Oct 07, 2016
The recent Soberanes Fire in Big Sur has left local area cross country teams looking for replacement venues for Toro Park in Salinas. The Hartnell College cross country program chose to recognize its South County campus and students by moving its home meet to King City at San Lorenzo Park. A homecoming of sorts for many South County athletes on both Hartnell and Monterey Peninsula College teams, the change provided an opportunity for family and friends to see a collegiate cross country meet close by. Despite the relocation almost 50 miles from Hartnell College's main campus, nine teams from Northern California trekked the extra distance down Highway 101 to King City. Teams from DeAnza College, Fresno City College, College of San Mateo, Shasta College, College of the Siskiyous, Sierra College, Monterey Peninsula College, and College of the Redwoods were in attendance.The sophomore trio of Edgar Bonilla, Jorge Sanchez, and Oscar Mora, Jr. distanced themselves from the field just after the first mile and ran alone for much of the second half the race. All three were timed in 21:10 on the four mile course having finished alongside each other with the final order given to Mora, followed by Sanchez, then Bonilla. Josh Esparza of College of the Redwoods spoiled a top seven sweep by placing fourth. He was followed close behind any another three Panthers in Andrew Martinez (21:38), Angel Mejia, Jr. (21:41), and Mario Perez, Jr. (21:47). Williams Ordaz enjoyed his best race of the season placing ninth (21:55). A trio of Hartnell freshmen earned the last of the top 14 medals with Jonathan Saldana (22:04), Christian Aldape (22:07) and Jaime Garcia (22:11) placing 12th, 13th, and 14th. The Hartnell men tallied just 17 points to win the team title. DeAnza College was second with 72 points and Santa Rosa Junior College taking third with 103 points.
The Panthers will travel south to Walnut, CA for the historic Mt. SAC Invitational on Friday, October 14th.