STANFORD, Calif. – The Cal Poly men's cross country team entered Satuday's NCAA West Regional as the fifth seeded team and came home third, advancing its chances for an at-large bid to the championships Nov. 21. The women's team entered the race seeded 14th and finished in ninth.
The NCAA selection for the championships will be announced on Sunday, Nov. 13.
The Mustangs finished third with 122 points behind a hotly contested race between Stanford and Portland, with the Cardinal winning 50-53.
The Mustangs placed all seven runners in the top 47 with senior Daniel Gonia setting the pace with his ninth place finish, covering the 10k course in a time of 29:28.
Junior transfer David Cardona was 20th with a time of 29:56 while senior Yran Cosens was 29th with a time of 30:10.
Sophomore Chris Frias finished in 46th (30:25) with Michael Johnson in 47th (30:27).
"Everybody ran an outstanding race today, I am really proud of the team" said head coach Mark Conover. "They ran like they really wanted to show something today, they used a lot of cohesiveness in the race, showing desire and hart.
Conover added, "they really believed in themselves today."
Cal Poly knocked off both Oregon (6th) and UCLA (7th) who entered the race ranked above the Mustangs. Washington State ran a solid race to finish in fourth behind Cal Poly. California finished fifth.
On the women's side, Cal Poly upset a number of schools with its ninth place finish. The team was paced by senior Leanne Fogg's 16th place finish and true freshman Meghan Breadmore's 17th place finish. Fogg covered the 6k course in a time of 20:45 with Breadmore posting a time of 20:47.
"I'm very proud of how the women ran today, they really stepped it up from their conference showing and showed they can compete with the best," said Conover.
He added, "with Leanne and Meghan's outstanding showing they have put themselves in a place to be considered for individual at-large selection."
Junior Noelle Garcia rounded out the scoring Mustangs with her 86th place finish and a time of 22:03.