Erica Williams trains with her coach Greg Bianchi at a track and field practice at the Ocean Campus on May 14, 2012. VINCENT PALMIER / THE GUARDSMAN
City College’s track & field team has set a goal of reaching All-American status this season. Their athletes are performing at high levels and breaking school records on their way to the state championships.
With their performance at the NorCal finals last weekend, the Track & Field team drew one step closer to their goal by having a handful of athletes moving on to State Championships.
Collegiate athletes reach All-America status when they place in the top four in a particular event at the State Championships.
Sprints coach Doug Owyang said, “to be NorCal Champion is our goal, to make it to the state meet, and to vie for All-American status… and I think we have individuals in relays that can possibly do it.”
“We’ve established that we are some of the tops in the events we are (competing) in for the NorCal Finals,” he said.
Owyang said that there are many top-level athletes on the team this season, and that Erica Williams has demonstrated that she is among the elite competitors in the state.
Williams broke a 20-year-old City College of San Francisco record by 100 points with her performance in the heptathlon at the NorCal Community College Championships in April.
She went on to break another school record with her 38.25 foot Triple Jump at the NorCal Finals on May 11 and 12.
“I worked about ten times harder this season then I ever had my entire life and it definitely showed,” Williams said.
The track portion of the team has been more successful than the field portion because of a lack of representation in field competitions. Williams has succeeded in both as a multi-event competitor Field Coach Greg Bianci said.
“On the men’s side, we’re pretty dominant in the sprints,” Owyang said. “We had the fastest time in the NorCal trials in the 4×4 (relay).”
The 4×4 relay team, comprised of all freshmen, will also be competing in the State Championship after qualifying at the NorCal Finals with a time of 3:13.
City College’s men’s team ranked fifth at the Coast Conference Championships, while the women’s team ranked fourth.
“For the first time we actually had a solid girl’s squad instead of it just being me and another girl like last season,” Williams said.
First year students Alex Foster and Jarrett Moore have proven very valuable in the team’s preliminary competitions, and have helped lead City College on the road to the state championships.
Foster placed second in the 800 meter event, and Moore placed fifth in the 1500 meter event at NorCal Finals. Both will compete in State Championships.
“The treatment you get here coaching-wise, and academically, is nothing compared to any other junior college,” Williams said.
Both Athletes and coaches athletes have worked hard all season to make it to State Championships which will be held May 18 and 19 at Cerritos College in Los Angeles.