Track teams compete in invitational


Photo by Kedar Dutt/The Pioneer

Marissa Marshall,
Staff Writer

The California State East Bay track and field teams competed in the East Bay Invitational over the weekend in their last regular season meet before the California Collegiate Athletic Association Conference Championships next month.

“It has been a rough season for our team as a whole,” sophomore Aaron Jones said. “Most of our sprinters got hurt and were not able to compete this year but I feel we finished this last meet strong.”

Sophomore Alberto Venegas managed to capture first place in the 800 meter race with a time of 1:55.94. He was the only athlete on the entire men’s Pioneer squad to place first in any event, which was also his personal best and the 13th best time among all CCAA runners in this event this season.

Venegas’ teammate freshman Jeremy Shaw also ran a personal best in the 800, as he placed fifth with a time of 1:57.44, earning 4 points for the team.

As for the women in the 800 meters, senior Sarah Perrin ran her personal best as she managed to nab first place in the event with a time of 2:19.54. This was the women’s team only first place victory as well at the invitational. Her teammate, junior Katherine Embody, came in just behind her in second place with a time of 2:21.84.

East Bay runners were solid in the 200 and 400 meter runs as a pair of sophomores, Jasmine Starks and Aaron Jones, were both able to place second in the 200.

Jones was unable to top his season best in the 200 and 400 meters but was still able to make a statement. He was one-tenth of second from taking home a first place finish in the 200 meters, with a time of 22.07.

“I felt pretty good throughout the race and I had a strong finish,” Jones said. “But I know I still need to improve the first half of the race in order to drop my time.”

Starks was able to achieve her season best in the 200 meter event with a time of 26.06. Jones also placed fourth in the 400 meter dash with a time of 50.26.

In the women’s 100 meters, Starks and sophomore Imani Blincoe, nearly finished at the same exact time. Starks was able to get the advantage over Blincoe by one-tenth of a second with a time of 12.83 earning her third place. Blincoe had a time of 12.84 and earned 4th place.

Three Pioneers finished in very close proximity in the men’s 5000 meter run. Freshman Christian Moncada finished in eighth place with a time of 15:54.25, junior Zach Kanlong finished in ninth place at 15:54.54 and freshman Deion Molina finished in tenth place with a time of 15:59.50. Though the trio were all in the top half of the 28 total runners, only Moncada was able to earned a point toward the team’s overall score.

“Our team has to stay healthy and make sure we do not get injured before championships,” Starks said. “It is going to be very competitive so those going to championships have to stay on top of their game by staying focused and working hard.”

The Pioneer men finished the competition with a total of 28 team points and the women finished with 44.

The two teams will select who they will bring to compete in the CCAA Conference Championships at Chico at University Stadium, which start on May 4 and end May 6.