Sept. 14, 2007
PORTLAND, Ore. - Gonzaga University junior Colby Litzenberger recorded his first collegiate cross country victory Friday, capturing the West Coast Conference Preview at Pier Park.
Litztenberger covered the 8K course in 25:05.70 to easily win by 13 seconds.
"There was nobody around him when he crossed the finish line," Gonzaga head coach Kevin Swaim said. "It was significant in that it was an 8K race. The NCAA Championship went to an 8K format for the first time last season, a distance more and more meets are using to get their men ready for the NCAA meet."
Sophomore Brett Withers was 20th for the Bulldogs in 26:24.60.
Gonzaga finished sixth with 126 points, host University of Portland winning with 31 points.
"Colby and Brett ran a good race, but for us to be successful we need to get our three, four and five runners closer to our top guy," Swaim said. "But on the flip side, our three through ninth guys were running 8K for the first time."
The Bulldogs were 35th, 38th and 55th overall after Withers.
A pair of sophomores was the top finishers for the Bulldogs on the women's side. Molly Funk was the top Bulldog in 21st in 23:22 over the 6K course. Madeleine Gianotti was 45th in 24:32. Bobeya Krishnik of team champion Portland took individual honors in 21:43.36.
Gonzaga finished sixth with 165 points, Portland taking the team crown with 17 points.
"Our women are young," Swaim said. "You'll see improvement, but it is going to take some time for them to come into their own."
The next action for the Bulldogs will be Sept. 22 at the Whitworth Short Course race in Spokane.