The mile was the focus for the Stanford men's track and field team Saturday, on both coasts.
At the Brutus Hamilton Invitational in Berkeley, Stanford freshman Sean McGorty won the Don Bowden Mile in a personal-best 4:00.35.
McGorty, who is redshirting and ran unattached, beat Cal's Thomas Joyce, the Big Meet 1,500-meter winner, by 0.14.
At Franklin Field in Philadelphia, Stanford also was fifth in the men's 3,200 relay. Both Stanford races were part of the Championship of America series highlighting collegiate relays over the course of the meet. Overall, Stanford placed second in three relays, as well as third and fifth.
Stanford's four mile team of Marco Bertolotti (4:11.2 split), Tyler Stutzman (3:59.9), Erik Olson (4:02.0), and Michael Atchoo (4:04.6) clocked 16:17.83. Oregon won in 16:09.67, the fourth-fastest time in collegiate history.
Bertolotti waded through a slow, congested field on the opening leg. Pushing and shoving knocked him off balance early, but Bertolotti wielded some elbows of his own to force his way from seventh to second, behind only Villanova, on his final lap.
Oregon put Edward Cheserek, the most dominant runner in collegiate running, in the second leg and he bolted into the lead.
Only Stanford's Stutzman made a true effort to go with Cheserek, who ran a 3:56.4 split. Stutzman's 3:59.9 was Stanford's fastest leg and the third-fastest split among all 52 runners in the event.
Olson shook Kentucky, the only other team within striking distance of Stanford, and Atchoo made sure no one threatened the Cardinal's position over the final leg.
In the 3,200, Stanford's team of Scott Buttinger (1:53.14), Justin Brinkley (1:51.57), Bertolotti (1:50.89), and Luke Lefebure (1:49.40) finished with a time of 7:24.99. Villanova won in 7:16.58, with Penn State second, Georgetown third, and Wake Forest fourth.
Bertolotti was the only Stanford runner in both relays. His legs were 3 hours, 15 minutes apart.
At Edwards Stadium, McGorty shattered his personal best of 4:04.47 to give Stanford six milers with bests of 4:02 or faster.
Stanford coach Chris Miltenberg is redshirting all but one of his outstanding freshman distance class in an effort to build a solid core that will benefit the program for years to come.
Buttinger, the Canadian 800 specialist, is the only freshman competing in a Stanford singlet this spring.
McGorty, the reigning U.S. junior national cross-country champion, is a versatile runner who finished second in the U.S. junior 1,500 last year.
He already has surpassed the time requirements in the 1,500 and 5,000 for the IAAF Junior World Championships this summer in Eugene, Ore. He must finish first or second in the U.S. junior championships in Sacramento to qualify.
Another Stanford athlete who should contend for a world junior team spot is freshman discus thrower Valarie Allman.
She was second Saturday to former Louisville standout Jere Summers (187-4), but her throw of 184-1 was consistent with her strong efforts all season. In her four competitions this spring, Allman has exceeded 180 feet.
Stanford gave up the tying run in the eighth and visiting California added three more in the 10th as the Cardinal dropped a 7-4 decision to the Bears in their Pac-12 Conference series opener on Saturday.
Stanford (6-10, 17-18) lost to Cal for the first time in eight games. The Cardinal and Bears continue the series Sunday at 2 p.m. and Monday at 6 p.m.
Brett Michael Doran hit a triple to score a run in the fifth inning. Menlo School grad Danny Diekroeger, who drove in a pair of runs and had three hits in the contest, followed with a sacrifice fly.
Stanford starter Cal Quantrill allowed three runs on four hits over seven innings. A.J. Vanegas (1-2) entered the game in the eighth. He allowed an earned run for the first time this season.
"We came back and had the lead, they just did a better job of hitting in the clutch than we did." Cardinal coach Mark Marquess said. "We gave them a couple walks, which hurt us."
Tommy Edman, who reached base in his seventh straight trip to the plate, scored on Doran's hit.
Edman is hitting .471 (8-17) since April 17. He also added his third steal before scoring Stanford's first run in the third.
In the sixth, Brant Whiting provided a two-out single to center to score Austin Slater with the go-ahead run.
Stanford collected 12 hits but also stranded 12 runners. The Cardinal lost while scoring more than three runs for the first time this season.
Edman, Whiting and Alex Dunlap each had two hits for Stanford.
For the first time this season, Stanford was swept, falling at top-seeded BYU, 25-23, 25-22, 25-22, Saturday, in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament final in front of a season-best attendance of 4,367 at the Smith Fieldhouse in Provo, Utah.
Stanford (22-8) outhit BYU (21-8), .284 to .266, marking the fifth time this season the Cardinal fell in a match in which it posted a higher hitting percentage than its opponent.
Stanford totaled 17 attack errors and 17 service errors in the match while BYU had 10 and eight, respectively.
Senior outside hitter Brian Cook continued to shine for Stanford, hitting .483 with 17 kills, five digs and two blocks.
Senior opposite Eric Mochalski added nine kills and nine digs. Sophomore middle Conrad Kaminski finished with six kills on a .500 hitting percentage, four digs and a block.
Sophomore setter James Shaw registered 36 assists in the loss, while redshirt junior libero Grant Delgado notched a match-best 11 digs.
Cook and Shaw were named to the MPSF all-tournament team.
The Cardinal now awaits its NCAA Tournament fate. The six-team field will be announced Sunday. The matches will be played at Gentile Arena in Chicago on the campus of Loyola University Chicago.
Caroline Doyle's impressive tournament run came to an end in both singles and doubles on Saturday afternoon at the Pac-12 Championships in Ojai.
Meanwhile, Stanford's top doubles team of Kristie Ahn and Carol Zhao will play for the Championship division crown on Sunday afternoon after defeating California's Lynn Chi and Anett Schutting 8-3 in the semifinals.
Ahn and Zhao are looking to become the first Cardinal duo to claim the Pac-12 title since Alice Barnes and Anne Yelsey went back-to-back in 2005-06.
Stanford fell behind and could not recover, dropping a 7-1 decision to visiting and top-ranked Oregon in a Pac-12 Conference contest Saturday.
The Cardinal (27-20, 3-14 Pac-12) had its opportunities to score, most notably in the bottom of the sixth inning with the bases loaded and one out, but could not find the hits needed to break through.
Kayla Bonstrom led Stanford, going 2-for-3 with a single and a double. Bonstrom has four of the Cardinal's eight hits against Oregon.
Bessie Noll, who drove in Stanford's only run, and Kylie Sorenson each had a single. Sorenson reached base in all three at-bats, being hit by pitches in two of three plate appearances.
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