SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The Sacramento State men's and women's cross country teams will begin their 2013 seasons at the Aggie Opener on Friday, Aug. 30, at UC Davis.
Under the direction of first year head coach Joe Eby, the Hornet women feature 13 returners while the men bring back 12 athletes from a year ago.
The women's team will be guided by seniors Rachel Mitchell, Lauren Mugnaini (pictured) and Veronica Stinnett who each redshirted a year ago. Mugnaini, who was the Big Sky champion in the 10K during the outdoor season, also qualified for the NCAA West Preliminary in the 5K and 10K. Competing unattached at last season's Aggie Opener, the Sacramento native placed fifth with a time of 14:11.7. In 2011, Mitchell led the Hornets in each of the six meets in which she competed. Like Mugnaini, she also advanced to the NCAA West Preliminary in the 5K during the 2013 outdoor season.
Seniors Reesey Byers (pictured) will guide a balanced men's team. Byers had the highest finish on the team in seven of the eight meets a year ago, including winning the Hornet Jamboree and placing second at the Aggie Opener. Also returning are seniors Cole Younger, Nathanael Litwiller, Zach Kaylor and Daniel Mitchell as well as juniors Domenic D'Acquisto and Mac Harvey who have all seen significant action with the Hornets.
At last season's Aggie Opener, the men captured the team title with 35 points, just edging host UC Davis (36) for the top spot. D'Acquisto, who placed seventh, joined Byers in the top 10.
The women finished second in the meet with 61 points — ahead of Fresno State (64) but behind UC Davis (15). Chloe Berlioux (ninth) was the lone Hornet in the top 10.
In a vote of the Big Sky Conference's 11 head coaches, the Sacramento State men were picked to finish fifth while the women were tabbed to tie for fifth place. Northern Arizona was selected as the favorite for the men followed by Southern Utah and Weber State. Weber State, NAU and SUU were the top three selections in the women's poll.
Big Sky Preseason Polls
1. Northern Arizona - 121
2. Southern Utah - 100
3. Weber State - 99
4. Montana State - 97
5. Sacramento State - 65
6. Montana - 62
7. Idaho State - 56
8. Eastern Washington 44
9. North Dakota - 40
10. Northern Colorado 22
11. Portland State - 20
1. Weber State - 118
2. Northern Arizona - 108
3. Southern Utah - 97
4. Montana State - 84
T5. Sacramento State - 64
T5. Idaho State - 64
7. Northern Colorado - 60
8. North Dakota - 42
9. Montana - 35
T10. Eastern Washington - 27
T10. Portland State - 27
January 27, 2014 SACRAMENTO STATE EARNS 22 FALL BIG SKY ALL-ACADEMIC HONORS
November 15, 2013 BYERS, MITCHELL PACE CROSS COUNTRY AT NCAA WEST REGIONAL
November 13, 2013 SACRAMENTO STATE HOSTS NCAA WEST REGIONAL ON FRIDAY
November 9, 2013 MALLORY PACES CROSS COUNTRY AT DOC ADAMS
November 2, 2013 MITCHELL EARNS ALL-BIG SKY HONORS AT CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIPS
October 31, 2013 CROSS COUNTRY HEADS TO BOZEMAN FOR BIG SKY CHAMPIONSHIPS
October 22, 2013 MITCHELL EARNS THIRD BIG SKY ATHLETE OF THE WEEK AWARD
October 19, 2013 MITCHELL, BYERS LEAD WOMEN, MEN IN SATURDAY MEETS
October 9, 2013 MITCHELL EARNS SECOND BIG SKY ATHLETE OF THE WEEK AWARD
October 4, 2013 WOMEN FOURTH, MEN SEVENTH AT INTER REGION JAMBOREE
October 3, 2013 CROSS COUNTRY TO HOST INTER-REGIONAL JAMBOREE ON FRIDAY
September 30, 2013 WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY EARNS WEST REGION RANKING
September 28, 2013 MITCHELL, MUGNAINI HELP WOMEN FINISH SECOND; MEN SEVENTH
September 14, 2013 MITCHELL, BYERS LEAD WOMEN, MEN TO TITLES AT HORNET JAMBOREE
September 13, 2013 CROSS COUNTRY HOSTS HORNET JAMBOREE ON SATURDAY
September 3, 2013 MITCHELL, YOUNGER GARNER BIG SKY ATHLETE OF THE WEEK HONORS
August 30, 2013 MITCHELL, YOUNGER LEAD CROSS COUNTRY AT AGGIE OPEN
August 29, 2013 CROSS COUNTRY BEGINS 2013 SEASON AT AGGIE OPENER ON FRIDAY
August 27, 2013 ENTRY INFORMATION FOR HORNET JAMBOREE
August 2, 2013 JOE EBY NAMED CROSS COUNTRY AND DISTANCE COACH