Aug. 28, 2006
Malibu, Calif. -
The Pepperdine men's and women's cross country teams open their respective 2006 seasons this week when they travel to Orange County to compete in the Cal State Fullerton Invitational at the Carbon Canyon Course in Brea, California, on Saturday.
The men's eight-kilometer race begins at 8:30 a.m. and the women's five-kilometer run is scheduled to start at 9:15 a.m.
This year's season-opening event will begin a new era in Pepperdine cross country as Robert Radnoti takes over the reigns as head coach of the program, replacing Dick Kampmann, who retired after 17 years as the Waves' head coach. Kampmann will continue to be a part of the program, serving as a volunteer assistant.
"This really is a dream come true for me," said Radnoti. "To be able to step into a head coaching position at a Division I university is something I have always wanted to do.
"There is a strong foundation here at Pepperdine and I feel like the program is moving in the right direction to become one of the premier running programs in the nation," Radnoti continued. "We have a great group of kids coming in, lots of excitement with prospective student-athletes and I am confident the cross country program will show immediate and continued improvement."
Saturday's meet is the first of six regular-season events the cross country teams will compete in prior to the West Coast Conference (WCC) Championships.
The Waves will host the Pepperdine Invitational on Saturday, September 23, beginning at 8:30 a.m. with the men's eight-kilometer race. The women will run their six-kilometer race at 9:30 a.m. USC, Cal State Northridge and Cal State Los Angeles are slated to compete in the event.
The WCC Championships are scheduled for Saturday, October 30, at the Crystal Springs Course in Belmont, California.
The NCAA West Regional Championships will be held at Blue Lake Park in Portland, Oregon, November 11, and the NCAA Championships are slated for November 20 in Terra Haute, Indiana.
The men's team returns a solid nucleus led by seniors Chris Gaudreau, Sam Hudson and sophomore Tim Hatters. The team is further bolstered by the addition of junior Nick Rowan and freshman Anthony Barnes.
On the women's side, seniors Tarrah Crowley, Kyla Maher and Beth Bedingfield along with sophomores Amy Rogg, Julia Frudden, Amanda Gordon, Marissa Kerby and Courtney Smith highlight a solid and experienced group of returnees.
THE PROGRAM: Cross country is a non-scholarship sport at Pepperdine. Both the men's and women's teams placed eighth at the 2005 West Coast Conference (WCC) Championships. Portland won the men's conference crown for the 26th consecutive year. On the women's side, Portland claimed the league championship for the 16th time in school history.
Robert Radnoti: Robert Radnoti, who built successful cross country and track and field programs at Thousand Oaks High School during eight years as head coach, begins his first season as head coach of the Pepperdine men's and women's cross country teams and women's track team. Radnoti replaces Dick Kampmann, who retired in July after 17 years as the Waves' head coach. Radnoti, who joined the Pepperdine program as an assistant in January of 2006, brings a wealth of knowledge, innovative ideas and enthusiasm to the head coaching position. A well respected coach in Southern California, Radnoti was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the California Coaches Alliance in 2000. Prior to joining the Pepperdine staff in January, Radnoti enjoyed great success at Thousand Oaks High. His track and field teams compiled a 209-12 overall record, while the cross country teams finished with a 416-17 mark in the tough Marmonte League in Ventura County. The high point of Radnoti's tenure at Thousand Oaks High came in 2005 when he led the girls' cross country team to the Division I California State - the first-ever for the Thousand Oaks girls' team. In addition to his coaching responsibilities, Radnoti was active in fundraising and oversaw the construction of a new all-weather track. Thousand Oaks High has produced numerous national record-holders and has an impressive group of alumni that includes Olympic Gold Medalist Marion Jones.
ON THE WEB: For updated information concerning Pepperdine athletics on the Internet, including results and a schedule of upcoming events, please bookmark the following address: http://www.PepperdineSports.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: For additional information on the men's and women's cross country program, or to arrange interviews with players and the coaching staff, please contact Al Barba at the Pepperdine Sports Information Office by calling 310-506-4455.