At the end of a hot September day, both the men’s and the women’s cross country squads came away with sixth-place finishes in the Stanford Cross Country Invitational, though it looked for much of the race as if the women would come away with a top-five finish. Amanda Moreno was in 15th place overall with half a mile to go when she was forced to exit the race because of an asthma attack.

“Moreno has had problems with allergies in the past,” Head Coach Pete Dolan said. “She thought she could make it to the finish but had to stop.”

With Moreno out, junior Breanne Strenkowski was the first Gaucho to finish, coming in 18th place with a time of 21:36 over the six kilometers. Junior Katie Voigtlander was next, coming in 32nd with a time of 21:58. Overall, the women scored 198 points to take 6th, place right behind Chico State and ahead of Cal Poly.

“The women have run well enough this year to erase last year’s painful memories,” Dolan said. “It is still early, but all indicators for this team right now are very positive.”

The men were at a disadvantage from the start of the race, running without two top runners, seniors Scott Smith and Julian deRubira, who were sidelined due to injury. The first Gaucho to finish was senior Waleed Totari, who came in 13th with a time of 24:38 over eight kilometers. The next to come in was redshirt freshman Juan Paredes, who came in 24th with a time of 24:54, and freshman Bhavik Kanzaria (42nd, 25:24). The team scored 187 points overall, and placed in 6th, behind Long Beach State and ahead of Loyola Marymount.

“The men should have run better,” Dolan said. “Their lack of confidence permeated through this result. These guys did the work this summer but did not trust themselves to race from the gun. It is an experience that they will not forget though.”

Stanford won the men’s and women’s races, scoring 15 and 24 points, respectively. The next meet will be on Oct. 17th, when the team will travel to Cal Poly for the Cal Poly Invitational.