Comets Continue to Progress in 2nd Dual Meet

The James Lick Comets had their 2nd dual meet of the 2018 season against the Evergreen Valley High School Cougars on March 15th. It was the 2nd dual meet in the ‘B’ division for the team. The team lost in all 3 divisions to reigning Varsity Boys champ Pioneer in their first meet. The result was repeated against reigning girls Champ, Evergreen. The team continued to progress and gain valuable experience nonetheless.

Lyndel Ventura at the start of the 4×100 

The meet began with the girl’s 4×100. The team of Lyndel Ventura, Yeimili Adame, Kirsten Yutuc and Natalie Rem ran 56.78, falling to the Cougars. The Frosh/Soph boys team of Salvador Lopez, Raven Alcantara, Luis Escamilla and Geovanny Campos ran a season’s best time of 49.21, narrowly losing to Evergreen partly due to a poor handoff. The varsity team of Adrian DeLaRosa, Cody Huoch, Misael Herrera and Chris Okoro ran 48.75.

Belen Sanchez ran a seasons best 6:34 in the girls 1600, and Krystal Tran ran a PR of 8:12, though Evergreen swept the event. The first points on the day came from the Varsity Boys 1600. Azael Zamora ran a seasons best 4:43, nearly running down Evergreen’s top runner to place 2nd. Inteus Castro-Lopez ran a seasons best 5:06 in the same race, as did Mark Orpia in 5:24. Joseph Benitez ran a big PR, running 5:43 compared to a previous best of 5:58.

The team saw their first win of the day in the next race. Valeria Cortez won the 100 hurdles in a seasons best time of 18.20. Susie Peterson scored her 1st point in the ‘B’ division by finishing 3rd in a seasons best 19.74. Yesenia Martinez ran a PR of 21.79. Cody Huoch scored a point in the boys 110 Hurdles with a seasons best time of 17.62. Jonathan Bradley scored a point in the Frosh/Soph version of the race with a new PR of 21.50.

The girls 400 saw an Evergreen Sweep, but Arlet Miranda ran 1:08.09 for her first go at the event this season, the best time by a Comet so far this year. Yeimili and Justine Austria were close behind, both in 1:11. The frosh/soph boys saw several solid performances in  the 400. Salvador placed 2nd in 58.27, a PR of nearly 1.5 seconds. Rudolf Ocampo ran a strong debut of 1:00.56 and Jerricho Habon ran a 3 second PR of 1:00.59. Misael took 2nd place in the 400 in a seasons best of 57.72. Azael took 3rd in a seasons best 58.66.

Evergreen would go on to sweep the 100 on both Varsity sides, though many Comets ran improvements on the week before (despite chilly/rainy conditions). Adrian DeLaRosa lead the team in 12.95 (previous seasons best 13.09). Chris Okoro and Austin Swank both ran 13.28 compared to times over 13.40 the week before. On the girl’s side, Natalie lead the team in 14.75, just missing scoring. Valeria ran 14.99 in her first 100m of the season. Lisbeth Galdamez ran a huge PR of 15.21, compared to a 15.84 previous best. Valeria Gonzalez ran 15.94 for her first try at the event. Kaylee Santos ran 17.19 for her personal debut. Lara Ventura ran a seasons best 19.51. The frosh/soph boys fared well, with Geo taking 2nd place in 12.52. Jojo ran a PR of 13.76 as did Josafar Gomez who ran the same time.

Arlet took the victory for the team in the 800. Arlet ran a commanding race where she remained in 4th place for most of the race, before storming to the win in a seasons best 2:36, winning by 4 seconds. Ashley Preciado ran a significant PR of 2:59.59 compared to her previous best of 3:08. Jenny Villagomez ran a small PR of 3:05. Mariana Perez ran a PR by nearly 10 seconds, clocking 3:24. The highlight of the boys 800 was Melvin Estrada running a PR of 2:21, a PR by 5 seconds. Hugo Marquez also ran a seasons best of 2:29.03.

Kirsten ran a PR in the 300 hurdles of 54.27 to take 3rd place. Yesenia ran another big PR, clocking 1:00.90 compared to a previous best of 1:03.94. The Frosh/Soph boys saw a solid debut from Rudolf Ocampo who ran 50.30. Jojo ran a PR of 51.38. The duo combined for 2nd and 3rd.

Justine Austria ran a PR of 31.67 in the 200 to lead the girls team, though she was unable to score for the team. Misael took 2nd in a seasons best 25.90. Hugo ran a PR of 28.75 and Chris Okoro ran a seasons best as well. Geo scored another point for the team with a 3rd place in the 200.

Azael took another 2nd place in the 3200 to wrap up the individual events for the team. The team would lose the 4×400 although the girls managed a seasons best of 4:46.

The field events saw a number of solid improvements as well. The varsity girls swept the Shot Put. Charli Chircop lead the way, matching her PR of 32-9. Adriana Marcelino threw a PR of 21-2 in the event, and Freshmen Lizbet Alonzo made her debut with a toss of 16-6. Daniel Medina scored 3rd place for the boys with a toss of 36-6. Daniel would also grab 3rd in the Discus with a seasons best 105-0 the 2nd best throw of his career. Jesus Venegas threw a PR of 84-0 as well.

Daniel Medina, indicating his 3rd place standing 

Valeria and Charli combined to go 1-2 in the girls discus, though Evergreen was able to take 3rd place. Kiely Leal threw a PR of 53-9 and Keara Medina had a strong debut of 51-4.

The highlight of the jumps for the team was Sal winning the Frosh/Soph boys high jump with a clearance of 5-0. Geo and Joshua Merin both managed PRs of 4-10 as well.

The Cougars handed the Comets three loses, moving the varsity boys, varsity girls, and frosh/soph boys each to 0-2 so far. Next week however, the team will be going after the win against the Prospect Panthers.

Prospect was a middle of the pack team last year, going a combined 6-8 in varsity (4-3 girls, 2-5 boys, 2-5 frosh/soph). They defeated Sobrato to start their season, then fell to the same teams as the Comets, Evergreen and Pioneer.

The home dual meet against Prospect on Thursday March 22nd should be the teams best chance yet to claim its first ‘B’ division victory, and the team is resting up this weekend in preparation for it.

Thanks for reading,

-Benny Reeves


Comets Show Great Late-Season Form at Bearcat Invitational

The Comets headed up to San Mateo High School for their final invitational of the 2017 track season. In the 2 previous years, the invite has yielded many PRs for the team, and Saturday April 15th would prove no exception.

Valeria Cortez on her way to winning the Frosh/Soph Girls 100 hurdles

The meet began with the Varsity boys running a 4×100. The team looked great through the first two legs but suffered a baton drop halfway through the race. The team would shake it off by the time the 100s began.

The 1600 saw PRs from virtually every Comet who ran. Denisse Calixto started the PR parade with a  6:53 clocking, taking 5 seconds off her PR. Azael Zamora ran a 6 second PR in the varsity boys race, clocking 4:40.90. Nathan Bernardo also PRd running 4:47.52. With his time, Azael moves into the team lead for best time in the 1600.

The Frosh/Soph girls 1600 was equally strong. Arlet Miranda took 4th place in 5:45, her best time since returning form injury 2 weeks ago. Belen Sanchez ran 6:12.39, a full 17 second PR. She was not the only Comet to shatter her 1600 PR on the day. Freshmen Mark Orpia ran 5:06.73 for a 13 second PR, despite leading his race for the first 1000 meters of the race. Fellow freshmen Melvin Estrada, Hugo Marquez, and Nien Tran, all ran PRs of roughly 20 seconds. Melvin ran 5:20.20, Hugo ran 5:21 and Nien ran 5:28. Hugo and Nien had never run under 5:40 for the 1600 before the race. Daniel Portillo managed a small PR of 5:52 as well.

Valeria Cortez won the Frosh/Soph girls 100 hurdles in 17.86. With this victory, she becomes the 2nd Comet of the season to be the champion of an invitational in any division. Misael Herrera ran the 400 for the team and managed a half second PR of 56.48.

Justine Austria ran a PR of 15.25 in the girls 100. Following his breakout performance in Wednesday’s dual meet, Ace Medina backed up his time with the 2nd best 100m he’s ever run, clocking 12.07. Hadji narowly missed his PR running 12.44.

The team saw more strong distance performances in the 800. Valerie Flores ran 3:03, a 6 second PR in the event.  Justine ran 2:53 for a massive PR, showing her potential as a distance runner. Arlet ran 2:32, a seasons best for 3rd place, a very encouraging performance as she continues to work towards full fitness for WVAL finals in 2 weeks.

Azael managed a 3 second PR in the 800 running 2:10.12, giving him 2 PRS on the day. Mark ran 2:24, managing a 2 second PR despite being exhausted from the 1600.Hugo ran 2:27 for a 3 second PR. Melvin and Nien ran 2:31 and 3:34 respectively, both managing a second PR on the day as well. Jose Limon ran 2:29, stepping up his efforts in rehab.

In the 300 hurdles, Kirsten Yutuc ran a PR of 56.9, as did Gustavo Aguilera running 44.67. Silvia Amaya ran a strong 200 of 31.04, barely missing her PR set on Wednesday. The boys had a very srtong day in the 200. Ace ran a new PR of 24.50. Gustavo and David Bejines did the same, running 25.50 and 25.67. Neither had run under 26 seconds before this week. Misael ended his day with a mid 25 second 200 as well.

Comets left to right: Ace Medina, David Bejines, Gustavo Aguilera. All 3 ran 200m PRs. 

The throwing events saw an off day for the Comets, but the team still took home some big points. Valeria placed 3rd in frosh/soph Shot Put and 2nd in frosh/soph Discus even though she did not throw near her PRs. Alejandra Ceron took 2nd in the varsity girls Shot Put throwing 32-4. Daniel Medina and Mariah Santos had off days in the throws. Kiely Leal and Sandra Naranjo competed in their first invitational for the team.

The jumps held the final PRS on the day for the Comets. Jamie Vong managed a small PR of 16-10 in the long jump, and a PR of 35-3 in the triple jump. Juan Gutierrez also PRd in the triple jump, going 36-1. Kirsten Prd by more than a foot as well, going 28-8, the best mark by a lady Comet in the triple jump this season.

James Lick is now on spring break, and the team can look ahead at a quality week of work with no meets. The team will take on the Del Mar Dons on April 26th in their final dual meet of the season, before they head to WVAL finals on May 3rd. The season is reaching its climax and the team will need to be working hard to be ready for the challenges ahead.


Thanks for reading,

-Benny Reeves


Comets Show Distance Strength at TKA Invitational

Boys DMR Team left to right: Misael Herrera, Azael Zamora, Nathan Bernardo, Erik Olsvold 

The season is only a week old, but with a strong showing at the TKA Invitational, the Comets find themselves at the top of the WVAL distance rankings in every event on the boys side.

The TKA Invite is a great early season meet for some fast distance times. The night atmosphere combined with the music and good weather (in this case) make it a great meet to asses fitness and earn season bests.

Valerie Flores started the Comets day off strong with a 7:00.55 1600m. The story of the girls distance team has been athletes like Valerie. Valerie began running distance this fall during cross country. At her very first mile time trial with us way back on, Valerie ran 8:32. She ended cross country season with a  7:39 1600 and is working her way down all the way down into sub-7 minute mile territory. As a senior, she is approaching competitive WVAL times. Unfortunately, she will likely graduate before she gets all the way down to times that would score her points for the team in WVAL dual meets. This has been the signature issue on the girls distance side, tomalley of the dedicated athletes who come out are juniors or seniors who don’t have as much time to develop. In any case, Valerie is off to a great start this season.

The Varsity boys 1600 saw several season bests. Azael Zamora took 8th place overall in 4:46.64 and Nathan Bernardo ran 4:56.06, both are seasons bests. Inteus Castro-Lopez has an off day running 5:10, while Jesus Deloya ran 5:29, a huge improvement on his 5:49 clocking from two weeks ago. Julian Delreal also ran a 10 second PR, clocking 5:47 for the 1600.

On the frosh/soph side, Erik Olsvold took 2nd overall running 4:41.46, a very strong early season clocking. Erik ran this 13 second PR, despite the fact that he had to lead the majority of the race, doing all the work for the Scots Valley runner who narrowly beat him out over the last 50 meters of the race. Melvin Estrada ran a 1 second PR of 5:38, and Daniel Portillo dd the same running 6:08. Hugo Marquez matched his PR of 5:51.

Erik once again lead the Comets in the 800, opening up his season with a time of 2:08.93. After running each distance event just one time, Erik has achieved the CCS Frosh/Soph Top 8 meet standards in every distance event, meaning he will have his pick of what events he wants to focus on come Top 8 meet. Nathan ran a seasons best of 2:11.75 despite a rough final 100 meters. Misael Herrera competed in his first ever 800 to get some over distance work. He clocked a solid 2:23.

In the 3200, the team’s 3 freshmen boys competed. Hugo and Melvin both broke 13 minutes for the first time, running 12:26 and 12:30 respectively, huge PRS for both runners. Daniel ran 13:40 to go under the 7 minute pace barrier as well. Back at their first 1600m time trial in August, Daniel and Hugo both failed to run under 7 minutes for the 1600, and Melvin ran 6:50. All three boys have advanced leaps and bounds this season.

The final event for the Comets was the DMR (Distance Medley Relay) consisting of a 1200-400-800-1600 relay. Despite being tired, the Comets ran their “A” team in prep for a school record attempt at the firebird relays in a few weeks. Azael started the team off with a 3:34 leg, a solid effort but unimpressive considering he went through the 1200m mark in 3:31 during his 1600 earlier. Misael split a 60 second 400, again, well off his best but a solid performance nonetheless. The team was in 7th place as a team at this point. Nathan took the baton and ran a 2:11 leg just as he did earlier, moving the team from 7th to 4th along the way. Erik ran a 4:59 1600m leg, holding on to 4th place all the way. At the firebird relays, the team will run the DMR as their first event, meaning a much faster time than their 11:45 clocking is certainly coming.

The team now looks ahead to a very competitive meet with Yerba Buena on Wednesday March 15th. The boys team suffered one of their two losses last season to Yerba Buena, making the meet a huge barometer of their ability. The lady Warriors suffered their only defeat of the season last year at the hands of the Comets, and they will surely be looking for some payback against a girls team that is much more vulnerable than last season. The Comets will need to bring their ‘A’ game (especially on the girls side) to earn the victory.

An exciting meet recap is likely coming the day after that meet.

Thanks for reading,

-Benny Reeves




Lady Comets Finish Season 7-0, Boys 5-2

The James Lick Track Team finished their regular season with a dual meet at Yerba Buena high school. It was a dramatic showdown as both teams entered with the exact same record, with both boys teams 5-1 and both girls teams 6-0, making this dual meet essentially the battle for the league championship. The team was looking for a good showing, and performances which showed the team’s readiness for league finals next week.

The meet began with an upset win in the girls 4×100. The team of Lyndel Ventura, Maria Mendoza, Karen Montes and Andrea Ortiz ran 54.15 to narrowly defeat the Warriors, The 2nd best time on record in school history. The boys team fell to the Warriors, but ran a huge seasons best time of 47.11, with Hadji Yono-Cruz, Jesse Chircop, Misael Herrera and Jose Limon combing for the time. Both 4×100 teams are hitting their peak at the right time.

The girls 1600 was won by Arlet Miranda in 5:46. Elizabeth Guevara and Carla Manzanares ran PRS of 6:13 and 6:37 respectively, and Analilai Regla narrowly missed her PR, running a seasons best of 7:29. On the boys side, Nathan Bernardo and Azael Zamora practiced racing tactics, they tucked in with the YB boys and unleashed strong kicks over the last lap to take 1st and 2nd both in 4:57.7.

The girls 10o hurdles saw a 1-2 finish of Valeria Cortez and Andrea running 18.01 and 18.05 respectively. This was Valeria’s first ever win in the event (in large part because Andrea had won the event in 5/6 prior dual meets) and a PR for both runners. Both girls are poised to break 18 seconds at finals. Susie Peterson ran a big PR of 19.20 as well, giving her  good chance at making finals next week. Hadji and Jonathan Rodriguez combined for a 1-2 finish on the boys side as well, Jonathan running a solid PR of 19.37 in the process.

Maria ran a seasons best 1:08.07 in the girls 400 to get the win for the team, with Carla running a PR of 1:17 in the race as well. On the boys side Lemon managed 3rd place for the team. Misael ran a small PR of 57.72, while Erik Olsvold and Vincent Giglio both broke 60 for the first time, running 58.10 and 58.97 respectively. Karen Montes and Jesse Chircop both ran very strong races into headwinds to take 2nd for the team in each respective 100m race. Susie  ran a PR of 15.19 as did Aliana Santos at 16.11. Brecia Dagio had a very strong debut in the event, running 14.87.

The girls 800 was a 1-2 finish for the Comets, Arlet paced Daisy Nava to a big PR of 2:42.77.  On the boys side Nathan won the 800 in 2:11.02 despite holding back significantly. This is Nathan’s fastest ever time at a dual meet and only 2 weeks ago would have been a PR. Hector Ramirez ran a huge PR of 2:12.57 for 2nd place. Andrea won the 300 hurdles in 51.56, defeating rival of Angelica Salvador of YB in the process. Jonathan ran a PR of 46.78 to place 2nd in the 300 hurdles, with Gustavo Aguilera a close 3rd.

Maria placed 2nd in the girls 200 in a strong time of 29.36. Karen grabbed 3rd for the team. Brecia ran 31.80 for her first try at the event. Lemon placed 2nd for the team in the boys race, with standout athlete Anthony Richard winning both sprints for YB.Isaak Herrera ran a PR of 29.69 in the race. Arlet and Eli combined to place 2nd and 3rd in the girls 3200, while Inteus Castro-Lopez and Azael Zamora did the same thing in the boys 3200. Both YB 4×400 teams defeated the Comets.

Elyse Elder placed 2nd for the team in high jump at 4-4 and Brecia had a PR of 4-2 as well. Elyse also won the long jump in 14-5 with Lyndel placing 3rd in 14-1. Lyndel took 2nd place in the Triple jump with a leap of 26-9. Hadji and Nathan took 2nd and 3rd in Long jump with marks of 18-5 and 18-3 restively, Hadji’s jump being a PR. Nathan took 3rd for the team in triple jump, going 38-5.

The girls got a huge boost out of the throws, where the team took 17 out of 18 available points. Valeria had a huge day, throwing PRS of 31-1 in Shot Put and 91-4 in Discus to win each event and break the 30 foot and 90 foot barriers. With her throw in Discus, Valeria leapfrogs teammate Alejandra Ceron into 2nd place on the schools all time list. Alejandra placed 2nd in both throws, and Leymsi Saldana took 3rd in Discus with a  throw of 55-9. Valerie Flores had a solid Discus PR of 54 feet as well.

Josh Garcia won the Boys Shot Put and Daniel Medina placed 2nd with throws of 35 feet and 34 feet. Daniel also gained his first ever Discus win, throwing a PR of 93-6. Osman Lopez had a big PR of 85-3.50 as well.

The boys meet was very close, with all running events concluded, Triple Jump was the final event contested with the scored locked at 59-56 Yerba Buena leading. The final score was 67-57 with Yb taking the win on the boys side, sending the Comet Boys into WVAL finals in 3rd place.

On the girls side however, the team accomplished what they had set out to do. The team now boasts the first undefeated season in school history on the girls side, with the 76-51 win against the Warriors. The team will need to place 2nd or better next week at WVAL finals in order to clinch their championship.

The team is tapering down and each athlete is getting ready to perform to the best of their ability next week at WVAL finals at Overfelt high school. This is a 2 day event, with Wednesday May 4th holding trials for all lane events, and finals for a few select events. Friday May 6th will then hold all remaining finals. The top 8 in each event score points and the top 4 in each event advance to BVAL Championships the following week.

WVAL Finals preview coming soon.


Comets Defeat Overfelt Move to Combined 11-1

The James Lick Track Team had their penultimate dual meet of the season at Overfelt High School this week. Overfelt is a long time rival, with dual meets between James Lick and Overfelt having been very competitive since the 1960s.

The meet began with Comet wins in both 4×100 races. Lynden Ventura, Liliana Diaz, Crystal Nguyen, and Karen Montes managed to win the race despite the absence of the teams top 2 sprinters. On the boys side the team of Hadji Yono-Cruz, Jesse Chircop, Adrian DeLaRosa and Jose Limon won handily, working on their chemistry.

The girls 1600 saw a 1-2 punch of Arlet Miranda and Maria Mendoza take 1st and 2nd on 6:00 and 6:04 respectively. Elizabeth Guevara and Daisy Nava both ran PRS of 6:14 and 6:17 in the race, as did Denisse Calixto in 7:17.  The boys race saw Nathan Bernarod take 2nd after being outckiced by strong Overfelt Senior Alexsis Castellanos. Nathan will look forward to the rematch at league finals. Erik Olsvold ran 4:54 for 3rd place, becoming the 5th Comet this season to break the 5 minute barrier, and become the first freshmen from James Lick to break 5 for the 1600 since 2002. Jared Resendiz ran 5:38 for his racing debut.

Andrea Ortiz placed 2nd and suffered her first loss of the season in the 100 hurdles to star Overfelt hurdler Chrizna Milanes. Valeria Cortez ran 18.7 for 3rd, breaking 19 seconds for the first time. Susie Peterson also PRd in 19.74 for 5th place. Hadji mono-Cruz won the boys 110 hurdles and Jonathan Rodriguez placed 2nd in a PR of 19.45.

Jackie Landa placed 2nd in the girls 400 in a time of 1:13. “Lemon” continued his rapid ascent in the sprints, running 55.49 to win the 400, the best 400 by a Comet this season. Gustavo Aguilera placed 2nd in a huge PR of 56.78. Karen notched her first ever meet win in the 100m dash running 14.53. Teammate Liliana was 2nd in the same time for a very tight finish. In the boys version of the event, Jesse laced 2nd in a PR of 12.34. Adrian was 3rd in 12.41 and Danny Nguyen was 4th in a PR of 12.65. Chris Okoro ran a huge PR in the next heat, breaking 13 for the first time with a time of 12.98. Bryan Cuevas also ran a sizable PR of 13.08.

The girls 800 was swept by Arlet, Maria and Andrea. Maria and Andrea ran PRs of 2:40 and 2:41, moving them to 7th and 8th on the schools all time list in the event. Carla Manzanres ran a PR of 3:04, as did Analilia Regla running 3:17.  The boys event was won by Azael Zamora in a PR of 2:13.31. Nathan was a close second. Vincent Giglio ran a PR of 2:22 as did Jared running 2:30.

Andrea battled knee injury and fatigue from the 800 to place 2nd in the girls 300 hurdles, with Belen Sanchez placing 3rd. The boys version of the event saw Gustavo A and Jonathan finish 1-2 with solid 47 second clockings. The girls 3200 was a 1-2 finish by Arlet and Eli. The boys event saw Erik ran 11:04 for a huge PR.

The girls were narrowly defeated in the 4×400, missing two of their A team members while  the boys team of Lemon, Azael, Misael Herrera and Gustavo A ran 3:51 for a seasons best time for the team.

The field events saw a number of excellent performances for the team. Josh Garcia won the high jump in his first competition in the event, learning 5-2 with Jonathan 2nd at 5-0. Nathan won both Triple and Long Jump with Hadji placing 3rd in long jump. Lyndel is battling shin problems but still placed 3rd in both triple and long jump. Crystal placed 2nd in Tripe jump with a solid 26 foot jump.

Josh placed 2nd in Shot Put, matching his PR of 36-7, and 3rd in discus with a throw of 88 feet. Osman Lopez threw 29-2 for a Shot Put PR, and is on the verge of becoming Coach Vela’s 10th athlete to throw over 30 feet. Alejandra Ceron had a huge day, throwing a PR of 31-4 to win Shot, and a huge PR of 89-6 to win Discus and move her into 2nd on the schools all time list in the event. The school record of 96 feet was set in 2002. Valeria placed 2nd in both throws, getting a PR in Discus of 88-11, giving the team a great shot at having 2 different 90 foot discus throwers this season, whereas only one girl in school history (on record) had done it before this season.  This demonstrates the fact that this team is shaping into the best girls track team James Lick has ever had. Leysmi Saldana placed 3rd in Shot Put with a huge PR of 24-6. She also threw a PR in discus of 59 feet.

The team won the meet by scores of 80-42 on the girls side and 86-36 on the boys side. The team is now a combined 11-1 with the girls team being 6-0. A win at YB next week would send the girls into league finals just needing to place 2nd overall to clinch the first league title in school history. This is shaping up as a great season for the team. It’s hard for the freshmen class to believe that only 3 years ago this team could not win a single dual meet (and the league was much weaker then as well). The program building is in full bloom, and the team will look to take another big step in it’s final dual meet of the season next week.

Yerba Buena has been the league champ on the boys side for 3 years in a row, and a good showing against them on both sides would give the team confidence heading into league finals. Andrea Ortiz and Azael Zamora will head to the historic CCS Top 8 meet fir day, and then the entire team will put in their final preparations and have their final dual meet of the season at Yerba Buena on April 30th.


JLTF Shows Late season Form at Bear Cat Invitational

Alejandra Ceron releasing the discus.
Alejandra Ceron releasing the discus.


The James Lick Track Team competed in their final invitational of the year saturday with a strong showing at the Bear Cat Invitational.Freshman Alejandra Ceron won medals in Shot Put and Discus in her first invitational, despite having to throw a heavier ball than required for HS girl’s. Alejandra has been working hard under Coach John Vela’s tutelage and is ranked highly in the WVAL despite being a freshman. Alex Alonzo and Daniel Medina also threw Shot Put, and narrowly missed PRs. Daniel finished in 10th overall out of 45 athletes. Gustavo Aguilera threw discus for the first time this season, achieving a new PR of 68 feet.

Davion Thomas competed in the long jump for the comets but struggled to find consistency in his runnup only managing one legal jump of 18’3. Davion won his heat in the 100 in 11.91, matching his PR and ran 24.35 to end his day in the 200.

In the sprints Paloma Contreras improved her 400 pr slightly to 1:03.75. Gustavo did the same running 1:00.54 in his race. Andrea Ortiz broke 30 seconds for the first time in the 200 with a strong time of 29.54. Cierra Gutierrez made her debut over the 100m distance running 15.6 without blocks or spikes. Andrea also ran a big PR in the 100 hurdles, running 19.40 to win her heat and move her onto the school’s top 10 list in the event. Susie Peterson also had a strong race with a 21.75 clocking.

The endurance event group really showed that they are rounding into form at the right time with their performances. 9 runners ran the 1600 and all 9 achieved a personal record. Most impressive was Daniela Camacho placing 3rd in 5:27.54. The time was a 12 second pr and breaks the school record in the 1600 by nearly 10 seconds. This PR had been a long time coming for Daniela who had spent a year and a half moving her pr from 5:43-5:39 before this break through.

Inteus Castro-Lopez broke 5:30 for the first time, running 5:29, while Jesus Deloya shattered his PR going from a best of 5:28 to 5:11.7 in one run. Guillermo Villalobos also had a sizable PR, running 5:11.95 to improve on his 5:17 best. Hector Ramirez and Gustavo Parra both had small PRS in a race which went out slow, running 5:02.25 and 5:00.71 respectively. Both runners are primed to break 5. Nathan Bernardo ran a small PR of 4:56.81 despite having run the 1600 the day before. Karan Singh had an outsanding performance for the boys to wrap up the varsity mile, running 4:41.92 for a 7 second personal best. Karan is now ranked #2 in WVAL and will be looking ahead to thursday for a showdown with #1 ranked Jason Morrow (4:38). Cierra ran a 6:18 1600 in her debut over the distance showing that she has outstanding potential as just a freshman.

The 800s saw Similar improvement. Hector Ramirez lead from gun to tape to run 2:17.59, a 7 second PR. Gustavo Aguilera improved his time by 6 seconds, also leading the entire heat and winning in 2:18.69. Gustavo P had a small PR of 2:16, and Karan again took a big chunk of his PR running 2:07.38.

The Comets look strong with just 3 full weeks in the season. 2 Dual meets remain, followed by the 2 day WVAL league Trials and Finals on 5/6 and 5/8 at Del Mar High School. JLTF has their eyes set on big performances on those days. Stay tuned for more Comet news.

Comets achieve Pair of Wins VS. Live Oak


Live Oak began the meet by demonstrating their sprinting depth, winning both 4×100 races. The 1600 saw Kaylah Grant of Live Oak win the race in 5:42, with Daniela Camacho finishing 2nd in 5:56, and Brianna Flores 3rd in 6:28. Elizabeth Guevara ran 6:40 for a strong PR. Karan Singh claimed his 4th 1600 victory of the season in 5:00 with Jose Jiminez matching his PR of 5:06 for 2nd. Inteus Casrto-Lopez ran 5:33 for a 2 second PR.

Both hurdle races were won in James Lick Sweeps. Maria Mendoza ran 19.06 for her best home meet time ever, Andrea Ortiz broke 20 for the first time for second (19.9) and Susie Peterson tok 3rd.  Hadji Yono-Cruz broke 20 for the first time in 19.90 and Gustavo Aguilera had a big PR of 20.38 for 2nd. Jonathan Rodriguez took 3rd.

Paloma Contreras ran 1:03.8 for her best ever Dual Meet time victory. Cierra Gutierrez made her JL Track debut with a run of 1:10.5 for 3rd. Andrea Ortiz ran 1:11.6 for a big PR over the distance as well. Nathan Bernardo won the boy’s 400 in 55.60 for a full second PR. Cesar Azevedo edged out a Live Oak athlete for 2nd in 55.9. Davion Thomas secured 3 points in the 100 with a time of 12.23. Live Oak mostly dominated the event however.

Karan added a win in the 800 in 2:16 with Nathan following in 2nd at 2:26. The girls swept the 800 with Brianna, Elizabeth, and Daniela running together. The 300 hurdles were sweeps again with Andrea, Maria and Daisy Nava claiming points for the girls. Jesse Chircop, Gustavo and Jon scored for the boys. Davion won a close 200m race, while Paloma scored a point against tough competition in the 200. Susie ran a 2 second PR of 34 seconds in the 200, while Daisy did as well in 32.6.

In the field events Robert Rios continued his undefeated season in the Shot Put with a throw of 41 feet 2 inches. Daniel Medina placed 3rd with a throw of 34’11. Pablo Segovia managed 3rd in discuss with a small pr, throwing 96’7. Isaac Jiminez had a strong PR of 84’11. Alejandra Ceron and Charli Chircop went 1-2 in both throwing events for the ladies.

Karan won high jump in 5’4, while Paloma and Elyse Elder came in 2nd and 3rd in the girl’s section at 4’4. Lyndel Ventura made her debut for the Comets, jumping onto the top 10 list for the school with a winning jump of 14’8. She also placed 2nd in triple jump in 29’9. Nathan won triple jump for the boy’s in 37’9 with Hadji taking 3rd. Davion managed a point in Long jump for the team as well.

Guillermo Villalobs, Hector Ramirez and Inteus swept the boys 3200 with Elizabeth Guevara and Brianna taking 1-2 in the girl’s 3200. Ellie ran 15:13 for a 27 second PR. The girl’s 4×400 team of Maria, Gabby Aguilar, Daniela and Paloma sealed the victory with a win in 4:41. The boys team of Cesar, Gustavo Parra, Nathan and Karan lost but ran a seasons best of 3:51.

With the victories the boy’s team moved to 3-2 and the girl’s remain undefeated at 5-0. The comets will compete in a final invitational saturday then prep for their final home meet of the season against Prsopect High School.

Lady Comets move to 4-0 Vs. Yerba Buena Warriors, Boys Lose Close Duel.

Last thursday’s dual meet saw the JLTF Lady Comets extend their undefeated streak to begin the season, winning the meet 85-42 vs a big Yerba Buena team. The 4th win for the girl’s means the Comets will have their first winning track season, either on the boy’s or girl’s side, since 2003. The boys fell to 2-2, losing to the undefeated YB team, 58-68.

The Girl’s 4×100 team of Maria Mendoza, Andrea Ortiz, Karen Montes and Gabriela Aguilar was victorious for the 3rd time in 4 meets this year, following a year in which they never won a relay battle. Karan Singh was a close 1600m race against rival Ivan Godinez from YB. Karan kicked away on the last lap to win in 5:01, with Nathan Bernardo taking 3rd in 5:04. Daniela Camacho won her race in 6:13, an easy win for her, while Brianna Flores secured a point for 3rd in 6:35.

The High hurdles followed, Hadji Yono-Cruz took 3rd in 20.10, a new PR, losing to two strong YB hurdlers. Maria took second in the 100h to rival Vannaline Keo, 18.97-19.22. Susie Peterson ran a PR in her race, running under 22 seconds for the first time in 21.6.

The 400m race held a Victory for Paloma Contreras with Gabriela following in 3rd. Cesar Azevedo PR’d in his race by nearly a full second, running 55.87 for 2nd place. Davion Thomas secured his 2nd 100m victory of the season, while Maria won the girl’s section for the 3rd time this season. Andrea broke 15 for the first time for 3rd place. Ralph Sanchez did not score but ran a PR of 13.08 despite the strong headwind.

Karan won the 800m run in a PR of 2:11.34, again edging out Ivan Godinez. Daniela likewise won her 800 in 2:44, with Paloma taking second in 2:50, a seasons best. The hurdles was won in come from behind fashion by Maria, who broke 55 seconds for the first time i her career just a week after breaking 56 for the first time. Hadji took 3rd in the long hurdle race as well.

Meanwhile in the field events, Alejandra Ceron and Robert Rios continued their undefeated streaks in shot put, throwing 27’2 and 41’6 respectively. The 41’6 throw was a big PR for Rios and moves him onto the school’s top 10 list in the event. Robert also took 2nd in discus throwing a pr of 95’7. Daniel Medina continued his strong freshman season, throwing 35’1.5 inches for 3rd in Shot Put, a PR by 3 feet. He also placed 3rd in discuss throwing a 6 feet pr of 81’5. Mario Perez threw over 30 feet in shot Put for the first time, and also snagged a pr in discuss at 77’10. Alex Alonzo also had a huge discuss PR of 75 feet.

In the jumps Elyse Elder had an exceptional break out performance for the Comets. She won both Horizontal jumps in PRs of 13’9 inches for long jump, and 27’9 inches for triple jump. She also added a second place in high jump, clearing 4’6 for her best high jump as a comet as well. Crystal Nguyen continued her strong season jumping 13’5, and 27’5 for a small PR in triple jump and points in both events. Davion Thomas took 2nd place in long jump at 18’9. Hadji jumped 17’8 for his best long jump as a comet, and Cesar Azevedo triple jumped 34’10 for a PR as well. Karan won high jump in 5’4 electing to exit competition after he achieved the win.

The 200m races were won by Davion and Paloma in convincing fashion. The 3200 was won by Daniela for the girl’s with Brianna again securing 3rd place. The meet ended with a girl’s victory in the 4×400,while the YB boys secured their victory by winning the boys 4×400. The comets are looking to have a hard week of practice during spring break, before they take on Live Oak at home on April 16th. Live Oak is the reigning league champion for both boys and girls, so the team will need all the work it can get to try to continue their winning ways.

Stay tuned for more Comet Track news.

Comets Split Dual Meet with Independence

Freshmen Alejandra Ceron, throwing a new PR of 27'5 to win the meet.
Freshmen Alejandra Ceron, throwing a new PR of 27’5 to win the meet.

The comets headed to Independence high school on 3/26 and faced their greatest challenge of the season so far. Due to a field trip, the team was without 2014 Team MVP Daniela Camacho, 2015 points leader Paloma Contreras, and standout performers such as Nathan Bernardo, Hector Ramirez, Davion Thomas and Charli Chircop among others. Despite these blows, the comets fought hard against the 76ers coming away with a close victory on the girl’s side while suffering their first defeat of the season on the boy’s side.

The meet kicked off with the girl’s 4×100 team pulling off their second win of the season. The team of Maria Mendoza, Andrea Ortiz, Karen Montes, and Gabby Aguilar ran 56.69, beating their seasons best by over a second. This group of girls is dramatically changing the fortunes of the James Lick sprint teams, a year ago the best time the team could muster all season was a 59.64, the current group is 3 seconds better and counting. Julia Cruz placed 3rd in the 1600 with an 8 second pr, running 6:31.9. Elizabeth Guevara followed with a pr of her own, 6:45.5. The boy’s 1600 turned out to be extremely exciting. Karan Singh was boxed in with a lap to go in the slowly paced race, he fought Abel Padilla tooth and nail to pull away at the line running 5:07 with an extremely impressive 60 second final lap.

Maria followed up her strong 4×100 leg, running 19.17 for the 100 hurdles to win the race. Maria’s PR from 2014 was 19.75. The Independence boys swept the 110 hurdles, and then the 400 putting the comets in a deeper hole still. The lady comets proved successful in their 400, with Gabby running home to victory in 1:11.91 for a season best only .4 off her PR. Candice Calantoc continued her strong freshman season, running 1:15.41 and Daisy Nava followed her in 1:16 with Karen Montes coming home in 1:19, all PRs.

Maria took her second victory of the day, with an official PR of 13.94 in the 100m dash.Karen followed up her 400 with a huge pr in the 100 for 3rd place, 14.69 beating her old best of 15.20. Manroop Kahlon made her debut in 15.90, a solid showing. The boys were unable to secure any points in the 100, though Kelvin Arenas impressed with a 12.73 clocking. Teammates Ralph Sanchez, 13.15, Austin Swank, 13.71 and Isaak Herrera 14.57 also ran PRs.

In the 800s, Karan dominated his race cruise home for victory in 2:20 while Jose Jiminez finished in second at 2:21 for a 15 second PR. Julia finished 3rd in her 800 and broke 3 for the first time with a 2:59.94.

As the running events continued, the Throwers were hard at work as well. Robert Rios won Shot for the 3rd time in 3 meets, throwing 40 feet and a half inch. Alejandra Ceron matched the win streak with a PR of 27’5, moving her up to 7th on the all time James Lick top list despite her freshmen status. Diana Ramos and Patty Saldivar made their debuts throwing 16s in shot and mid 30s in disc, coring 1 3rd place each. Isaac Jiminez and Damian Sanchez, both inched closer to 30. Robert followed his shot put win with a 2nd place in Discus. Alejandra made it a double victory with a throw of 62’3.

Maria ran 56.35 in 2014 at league trials to move into 2nd on the all time JL list. She worked hard to finally beat that time, winning the race against Independence in 55.06, moving closer to the school record. Hadji Yono-Cruz ran 49.4 for 3rd place, but is still struggling with adjusting to high school hurdles.

Hadji also won the triple jump with a high school best of 36 feet and a half inch. Crystal Nguyen took second place in the girl’s triple, with a jump of 24’11, an off day for her. Crystal, Elyse Elder, and Mitzy Licon swept the long jump with marks of 13’3, 12’8 and 12’6.5. Elyse also added a victory in the high jump, clearing 4’4 in a solid performance. Karan also won the boy’s high jump clearing 5’8 in impressive fashion.

Stanley Nguyen ran 24.81 in his 200m debut, placing 3rd though injuring his thigh in the process. Andrea ran her first 200 of her career and clocked 30.15 for a win, making it onto teh school’s top 10 list in the event. Karan won his fourth and final event, with an 11:29 in the 3200. Hector Ramirez shoed up in time to run 11:36 for 3rd in the event. Julia finished her day with a 3rd and final huge pr, runing 15:00 just 2 weeks after 16:08 was her pr. With so many members missing, both 4×400 teams suffered, and both relays lost to teh 76ers to finish the meet.

The 76ers won the boys meet decisively, 88-39,

The Comets wonthe girls meet by a final margin of 65-62. The 5 wins combined for the James Lick Track team is already the best win total in over 5 years, the team will continue to build on it when the face a tough Yerba Buena team on April 2nd at home. Come out and root your comets on!