saturday, 10:15 a.m. – Women’s Open 6 km

The Gaels are coming off a bye week and will be plenty rested heading into the always-fast Bronco Invitational. The men and women both finished fourth at the 2016 Bronco Invite, with Gabe Arias-Sheridan’s course and meet record in the men’s 8-kilometer race highlighting the day. Saint Mary’s has already raced on the Baylands Park course this season, taking on South Bay rival Santa Clara in a dual meet on Sept. 22. SMC grabbed two individual victories, with Abby Bolt winning the women’s 5 km race in 18 minutes, 2.5 seconds, and Raymond Boffman earning his first collegiate victory with a win in the men’s 6 km (17:51.16).

The Gaels’ biggest meet to date came in their last competition when they ran at University of Notre Dame’s Joe Piane Invitational on Sept. 29. Bolt led the women in Indiana by finishing 27th in 17:58.7 over the 5 km course. Boffman finished fourth overall and teammate Noah McDermott finished seventh, giving the Gaels two finishers in the top-10 out of 160 runners in the race.

Nolan Dozier and Neylene Leon showed impressive standings in the Joe Paine Invitational. Leon has consistently been Saint Mary’s No. 2 runner behind Bolt, giving SMC a strong 1-2 punch. Dozier most recently finished 42nd at the Joe Piane Invite, giving the Gaels four in the top-50.

Neylene Leon
“This invitational helps us learn what we need before the conference (meet). We are having two of our last year’s top-five join in (on Saturday) so I think the gap is going to close just because we have our women back healthy and running.”

“We are just looking to execute the perfect race plan and run together. I know from experience that running together has been a lot easier than running by yourself. (Saturday) is key to help us look for our last practice before our conference run.”
“I think this year we have trained a lot smarter. I think that from the Bronco Invitational to Regionals we are expected to do well. We can only go up from here, which is what we are all looking forward to and getting more and more fit is a confidence builder.”

Nolan Dozier
“I have been feeling really happy with my fitness. I feel like the courses have been a lot different compared to last year. I’m feeling confident, but I am waiting on that pop-out race which I think it should either be Bronco Invitational or the upcoming conference race.”

“I am just hoping everyone can go out there and have their personal best. Overall, I think our guys are more fit than ever. For example, Boffman did some solid training at altitude this summer. Noah is consistent and fit as always. Bojorquez has been a big surprise because of his shin issues, but this year he is on top of his game and it has been motivating me. I am also excited for the freshmen to see what they can do in a faster race like this. All in all, I‘m looking forward to having a good solid season best.”

Saint Mary’s will compete in another fast race at the WCC Championship on Friday, Oct. 27, in Oakland.



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