Men’s & Women’s Cross Country Advance to State Championships

Left: Women's XC's Sarah Hollis lands on the podium for the seventh-consecutive time after placing second overall at the SoCal Championships. Right: The men show off their hardware after placing second at the SoCal Championships.
Left: Women's XC's Sarah Hollis lands on the podium for the seventh-consecutive time after placing second overall at the SoCal Championships. Right: The men show off their hardware after placing second at the SoCal Championships.

The Riverside City College men's and women's cross country programs hit the trails in Central Park, CA for the Southern California Cross Country Championships after dominating the Orange Empire Conference (OEC) Championships last week. Both side advanced to the State Championships after the men finished in second place and the women finished in seventh place.

The top 14 teams advance to the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) State Championships that are hosted at Woodward Park in Fresno, CA.  For the women, the Tigers were one of three OEC members to qualify, while the men were just one of two OEC competitors to qualify.

Men

The men had a fantastic showing by placing second overall with a time of 1:48:01. They trailed Mt. SAC by approximately three minutes.

"The guys are firing on all cylinders," said Head Coach and 2017 OEC Coach of the Year Jim McCarron. "They are going to be prepared to have their best race of the season at the State Championships."

After hauling in an OEC Individual Championship and the 2017 OEC Men's Cross Country Runner of the Year award, freshman Enrique Villa finished fourth overall with a time of 21:15.0 that included an average mile clip of 5:18.8.

Sophomore tandem Jeffery Robbins and Ricardo Cardenas finished back-to-back to round out the top three for the Tigers. Robbins placed 17th overall with a time of 21:38.1, while Cardenas placed 18th with a mark of 21:38.5.

Sophomore Alec Hall round out the Tigers in the top-25 by placing 24th with a finishing clip of 21:55.1.

Women

The women placed seventh overall with a time of 1:41:55. They were the highest finishing OEC team as well.

Sophomore Sarah Hollis shined once again following her OEC Individual Championship showing by placing second overall. The 2017 OEC Women's Cross Country Runner of the Year earned an overall mark of 19:05.8 which included an average mile mark of 6:08.8. This is Hollis' second silver medal showing and seventh-consecutive meet where she has landed on the podium.

Sophomore Robin Valencia placed 12th overall with a mark of 19:45.2 to finish in the top-15. Sophomore Carissa Gomez was the next best finisher with a time of 20:54.4 to earn her 46th overall.