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The Jag-Wire Recap
Greetings supporters, family members, athletes and fans of Southwestern College Track & Field team. In the next weeks, you’ll be updated to the amazing stories, lives and reports on members of the team and given updates to their performances. I’d like to thank you in advance for your considerate donation to assist our team and invite you to come watch us compete, train and celebrate what is Jaguar track & field.
SWC T&F Head Coach
Jaguars breeze to sunny scores in collegiate challenge PLNU invite
March 26, 2015
Point Loma Nazarene University (3/21/15)
Point Loma, CA – The Men and Women’s track and field teams continued to send clear and resounding statements to the collegiate world as they ventured to the Ross & Sharon Irwin Invite at Point Loma Nazarene University. In what was coined as a collegiate scoring meet, teams from the Navy, Middlebury, Cal St. San Marcos, Bethel College of Minnesota, Yale, Concordia, Soka and Mesa College competed in the scoring portion of the meet while a hand full of unattached athletes also tested there fitness at the beautiful picturesque location located overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Final team scores; SWC Men 8th, SWC Women tied 3rd.
Freshman and assistant team captain, Daeniesha Burrell continued her assault up the SWC All-time list with PR’s in the 400m placing fifth with a time of 58.18 and later running the 200m in a time of 25.48 placing 3rd best of all competitors on the day. Kassidy Harper also lowered her personal record in the 100m speeding to a fine time of 12.51 finishing 4th on the day and coming 5th in the 200m with a time of 26.09. Additional sprinters in the field were Katrina Duckett 11th in the 200m with a time of 27.11 and Charrion Perkins 10th with a time of 26.98. Later the same day, Charrion also ran her PR in the 400m covering the one lap race in a time of 61.76.
Aminat Olowora continued to erase all names from the SWC record book. What started as more of a joke or challenge, Aminat was dared to run the two lap sprint race to see if her abilities stretched into the sprint realm. From the gun start, Aminat led the race wire-to wire eclipsing the school record by more than five seconds setting the new mark for the 800m at 2:12.19.
In the 5000m race, Erika Gonzales ran an aggressive race finishing 4th in a time of 19:03.74 with teammates Kassandra Covarrubias, Stephanie Legault and Jasmine Vasquez finishing 8, 9, 10th respectively.
As the season continues to evolve, the personnel on the 4 x 100m relay continues to revolve. This edition, the quartet of Jeyla Spencer, Kassidy Harper, Larissa Johnson and Daeniesha Burrell once more lowered the school record shaving .01 seconds off running a time of 48.95.
Long hurdlers Jeyla Spencer and Destinee Thayer attacked the grueling 400m hurdle race. Jeyla sped to a 5th place finish with a time of 63:68 winning the event. Destinee lost a shoe on the second hurdle and had to run the remainder of the race with one shoe finishing overall 6th in a time of 71.13. In the sprint hurdles, the trio of hurdlers, Jeyla Spencer, Katrina Duckett and Maria Garcia finished 5th, 6th and 11th respectively with Jeyla posting the best time running a season best of 15.12.
Finally, in the field events, Maria Garcia leaped to a season best of 10.68m in the triple jump placing second in the event for the day. Katrina Duckett equaled her seasonal best in the high jump with a bound of 1.45m.
Aqel Carson entered the sprints as SWC’s top runner and still chasing the elite level times that his training promises. Aqel sped to a season best 11.13 for 8th in the 100m and later in the day ran a respectable time in the 200m of 22.33 for 6th place overall. Jesus Aguilar finished 17th overall in the 200m with a time of 23.37 and 14th overall in the 400m running 52.38. Diondre Braithwaite finished 9th in the 400m with a season best time of 50.95.
In the distances, Team Captain Carlos Ponce ran a personal best of 4:03.37 in the 1,500m finishing 14th out of all competitors on the day. Later he returned to run the 5,000m finishing 7th behind teammates George Martinez 1st and Alejandro 2nd.
In the field events, Myles Gray finished 6th in the men’s long jump with a leap of 5.85m. Deon Braithwaite finished 8th jumping 4.68m
However in the men’s relay team continued to struggle failing to complete the race, dropping the baton for the fourth time this season.
SDSU Aztec Invitational
@ San Diego State University
Friday, March 26 - 27, 2015
Events start at 9:00am
...AND THE BAND PLAYED ON
March 17, 2015
UCSD Collegiate Challenge (3/14/2015)
La Jolla, CA – “…you go back, Jack, do it again…” or “Another one bites the dust. Hey! Another one bites the dust…” or perhaps “Celebrate good times come on! It’s a celebration…” There are hundreds maybe thousands of songs you could interject into the conversation here but which ever you choose, the song remains the same. This weekend as the Southwestern College track and field team traveled north on the 5-freeway to La Jolla, it was another meet, another record fell for Aminat Olowora.
While most of the country was still digging out from a long cold winter and perhaps contemplating putting away their winter coats, California was experiencing a March heat wave off and on the track. As the temperature soared to above ninety degrees by race time, anticipation for fast times and great performances swelled to a feverish pace.
This year, the annual San Diego Collegiate Challenge, brought together teams from Mesa College, Palomar College, Cuyamaca College, Navy, Cal State Dominquez Hills, San Marcos, San Diego State, Point Loma Nazarene and host UCSD. A moderate size crowd braved the heat and was not disappointed as athletes from NCAA Div 1, Div 2, NAIA and California Community Colleges delivered great performances one after the next.
The women of SWC began the day with another variation of the 4 x 100m relay. Katrina Duckett sidelined with a leg injury was given the week off and Larissa Johnson stepped in to try her hand at the third leg of the sprint relay. Leading off was Jeyla Spencer followed by Kassidy Harper and anchoring was Daeniesha Burrell. Only the slightest miscalculation between Johnson and Burrell cost them a spot in the top three as the ladies finished fourth in a time of 49.15.
The next event for the Lady-Jags was the 1,500m. The sole competitor for the girls was Jasmine Vasquez who continues to improve weekly and should be in fine shape for the conference championships next month. Jasmine finished tenth overall with a season best of 5:28.21. In the 100mh, Larissa Johnson ran a seasonal best of 15.71 in the first heat finishing seventh. Jeyla Spencer in the second run section, won her heat and just nipped Johnson’s time running 15.69. Overall, the ladies finished in the top 10 for the day.
Kassidy Harper drew long sprint duty this week running a respectable time of 63.52 in the 400m. In the short sprints, Daeniesha Burrell and Destinee Thayer blazed sprint times of 12.51 for eight overall and 13.27 for fourteenth. In the two hundred, Daeniesha again was top Lady-Jag running 25.83 for sixth with Kassidy Harper running 26.60 for eleventh.
Stephanie Legault bumped and jostled her way in the two-lapper, 800m run. Stephanie still working on finding her stride, missed her marks and fell off the pace early but redeemed herself with a great finishing kick. Her time of 2:30.91 was good enough for seventh overall on the day. In the second section of the race, Karina Cantera ran wire to wire setting a blazing pace that no other competitor dared to challenge. Her finishing winning time of 2:29.78 nipped her teammate and moved her into the sixth best time of the day.
In the long hurdle event, the trio of Jeyla Spencer, Destinee Thayer and Larissa Johnson continued to learn the event and different race strategies. Johnson out of the blocks set a blistering pace through the first five hurdles but faded badly upon coming home. Jeyla Spencer stayed to plan and ran another consistent race making only the occasional mistake and or stutter. Destinee continued to find her stride as she too has become comfortable with setting an early pace and attempt to hold the rhythm as best she can. In the end, the Lady-Jags finished third, sixth and ninth on the day with times of 66.99 for Spencer, 68.48 for Thayer and jogging into the line 73.36 for Johnson.
On the field, Kayla Nunez found her wings and soared to tie her personal best of 10’6”. Kayla finished 12th overall on the day. In the long jump, Jeyla Spencer continued to improve as she readies herself for the SDSU Aztec Invite multi competition. She jumped a season best of 4.77m and finished eight on the day.
In the most exciting race of the day for the Lady-Jags, Aminat Olowora was once again front and center stage as she made her first foray into the 5,000m. Teammates Kassandra Covarrubias and Erika Gonzales would join the distances phenom into battle. From the gun start, Aminat established a pace that saw no challengers. Kassandra and Erika stayed with the lead pack for the majority of the race only to drop back in the later stages but running respectable races overall. However, Aminat continued to push the pace and her own abilities chasing the final record of Southwestern College Hall of Famer Sarah Apgar’s time of 17:27.66 for the three point one mile run. Towards the ending laps of the race, Aminat left no doubt in the minds of her competitors, coaching and fans that the record was in jeopardy. On the final lap, Aminat burst into a final kick even the most seasoned quarter-miler would envy, rushing through the final turn and home straight then crossing the line. The clock flashed the time 17:16.97! The record that was believed would stand for years fell and fell hard. Aminat Olowora added another jewel to her distance queen crown. Now, with only one distance record left, the great Ayded Reyes’ 800m of 2:18.39 will she complete the clean sweep? Stay tuned as we continue to watch greatness in this young lady.
In the first event of the day for the men’s they dropped the baton on the last exchange. Perhaps this was metaphor for the season that started with so much hope but entering the fourth meet of the year, the team that showed so much promise and a roster loaded with talent, continues to be decimated with injury and lose due to ineligibility. However, there are still several meets in the season left and several outstanding athletes still pushing onward.
In the short sprints, Hakeem Martin made his team debut with teammate Jesus Aguilar. The two athletes finished 15th and 16th on the day running 11.81 and 11.88 respectfully. In the 200m top SWC sprinter Aqel Carson had long sprint duty per season plan. Aqel sped to a 22.61 for 6th place overall. Team mates Jesus Aguilar, Hakeem Martin and Khaalid Lockett also ran the half lapper finishing 11th, 13th and 14th. In the 400m race, Aqel completed the tough double running 51.74 and finishing 7th amongst all competitors. Khaalid Lockett ran 56.69 for 14th.
In the distances, Diondre Braithwaite stayed with the lead pack for most of the 800m run then only falling behind near the end of the race to finish 6th place with a time of 2:00.19. Carlos Ponce scored a personal best in the 1,500m running 4:02.92, teammate Alejandro Rosario continued to impress with his run of 4:11.42 and finished 4th.
In an exciting run, George Martinez ran a tough race and stayed with the leaders for the majority. Late in the race, the lead pack broke away from the field and put some distance between them. George ran stride to stride not allowing himself to be dropped by the university athletes. George ran a season best of 15:21.18 and crossed the line in third for the day. Also ran, teammates Carlos Ponce, Jonathan Patron and Alejandro Rosario finished 8th, 9th and 10th.
In the hurdles we saw two big improvements. Marcelluz Smith ran a 16.48 for 6th place but later had to stop for the day due to a reoccurring injury that may knock him out for a couple of weeks. Alejandro Garcia ran his season best as he continues to find his race strategy for the 400m hurdles. Alejandro’s time of 60.18 was just shy of dipping into the sub-minute mark.
Finally, on the field, Jalen Walker jumped 6.23m and placed 6th place for the day. Deon Braithwaite finished 12th with a jump of 5.19m. In the javelin throw, Akil Adisa competed in his first meet for the year and tossed a best of 40.89m for 12th place.
Ross and Sharon Irwin
Collegiate Scoring Meet
Saturday, March 21, 2015
Events start at 9:00 am
The Queen is dead, long live the Queen!
March 9, 2015
Cal State University Los Angeles (3/7/2015)
East Los Angeles, CA – Southwestern College track and field team has a storied past and amongst that history many of the greatest California Community College track and field performers. One such athlete was SWC Hall of Famer and CSU Long Beach alum, Sarah Apgar whose name has graced the record book for several years now. That was until Saturday. Aminat Olowora just recently adding her name to not only the SWC record books but the state’s JC record books, continued to lay waste to and add her name next to each school record event attempted. Earlier in the week, Aminat was named Pacific Athletic Coast Conference female athlete of the week. Not resting and basking in the glow of her most recent accomplishments, Aminat destroyed a field of some of the top university, collegiate and professional runners under the toasty L.A. skies and a crowd of several thousand. In her first race, the 1,500m, this would be the star athlete’s third try at the record for the season. With the right conditions and an excellent field of athletes, Aminat outclasses the field and dominated the race. Only a handful of university and pro athletes dared to attempt to match pace with the freshman. Near the end, all but one woman dared to give chase. With one lap to go, Aminat’s superior finishing kick was unleashed upon the field. No one gave chase. As she cross the finish line, the crowd showed their appreciation with a roar realizing the feat they had just witnessed. The clock results flashed a time of 4:28.36! One of the most impressive Lady Jags records had fallen and been laid low by just shy of seven seconds.
The second act of this amazing performance came in the 3,000m run. After delivering an amazing time in the 1,500m, the crowd was abuzz for this second race of the day. Aminat lining up with the best 27 athletes of California universities and pros jumped out to an early lead separating from the majority of athletes. The lead pact of eight athletes quickly separated as the pace was too much for the average runners falling behind. As the race continued all but one athlete had fallen behind. One athlete, a professional representing Saucony rose to the challenge of Aminat’s pace. The two women battled for additional laps until finally, the pace took its last victim which was Aminat. Obviously tired from her previous race and the heat of the day, Aminat fell back to second place and never challenged the leader again on the final lap. Aminat’s second place time was her second best performance ever 9:43.32. Aminat Olowora, record holder and the new Queen of Southwestern College distances. May her reign be long and truly awesome.
Jeyla Spencer too had a banner day. In the 100m hurdles, Jeyla sped to a heat winning time of 15.71 and the 11th fastest time of the day. Katrina Duckett was closely behind in 15.80 and Maria Garcia in 16.20 for 13th overall. In the long hurdles, Jeyla delivered the second best time of the day. The freshman blazed a 65.66. Destinee Thayer finished 9th overall in a time of 68.89. Jeyla’s performances place her on the 4th on the 400m hurdle state ranking list and 14th in the 100m hurdles.
In the sprints, Daeniesha Burrell continued her sprint excellence with times in the 400m of 60.03 for 12th overall and a sprint of 25.23 for 8th overall in the 200m. Kassidy Harper continued to improve. Kassidy finished 12th overall in the 100m finishing with a time of 12.58. The last race of the day, a second heat of the 3,000m started with nearly 30 athletes. Karina Cantera ran a commanding race and finished in a time of 10:50.41 for 4th.
Bryan continued his season delivering strong performances in the 1,500m. His time of 4:07.39 placed him 25th overall. Diondre Braithwaite continued to discover his best race and best potential for earning a ticket to the California Community College State Championship. Diondre’s entered the 800m. Running with over 20 athletes due to the size of the meet, forced a complicated first lap. Lots of pushing and elbowing until the field began to spread out. Diondre stated out hard it was to establish a race pace. At the halfway mark, Diondre seemed to be out of the running as he fell back to the rear of the pack. However, per his plan Diondre had changed his strategy to pulling back and loading up before releasing an amazing finishing kick that took him from the rear of the group all the way back to 8th place. His finishing time was 2:00.63 for 25th overall out of over 100 athletes.
Aqel Carson continued to improve. In the short sprint (100m) he ran a speedy 11.28 for the second week in a row placing him 31st overall and coming back later in the 200m, Aqel sprinted to a season best of 22.24 -29th overall for the day. In the hurdles, Jose Martinez coming back from a moderate hamstring strain, continued to improve and show the talent that the coaching staff saw while he competed for Sweetwater Union High in National City. Jose, ran both long and short hurdles however, the longer hurdles showed the most promise for a possible conference title bid. Jose looked smooth and commanding as he negotiated the ten barriers over the 400m. Martinez hurdled to a third place finish in his heat but finished overall 14th for the day in a time of 58.94.
In the distances, the men ran well and competed in both the 1,500m and 3,000m races. Nearly 150 athletes entered and competed in the 1,500m. The Jaguar men broke no new records but gave it their best as they finished near the middle of the pack. In the 3,000m run, Captain’s Carlos Ponce and George Martinez earned a spot in the top flight of the day. This race featured the top 33 athletes entering the meet, all other athletes were pushed into the “B” heats to run at the end of the day. Both Carlos and George ran with the lead pack for several laps until late in the race when the pace quicken beyond their conditioning. For the Jaguar men, George Martinez crossed the line first in a time of 8:49.27 for 11th and closely followed behind by Carlos Ponce for 19th in a time of 8:59.84. Finally, the men’s 4 x 400m relay finished in 9th with a season best of 3:29.08.
Additional reading; CCCAA website “Athlete Of The Week” article...cilck here.
UCSD Collegiate Challenge
Saturday - March 14, 2015
Events start at 11:00 am
Sun shines on three Lady Jag's records
February 28, 2015
Cerritos College Invitational (2/28/2015)
Cerritos, CA – Stormy skies and thick moisture laden air greeted the team as they disembarked their chartered bus and walked onto the athletic field at Cerritos College located south of Los Angeles. The impending storm granted favor to the meet as the predicted foul weather steered clear of the competition the entire day however, there was lightening on the track.
High hopes for a successful day were quickly realized as the Lady Jags first race of the day, the 4 x 100m relay stepped onto the field. Competing against ten of the most storied junior college track and field teams in the state, history hasn’t been kind to the Southwestern College teams in the sprints. However, once the gun sounded, the quartet of Jeyla Spencer, Kassidy Harper, Katrina Duckett and Daeniesha Burrell pounced on the field and quickly showed that the school record set only seven days prior was no fluke. Only the slightest bobble of the baton ruined the ladies chance for victory as they finished to the state finalist Cerritos in a school record time of 48.96.
The SWC Coaching Staff stayed the course and keeping with the race strategy for the year, turned loose in the sprints its big guns. To this point, they and the crowd of 500 fans and athletes were not disappointed. In the 400m Daeniesha Burrell dominated the field and won the one lap race in an amazing 59.27 moving her to the #3 All-Time Lady Jaguar list for the event. In the second heat, teammate Charrion Perkins duplicated Burrell’s performance and destroyed the runners in the second heat, finishing in a time of 61.25 placing her 5th for the day.
In what is said to be the premier event, the 100m, the duet of Kassidy Harper and Katrina Duckett lit the track a fire with respectable times of 12.86 and 13.10 respectively to finish 4th and 9th overall for the day. In the sprint hurdle event (100mh), the quartet of Jeyla Spencer, Destinee Thayer, Katrina Duckett and Larissa Johnson lined up for the 10 barrier event. Johnson coming back only one week after a slight strain of her hamstring muscle, convinced the coaching staff she was able to go. Newly named Team Captain Mary Garcia was sidelined this week with a shoulder injury and chose to cheer on the ladies. Katrina Duckett was the top Lady Jag for the day in the event closely followed by Jeyla Spencer in a time of 16.44 and 16.45. Destinee and Larissa trailed the field in 18.31 and 18.36 respectfully. In the 400mh, Destinee was top performer for SWC finishing 6th with a season best of 1:10.42.
In the half lap race the 200m, Daeniesha Burrell duplicated her feat from earlier and pulled the double sprint title winning the race in 25.49 placing herself #3 All-Time for the event. Teammates Jeyla Spencer finished 7th followed by Lady Jag Kassidy Harper in 8th, Charrion Perkins also having a fine run finished 13th overall for the day.
In the distance events, Aminat Olowora continued her assault on the record books. Aminat pulled the difficult 1500m/300m double. Starting the day in the 1500m attacked the race with the veracity of a state title run. She quickly established a blistering pace that sent shockwaves to her competitor as none of the other 37 athletes gave chase. Aminat’s time of 4:37.97 was a clear eight seconds ahead of the field and placed her #2 on the SWC All-Time list just below Hall of Famer Lady Jaguar Sarah Apgar’s school record of 4:35.90. Only minutes later, the Aminat Olowora show continued. Only perhaps the SWC coaches and her teammates could have predicted what would come next. As she lined up for the women’s 3,000m high hopes were for a spirited race between many of the same star athletes from the cross-country season however, once the gun fired, Aminat was in a class all of her own as she chased only her best time set last week and history. In the 13-lap race, Aminat lapped all but three of the eleven athletes. Her time, a school record of 9:41.61, was :45 seconds faster than the nearest competitor and one of the finest races ever in California Junior College history. Erika Gonzales finished 4th with a fine time of 11:11.11. Teammates Kassandra Covarrubias and Stephanie Legault trailed the field in 11th and 16th of a field size of twenty-two ladies.
In the field events, Destinee Thayer and Jeyla Spencer continued to prepare for the heptathlon by getting in some work with the javelin. Destinee, not a stranger to the event threw a decent mark of 18.89m for 11th place overall. Jeyla, just getting the feel of the event, threw 13.37m for 16th place. Katrina Duckett finished in a tie for 5th in the High Jump event. She equaled her previous best set last week of 1.46m. Finally, in the long jump, Jeyla Spencer and Destinee Thayer finished 11th and 17th in the long jump respectfully with leaps of 4.47m and 4.20m.
In the final event of the day, Jeyla was brought into the 4 x 400m to continue the experiment of different personnel to find the best combination and establish alternates for the event. Charrion Perkins ran a fabulous first leg and proved that the longer sprints may be her forte. Charrion kept the Lady Jags in position and handed off the baton to Jeyla who immediately challenged for the lead. Aminat just having finished the 3k race, convinced the coaches that she was okay to run and didn’t disappoint. Aminat expanded the SWC lead and handed off the Daeniesha to bring it home. The Lady Jags never looked back as they crossed the finish-line first in a new school record of 4:04.01 chopping off seven seconds off the previous record.
On the men’s side, the team struggled to find their stride as injuries and academics continue to plague the team early. In the first event of the day, the 4 x 100m, the team had to quickly substitute runners as two key runners failed to travel to the meet. Jesus Aguilar and Jalen Walker joined the team of Alex Wiley and Aqel Carson. The men managed to get the stick around however finished sixth out of eight teams with a pedestrian time of 44.28.
In the sprints, Diondre Braithwaite attempted the difficult double of the 400m/800m. In the first event, the 400m, Diondre ran a fine time of 51.14 to finish 5th overall for the day. In the 800m, perhaps muscle fatigue and needed recovery led to a sub-par run for the this talented runner finishing in 36th overall and a time of 2:11.97. Bryan Alvarado ran a much better race. He finished the two-lapper in 1:59.91 moving him to the #6 All-Time lists for the men’s event. Aqel Carson equaled his sprint time of 11.28 for the 100m run finishing 4th overall. In the 200m, Aqel finished 5th overall in a time of 22.56 outpacing teammates Jesus Aguilar 15th overall (23.35).
In the distance races, the block of maroon, gold and black uniforms blanketed the finish-line. George Martinez was the top athlete from Southwestern in the 3k followed by Carlos Ponce, Bryan Alvarado, Alejandro Rosario, Edwardo Palleres and Bruce Alvarez. In the 1,500m Carlos Ponce was the top Jag outpacing teammates Jonathan Patron and Bruce Alvarez with a time of 4:06.48 for 4th place overall.
In the field, the trio of Alex Wiley, Myles Gray and Jalen Walker competed in the long jump finishing in 8th, 9th and 11th respectively. Alex was the top jumper for SWC on the day leaping 6.37m. Deon Braithwaite also entered in the long jump, failed to make a mark as he sustained a slight injury after the first jump.
Cal State University Los Angeles
Saturday - March 6 - 7, 2015
Events start at 9:00 am
Lady Jags take bite out of record
February 24, 2015
PomonaPitzer College - All-Comers (2/21/15)
Claremont, CA – Déjà vu. Last year the opening statement of the Jag-Wire (Southwestern’s Track & Field team’s news feed) read like this; “The 2014 Southwestern College track and field team season got off to a roaring start….” This year, 2015, the song remains the same as the team took the two hour drive north to Los Angeles’s Inland Empire and the Claremont Colleges. This team, being one of the most talented teams ever assembled for the college, quickly showed their teeth as two SWC school records fell within the first forty-minutes of the competition’s start and another record fell before the clock chimed its first hour. In all, three official school records fell to the 2015 team and a forth unofficial school record (the Mile run) were laid to dust.
The 2015 team squared off against small private schools such as, Claremont McKenna, Pomona Pitzer, La Vern, Vanguard, Biola, Chapman, Concordia, Redlands to name a few and state schools such as Cal Poly Pomona, UC Irvine and a handful of private and professional athletes. The SWC coaching staff led by 13-year Head Coach Tonie Campbell continued with the winning strategy of holding back athletes in their specialty events for the first meet and running “off” distances in most cases to prepare for later races in the season and try new events for later point considerations at the conference championships to be held in late April. Although this strategy is designed to minimize risk of injury, the team did suffer two key player injuries. Freshman hurdlers Jose Martinez and Larissa Johnson both succumbed to hamstring injuries while negotiating the barriers and will be sidelined for a short time until healed.
Returning from a phenomenal 2014 track season and fall x-country season, sophomore distance sensation, George Martinez broke the four year-old 3,000m run record set by Leonard Banales. George ran a strategic race and then used his powerful kick to stay with the seasoned university runners to the finish sixth in a time of 8:43.03 and shaving just shy of eight seconds off the record.
In the woman’s 3,000m run held minutes after the conclusion of the exciting men’s race, freshman Aminat Olowora, the new XC Champion and California State XC Record holder, showed that she is no fluke as she dominated all competitors at the meet and won by nearly a second over the closest competitor. Her time of 9:56.59 eclipsed the old school record set by Alyin Meija by nearly thirty seconds! Aminat later went on to run the second fastest time of the day in the women’s mile run in a blistering time of 5:01.00. Surely if SWC record books had the mile as one of its events, Aminat’s time would have been an all-time best for the college. The coaching staff truly believes, this young lady has yet to show all of her talents and she is likely to single-handedly rewrite the record books in multiple events.
In the sprints, the first event, the men’s and woman’s 4 x 100m relay, the 2015 versions of the four person sprint squad were still in flux. The coaches entered two teams for each gender to give eight sprint/jump/hurdlers the opportunity to showcase their abilities. Unfortunately in both men’s and women’s relays only one team was able to answer the bell due to the hurdle injuries. However, both teams finished ahead of several colleges. The men finished in 4th while the women finished in 2nd and eclipsed the Southwestern school record with a time of 49.26.
The 400m sprint has been used by this staff as a barometer to judge the fitness level of its sprinter for the season. In the women’s race Charrion Perkins won her heat in a time of 1:02.31 closely followed by
teammate Kassidy Harper with a time of 1:03.95. The two ladies placed themselves as #4 and #8 All-Time for the quarter mile race.
In the hurdle events, Maria Garcia topped freshman Jeyla Spencer as the top hurdler for the Lady-Jags for the day. Spencer finished ahead of her teammates Katrina Duckett, Destinee Thayer and Larissa Johnson in the short hurdles second heat and equaled the feat in the 400m low hurdles winning her heat with a time of 1:08.42 which ranks her #5 on the All-Time list.
In the jumps, Kayla Nunez took flight in the women’s pole-vault event. However, Kayla struggled with pole
selection early and faltered at an early height. However, big things are expected from this young lady as her power and speed were the result of the selected pole failing her as she has quickly outgrown its ability. Next meet, she will be on a larger pole that is matched with her speed and power so better results should be garnished. In the long jump, newly named Team Captain and Heptathlete Maria Garcia soared to a fifth place jump of 15’ 7” while freshman Jeyla Spencer finished just behind Mary with a leap of 15’ 4”.
One of the surprise finishes of the day came from Katrina Duckett in the women’s high jump. In just her first week and with only two days of training with Coach and nationally ranked triple-jumper April Sinkler, Katrina leaped 4’9” and finished squarely in the middle of the pack. Katrina’s jumping attracted the attention of Coach Cris Gonzales of La Vern which sought out Coach Tonie Campbell to get her information. Things are looking up for this talented young lady.
In the sprints, freshman speedster Aqel Carson entered the 100m. Running with only one other competitor, cruised to a finish of 11.28. In the 200m race, Aqel once again finished top of his heat with a time of 22.96. Not a bad finish but a lot of work to do if he is going to place himself on the All-Time list. Additional athletes in the sprints were freshman Jesus Aguilar, Alex Wiley and Husani Davis rounding out the field.
In the 400m, middle distance runner Bryan Alvarado got in some sprint work entering the one-lapper race. Bryan’s heat winning time of 52.50 was respectable however the fastest quarter mile of the day belonged to Jesus Aguilar with a time of 51.24.
In the distances, Diondre Braithwaite opened his season running the 1,000m. Diondre finished 4th in his heat with a time of 2:43.19. Newly named 2015 Team Captain Carlos “Charlie” Ponce outpaced the field in the men’s mile run winning his heat in a time 4:30.77. Teammates Alejandro Rosario finished 2nd, Jonathan Patron finished 6th and Edwardo Pallares finished 10th.
In the 3,000m run as mentioned earlier, George Martinez set the new school record in the event. In the second heat however, Bryan Alvarado caught the record fever and with teammate Alejandro Rosario finished 1st and 2nd in their heat. Bryan’s time of 9:02.96 placed in #4th All-Time and earned Alejandro the #6 spot.
In the jumping events on the men’s side, Alex Wiley easily won his heat against many fine collegiate jumpers leaping to an impressive opening hop of 21’ 3”. Teammate Deon Braithwaite, competing in his first ever track and field completion finished in a respectable 7th position with a leap of 16’ 10”.
The final event of the day concluded once more with the relays. In the 4 x 400m relay, competing in the top section, the quartet of Husani Davis, Diondre Braithwaite, Bryan Alvarado and Jesus Aguilar, fought gallantly and finished 5th with a time of 3:30.44 which ranks as eight fastest time in school history. On the women’s side, a mere fifteen minutes after her amazing mile run, Aminat Olowora took the baton and lead off the race delivering a sub-sixty second first leg. The team of Aminat Olowora, Stephanie Legault, Kassidy Harper and Daeniesha Burrell struggled with holding their lead, giving meters on the field then gaining back yardage. In the end, the women finished fifth in a very competitive race in a time of 4:13.49 ranking this first effort third on the Southwestern College All-Time list.
@ Cerritos College
Saturday - February 28, 2015
Events start at 9:00 am