Escalon’s track and field athletes headed to nearby Ripon on May 26 for a meet, facing off against both Ripon and Central Catholic. It was the final meet of the season for the Cougars.
“It was great to actually be back at a TVL school on Wednesday for our meet,” said head coach Carrie Nash. “Competing against two schools was fun too, it just felt a little more like normal times.”
Track standout efforts included:
Senior Brandon Granda 4th in the 100m (pr-12:07); sophomore Owen Nash 2nd 300 hurdles (47.62), 2nd high jump (5-08); junior Belen Lechuga Soto 3rd in the 400m (73.25), 1st triple jump (28-06.50); senior Brianna Briones Chavarria 3rd 800 and 1600 (2:47.9, 6:00.4); freshman Madison Webster 1st 300m hurdles (59.59), 4th 100m hurdles (20.34).
Leading the way in the Field Events were:
Junior Preston Ball 1st Shot 40-07.0 (PR), 1st Discus 122-07.5 (another PR), 3rd in the long jump (19-02 PR), and 2nd in triple jump 37-09 (another PR).
“He had a great day,” Nash said of the junior setting four personal best marks and taking first in two events.
Also, junior Stephen Percy 3rd discus 109-02.5 (PR), 5th shot (33-10 PR) 3rd triple jump 34-10; junior Brent Beary 4th shot put 36-01; junior Haylee Barajas 4th shot put (28-05); junior Rachel Farley 1st high jump (4-06) 1st long jump (14-03 PR); senior Alexis Barron 2nd long jump (13-09), 2nd triple jump 26-10; sophomore Ali Pence 3rd long jump (13-03); freshman Katelyn Rodriguez 4th long jump 12-10.5.
Previously, track and field traveled to Weston Ranch for a May 19 competition.
“Several athletes fought through the windy conditions to have some stand out performances,” explained assistant coach Michael Bower. “Katelyn Rodriguez set a personal record in the 100m hurdles with a time of 19.91. Brandon Granda won the boys 100m race in a time of 11.94, and Owen Nash put up a personal record of 47.14 seconds for 300 hurdles.”
Cougar distance runners also had a stellar day, noted Bower.
“The wind meant focusing on racing well, but Ryan Walker led the girls mile finishing within a second of her personal record, running 7:11, Gonzalo Leal dropped his season best time to 7:21 in the mile, and Grady Fugett ran a focused 2 mile, finishing in a personal record of 13:25.”
In the field events at Weston Ranch, Preston Ball had a great day, taking first in all four of his events; shot put 39-5, discus 108-11, triple jump 37-8, long jump 19-11, accomplishing the feats against a really strong wind.
“This was the first meet he participated in jumps and it was great to see him do so well,” Nash noted of Ball’s performance against the Weston Ranch team. “It was also Stephen Percy’s first time jumping this year and he did well, earning two 2nd places. Haylee Barajas got two firsts, one in shot and one in discus and Ali Pence and Belen Lechuga Soto did well in the long jump.”
Victor Romero was second in the shot put, third in discus while Brent Beary was third in shot and second in discus.
For the girls, Anya Peeples was second in shot behind Barajas and Ana Paula Garcia took third. Danielle Gallegos was second in discus to Barajas with Cesi Rodriguez placing third.
“With multiple sports going on, it was a great opportunity to see different athletes step up and compete in different events: joining a relay or trying something new,” Bower said of the unusual campaign. “I’m really proud of what our kids have accomplished. Regardless of where they started this season, they have fought to become better.”
After the successful trip to Weston Ranch, the Cougars came back to do just as well in the season finale at Ripon, a satisfying end to the campaign.
“We wrapped the evening up with scholar athlete awards, four-year senior awards and senior recognition,” Nash explained. “I’m so happy that we got to have a season, very unlike any other previous years. Our team was much smaller due to so many sports returning to play at the same time. Eighty-five percent of our athletes did two sports and that made practicing, competing and coaching difficult at times. The athletes that came out this year were such a joy to work with. They learned a lot and made some awesome overall growth.”