On Friday, Aug. 30 the Lancers kicked off their 2019 campaign at the Ventura Invitational held at Arroyo Verde Park in which the men’s Cross Country team placed fourth overall and the women’s team was unable to place due to not having enough eligible participants available to race.
Pasadena had two racers place in the top 10 for the men’s team. Asa Barton, a promising looking freshman out of Blair High School for the Lancers, led the team by placing eighth place overall out of 58 total racers with a time of (24:05.69) in the 4 mile run.
Teammate Giovanni Guajardo was able to crack the top 10 rankings by placing 10th overall with a time of (24:31.10). Guajardo is the only member on the team with state meet experience and plans to lead by example this season.
“I’ve been strict on myself with how I train in hopes that my team will follow and do the same. Based on what I have seen, each one of my teammates is more than capable of making it all the way through to State,” said Giovanni.
Two other racers managed to place in the top 20 for Pasadena, first was freshman Mohammad Halim who finished with a time of (24:55.56) for 17th place. Mohammad got personal praise from Guajardo on his work ethic and abilities.
“I instinctively believe that we will 100% do better at Biola. The coaches, athletes, and I all believe that we have a strong enough team to make it to state,”said Mohammad.
Alec Fernandez, also a freshman, immediately finished behind Mohammad in 18th place with a time of (24:58.22), helping the Lancers place fourth. Oxnard won the event, Canyons College took second, and Bakersfield managed to place 3rd.
The women’s team along with three other colleges were not able to place at this event due to only having two racers available to compete, but that did not stop the two Lancer athletes from trying.
Freshman Olivia Ruiz out of San Marino High school, managed to place 11th overall out of 39 total racers with a time of (24:38.17). Another Lancer newcomer, Meline Minasian out of Arcadia High School placed 21st with a time of (27:22.81).
Pasadena look towards continuing to build on their season this week by competing in the Biola Invitational on Friday Sept.7, at the Craig Regional Park in Fullerton.