By Tadzio Garcia
The East Los Angeles College men and women’s track and field team did it again. The Huskies produced personal records that include top state times last week in San Diego and Walnut, Calif.
ELAC competed in the non-scoring Arnie Robinson Invite in San Diego, April 4-5 and Mt. San Antonio College Relays Saturday producing the most personal records in one meet this season.
Jorge Romo placed No. 14 at the Southern California Decathlon Championships April 8-9 at Mt. SAC after ending the first day of competition in seventh place. Jimmy Palencia-Gonzalez also competed. The Huskies compete in the South Coast Conference prelims on April 22 and the finals on April 25 at Long Beach City College.
“We are ready to compete in the SCC Championships and move on to the SoCal finals,” sophomore Gonzalo Ceja, a 2013 state finalist for the Huskies in the men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase, said.
He had one of two personal records at the Mt. SAC Relays Saturday against some of the top individually ranked athletes in California community college competition. Ceja stunned California’s elite placing second in the men’s steeplechase missing first by two seconds.
He previously had the 11th-fastest time in the state. “I focused on keeping a pace behind the top runner, which meant I had to run smart,” Ceja said.
All American freshman Laura Aceves won the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase for the Huskies eclipsing 15 seconds off her previous best time. It was just her second steeplechase run. Aceves runs the fastest 10,000-meter run in the state.
She already qualified for the So Cal Championships in the event. “She will focus on three other races in the SCC finals,” ELAC Head Coach Louis Ramirez said.
“I compete in the 800 and 1,500 because it helps me build my (long distance) speed,” Aceves said. Her kick in the steeplechase gave her a 20 second win at Mt. SAC.
Sophomore Carlos Lopez erased almost two minutes of his previous fastest the 5,000-meter run in San Diego. Other top Husky individual records at the Arnie Robinson Invite include Viridiana Hernandez’s 800-meter run and Amy Herrera (1,500 run).
Also, Kris Chacon, Ceja and Adrian Gaytan in the 5,000, 1,500 and 800 runs, respectively. In short distances it was Pedro Mariscal and Romo (100 dashes) as well as Mariscal and William Hang (200 dashes). Adding season individual records include Luis Hernandez and Palencia in the 400-meter hurdles.
The Husky relay teams ran their fastest times at the Invite. The 4×100 relay team included Mariscal, Ceja, Gaytan and Romo. The 4×400 relay team consisted of David Jimenez, Mariscal, Hernandez and Romo.
Robert Villafan and Hernandez each had personal records in the javelin, and also Daniel Romero and Abraham Islas in the discus.
In the SoCal Decathlon Championships, Romo recorded his best results in the 100 dash, shot put, high jump, 400 meter run, and the javelin.
Palencia-Gonzalez’s best records among others included the shot put and the 400 run.