The brief history of NCAA Track & Field at UC Santa Cruz has been dominated by distance running performances. That trend continues for at least one more week as the Banana Slugs open the season with a small contingent competing in the 5000-meters at the Johnny Mathis Invitational, hosted by San Francisco State.
Shannon McClish and Paul Colosi, individual qualifiers for the NCAA National Cross Country Championships last fall, are expected to lead the Slugs again on Saturday. McClish will be looking to improve on her performances from her freshman year while Colosi will be running his first track 5K. All-Region Cross Country runner Zahid Anjum, as well as Ashley Anderson and Raissa Boysen will also be running their 5000-meter track debuts, while Lizzie Meredith, who closed last season as the fastest Slug woman at this distance, will look to pick up where she left off.
The Banana Slugs throwing contingent will also be in action Saturday. They'll start the season with the De Anza Open in Cupertino. Jeff Zhang and Kevin Raja will be expected to lead the Slug men, while Jordynn Dorado leads the Slug women and could open the season with a school record.