Sept. 20, 2003
RIVERSIDE, Calif. -
Junior Jeff Gardina led the Gauchos to victory at the Riverside Invitational on Saturday by covering the 8k course in 24:23.8 to capture the individual title. UCSB scored only 32 points to win the team title ahead of 28 other teams that took part in the race.
Gardina moved to the front of the race in the fourth mile after conceding 20 seconds to the lead pack at the mile mark. Gardina cruised to victory ahead of second place Justin Patananan who finished in 24:26.9. The Gaucho men finished well ahead of the second place team Runner's High total of 85. Orange Coast College scored 145 to finish third, CS San Marcos took fouth with 155 and Big West rival CS Fullerton was fifth at 171.
UCSB showed superior depth over the competition placing three runners in the top eight, and seven among the top 16, out of 316 total finishers. Senior Chris White finished fourth in 24:33.2, and sophomore Art Avitia took eighth in 24:43.2.
A tight pack of four closed the door on the team scoring for the Gauchos claiming 13th through 16th overall. Senior Pablo Gallegos ran 24:50.9, followed by Senior David Monico at 24:53.1, redshirt freshman Stewart Harwell at 24:53.5 and true freshman Mike Chavez, who crossed the line in 24:53.7.
Santa Barbara will compete next at the Stanford Invitational on Saturday Septmeber 27th. The men's invitational 8k will start at 5:15pm on the Stanford University Golf Course.