Cross Country Chronicles Logo 200px The 2015 UC Davis men's cross country team returns for its seventh installment of "Cross Country Chronicles," giving fans an exclusive look at what makes Aggie runners one of the top teams in the Big West Conference. Follow the Aggie men all year long as they make a run to the Big West Conference championship.
BLOG ENTRY #1: Senior Amar Dholakia, Sept. 25, 2015
Being a kid born and raised in Southern California, my recruiting trip to Davis was not a pleasant one. I was not ready for the "cowtown," the rural smell, and the fact that I had to leave my friends and family behind. The minute I saw the city, I was convinced that Davis was not the college for me. However, the turning point came a week later when I received a highly motivating email from our former head coach Drew Wartenburg. The email stated that two runners, Jordon Rushing and Nick Ratto, had already committed to the team. Let me give you a little background info on these two runners. Jordon had run a blistering 14:22 for 3 miles and set a huge new personal record prior to signing, while Nick was crushing the 800 meters with a mark of 1:51. At that moment, I realized the possibilities. Those were solid times they had posted. I had forgotten about everything I felt before and knew I had to be a part of this team. I believed that our combined potential would result in doing big things together. Furthering the cause, after I signed, my buddy Cody Nguyen committed to Davis. A runner with a legit resume in his own right, elevated and punctuated our incoming class. I felt like a five year old on his birthday! With Trevor Halsted, a state finalist, already on the roster, and the addition of Austin Goins and Patrick Fitzgerald to the squad, I knew by our senior year our lofty goals could well be within reach: a conference championship title to match the 2010 team and a bid to nationals. We just had to be patient and work our way up together.

All of my hard work, dedication, and commitment to this program for the past three years has stemmed from the passion I have for the sport and my teammates. We have developed a strong camaraderie through the goals and high standards that we have set for each other. The strength of seven men is much more powerful than mine alone. I run for my teammates and I know they run for me. Now it's our senior year and it's our time to leave a legacy. This weekend's Stanford Invitational marks a huge stepping stone for our season. It marks the beginning of our season-long journey to achieving our goals. With that said, I have waited a long time for this moment and I will do everything in my power for my team. We have put in all the hard work. Now let's enjoy the ride.

BLOG ENTRY #2: Freshman Jordy Ceja, Oct. 2, 2015
My upbringing at a public charter high school with few top athletes was nothing short of people continuously telling me how I made the sport of running look easy and natural. However, with three schools set as my top picks, I was beating the pros and cons of going to a beach school in Hawaii, a private Christian school an hour drive away from home, or a school that would guarantee a fresh start.

From me sticking with a consistent pack for the runs each day to being coached upon areas where I could improve, I was slowly acclimating to what it would be like over the next four years at UC Davis. For once, I would train alongside a team that is as focused as they are talented. Two weeks later, I was set to run my first college race, the Aggie Open. Just as college runners experience their first race, I happened to experience another aspect to the sport and that was becoming injured. Within the time of a day before what was supposed to be my first race, I was to learn just how valuable the resources around campus were.

During a race, you are limited to energy just as much as you are to motivation, and no longer training with the team made the days following my injury fall stagnant. Fortunately, I was still able to train alongside a teammate, whose self-driven attitude allowed me to reevaluate my too-eager interpretation for my first year running.

The idea of college alone was daunting enough, however, entering the realm of college athletics was something I knew noting about. Regardless, I am now healthier and preparing to support this team in both a moral and physical manner. With me approaching the first start line of my college career this Saturday I hope to maintain a proactive sentiment on this sport I have grown to appreciate more with every pushing step and expand on my strengths for my time here as an Aggie.