After tremendous performances in Friday’s Orange Empire Conference prelims at Riverside City College, both men and women who competed for Santa Ana qualified for the next round.
The men’s team placed fourth with 11 points. Freshman Lizandro Hernandez established himself as Santa Ana’s top runner, placing seventh in the men’s 3000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10:40.92. It was only his second time competing in the event and he beat his first attempt by more than 30 seconds.
“I wanted to get off those other constant races and try something new, and I felt like I could do the Steeplechase,” Hernandez said.
Before his attempts at running the steeplechase, Hernandez had only competed in the 800-meter run. Making the move from the 800 to the steeple wasn’t easy. “The barriers are the hardest part because you have to jump and there are some certain techniques that you have to do in order to go good,” Hernandez said.
Freshman Alexandria Owens was one of the top sprinters at the event for the women. She was recently awarded student-athlete of the month in March. In the 100-meter dash she placed third among 21 competitors with a time of 12.57 seconds.
Other notable names for the women were freshman Adrienne Jenkins and Monique Azpeitia. Jenkins competed in the 400-dash and placed second out of eight competitors with a time of 1:02.65. In the 800 run prelim Azpeitia clocked in a time of 2:34.18 good enough for fifth place out of 12 competitors.
Miriam Mitzel Head track and field coach is proud of the way the team competes and tries new challenges. “we have an amazing group of runners and hurdlers, we are a very small and young team,” Mitzel said. “ we are definitely putting SAC back on the map so watch out.” She added.