Sophomore runners Azahalea Vazquez and Jazmin Avila refuse to let their college careers end without the best times.
Vazquez finished 10th and Avila 16th overall for the Dons at the Orange Empire Championship in Fullerton Oct. 31.
“We lost our top three runners in the summer, they quit. But my top two right now are doing real well,” Head Coach Miriam Mitzel said. “They have shaved more than a minute off their time from last year.”
Vazquez trimmed 43 seconds off her total time from her last meet, the Mt. SAC Invitational, running 19:09. It was her fastest this season.
“I feel really accomplished,” Vazquez said.
Avila also ran 42 seconds faster at conference, clocking in at 19:30 compared to her 20:12 time at Mt. SAC.
“I didn’t want to end my season without being able to run 19s. That’s what motivated me,” Avila said.
Vazquez and Avila have drawn interest from several four-year schools, including the Universities of Kansas, Arkansas and Georgia.
“I told them that the faster they run, the more schools will call about you,” Mitzel said.
As a team Santa Ana College placed sixth overall at conference. It is the team’s second highest placing since the first meet of the season, at Palomar College, where the team placed third and the pair placed in the top eight.
They competed in the Southern California Finals in Van Nuys Friday and are expected at state finals, to be held on Nov. 22 in Fresno.
October 31:Vazquez ran her best time all season at 19:09 in the 5k run at Creek Park.
October 10: Her 20:05 time at the SAC-hosted Brubaker Invitational gave her a 13th place finish.
September 5: She started the season clocking in at 20:34 at the Palomar Invitational.