2009 Dirt Dog XC Series
Rules:   2009 Rules
Series Awards:   2009 Prize Money
Final Scoring:    Individual      Team 

2009 Cross Country Races
Date Race Location Contact Results
 8:00am (M)
 8:30am (W)
Wild Duck 5K Guajome Park
Joe Crosswhite
 7:30am (M)
 8:10am (O)
45th Balboa 4-Mile Cross Country Balboa Park
6th & Quince
Stephen Burch Results-M 
 8:00 am
City College Invitational 10K Rohr Park Kylie Edwards Results
Bonita Stampede 8K Sweetwater Regional Park Michelle Esqueda Results
Ursula Rains Balboa Boogie 5K Morley Field
Balboa Park
Nancy Morris  Results
 8:00am (W)
 8:45am (M)
Cougar Challenge Cal State San Marcos Track Steve Scott  Results-W 
Cuyamaca College 6K Lindo Lake Patrick Thiss  Results
 8:00am (W)
 9:00am (M)
SD-I USATF Championship 4-Mile XC  Mission Bay Park Paul Greer  Results-M

Article by Landon Bright, San Diego Newsroom

The 2009 Dirt Dog Cross Country series wrapped up a couple of weeks ago with the 4-Mile Championship at Morley Field.  The series consisted of eight races taking place across the county, with the region's top runners competing for prize money and local pride.

"The 2009 USATF Dirt Dog Cross Country series was a great success.  There was greater attendance this year at our events and it was evident that the best runners in San Diego County participated in awesome competition," said series director and San Diego Track Club coach Paul Greer.

Here's a look back at the races that took place:

Wild Duck 5k, 8/22:   Former high school standout and current University of Oregon All-American AJ Acosta used this 5k at Guajome Park in Oceanside to tune-up for the NCAA cross-country season.  He won the race in 15:48, beating second-place finisher Okwaro Raura by only two seconds.   Lesley Paterson, former Scottish XC champion, got her dominant running off to an early start with her 17:23 win over the 5k course.  KC Meehan would finish a distant second in 18:03.

Balboa 4 Mile, 9/5:   This is course is well-known in the San Diego running community for one reason -- being hard.  But that did not stop Ansu Sowe from breaking the 21-minute barrier with a win in 20:55.  Longtime Dirt Dog participant Nazario Romero of Team Adidas/Movin Shoes placed second in 21:00.  The first master's runner to come in was Mike Hansen of Team BSK in 22:36.  Lesley Paterson of K-Swiss Misses won in easy fashion with a time of 23:46.  Jennifer Maria of Movin Shoes was second in 24:26.  The master's competition was won by Laura Schmidt of Team JH Cohn in 26:25.

City College Invitational 10k, 9/12:   The longest race of the series saw the absence of Paterson for the first time, allowing Kathy Kaisischke to have her time in the spotlight.  She took the women's open race at Rohr Park in 38:53, followed by Joey Bonfiglio in 39:15.  Laura Stuart took the women's masters race 40:30.  On the men's side, Romero got his first win of the season by barely edging out Raura -- the race was so closed that they finished with the same time of 32:40. James Towle claimed the master's title in 35:38.

Bonita Stampede 8k, 9/26:   Coming back from his Balboa 4 Mile victory, Ansu Sowe got his second win of the series with a time of 25:14.  Raura managed to get his third second-place finish of the season with a time of 25:37.  KC Meehan got her first taste of victory, winning the women's race in 29:00.  Dianna Chivakos was second in 29:15.

Ursula Rains Balboa Boogie 5K, 10/3:   Runners were able to get a feel for Morley Field, the site of the final race, at this fast 5k.  UCSD runner Jesse Morrill captured the win in 15:09 (4:53 pace).  Nazario Romero finished second 16 seconds back.  Cal State San Marcos runner Muiuken Beressa finished third in 15:28.  Another CSUSM runner, Dallon Williams, crushed the women's field, including Paterson, to win in 17:10.  Paterson got second with a time of 17:22.  Dallon and her teammates would go on to capture the NAIA cross-county title several weeks later.

Cougar Challenge 5K/8K, 10/17:   After a week off, runners descended on the campus of CSUSM for a race that produced plenty of fast times.  Romero picked up another win, finishing the 8k course in a blazing 24:27.  Beressa improved on his third place finish two weeks earlier to place second in 24:39. Mike Hansen added another masters in 26:55.  After finishing second in the City College Invitational, Joey Bonfiglio won for the first time with a time of 17:26 for the 5k course.  Anne Marie Byrne finished second in 17:33.  Laura Stuart won the masters race in 18:32.

Cuyamaca College 6K, 10/31:   Marco Venancio of Movin Shoes finished the 6k course in 19:01, picking off a victory from Raura by 4 seconds, who finished second once again in 19:05.  Jim Walsh won the masters race in 20:14.  Paterson got back to her winning ways, finishing first in 20:47.  Bonfiglio followed her Cougar Challenge win with a second place finish here in 21:29.

San Diego USATF Championship 4-Mile XC, 11/14:   The final race of the series took place under great conditions a Morley Field.  There were a few muddy parts on the course, but the weather was near perfect.  Romero withstood several challenges from the field and finished first comfortably in 20:35.  The veteran racer was able to finish 16 second ahead of Sean Zanderson of Movin Shoes, who ran 20:51.  Jim Walsh barely beat out Michael Hansen for the masters win in 22:26.  On the team side, Adidas Movin Shoes dominated, with four runners taking the top four spots.  Team BSK was a distant second. Paterson decided not to mess around for the championship event.  She went out hard and fast, beating the second place finisher Bonfiglio by nearly a minute.  Laura Stuart took the masters race.

Here's what Paul Greer had to say about the race: "The championships was the best ever as over $5,000 in prize money was allocated to 65 individuals and 6 teams.  Spectators who attended this event was treated to great racing from both Nazario Romero and Lesley Paterson."