Sports Briefs: Sept. 15 – 21, 2016

By Diego Linares

Water Polo 

The water polo team looks to regain its composure after going 0-8 to start the season.

The team has had to play through two injuries, one being a shoulder subluxation suffered by starter Irene Young, but are looking toward a young core of athletes to propel them forward.

ELAC water polo head coach Erik Matheson said freshman players Jessenia Barberena and Cynthia Sanchez have been two to contribute on offense and defense, while awaiting the return of Young and impact of fellow freshman Sophia Gonzalez.

“My primary goal is to get us into the conference championship tournament,” Matheson said. “We’re doing a lot of learning and a lot of investing into the second half of the season. I knew it was going to be a bumpy ride in the beginning, a lot of tough matchups in the beginning, but if we can start making things click this week and next week, the second half of the season should pan out the way we’re shooting for.”

ELAC will travel to Mount San Antonio College today to face a conference opponent with a record of 4-2 at 3 p.m.

Cross Country

Cross country did not place in an event at the SoCal Preview Meet last Friday, but did see a few athletes do a respectable job.

“Our men’s team did good for being freshmen and for it being so big of a meet. Transitioning from high school where they ran three miles, and then coming here to junior college competition where it’s four miles, they did good,” ELAC assistant coach Megan Magdaleno said. “They’re only going to get stronger from here. The season’s looking good.”

Freshman Grecia Estrada finished 98 in the women’s individual five kilometer run where over 240 athletes competed, while fellow freshman Martin Perez ended up 77 out of over 300 runners in the men’s individual 5k run.

The cross country assistant coach and track and field head coach Edgar Lightbourn mentioned how dedication to education could translate to uplifting the competitive nature of the team.

“The formula is pretty simple and straight forward. We emphasize academics first, and from that place is where we pivot and translate that over to the distance running and the competitive side of the program,” Lightbourn said.

For their next meet, the team will head to California State University, San Bernardino this Saturday for an all day event.

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