The Ventura College men's and women's track and field teams both placed second Friday at the Western State Conference Coastal meet held in San Luis Obispo at Cuesta College, led by double sprint wins by Jordan Gibson on the men's side and Valexsia Droughn for the women. Sandra Harness earned 36 points individually in six separate events, including a first place finish in the high jump, while Darrell Handy-Johnson also claimed gold in the high jump for Ventura.
Droughn, who already holds the conference lead in the 100 meters, stormed to the front of the short sprint and was never threatened. In the 200 meters, Droughn, who was ranked No. 4 in the WSC coming in, took control of the race from the onset and held off a furious charge from the conference leader from Santa Barbara to record the second-fastest time in school history as well as a State "A" qualifying mark.
Despite the impressive performance by Droughn, the day for the women belonged to Harness, a multi-event specialist. She scored 36 points, a whopping 28 percent of the team total, winning the high jump, placing second in the long jump, third in the triple jump and 100m hurdles, and fifth place finishes in the 400m hurdles and javelin.
Other top finishes on the day for the Ventura women came from Marissa Gonzales, who placing second in the 1500 and 3000 meters, Krystal Tapia, bringing home second in the hammer, and Serenity Valoaga who finished second in the discus.
The Pirate women totaled 129 points, falling behind West LA (155 points) and ahead of third place Cuesta (109).
On the men's side of the meet, Gibson, who almost didn't compete due to illness, came from behind twice to win the 100 and 200-meter events. Darrell H-J scored a first-place finish with a personal best of 6'8.75" in the high jump, meeting the state and SoCal qualifying standard.
Other top finishers for the Pirate men included Dillon Chong, second in the 400m hurdles, Max Carmona, second in the 800 meters, Chris Lawry, second in the pole vault, Kamar Wilson second in the high jump, and Terrell Handy-Johnson who contributed second-place finishes in the high jump, long jump and triple jump events. Both the men's 4x100 (Chong, Gibson, Wilson, & David Lopez) and 4x400 meter relays (Lopez, Carmona, Gibson, and Richard Celedon) placed third overall, adding valuable points to the team effort.
Ventura earned 151 points on the men's side, good for second behind Cuesta (171 points)and ahead of West LA (136).
"The conference scoring meets provide the team with championship pressure, and allows the staff to evaluate our performance plans for the year," commented head coach Tony Veney.
"It was great seeing the young men and women rally when we were trailing in the fourth spot for much of the afternoon. We're going to need that same energy in three weeks when we travel to Santa Monica College for the WSC Prelims and then host the finals the following week."
The Pirates next compete in the Vaquero Invitational hosted by Glendale College on Saturday April 7. Field events begin at 11:00 am while the running events start at 12:00 noon.
|Men's Results||Women's Results|
|Cuesta||171||West Los Angeles||155|
|West Los Angeles||136||Cuesta||109|
|Santa Barbara||28||Santa Barbara||34|
|Allan Hancock||15||Allan Hancock||31|