The Santa Clara Bronco track team celebrated the end of spring break with another school record and more personal bests at the San Francisco State Distance Carnival hosted by San Francisco State University.
Senior Kevin Oliver continued his assault on the school top 10 list, improving on his previous best set earlier this year, running 14:30.97, besting his previous school record set on month ago. LMU's Kevin Joerger and Drew Dalton coordinated a breakaway from the pack just one lap into the 12 and a half lap race, but the remaining pack stayed back biding their time, a pack that Oliver sat in for nearly two miles. Approaching two miles, Dalton was absorbed by the field, but Oliver and two other competitors, Bhavik Kanzaria of UC Santa Barbara and Micheal Scolorici of St. Louis, put the chase on Joerger. Oliver sat behind Scholrici as they began clipping off around 4:35 mile pace, but Joerger managed to hang on for a three second section two victory. Oliver managed a third place finish, and a new personal best by more than 14 seconds.
"I was confident going in because I did ten pull ups on Wednesday and I knew that converts to roughly 14:30, so I went in with those types of expectations," said Oliver. "I'll need to get at least two more pull ups to my set if I'm going to take a shot at breaking 30 minutes in the 10k at Mt. Sac."
"Kevin is having a fantastic senior season," said Bronco head coach Felipe Montoro. "He's working really hard and he's having a lot of fun."
Sophomore Emily Robinson made her 10,000 meter debut in impressive fashion, running 37:48.87. Her time was good enough to make it fourth on the all time list. Her performance was good for 13th place overall.
"It felt difficult but I feel like my training has prepared me for it, and I'm looking forward to running another one this season, and taking some of the mental lessons I learned from this one to improve," said Robinson.
"Emily managed to string together two sub 19 5k's en route, a barrier that eluded her for the 5k event last season," said Montoro. "That kind of improvement is fantastic, and certainly a testament to her hard work."
After a sunny morning, the fog rolled in, making for ideal conditions for distance events like the 5k, and the Bronco women took advantage of the competition and conditions to drop fast times. Senior Hayley Ney led the way for the Bronco women in the 5k event. Ney chopped nearly 20 seconds off her season best and finished just off her lifetime best, running 17:33.72. Ney placed 21st in the afternoon's top flight. Junior Lauren Germany led the way for the remaining four Bronco women in the field, all charging to personal bests. Lauren found another gear working into the bell lap, and used her kick to pass four athletes in the last 400 meters. Her big moved earned her a personal best of 17:47.46, narrowly in front of her twin sister Kayla, who also ran a personal best of 17:48.65. Sophomore Kelly Ryan, who made a big surge on laps 8 and 9, got things rolling for her teammates, and she ultimately finished just behind in 17:51.55, good for a big personal best.
"I think our women ran great in the 5k, and I think we all really owe Kelly a thank you for stirring things up on lap 8 and going for it," said Montoro. "Her aggressive move at that point in the race was a good sign of things to come."
Freshman Adrian Hinojosa finished 7th in section four of the 1500 in a season best of 4:02.73. Fellow freshman Leland Wong ran 4:09.90 in the metric mile, and doubled back into an 800, running 1:58.80.
Sophomore Allie Sibole, coming off a short racing hiatus, came back to competition in impressive fashion, finishing third in section three of the 1500 meter event in 4:41.08.
The Broncos are off this weekend, but return to competition on April 11th at the Chico State Distance Carnival hosted by Cal State Chico.