January 23, 2009

Gaucho Cross Country Honors Past and Present at Awards Banquet

Jan. 23, 2009

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- Last Saturday, the UCSB cross country program hosted a memorable awards banquet, with 16 members of the 1978 and 1979 PCAA (Big West) championship teams in attendance. The event commemorated the achievements of the past and served as the awards ceremony for the 2008 season.

The '78 and '79 teams were reunited 30 years after their championship seasons. The 16 teammates participated in a social hour before the banquet, and also toured the Mosher Alumni Building and the new Intercollegiate Athletics Building, allowing them to observe how UCSB athletics has advanced in the past three decades.

The members of the team were given an opportunity to speak at the awards banquet, providing their perspectives on the championship team and on the current cross country program. Each team member was given a commemorative blue jacket embroidered with the UCSB cross country crest and the number 30, signifying the 30 year anniversary of their benchmark seasons. The team went on a run together the morning after the banquet.

Awards were presented to members of the current team in honor of their achievements in 2008. The MVPs for the 2008 season are Danielle Domenichelli, the women's Big West Conference Champion, and Scott Smith, who took third in the men's Big West Championships.

Other presentations included the Comeback Runner Award, which was awarded to Waleed Totari for re-earning a spot on the team after sitting out last season. His determination during the season and offseason was remunerated at the Big West Championships, where he took ninth place to earn All-Conference distinction. The Gaucho Award was presented to Charles Maginnis for finishing in a scoring position at the Big West Championships as a freshman.

Additionally, the team presented Domenichelli and fellow senior Ashley Ramirez with gifts to commemorate their Gaucho careers.

The program would like to thank all those who attended the banquet, and now looks forward to the 2009 track and field season.

-- UCSBgauchos.com --