Track & Field beats NCAA competition

Posted: March 12, 2015 | Written by Laura Tapia
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Ready, Set, Go! : RCC’s Lamar Sparks begins his 400m run in three-way invitational with Division I schools UC Riverside and Cal State Fullerton March 7.

In a three-way invitational at the Wheelock Stadium March 7, the Riverside City College Track and Field team ran against UC Riverside and Cal State Fullerton, making history, as this was RCC’s first meet against UCR.

According to Riverside’s head coach Jim McCarron; RCC is the only community college in the nation to meet with Division 1 competition.

“I’ve been trying nine years to get them to have a track meet with us,” McCarron said.

Echoing McCarron was UCR’s track and field coach Irv Ray, stating “It’s been a long time coming to come over here and compete, we’re glad we did it was a great meet.”

UCR and Cal State Fullerton were armed with some of RCC’s former players competing against the Tigers.

There are over 100 students from the Tigers’ track and field program to go on to four-year universities with full or partial scholarships.

Freshmen Quinton Bell won first place in the 200-meter dash with a time of 21.49 seconds, but fell short .02 seconds in his 100-meter dash.

Bell is one of the top five runners in the nation, coming close to former RCC runner Just’n Thymes, who is currently at USC.

“It feels really good to know I’m up there with all the sophomore guys,” Bell said.

Olivia Kana received first place in the women’s shot put with a distance of 16.59 meters. Freshmen Kayla Wilson finished in second place in the 100-meter dash in 11.89 seconds and the 200-meter dash in 24.98 seconds.

“I wasn’t really nervous about the competition, I was more focused on what I had to do,” Wilson said.

Riverside’s men squad finished in first place with 89 points beating CSU Fullerton by 35 points and UCR by 40 points.

Although the women’s team was ahead halfway through the meet they ended up scoring 61 points, falling behind UCR by seven and a half points.

As mentioned on RCC’s athletic website, RCC will travel to CSUF March 13-14 to compete in the Ben Brown Invitational and also to OCC to compete in the Orange Empire Conference (OEC) multi-event Championships.