Rewriting GCC's history books

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This is the first of eight editions in which the News-Press looks back at the area's 2010-11 seasons, school by school, before looking ahead at the year to come.

Locally, regionally or at the state level, Glendale Community College enjoyed arguably its finest athletic year ever. From the fall season right through the spring session, plenty of dramatic stories unfolded with several individual athletes winning state championships and the baseball team making an unexpected playoff run that nearly led to a state championship after winning its first conference championship since 2002.

Tammy Panich highlighted the fall season with her ascent to becoming the state's best women's golfer.

Alex Sarkissian put together the finest season in the history of the Vaqueros men's tennis program and quite possibly the state. He was the first player from GCC to win the Ojai Valley Tournament community college singles title and he also captured the 2011 California Community College Athletic Assn. Southern California Regional and the state singles championships.

The women's cross-country team finished second in the state meet. The men's basketball team used a late surge to qualify for the postseason for the first time since 2008. Thanks to a solid recruiting class, the men's golf program excelled throughout most of the season, which included placing second in conference and reaching the state championship for the first time in the program's history. To top it all off, Karen Rosas continued the individual glory with a tour de force at the state track and field championships.

The Vaqueros enjoyed a major renaissance in the spring, one that might not be forgotten for a long time.

Here is a recap of some of the Vaqueros' athletic highlights and events that unfolded during the past year:

Sept. 3, 2010 — The women's volleyball team picks up its first win of the season, defeating visiting Antelope Valley College, 25-15, 25-27, 20-25, 25-13, 15-12, in a nonconference match. Jessica Alvarez leads the Vaqueros with 20 kills and 11 digs and Roxy Domines has 51 assists.

Sept. 20, 2010 — The women's golf team places third on its home course of Oakmont Country Club in a Western State Conference match. The Vaqueros receive a seven-over-par 79 from Tammy Panich to lead the way

"I'm ecstatic with our scores," said Glendale first-year Coach Greg Osbourne, whose team finished with a 343 and finished two shots behind second-place Bakersfield. "How can you not give them the credit they deserve?

"We came close to taking second and beat an established Santa Barbara team that won state a couple of years ago. A lot of hard work went into their scores."

Panich finishes with one birdie, 11 pars, four bogeys and a pair of double-bogeys to finish tied for second with Hannah Lee of Canyons.

"I didn't have a good round," said Panich, who earlier undergoes an appendectomy while also recovering from a right-leg strain. "I usually hit the balls in the fairways, but my leg hurt and I had to shift my weight to hit the ball.

"I was using my arms to hit the ball. My putting was good and the greens were nice and fast. My putting saved me a bunch of shots."

Oct. 1, 2010 — The men's soccer teams posts a 1-0 Western State Conference home victory against Moorpark College.

Oct. 8, 2010 — America Lopez scores a pair of goals in the final five minutes of the first half to give the women's soccer team a 2-0 Western State Conference home victory against L.A. Mission College at Sartoris Field.

Oct. 9, 2010 — The Glendale Community College cross country teams don't find their strides in the Southern California Preview. The women take second, paced by Angela Martinez' ninth-place run of 19 minutes 39 seconds. The Lady Vaqueros end up with 78 points. The men finish sixth with 182 points. Ricky Avila turns in the team's top mark, taking 11th in 21:10.

Oct. 11, 2010 — For the first time in the program's brief history, the women's golf team wins a Western State Conference match. Panich notches medalist honors as she cards a school-record two-under-par 71 to lead Glendale to a tie for first with state powerhouse College of the Canyons at Marshall Canyon Golf Course in La Verne.

The Vaqueros, who finish with a 327 in the five-team event, see Panich birdie her last four holes to win by six strokes.

"It's the program's finest moment," said Glendale college Coach Greg Osbourne, who gets an 84 from Louise Wright, an 85 from Imelda Treto and an 87 from Diana Hernandez. "It's a huge moment for the program — men and women — and we were able to see Tammy separate herself to take the lead. Anytime you have that opportunity and you can make a statement, you do it and she did."

Oct. 15, 2010 — Gonzalez' second overall finish (20:45.09) in the Santa Barbara Invitational leads the GCC women's cross country team to a first-place finish. The women finish with 36 points.

The men's team comes in fourth place with 84 points. Rico Gutierrez heads the charge, taking second in 21:54.28. Avila takes fourth in 21:59.29.

Oct. 23, 2010 — The Glendale Community College football team is unable to put the finishing touches on a comeback, as West Los Angeles College converts a last-second field goal for a 26-24 win over the Vaqueros.

The Vaqueros were trying to cap off a 13-point, second half comeback victory, which would have been their first win of the year. Glendale is unable to contain West L.A. late. On fourth-and-long and with the game on the line, the Wildcats complete a 33-yard pass to set up shop on Glendale's two-yard line with five seconds left. Down 24-23, West L.A. kicks the easy field goal as time expires for the win.

The loss keeps Glendale (0-7, 0-3 in the Pacific Conference American Division) winless. Glendale's defense — led by nine tackles from Ra'Shon Harper, seven from Jermaine Shamburger and five from Alex Saenz, who also had two sacks and a forced fumble — held the Wildcats without a touchdown in the second half.

Oct. 26, 2010 — As predicted, both the men's and women's cross country teams dominate the competition in the Western State Conference. Both Vaquero squads take home the conference crown, the sixth straight for the women and second in a row for the men, who finished with 22 and 39 points, respectively.

Martinez is crowned the conference's individual champion for the women after running the race in 19:23.06. Avila (20:22.64) and Gutierrez (20:27.18) come in second and third place, respectively, for the men.

"We ran our best race [of the season], the women, but the guys were right there, too," said Glendale Coach Eddie Lopez, who had five women in the top seven and seven in the top 10. "We're peaking at the right time."

Nov. 1, 2010 — Panich wins the Western State Conference individual championship, shooting a two-under-par 72 in the final round of at the 36-hole competition at Olivas Links Golf Course. Panich finishes the two-round competition with a 143 and becomes the first female Vaquero to capture a conference title.

"I felt very positive going into my two rounds and I had a good start [Monday]," said Panich, who bests Malea Miller of Bakersfield by six strokes. "I was able to stay focused and it feels good to win conference."

Nov. 5, 2010 — The women's soccer team comes through with a 3-0 Western State Conference victory against L.A. Valley College. The Vaqueros finish 4-15-1, 3-10-1 in conference.

Nov. 6, 2010 — Brianna Jauregui leads the GCC women's cross country team to a second-place finish in the Southern California championship with a 10th-place mark of 19 minutes 33 seconds. The Vaqueros place behind San Diego Southwestern (22 points) with 68 points, which snaps a string of five straight Southern California titles for Glendale's women. GCC's men come in sixth with 181 points.

Diana Sanchez places 13th in 19:44, with Martinez coming in just behind her at 14th in 19:46. Cecilia Nicolas crosses the line in 19:51 for 16th place, while Keri Molt rounded out GCC's scoring five (21st, 19:58).

"We ran well," Lopez said. "We had mostly all our people in the top 20, that usually wins."

Gutierrez's sixth-place finish in 20:50 was the best mark for the men.

Nov. 8, 2010 — Panich once again excels as a member of the college's women's golf team. At the Southern California Regionals at the Alisal River Golf Course in Solvang, Panich finishes with a two-round score of 151 to tie for second and advance to the state tournament.

Panich ties for second with Tina Yang of Mount San Jacinto College and Malea Miller of Bakersfield. She finishes second in a card off behind Yang with the low score on the back nine serving as the tiebreaker.

Panich is the first Glendale college women's golfer to participate in the regionals since Brittney Gonzalez in 2008.

Nov. 9, 2010 — The men's soccer team nets a 3-2 Western State Conference victory against Citrus College. The Vaqueros finish up at 5-12-4, 4-9-1 in conference.

Nov. 13, 2010 — A disappointing football season ends on a bright note for GCC, as it defeats L.A. Southwest, 42-27, in the final game of the season. Omar Sanchez-Berrara scores a career-high three rushing touchdowns and rushes for 118 yards, while defensive back Oscar Gladden also helps ignite Glendale with three fumble recoveries.

"All I can do right now is smile," said Vaqueros Coach John Rome, whose team finishes the season 1-9 (1-5 in conference). "I told them before the game that they had a choice. They could either go 0-10 or go down with one win and appreciate it the rest of the way. For one night, they can feel like a champion."

Nov. 15, 2010 — Women's golfer Tammy Panich records 14 birdies to net a two-over-par 76 during the first round of the California Community College Athletic Assn. Women's Golf State Championships at Los Serranos Country Club in Chino Hills.

Panich and Kayla Riede of Sacramento City College share the lead entering the final round.

Nov. 16, 2010 — Panich enjoys the finest moment of her collegiate career, as she shoots an even-par 74 to finish tied for first with Kayla Riede of Sacramento City College in the California Community College Athletic Assn. Women's Golf State Championships at Los Serranos Country Club's North Course in Chino Hills.

Panich wins the tournament in a card-off. Riede also cards a 74, however, Panich wins the card-off on the strength of an even-par 36 on the back nine, compared to a 38 from Riede, who takes runner-up for the second year in a row.

"It hasn't sunk in yet that I've won it, but I'm just tired and hungry," said Panich, who becomes the first Vaquero — man or woman — to capture a state golf crown. "I was so nervous that I just couldn't sleep last night and I'm just proud to have won state."

Jessica Alvarez collects 16 assists and Roxy Domines chips in with 25 assists as the Vaqueros women's volleyball team falls in their season finale to Citrus College, 25-13, 18-25, 26-24, 25-20, in a Western State Conference contest. Glendale college finishes 6-17, 2-10 in conference.

Nov. 20, 2010 — The women's cross country team is unable to capture its second straight state championship, taking second in the California Community College Cross-Country Championship with 74 points, behind San Diego Southwestern's 36. The men take sixth with 183 points.

Martinez leads the women with a ninth-place finish in 18:34. Also finishing close by for the Vaqueros are Alyssa Selve (10th, 18:37), Jauregui (16th, 18:31) and Molt (18th, 18:52).

"We would have liked to have won it again, but we've run top three or better in the past six years," Lopez said. "We ran for first, but they just beat us. We will be back."

Gutierrez paces the men with a time of 20:28, which earned him All-American honors.

Jan. 6 — The men's basketball team holds on for a 74-71 Western State Conference Southern Division-opening win over Los Angeles Valley, after leading by as many as 11 points in the second half.

Poor shooting from the field kept the Monarchs in striking distance, but Glendale shuts the door just in time. Narbeh Ebrahimian had a team-high 13 points for the Vaqueros, which included a perfect four-for-four mark at the free-throw line in the final 25 seconds.

Jan. 15 — The men's basketball team tops Citrus College, the fifth-ranked men's basketball team, 72-70. The win keeps Glendale an undefeated 3-0 in its division and 14-5 overall.

The Vaqueros defense holds the Owls 30 points below their average points per game in division play. Glendale's offense shows up to play as well, shooting 49.1% from the field. Nikolas Rhodes has a game-high 15 points for the Vaqueros. Teammate Antonio Garrett has 13 points and Ebrahimian chips in 11.

Feb. 11 — The men's tennis team bounces back from a tough start to the season and snaps a four-match losing streak against Victor Valley. The Vaqueros win 9-0 and improve their record to 2-4.

Alex Sarkissian, Trevor Campbell, Grayson Frazier and Eric Khanlarian pick up 6-0, 6-0 wins in singles play. In doubles, Sarkissian and Campbell, Mike Astorian and Frazier pick up wins.

Feb. 12 — The softball team splits a nonconference doubleheader against San Diego Southwestern. Glendale college wins the first game, 3-2, before suffering a 4-0 loss in the finale. The Vaqueros get two hits apiece from Monique Guzman and Samantha Dickens.

In the first game, Glendale gets a strong outing in the circle from Brandy Morin.

Nate Bryant scores 10 of the men's basketball team's 12 overtime points, but it isn't enough to overcome West L.A. The Wildcats win, 74-72, after overcoming a 15-point deficit with a 17-2 run in the final nine minutes of the second half — sending the game into overtime.

Two key Vaqueros, Garrett and Suilaiman Sekamwa, play limited minutes after arriving late for warm-ups. The pair still produced, as Garrett had 13 points, 10 assists in 22 minutes and Sekamwa had 12 points in 26 minutes.

Feb 19 — The men's basketball team locks up third place in the Western State Conference Southern Division with a 76-57 win over Bakersfield. The victory gives the Vaqueros a playoff berth. Bryant has a team-high 18 points, Sekamwa chips in 12 points and a game-high 16 rebounds.

Feb. 20 — The women's basketball team finishes its season with a 76-57 Western State Conference loss against Bakersfield College. Glendale winds up 0-24, 0-12 in conference.

Feb. 23 — The men's basketball team experiences a short-lived appearance in the Southern California Regional playoffs, as Long Beach City College eliminates the Vaqueros, 82-73.

The game is tightly officiated as 75 free throws are shot on 55 foul calls. Long Beach also has 15 more offensive rebounds than the Vaqueros. Glendale surrenders the final 11 points of the game.

"That's the first time we've been outrebounded on the offensive end all year," Vaquero assistant coach Vigen Jilizian said. "We have guys who can rebound but were playing the game with their hands in their pockets because of foul trouble."

Ebrahimian has 17 points, five rebounds and four assists in his finale with the Vaqueros. Sekamwa contributes 14 points and 10 rebounds and Rhodes scores 12 points. Glendale finishes the season 18-11 (7-5 in the Western State Conference Southern Division).

March 17 — The baseball team puts together a seven-run bottom of the seventh inning to defeat LA Pierce College, 8-3. Glendale's seventh inning is highlighted by a three-run, bases-clearing double from Myles Neimeyer.

The win has Glendale rolling, winning three of its past four games to even its record in the Western State Conference South Division to 3-3, 12-7 overall. It was a big turnaround for the Vaqueros, who'd lost five of their past six games before starting the winning streak.

March 27 — The men's tennis team falls to Middlebury College, the reigning NCAA Division III champion, 7-2.

Glendale's top singles players, Alex Sarkissian and Trevor Campbell, each grab wins. Sarkissian defeats Andrew Peters, 6-2, 6-3, and Campbell bests Bruchmiller, 6-4, 6-1.

April 4 — For the first time since having the program reinstated in 2008, the Glendale Community College men's golf team places second in a Western State Conference match at Elkins Ranch Golf Course in Fillmore.

The Vaqueros fire a 369 to finish behind College of the Canyons (363). Chris Ramirez notches a one-under-par 70 to tie for first with Andrew Garcia of Ventura College.

April 12 — The baseball team's hunt for a spot in the Southern California Regionals heats up with a 6-2 win over first-place West L.A.. A complete-game, 16-strikeout pitching performance from Ryan Sherriff leads GCC to victory. The Vaqueros improve to 19-11 and 10-7 in the division, tying them for second with Citrus.

"For us, this was our biggest game of the year in being able to stay in second place," GCC Coach Chris Cicuto said. "Now, we control our own destiny. It's not often when you can play the first-place team when you are trailing them by one game."

April 16 — Sarkissian and Campbell continue their seasons in both singles and doubles competition with wins in the Western State Conference Tournament's round of 16. The victories advance the pair to the Southern California Regionals.

Sarkissian tops L.A. Pierce College's Sean Bullaghan, 6-0, 6-1, while Campbell posts an equally dominant 6-1, 6-0 win over Santa Barbara City College's Reggie Fastreg. The pair pulls off the same feat in doubles with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Kevin Paul and AJ Minasian of L.A. Pierce on April 15.

Samantha Sismundo and Sevana Zargarian, a double teams for the Vaqueros women's tennis team, qualify for the Southern California Regionals as a doubles team after advancing out of the round of 16 in the Western State Conference Tournament with a 6-1, 6-1 win.

Sismundo qualifies in singles competition with a 6-2, 6-2 win against Layne Galamore of Ventura in the second round. Zargarian can't make the singles cut after she falls to Santa Barbara City College's Amy Sagrave, 6-4, 6-4.

April 18 — Men's golfer Brennan Amirkhizi cards a four-under-par 71 and the Vaqueros finish first with a 377 in a Western State Conference match at Oakmont Country Club. It is the program's initial first-place conference tally since the golf team was reinstated.

"I knew I had to come back strong and just play a safe and smart game," said Amirkhizi, who fires a five-under-par 31 on the front nine. "I had to just block that out and just go play my game.

"On the front nine, most of my [approach] shots came within five feet of the hole and I knew I would be in good shape."

Amirkhizi finishes his round with eight birdies, six pars and four bogeys and helps the Vaqueros topple conference powerhouse College of the Canyons by three strokes.

Glendale turns in some quality results all around on its home course, including a 75 from Chris Ramirez, a 77 from Jin Park and a 78 from Michael Timpson.

April 19 — Marissa Vasquez, Brittni Spear and Brittany Wright each collect a pair of hits and Carly Zabka hits a two-run homer in Glendale college's 9-1 Western State Conference win against L.A. Valley College. The Vaqueros finish 14-23, 9-9 in conference.

April 25 — The men's golf team qualifies for the Southern California Regionals. Vaquero Michael Timpson finishes the 36-hole competition by carding a 142 to earn medalist honors and helps Glendale college finish second in conference after it cards a 760 at the conference finals at Los Serranos Country Club's South Course in Chino Hills.

"It's just so phenomenal what the guys were able to get accomplished," Coach Greg Osbourne said. "What an accomplishment.

"I can't be more proud of the way the program was able to come together. We put in the work, they did it and anything can happen. Our goal now is to be able to advance to state as a team."

Timpson fires a first-round seven-under-par 67. He then shoots a 75 in the second round to best Brett Silvernail of Ventura and Aaron West of College of the Canyons by three strokes overall in the two-round event. Teammate Brennan Amirkhizi finishes with a two-round score of 148 to take sixth and achieve all-conference accolades.

April 28 — The Vaqueros put together an all-around game to defeat Bakersfield, 8-2, and capture the Western State Conference South division title for the first time since 2002. The win comes on the heels of Sako Chapjian's seventh-inning grand slam, which gives Glendale a 7-2 lead.

Sean Spear has two hits, one is a RBI triple in the sixth inning to give Glendale a 2-1 lead. He comes around to score on a squeeze bunt laid down by John Schwer before Chapjian blows the game open in the seventh. Josh Canales also has a solo home run. Glendale pitchers Nick Woodward, the starter, John La and Michael Noteware combine to hold the Renegades to two runs and five hits.

Citrus also gives GCC a helping hand in getting the WSC title outright, defeating L.A. Pierce, 12-2, the same day. Glendale enters the postseason at 23-12, 13-8 in the division.

April 29 — Vaqueros' standout women's track and field athlete Karen Rosas enjoys a big day at the Western State Conference Finals at Bakersfield College.

Despite battling windy conditions throughout most of her races, the sophomore prevails in the 10,000-meter race in 38 minutes 55.79 seconds and the 5,000 in 18:21.98. She also finishes third in the 1,500 in 4:56.55.

"I talked to my coaches about how to go out there and run my best and they said to be confident and run strong throughout," said Rosas, who wins conference crowns for the first time in each event after securing All-American status in each and advancing to the state championship in 2010. "In the 5K, I tried to go around six minutes per mile and I picked it up in the last couple of miles.

"In the 10K, my coaches told me about mainly being able to pace myself and then take off in the last mile. I was really impressed with it. I just trust my coaches and training. You go out there and put in quality workouts because it all comes down to your mindset."

Also picking up a first-place finish for the Vaqueros is Alyssa Selve, who clocks 4:50.75 to take the 1,500 race.

In the men's portion of the meet, no Vaquero is able to earn a first-place finish. However, Neil Jones finishes second in the 1,500 in 4:06.19.

May 1 — Sarkissian becomes the first tennis player in the history of Glendale Community College to win the Ojai Valley Tournament Community College Singles Title. He doesn't stop there, teaming up with Campbell to win the doubles crown.

Sarkissian starts the day with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Rodrigo Schaefer of College of the Desert and defeats Derek Siddiqui of Cerritos, 6-2, 7-5, in singles. He then teams up with Campbell to defeat Oliver Andrzejczuk and Torsten Keil-Long, 7-6, 6-4, in the tournament's championship match.

May 5 — Both the GCC men and women get the job done and advance out of the first round of the 2011 California Community College Athletic Assn. Southern California Tennis Regional Championships. Sismundo wins, 6-0, 6-0, before teaming up with Zargarian to advance in doubles competition, 6-2, 6-3.

Sarkissian and Campbell also advance in singles and doubles play. Sarkissian wins his singles match against James Bragg of Mt. San Jacinto, 6-1, 6-1, and Campbell coasts, 6-0, 6-2, against Torsten Kiel-Long before the two team up against Jake and Eric Bernard from Saddleback for a 6-0, 6-3 doubles sweep.

May 6 — The baseball team falls to Cypress College, 7-1, in their first game of the California College Athletic Assn. regional playoffs. The Vaqueros surrender five runs in the top of the ninth inning.

Spear leads Glendale's offense with four of his team's nine hits and drives in the only run. The loss puts GCC in a hole, as the team needs to sweep the rest of the three-game series to keep its season alive.

The first two rounds of the 2011 California Community College Athletic Assn. Southern California Regional Championships pose little challenge to Sarkissian and Campbell.

Sarkissian defeats David Engelberg of L.A. Pierce, 6-3, 6-2, and Ventura's Paolo Fernandes, 6-1, 6-0. Campbell falters in his bid to upset Siddiqui, losing 6-0, 6-2, but is able to bounce back in doubles. Campbell and Sarkissian team up for a 6-4, 6-2 victory against Matt Mims and Kaplan Kaster.

With round-of-16 wins, Sarkissian and the team of Sarkissian and Campbell ensure themselves spots in the state tournament, while continuing to the tournament's semifinal rounds.

The Lady Vaqueros don't fare as well. Sismundo is defeated in round-of-16 singles play. She and Zargarian also fall in the round-of-16 doubles tournament.

"We went as far as we could," GCC women's Coach Bob Donaghy said. "We won't be going to [state]. It's kind of upsetting, but we didn't leave anything on the table. We played well."

May 7 — Chris Stroh delivers the first sign that the baseball team's postseason run is going to be a special one with a walk-off, two-out double to give Glendale a 9-8 win over Cypress College. The game, the final of a best-of-three series, determined who would advance to the Super Regional Tournament.

It is an epic comeback for the Vaqueros, who were down 8-6 heading into the bottom of the ninth. Chapjian leads off with a solo homer and a critical two-out error committed by the Chargers on a routine ground ball gives the Vaqueros new life and Stroh a swing at delivering a win.

The Vaqueros won the second game of the three-game series earlier that day, 9-4. Chapjian has a three-run homer in that game and finishes the day with six hits, three home runs and eight runs batted in.

Sarkissian captures the 2011 California Community College Athletic Assn. Southern California Regional Championships singles championship with a 6-4, 1-0 (retired) win over Schaeffer. Sarkissian and Campbell also team up to win the doubles championship, 5-7, 6-3, 6-2, over Cerritos' Derek Sideitui and John Chai.

Both of Sarkissian's singles opponents, Schaeffer and his College of the Desert teammate Sergio Chip, retire to conserve energy for the state tournament.

May 9 — The men's golf team continues its torrid pace by earning a second-place finish during the program's first appearance at the Southern California Regionals. Amirkhizi fires a two-round score of 147 and teammate Timpson earns a 148 to help Glendale college place second in the 10-team event with a team score of 765 at par-72 Bermuda Dunes Country Club near Palm Springs.

The Vaqueros qualify for the state championship at Kings Country Club in Hanford.

"I can't say how proud I am of the whole program and it's a win for our community," Coach Greg Osbourne said. "We came in and thought that anything could happen.

"It took a whole lot of work just to get [to the regionals]. We've solidified ourselves and it shows the kind of talent we have here."

May 13 — Women's track and field standout Karen Rosas excels at the Southern California Championships at Mount San Antonio College. Rosas clocks 17 minutes 36.43 seconds to finish first in the 5,000-meter race and qualifies for the California Community College Athletic Assn. Track and Field Championships at American River College in Sacramento.

"I'm just happy that I'm going to state," Rosas said. "I had to make sure I stayed focused and showed that I could do it."

Glendale college's Cecilia Nicolas and Catlin Kelly qualify for state in the 3,000 steeplechase and Selve in the 1,500. Selve clocks 4:40.65 to finish fifth in the 1,500 despite being bothered with a foot injury and later scratches from the 800.

Nicolas places fifth in the steeplechase (11:37.99) and Kelly takes sixth (11:38.75).

On the men's side, Neil Jones is the only Vaquero to advance to state, as he moves on in the 800 and 1,500. Jones finishes second in the 1,500 in 3:55.89 and fourth in the 800 in 1:53.59.

Small ball and three run-scoring squeeze bunts lift Glendale Community College to a 9-2 win over Palomar in the first round of the California Community College Athletic Assn. Super Regional.

Nick Woodward throws a complete game for the Vaqueros, giving up eight hits and striking out four. Glendale starts pulling away from Palomar with a three-run sixth inning to go up 5-2. Ryan Daniels and Erik Suarez each have two hits.

Sarkissian's dominance isn't close to running out. With a trip to the California Community College Athletic Assn. State Tennis Championships on the line, he defeats Foothill's Ramon Martinez, 6-0, 6-2, and Fresno's John Karlman, 6-1, 6-1, in the California Community College Athletic Assn. State Tennis Championship quarterfinals.

Campbell and Sarkissian also team up in doubles to defeat Santa Rosa's Donny Felish and David Hutton, 6-0, 4-6, 6-4, and cruise past Foothill's Martinez and Alex Johnston, 6-1, 6-3. The wins improved Sarkissian to 33-0 on the year and 66-0 in sets,

"This is what you play for all year, to get to state," GCC men's Coach Bob MacKay said.

May 14 — Suarez delivers in the clutch, hitting a two-run, walk-off home run for a 7-6 GCC win over Rio Hondo, the top-seeded team in the Super Regional tournament. Facing two outs and a 2-2 count, Suarez bangs a hanging slider over the left-field fence to defeat the Roadrunners, who'd beaten the Vaqueros three times in the regular season.

"The first two pitches I took were sliders and I knew he was going to come back with it because he couldn't overpower me with his fastball," Suarez said.

Suarez' dramatic homer almost never happened. Cicuto considered pulling him out of the game after he was hit by a pitch on his already fractured left hand in the first inning, but Suarez wouldn't let his coach pull him.

"It hurt so bad, I actually teared up a little bit it hurt so bad," Suarez said. "I went down to first base and I was like, 'Forget that, I'm staying in this game. This is too big of a game to be taken out in the first inning.'"

Sarkissian becomes the 2011 California Community College Athletic Assn. state champion, doing so with a sweep over Schaefer. He finishes his season with a 35-0 match record and 70-0 set record.

"He won the trifecta," said MacKay, adding that an undefeated run through three championships could never be outdone. "Literally, that record can never be broken. It's etched in stone. It's an amazing season against some pretty darn good players."

One of Sarkissian's toughest tests of the season comes in the semifinals against Ventura's Sasha Hedberg, but he prevails, 6-2, 7-5. He defeats Schaefer, 6-2, 6-1, but is unable to capture the doubles title with Campbell. The pair falls to Andrzejcuk and Keil-Long, 7-6 (5), 3-6, 6-3, in the semifinal match.

May 15 — After all the drama and walk-off victories, GCC wins the Rio Hondo Super Regional baseball tournament with relative ease. The Vaqueros defeat Southwestern, 11-5, to advance to the California Community College Athletic Assn. State Championship with a five-game winning streak and 3-0 record in the Super Regional tournament.

Chapjian collects three hits, including a solo home run, drives in three runs and scores two, while Ellis Whitman has a pair of hits, three RBI, two runs and two stolen bases. The Vaqueros never trailed as seven of nine starters combined for 13 hits and made the most of five Jaguars errors.

Thomas Korn, the starting pitcher, soldiers through six innings, allowing one run, two hits, two walks, hitting a batter and striking out seven.

May 16 — The men's golf team completes its historic season by shooting a 768 to place seventh in the eight-team California Community College Championships at Kings Country Club in Hanford.

"We gave it our best shot and we just feel terrible that we couldn't win it," Glendale Coach Greg Osbourne said. "It's hard to look at it as just getting there.

"You get to the point where you get so close and you are trying to get it done and not thinking about the next time it might happen. But, I like the season we had."

Amirkhizi finishes tied for 11th with a two-round score of 149. Timpson cards a two-round total of 150 to tie for 15th.

May 20 — After solid play through the postseason, errors deflate the baseball team in a 21-9 loss to San Joaquin Delta in the opening game of the California Community College Athletic Assn. State Championships, a double-elimination tournament.

Eight Vaqueros errors end up costing Glendale in the loss. All seven GCC pitchers who made an appearance in the game struggle, as Delta scores multiple runs in six innings.

May 21 — After winning a state title in the 10,000-meter race in 37 minutes 19.69 seconds, Rosas makes it a double in the California Community College Athletic Assn. Track and Field Championships at American River College in Sacramento.

Rosas becomes the first Vaqueros athlete to win two titles at the state meet since Tove Berg doubled in the 10,000 and 5,000 in 2007. She wins the 5,000 in 17 minutes 37.67 seconds..

"It's a tribute to her," Glendale Coach Eddie Lopez said. "Taking second last year in the 10K and 5K and then waiting one year to come back and do it again, that's a lot of pressure, but she handled it really well. She just ran smart and she was strong. It's a tribute to Karen and to our tradition that we have."

It's a solid day for the Vaqueros' entire program, which sees six different athletes — including Rosas — capture All-American honors.

Cecilia Nicolas and Catlin Kelly finish third and fifth, respectively, in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Nicolas clocks 11:20.09 and Kelly completes her race in 11:33.23 to achieve All-American honors.

Neil Jones ends up a double All-American, as he places third in the 1,500 in 3:52.17 before coming back to record a third-place finish in the 800 (1:53.39).

Glendale's Selve and Laura Pluemer compete in the 1,500 and finish fifth (4:42.63) and seventh (4:47.97), respectively, to garner All-American accolades. Angela Martinez finishes ninth for Glendale (4:59.48).

Vaquero sprinter Carissa Porter earns All-American honors with a fourth-place finish in the 100 (12.25). Porter also finishes fifth in the 200 (25.08) to garner All-American status.

The deepest and most impressive postseason run in the history of the Glendale Community College baseball program ends at the hands of San Joaquin Delta in the California Community College Athletic Assn. State Championships. Another eight Vaqueros errors hand San Joaquin a 7-3 victory.

GCC was in trouble from the beginning, as the Mustangs batted around in a four-run top of the first inning. The early damage spelled the end of the Vaqueros' incredible season, which included the team's first Western State Conference title since 2002 and trips through the regional and super regional round of the CCCAA postseason. In the end, Glendale was the last Southern California team standing in the state tournament.

"I'm just so proud of these guys," Cicuto said. "Only one team wins the last game. ...There's a lot of teams sitting at home that would love to be where we are."

The Vaqueros play two games. They win the first against Santa Ana, 13-6, before being eliminated from the tournament by San Joaquin.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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