The Ventura College men's and women's track and field teams participated in the annual Occidental College Distance Carnival and Spring Break Competition Friday in Eagle Rock, producing changes in the state rankings and on VC's all-time track lists. One thrower and three distance runners made statewide impacts highlighted by Brieanna Tafoya's 800-meter run. Olivia Burton and Adan Cruz had strong runs in the women's and men's 500 meters, respectively, and Cynthia Tuzak had a strong performance in the discus.
Tafoya, taking the lead from the onset, won handily, running 2:19.25 which ranked her No. 4 in Southern California, No. 5 in the state, and No. 2 all-time in the Pirate record books.
Burton ran well in the 5000 meters, also moving to the No. 2 Pirate performance as well as up to No. 4 SoCal and No. 6 in the state.
Cruz won his 5000 meter heat with a 6-second lifetime best. His run ranks him No. 8 in California just outside VC's Top-10 list.
Tuzak took her first major victory of the year winning the discus with a seasonal best, No. 10 Pirate all-time, No. 3 SoCal, and No. 7 state-ranked throw of 122'5".
David Lopez placed fifth overall in the 100 meters tying his personal record set two weeks ago and was the top community college finisher behind four members of Team China 2019. His time of 10.78 leaves him .02 seconds from the state "B" standard and .01 seconds from the Pirate all-time list.
"The meet gave our young people an opportunity to see four-year competition as well as other SoCal competitors we'll have to face in May," commented head coach Tony Veney.
"With eight weeks to go leading up to the WSC finals, this team has made some nice improvements, but there is still so much more work to go before we start punching tickets to San Francisco for the state finals."
The Pirates stay local next week as they travel to Moorpark College on Friday March 15 for the annual Moorpark Open. Field and track events are scheduled for 12:00 pm.