The Riverside City College men's and women's cross country programs have hit the trail twice this season and have lived up to the high expectations thus far. Their performances have already earned both teams top-five rankings in the most recent California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Cross Country rankings. The men currently hold the second-overall spot and the women sit comfortably at fifth-overall.
Of the top-ranked teams, the Tigers are just one of three Orange Empire Conference (OEC) members to be represented on either side. Saddleback's men's program ranks 10th overall and Fullerton's women's team comes in at 13th overall. They are the only OEC program that has both men's and women's teams represented.
Both men's and women's teams draped themselves in gold medals at the Palomar Invitational by each hauling in a first place trophy in sizable triumphs.
On the men's side, sophomore Ricardo Cardenas (John W. North HS) hauled in his first-career meet victory by snapping the tape at a clip of 21:00.9. His average mile time came in at 5:15.3. Freshman Enrique Villa (Colton HS) finished approximately four seconds behind him at a mark of 21:03.2 that included an average mile time of 5:15.8.
The women performed just as well with sophomore Sarah Hollis (Hemet HS) pacing that field with a time of 18:23.3 that included an average mile mark of 5:55.1. Sophomore Samantha Chapa (Martin Luther King HS) finished third with a time of 20:29.6.
Riverside continues their campaign this Friday, September 15th at Central Park in Santa Clarita, CA for the Southern California Preview. The meet is set to begin at 10 a.m.