Two-time defending CCCAA track and field state champion Laura Aceves clocked in the top time in the nation in the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase run at the Santa Barbara Easter Relays on March 20.
On Feb. 28 she ran the fastest 1,500-meter run in the country.
Aceves won the steeplechase at Santa Barbara City College in 11:14.60 minutes, 33 seconds faster than the previous best time from Allison Hainer of Cuyahoga College in Cleveland, according to the 2015 U.S. Community College Track and Field Association Rankings.
“Laura is very precise and very coachable in both training and competition, which is one reason why she did good,” said Husky Assistant Coach David Loera. “She’s coming into pretty good form and we are looking forward to her first 10,000-meter run this season, in hopes she can win both events at state.”
Aceves won 2014 state titles in the steeplechase and 10,000 runs. “I did OK (steeplechase at Santa Barbara), but there is a lot more to improve,” said Aceves.
East Los Angeles College had five more first place wins at the Easter Relays.
Freshman Joshua Taylor won two events for ELAC, both with personal records. He won the men’s long jump with a leap of 21.62 feet and the triple jump (33.62 feet).
“Joshua’s (Taylor) triple jump is only the second time he has competed in the event—ever,” said ELAC Assistant Coach Ernesto Zuniga. “He’s doing well on his jumps, but is not close to what he can do, so we’re working on it.”
Freshman Darling Durant won the women’s shot put throwing her second-consecutive personal record with a toss of 35.72 feet. She threw a personal record of 33.37 feet on March 13 at the Occidental College Spring Carnival, mostly against four-year university competition.
“She’s improving on her technique and working towards a goal of 40+ feet by the end of the regular season, which would be good enough to move on to the postseason,” said Zuniga.
The Huskies also took first place in the women’s 4,000-meter distance medley lapping runner-up Santa Monica College in the win. The winning quartet included Aceves, sophomore Guadalupe Yanez and freshmen Alease Wilson and Luz Badillo.
Freshman Kaniya Bawlson won the women’s high jump and will add the triple jump to her list of events on Friday, according to Loera.
Four freshmen threw personal records in the shot put, Ramiro Arreola, Cesar Santiesteban, Maureen Contreras and Arianna Carter. Santiesteban added a second personal record in the discus.
Arreola returned to the shot put ring coming off a three-week injury. “I just tried to not hesitate because of the injury and just tried to get into a smooth rhythm,” said Arreola.
Freshmen Jessica Perez placed second in the pole vault while Fernando Sandoval, also recovering from an injury, placed second in his heat while competing in his initial 400-meter dash, which could add valuable points at the South Coast Conference finals in less than a month.
The Huskies will compete in the 72nd edition of the Pasadena Games on Friday March 27. The throws events begins at noon at Cal Tech. All other events are a short walk to Robinson Stadium at Pasadena City College with a 1 p.m. start.
--Story by Tadzio Garcia