Panther Men Lead After Day One of Conference Championship

Panther Men Lead After Day One of Conference Championship

Hartnell College played host to day one of the Coast Conference Track & Field Championship with five scored events and running trials for advancement to Saturday's final at Monterey Peninsula College. After a substantial show of strength in the distance races, the men's team leads College of San Mateo by 24 points 64 to 40 with potential second day challenger DeAnza College at 28 points. For the ladies, the DeAnza Dons have a substantial lead 105 points to 57 points for Hartnell College.

Thomas Salao won his first ever conference title in an event he's shown promise in since his freshman year in the javelin. Salao came in ranked second overall but a lifetime personal best of 167-4 propelled the former Salinas High School Cowboy to the top spot. Freshman Kyle Winslow may the heir apparent to take Salao's place at the top next year with his sixth place throw of 136-6. Sophomore Andrew Martinez lead a sweep of the top seven places in the 10,000 meter run with a CCCAA State Championship qualifying 32:35.57. He was followed by Jorge Sanchez (33:21.29), Mario Perez, Jr. (33:23.63), Angel Mejia, Jr. (33:27.12), Edgar Bonilla (33:36.79), Williams Ordaz (33:40.32), and Oscar Mora, Jr. (33:43.06). Martinez also lead all qualifiers into Saturday's 1500 meter final with his 4:02.79. He will be joined out of qualifying by Bonilla (4:05.61), Perez (4:06.17), Eduardo Orozco (4:07.38), Sergio Coronel (4:07.69), Patrick Olson (4:07.86), and Mejia (4:09.49). Norman Napolitano (21-4.75) and Clemente Villareal (20-10.50) picked up sixth and seventh place points in the long jump. Others to advance to Saturday finals include: David Thompson (110 HH, 400 IH), Jonathan Saldana (400 IH), Joziah Garcia (400), Eduardo Orozco (800), Edgar Bonilla (800), Sergio Coronel (800), and Patrick Olson (800). Orozco lead all qualifiers on time with his 1:58.27.

Frosh Haley Romero picked up her conference title with a season best 18-3 making one of a handful of Lady Panthers to eclipse the 18 foot barrer. Chelsea Andrade was third in the hammer throw (130-6). Sophomores Yvette Felix and Beatriz Duarte went from happy to score points in the 10,000 meters as a freshmen to a significant first and second place finish in this year's championship. Felix clocked 40:18.89 to dip under the CCCAA qualifying mark. Duarte was not too far behind in a State "B" mark 40:47.88. Freshmen Jocelyn Cervantes (41:58.58), Yvette Tavarez (43:04.85), and Leslie Oseguera (43:06.16) all scored for the Lady Panthers. Haley Romero had the third fastest 100 meter hurdle qualifying time (15.76) to lead teammate Raquel Legaspi (17.47) into the final. Legaspi lowered her regional qualifying mark in the 400 low hurdles to 1:10.54 and will be seeded fifth on Saturday. Romero also advanced in the 100 meters and 200 meters. Fellow frosh Bailee Rusconi will be seeded fourth in the 100 meter final along with fifth in the 200 meters after lifetime best 27.06 in the heats. In the 800 meters, Olivia Jimenez will lead four Lady Panthers in the 800 meter final Saturday. Jimenez lowered her lifetime best to 2:28.23 in winning her heat. Yvette Felix (2:29.85), Elizabeth Hernandez (2:28.84). and Leslie Oseguera (2:33.67) will all look to help Jimenez in the event.

On Saturday, the Panther men will look to win a fifth consecutive team title. The women were second in 2016 and will look to make a run at unseating last year's champion DeAnza College. Field events start at 12:00pm and running events at 1:00pm at Monterey Peninsula College.