Locals shine for GCC

MISSION VIEJO — With a sharp pain in her right leg, Samantha Bogatz set sail for the finish line with plenty at stake.

Competing in the 200-meter dash, the standout Glendale Community College track and field athlete crossed the finish line in a school-record time and breathed a sigh of relief.

Bogatz captured the event in 24.09 seconds to repeat as champion at the Southern California Championships on Saturday afternoon at Saddleback College. Bogatz earlier repeated as champion in the 100, clocking 11.85.

"I felt a sharp pain most of the 200, but I knew that I had to go out there and do it," said Bogatz, who broke her own school record of 24.23, which was set May 8 at the Southern California prelims at Saddleback College. "I had to come out of the pack and I knew I had to get a lead from there."

Bogatz was one of a handful of Glendale college athletes who qualified for the California Community College Athletic Assn. Track and Field Championships, which will be held Friday and Saturday at Antelope Valley College.

Joining Bogatz from the college's women's team are Angie Gonzalez, Rosa Del Toro, Nina Moore, Karen Rosas, Burroughs graduate Vivian Ochoa, Alina Jabourian, Carissa Porter and Daniela Pollard. Two Glendale men's athletes — Jonathan Alpizar of Burroughs and Frankie Quijada — also qualified for the state meet.

In the men's portion of the meet, Alpizar excelled in the steeplechase.

He clocked a personal-best mark of 9:19.46 to take second behind L.A. Southwest College's Dahir Mohamed (9:13.53).

Quijada took third in the 5,000 in a personal-best time of 15:17.2.

"Jonathan's executed everything right in the steeplechase and Frankie came back from the pack and did it with heart," Lopez said. "They've been tough competitors."

Quijada was eighth in the steeplechase (9:37.61), Ricky Avila of Glendale college was 12th in the 1,500 (4:10.83) and teammate Miguel Flores clocked 1:56.93 to take seventh in the 800.

Bogatz, who repeated as champion in both events at the Western State Conference Championships on April 30 at Moorpark College, began her day by winning the 100 by .05 seconds. Uchechi Anunkor of Mount San Antonio College finished second in 11.90.

"I was scared in the 100," Bogatz said. "Coming off the block, I was with two others and it came down to who would tire first.

"Last year, it was a surprise to win both events. This year, there's a lot of good competition. I've had to work hard all year."

Gonzalez finished sixth in the 3,000 steeplechase in a personal-best time of 11 minutes 26.8 seconds to advance to the state meet. Two Vaqueros reached the state meet in the 1,500, as Del Toro was fourth (4:4.56) and Moore placed sixth (4:47.82).

Also moving on were Moore, Del Toro and Rosas in the 5,000. Moore placed third in 17:51.2, Del Toro was fourth (17:54.6) and Rosas clocked 18:00.2 to take sixth.

Glendale's 4x100 relay team of Jabourian, Porter, Pollard and Bogatz clocked 47.97 for fourth.

The finals in the women's 10,000 were held May 8. Rosas finished third with a personal-best mark of 36 minutes 43.97 seconds to qualify. Ochoa finished seventh (37:27.01) and will be an alternate.

"Sam ran with a lot of heart," Glendale Coach Eddie Lopez said. "She got out decent in the 100 and ran very confident but not cocky in the 200.

"We did a lot better in the women's competition. It's tough because everybody is getting better."

Caitlin Kelly of Glendale took 10th in the steeplechase (11:50.2), Ochoa was eighth in the 5,000 (18:16.9), Brianna Jauregui was 15th in the 5,000 (19:00.2) and Reyna Samaniego took 21st in the 5,000 (19:24.8).

Glendale's 4x400 relay team of Porter, Laura Pleumer, Del Toro and Melisa Sanchez took eighth (4:05.53).

The top six from each event except for the 100, 200, 400, 800, both hurdles events and relays advanced to the state meet.

The top four finishes in the 100, 200, 400, 800, both hurdle events and relays plus the fastest fifth time from either the Northern California or Southern California championships also advanced.

Glendale college finished fifth in the women's team scoring with 60 points. Mount San Antonio won with 119 points, followed by Cerritos College (101 1/2 ), West Los Angeles (74) and Orange Coast College (73).

In the men's competition, Glendale finished 13th with 17 points. Riverside Community College won the team competition with 121 points and Mt. SAC was second with 106.

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