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UNIVERSITY BEAT

UCLA Women's Runners Up for Challenge

November 01, 2002|Eric Stephens | Times Staff Writer

Brookside Golf Course in Pasadena would normally be a nice spot for weekend duffers who want to get in a round or two.

They'll be pushed aside Saturday by an invasion of collegiate cross country runners and their followers. Brookside, just north of the Rose Bowl, is the site of the Pacific 10 Conference championships.

National power Stanford is expected to defend its men's and women's conference titles. But UCLA, hosting the event for the first time, may push the Cardinal on the women's side with a talented team.

Junior Lena Nilsson could contend for individual honors. Last month, she ran a school-record 6,000-meter time of 20 minutes 28.2 seconds to finish eighth in the NCAA Preview Meet at Terre Haute, Ind.

"When you look at the women's side, you have Stanford's girls in Lauren Fleshman, Alicia Craig, Malindi Moore and Sara Bei and then Lena Nilsson, who clearly showed she could run right with them," UCLA Coach Eric Peterson said. "On the right day, any one of those kids can win the meet."

The Bruins will also rely on sophomore Alejandra Barrientos and freshman Jenna Timinsky. With those runners and talented freshmen Allison Hall and Sarah West, UCLA ispositioned as a potential top-10 team.

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The top-ranked USC women's volleyball team will put its undefeated record on the line Saturday night when the Trojans (18-0, 11-0) host sixth-ranked and defending national champion Stanford in a Pac-10 match.

It is a rematch of the Trojans' thrilling five-game victory Oct. 4 at Stanford.

That night, USC rallied from a 14-9 deficit in the fifth game to end the Cardinal's 26-match home winning streak.

Stanford (19-3, 7-2) has a 42-14-1 advantage in the all-time series, but USC has won four of the last five meetings.

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Pepperdine achieved a first in the 10-year history of its women's soccer program with its first consensus top-10 national ranking after defeating Santa Clara and San Diego last weekend.

The Waves, ranked eighth in both the Soccer Buzz and National Soccer Coaches Assn. of America polls and ninth by Soccer America, became the first West Coast Conference team to defeat powerful Portland and Santa Clara in the same season.

Ali Pavoni (nine goals, four assists), Jenna Fodor (eight goals, six assists) and Lacey Ubaldi (seven goals, eight assists) are tied for second in the conference in scoring with 22 points, leading the Waves to a program-best 14-1-2 record.

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