By Tadzio Garcia
Updated version from the East Los Angeles College Campus News Oct. 29 Volume 72, Issue 7, print edition
The Huskies’ cross country teams shocked a field of four-year colleges and universities with their results at the 7th Annual West Coast Jamboree at Irvine Regional Park in Orange last Saturday.
The meet consisted of National Association of Intercollegiate Athletic teams from across the country as well as East Los Angeles College, the only community college to participate.
Sophomore Laura Aceves finished third for the Huskies in the women’s 5-Kilometer run leading the women’s team to 11th place.
The Huskies stunned Hope International,Vanguard and William Jessup universities, 12th through 14th finishers, respectively.
Aceves finished in 17:53.5 minutes edging fourth place finisher Karis Frankian of The Master’s University of Santa Clarita by 3.1 seconds.
As a result, Aceves joined the NAIA West Coast Jamboree Women’s All-Time list with the 11th-fastest time.
“I was pleased with my finish. I ran (36) seconds faster than I did here last year by keeping a pace with the top runners,” Aceves said.
The women’s team ran to its best results in five years of competing at the Jamboree even without sophomore Guadalupe Yanez, a top runner recovering from injury.
Freshmen runners Stephanie Trelles, Viridiana Hernandez and Luz Badillo finished in the No. 2-4 spots for the Huskies.
The freshmen were followed by sophomore Ruby Padilla, freshman Maybell Sanchez and sophomore Vanessa Buelna to round out the top seven finishers for the women’s team.
This was Buelna’s best finish all season. “Vanessa began walking laps with her father at age two, which led to running. This was to work with the (breathing) problems she had,” Lillian Buelna, Vanessa Buelna’s mother said.
“She would do two laps before she could play. This led to a lifetime of running. I’m so proud of her.” Vanessa Buelna finished in a top-seven spot for ELAC.
The top seven women advance out of next week’s meet to the SoCal Cross Country finals in two weeks if the Huskies run fast enough to move on to the postseason. With a previous state ranking, the Huskies are expected to advance.
Both ELAC teams will compete in the SCC finals Friday beginning at 10 a.m. at Hahamonga Watershed Park in Pasadena.
The men’s team will race the entire team for the first time this year at the SCC finals including Andres De La Cruz and Salvador Ascencio, both who are recovering from injuries.
“We work together to win, but it is up to each of us to improve our times to advance to (SoCal), sophomore Omar Alvarenga said.
Cristian Flores led the men’s team finishing as ELAC’s top runner. The men’s team beat San Diego Christian University of Santee for 12th place.
All of ELAC’s seven runners placed ahead of the entire San Diego Christian team.