Darcy Arreola of Cal State Northridge, the 1988 NCAA Division II champion in the 1,500 and 3,000 meters, said she will redshirt this cross-country season because of injuries and mental fatigue brought on by a long and arduous track season.
Arreola’s track season began in March and lasted until late July, when she advanced to the semifinals in the 1,500 at the U. S. Olympic Trials in Indianapolis.
“Looking back, I ran too many races and I started on the track too soon,” said Arreola, a junior. “I raced too early in the season and too often. . . . By the time I got to the Olympic Trials, I was tired of racing. I didn’t really care about running.”
Feeling she had little time to get in shape for cross-country because her track season ended later than usual, Arreola trained too hard too soon. She injured her right Achilles’ tendon and missed 2 weeks of training in September.
“I was really paranoid about my mileage,” said Arreola, who began running again Friday. “Last year I put in 60 miles a week over the summer in preparation for cross-country, but I couldn’t do that this year because track lasted so long.”
Although the Lady Matadors will miss Arreola, who placed fifth in last year’s Division II cross-country championships, Northridge Coach Don Strametz said the decision to redshirt is in her best interest.
“She just needed a break,” he said. “Both physically and mentally. The worst thing we could do right now is bring her back too quickly and turn a minor injury into a chronic one.”
Unfortunately for Strametz, who also coaches the men’s team, Arreola is not the only Northridge runner who will redshirt.
Junior Derik Vett and freshman Mike Glaze, both expected to be among the Matadors’ top 5 runners, will not compete for Northridge until the 1989 track campaign.
Vett is recovering from a hip injury and Glaze has a pinched nerve in his right foot that will prevent him from running until December. Vett placed 55th in last year’s Division II cross-country championships and Glaze finished third for Notre Dame High in the 1987 state Division II cross-country championships.
In addition to Vett and Glaze, Jeff Gilkey, a highly touted freshman from Arroyo High, recently strained abdominal muscles on the right side of his rib cage and is expected to miss Saturday’s Northridge Invitational at CSUN.
“It just may not be our year,” Strametz said. “It may just be one of those years when nothing falls into place.”
Without Vett and Glaze, the Northridge men, eighth in last year’s Division II meet, could be hard pressed to qualify for this year’s championships on Nov. 19 in Clinton. Miss.