“Bittersweet” Performance at SoCal Regional Championships

The Santa Monica College Track & Field Team finished the SoCal Regional on May 13 beating many expectations, but were hurt by the loss of Jordan Herrera to injury and the suboptimal condition of Michaela Cosentino, who was recovering from a stomach flu.

Jordan Herrera, for the 100 meters, ran the best time in the state for 2017 in the preliminaries two weekends ago, with a time of 10.45. Unfortunately, he pulled his hamstring at the finish line. Herrera says he was “happy and sad at the same time because I PRed [set personal record] with the fastest time in the state and also sad because I hurt myself for the state [competition].” Without their best 100-meter runner, the Corsairs’ 4×100 relay team placed fifth in the finals.

Track & Field Head Coach Larry Silva explains that “we’re dealing with a lot of emotions with the rest of the athletes. They’ve been clearly the number one or number two team in the state in the 4×1 for most of the season. They go back and forth with Mt. SAC and Sequoias up north and then all of a sudden you get a major injury like that, it can affect you adversely.”

Michaela Cosentino also underperformed, due to a stomach flu. Having just started eating properly this Thursday, Cosentino received ninth on the women’s high jump. According to Silva, Cosentino ranked top three coming into this event.

But the team’s performance also had much to cheer about. Silva cited Stirling McCulloch getting second in the men’s high jump as an “outstanding performance”. He also complimented Shane Brouwer’s great improvement in the 1500 meter and “gutsy performance. He did what his coach asked him to do, and he pulled the best race he’s been able to pull out the whole season on the most important day for him. Can’t ask for more.” Originally a swimmer, Brouwer managed to qualify for the finals his first year and place eighth, with 4:01.40. Brouwer joked that his success is thanks to his friend promising to “wear a banana costume as long as I go under 4:05.”

Devyn Deckard also performed excellently, reaching third in the 400 meter hurdles. Deckard notably overcame a technical misstep when he took 23 steps instead of 22, forcing him to jump the hurdles with his right leg instead of his practiced left leg. Deckard says he “erased that mistake from memory and just focused on the rest of the race.”

Chimechi Oparanozi placed fifth in the Men’s Shot Put, but believed he didn’t “perform well at all”, with improper technique. Ranked 15th nationwide in high school before a two-year break, he says he is “kinda rusty but… everything is going well so I hope next year I come back and win the whole thing.”

Other notable performances were finalists Sharieff Reed, who placed seventh in the Men’s 100 meter, and Amanda Yager, who received seventh in the 400 meter hurdles. The men’s 4×400 meter relay also received fourth in the finals.

Santa Monica College Corsair Sharieff Reed sulks after a disappointing 7th place finish in the mens 100 meter dash at the CCCAA (California Community College Athletics Association) Southern California Regional Prelims and Championship on May 13, 2017 at Cerritos College in Cerritos California. (Zane Meyer-Thornton)