Cerritos College
Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

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Falcons’ track and field compete at UCLA Legends Invitational meet

Carlos Ruiz
Sophomore Micqwuan Wright in the men’s 400-meter hurdles race. Wright finished the race in fourth place.

The women’s track and field team were able to take fifth place overall out of 17 schools on Saturday’s meet, while the men’s team clinched ninth place out of 18 schools.

The Falcons were on-away territory clashing against schools in the Pacific Coast-12 conference once again on day-two, hunting for glory after the first meet on Friday.

Some athletes from both the men’s and women’s team are coming off of injuries and are beginning to make the readjustment to compete once again.

The women’s track and field team were able to get first place in several events such as:

  • Sophomore Keirra King, 200-meter race
  • Freshman Tanya Reyes, hammer throw
  • Sophomore Amber Hart, the discus and shot put
  • Freshman Imani Jones, triple jump
TM Carlos Ruiz
Sophomore Tyler Simpson during her record breaking 800-meter run. Simpson finished second place behind a Cal State L.A. College runner.

Sophomore Tyler Simpson who participated in the women’s 800-meter race, broke a Cerritos College school record which was set by Tyrene Webb in 2005.

Simpson finished in second place, with a time of 2:12.51 surpassing Webb by .2 seconds.

TM Carlos Ruiz
Sophomore Cristhian Macias during the 1500-meter run. Macias placed first, with a time of 4 minutes, 4.43 seconds.

While sophomore Cristhian Macias of the men’s team managed to win first place in the men’s 1500-meter race.

Despite the 1500 being the only first place victory for the Falcons, sophomore Andrew Fowler was able to get second place in the pole vault and sophomore Jorge Bergara got second place in the hammer throw and fourth place in shot put.

Sophomore Micqwuan Wright took fourth place in the 400-meter hurdles finishing with a time of 57.02 seconds.

Men’s track and field head coach Morris Jones said that the team had some good spots, but also some spots they’re trying to improve on.

Jones said, “We had a couple of distance people shine, Macias ran a pretty decent race. We have a lot of people coming off of injury, so we’re trying to get [athletes] healthy for the last couple of meets.

“We’re in the position to compete in our heated conference meet coming up, but overall I was pleased. We obviously can always improve.”

TM Carlos Ruiz
Freshman Angel Chavarria is leading the pack in his track race. Chavarria capped the day off with a time of 1:55.25 in the 800-meter run, good for fourth place.

Jones believes that the men’s 800-meter race is the strongest event for the Falcons at the moment.

“Wright PRed huge,” said Jones referring to the personal record Wright broke.

As the Falcons come across and face PAC-12 schools, Jones said, “Everyday is a PAC-12 meet for us, the thing to always remember is you need to connect your mind with your soul.

“A disconnect there leaves you in the rain, my whole philosophy is if we can connect the mind with the heart and soul, then we’re going to perform well.”

Women’s track and field head coach Michael Allen said, although the team tried not to cover all events that day, they still did pretty well.

“We had a school record and several personal bests, so I was really happy with that,” said Allen.

Allen says the strongest aspect of the women’s team would be the field events.

“We’re really starting to make some good improvement with King in the sprints, she’s become dominant in that event and I’m hoping she’ll be the dominant sprinter in May.

“The biggest thing to do now is to get up and run, we have to get our relay team going, we’re okay, but we have to get a lot better,” said Allen.

Allen says training harder and paying attention to detail with focus when it’s time to compete will help improve the aspects that are missing.

With the women’s team facing PAC-12 schools as well, Allen explains how the schools are “motivational builders,” hoping the girls are striving to be at that level which is the next step.

“To be able to have an opportunity to compete against schools from PAC-12, it gives these kids hope that ‘I can compete at this level.’ This is the type of competition they’re going to see on a weekly basis,” said Allen.

TM Carlos Ruiz
Freshman Monica Bautista jumps over a hurdle at the UCLA Invitational on March 30. Bautista ended seventh place in the 400-meter IH, with a time of 1:11.63.

Although Allen is mainly the women’s head coach, he still gives advice to the men’s team saying, “It takes advice from all of the coaches and there’s more than one way to do things.

“The ultimate goal is to help the team and move the team forward.”

With the season moving quickly Allen is pleased with the improvement from the last few weeks so far.

With the improvement that he is seeing this is what he calls the “big point level.”

Allen is confident that the team can come out on top in conference, as long as they put in the work and rally around each other.

“The most important thing I can tell them is to believe in themselves, believe in their training and to compete hard.

“You have to go into a competition believing you belong here, that you’re capable of competing like you should be here and that you’re capable of winning an event,” said Allen.

TM Carlos Ruiz
Freshman Kenya Owens during the women’s 400-meter race in which she finished seventh place. Owens finished with a time of 1 minute, 2.60 seconds.

Freshman Kenya Owens is recently coming off of injuries, last weekend she said she did decent, however, she mentioned that she felt a lot better this time around.

Owens participated in the women’s 400-meter race and the 4×400-meter relay.

“We had competition, because there’s PAC-12 schools at this event,” Owens said, “ it pushed me to run faster.”

Overall Owens said the team performed better as a whole because of the competition that they were up against.

Owens talked about running scared during the events, but knowing that she’s racing up against the next level in which she’s aiming for, there’s a push to do better.

“So, it’s like why not run with them, don’t run scared. I have the mindset of mind over matter,” said Owens.

The Cerritos College men’s and women’s track and field team have its next meet April 6-7 in San Diego Mesa for the Arnie Robinson Invitational.

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About the Contributor
Carlos Ruiz, Managing Editor
Carlos Ruiz is the Managing Editor for Talon Marks. He admires photography, and even launched his own website and has dedicated his Instagram to his work. His dream job is always changing, but most recently, he would like to travel the world taking photos, or something having to do with photojournalism. He’s hopeful to continue working on a newspaper staff at the CSU he decides to attend.  
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Falcons’ track and field compete at UCLA Legends Invitational meet