WALNUT, Calif. — The East Los Angeles College women’s cross country team came home with two personal records on the most difficult course of the season at the Mt. San Antonio College Invitational.
Sophomore Kattie Padilla, a Psychology major, finished with a lifetime best record of 22:37 minutes passing Mt. SAC freshman Melanie Esquivel in the final lap and getting to the finish line 10 seconds faster. Padilla ran her 2-year ELAC personal record on “one of the most famous courses in the world,” according to the Mt. SAC website. According to Mt. SAC officials, former ELAC cross country head coach Louis Ramirez helped design the course.
The course is so difficult that it is tough to get a personal record with sections such as the Valley Loop, Switchbacks, Poop Out Hill and the Reservoir Hill. This cross country meet is known as the largest in the world according to the Mt. SAC Athletics website with 14,000 athletes from 500 teams competing in the two-day event with community college, elementary, middle school and high school divisions.
Freshman Tahlia Adams (Eleanor Roosevelt HS), a Technology Microcomputers major, also made her mark in community college competition running to a personal record today as well. Adams continues to improve in each college meet. At the SoCal Preview meet in September, she predicted that her daily workouts with the team would give her better times at the conclusion of the season. She wasn’t kidding. Based on her improvement each week, Adams could improve more than a minute by the next meet.
Freshman Daria Ayala (Bravo Medical Magnet HS), who is majoring in Business Administration, finished in 27:00, knocking off 47 seconds from the Huskies previous hilly course. Ayala paced herself to win a heated sprint to the finish line side-by-side with Oxnard College freshman Laura Salvador. Ayala clocked in less than a second faster.
Freshman Patricia Martinez-Maturano (Shadow Ridge HS) who is pursuing a career as an Ultrasound Technician, is a new addition to the team and finished in 28:41. She survived her first-ever college race with flying colors. After surpassing Fullerton College freshman Kimberly Estrada-Rodriguez in the final lap, Martinez-Maturano picked up her pace. She continued the momentum and burst into her sprint, like a determined gust of wind. Martinez-Maturano finished twenty-two seconds faster than Estrada-Rodriguez.
In two weeks, ELAC competes on a familiar course at the South Coast Cross Country Conference Championships at Don Knabe Regional Park, 19700 Bloomfield Ave., Cerritos, CA 9070 on Friday, Oct. 26 with a 10 a.m. start time. Since the Huskies do not sport a five-member team, they will compete for individual bids to the SoCal Championships on the same course, Friday, Nov. 2 also at 10 a.m.
Follow ELAC Athletics at http://athletics.elac.edu/landing/index or on Facebook at ELAC Huskies Athletics (@elachuskiesathletics).
submitted by Tadzio Garcia