CSUEB Women’s Cross Country Team is Aiming High

Shubham Sharma, Sports Editor

The California State University, East Bay Women’s Cross Country team has been performing exceptionally well in their recent events as they aim to qualify for the NCAA Division II Championships. On Friday, Oct. 7, the Pioneers will participate in their second meet of the season at Golden Gate Park in the San Francisco State University Invitational. “We want to qualify for nationals and do well in it. We are motivated and focusing on the process,” commented Jordan Rodrigues, Looking ahead to the crucial meet the assistant Coach for the Pioneer Women’s XC team. 

The XC season began on Sep. 4 at the University of San Francisco Invitational. Among the 13 teams present, the Pioneers placed seventh in team points. Coach Rodrigues was satisfied with the placement, stating, “It was the season opener and the girls ran really well. They are coming off of a good summer training session and they are really confident and determined to achieve success this season.” 

Regarding talent in this upcoming season, Rodrigues advised keeping a watchful eye on seven athletes, notably: Claire Fisher, Chase Worthen, Leza Cassidy, Kimberly Lima Pardina, Melissa Sossa, and Alyssa Escay.

Throughout the season, the runners follow a carbohydrate-rich diet and a strict exercise regime, though exercise intensity varies from person to person, depending on their endurance level. “Some athletes are running 16 to 17 miles a week, while some are running 30 miles a week,” Rodrigues commented, nevertheless emphasizing the grueling work and strenuous dedication that each runner displays when maintaining fitness. According to Rodrigues, the key to success is to “eat healthy, keep ourselves hydrated, and maintain a healthy diet.”

Discussing his goals as this season’s assistant coach, Rodrigues said, “The Women’s Cross Country team finished 9th in the Nationals in 2019, but I wasn’t there at that time and that is why I would say our best is yet to come.” While he admitted that the team “ missed a mark a couple of times and didn’t qualify for the nationals” last year, the coach looks on this season with hope.