Senior Rosa Del Toro a recorded new school record to lead the Long Beach State women’s cross country team to a first-place finish at the Bronco Invitational this past weekend at Baylands Regional Park in Sunnyvale, Calif.
Del Toro broke a program record in the 5,000-meters by five seconds that was previously held by Sarah Apgar (17:14) in 2009 at the Bronco Invitational. Del Toro crossed the finish line in fourth with a mark of 17:09.8, finishing 14 seconds behind race winner Hannah Kiser of Idaho.
The 49ers tallied a total of 94 points to beat out second-place Portland (100 points) and Idaho State (116 points), which finished third.
With the win, LBSU finished ahead of five teams that were ranked in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Women’s West Region poll. UC Berkeley was the highest ranked team at No. 3, followed by Portland (8th), UC Davis (9th), Cal Poly (10th) and Idaho (13th).
On the men’s side, LBSU placed third in the 19-team field, collecting 153 points and finishing just behind second-place Cal Poly (77 points) and team champion Stanford (38 points). The Mustangs, ranked seventh in the USTFCCCA west region poll, are the highest ranked team from the Big West Conference. The 49ers finished ahead of UCLA (14th) and California (16th) as both the Bruins and Golden Bears are ranked ahead of LBSU (9th) in the west region poll at No. 6 and No. 8, respectively.
“We’re really proud of both teams on their performance this morning,” LBSU distance coach Patrick Cunniff said. “Both squads put in a great effort. We’re really happy with the women on how hard they competed.”
Junior Nina Moore finished second for the 49ers placing 23rd with a time of 17:38.8, followed by Michelle Thompson in 25th at 17:39.8. Senior Jessica Barnard ran a personal-best of 17:43.6, crossing the line in 31st, followed by freshman Catherine Martinez in 37th (17:50.7).
Junior Prism Garcia turned in a personal-best 18:44.3 (117th) as well as sophomore Kylee Martin at 18:50.0 (123rd). Freshman Madison D’Orenellas finished in 133rd (18:59.0), junior Andrea Gayton-Jacobs in 143rd (19:06.0) and sophomore Annie Randall in 148th (19:15.2)
Sophomore Heath Reedy and senior Matt Maldonado were the top runners for the men’s team, finishing in the top-10 and recording personal-bests in the 8K run. Reedy finished in third at 23:50.0 and Maldonado placed ninth at 24:10.2.
Sophomore Andrew Garcia finished in 39th with a personal-best 24:41.4, followed by juniors Bret Hasvold in 62nd (25:13.4) and Jared Long in 68th (25:17.7). Arturo Trejo turned in a time of 25:54.4 to place 108th and Cameron Pantoja finished in 132nd (26:23.7).
“The men’s effort was good as we went into the race a little tired,” Cunniff said. “Overall, [we’re] proud of both teams as this now prepares us for the conference championship in a few weeks.”
The 49ers will return to action Friday as they travel to Cal State Fullerton for the Titan Invitational.