http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/03/10/MNKSVGTJ1.DTL Sheriff's deputy hits cyclists, killing 2 Monday, March 10, 2008 2 cyclists killed in crash. Chronicle Graphic Cyclist Matt Peterson, who was struck and killed by a she... Kristy Gough was struck and killed on Sunday as she and h... (03-09) 20:42 PDT Cupertino -- A rookie Santa Clara County deputy sheriff patrolling a winding Cupertino road Sunday morning veered into the opposite lane of traffic and struck three bicyclists, killing two, including a rising star in the Bay Area cycling community, authorities said. Authorities did not release the names of the riders who were killed, but friends identified them as Kristy Gough, 30, of San Leandro and Matt Peterson, 29, of San Francisco. The third cyclist, whose name was not released, was listed in critical condition Sunday night at Stanford University Medical Center. Gough was a professional triathlete who recently took up road racing and who friends said won every race she entered this year. She and Peterson, also an amateur road racing cyclist, both won their divisions in a March 1 road racing event in downtown Merced. Gough, Peterson and the third cyclist were on a training ride on Stevens Canyon Road and had broken away from a group of eight others when they were struck by the on-duty deputy at about 10:25 a.m., friends of the riders said. The unidentified deputy was driving northbound when his white cruiser accidentally crossed over the double yellow line between Montebello and Ricardo roads and hit the cyclists, said Sgt. Don Morrissey, a spokesman for the Sheriff's Department. The deputy, who has worked for the department for about 18 months, immediately began to offer assistance to the bicyclists and called for medical aid, Morrissey said. "The deputy is very distraught over this right now," Morrissey said. "It's devastating for everybody involved." Morrissey did not know whether Stevens Canyon Road is a route the deputy normally patrols. As is customary when a local law enforcement officer is involved in a fatal crash, the deputy was placed on paid administrative leave and the California Highway Patrol is conducting the investigation. Peterson, a member of the Roaring Mouse Cycles racing team, was pronounced dead at the scene. Gough died several hours later at Stanford University Medical Center, where the third rider, a 20-year-old, was admitted with major injuries, according to CHP Officer Todd Thibodeau. Roaring Mouse Cycles on Irving Street in San Francisco, a bicycle shop that sponsored the team to which Peterson belonged, posted word of his death on its Web site. His death was confirmed by David Parrish, president of the Roaring Mouse racing team. Two of Gough's friends, Dave Mayer and Anthony Borba, rode with her on the Third Pillar Amateur Road Racing team but were not present on Sunday's ride. They spoke with her family and said that she died as a result of head injuries and internal bleeding and that she also suffered a severed leg. Mayer, 30, of Portola Valley, and Borba, 32, of Campbell, stood outside the hospital Sunday afternoon and recalled a talented athlete who excelled at cycling, even though road racing was a relatively new sport for her. "She's the strongest rider I ever rode with," Borba said. "The next level for her would have been the Olympic trials, and she had no ego about it." The group of riders hit by the deputy on Sunday were on a stretch of road frequently used by cyclists, but also heavily traveled by gravel trucks en route to a nearby quarry. In 1996, a 46-year-old Cupertino man was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer rig while riding a bicycle near the scene of Sunday's accident. Borba said his racing team regularly uses the road for training rides because it is considered safe. "It has a large bicycle lane that is safe," he said. "That's why we ride that route every weekend." Chris Wendt, 53, who lives near the scene of the crash, called the incident a tragedy. "I don't want to say it was inevitable," he said. "But you do get a lot of (vehicles) and bikes up here. What was surprising is that it was a sheriff's deputy." Anyone with information about the incident should call the CHP at (408) 467-5354, ext. 337.