Bronco Express

May 6, 2001

Sacramento Spring Invite
The Broncos encountered the heat of the Central Valley in their track meet of the spring. The Mission Harriers put their efforts into the 1500 meters as the high temperature for the day reached 86 degrees. In addition, three ambitious 5000 meter runners ventured to test themselves against the heat.

Eight women toed the line for the Broncos in the 1500 meters. A mix up in starting times for the 3000 which had the three Broncos entered change to the 1500. Annie Gastelum led the Bronco pack and broke free early. Erin Skourtes and Milena Basile lead out the rest of the team. Katie Malinak trailed closely with Kristen Love and Ashley Weger racing for the third time this season at 1500 meters. Also, Kasey Shemwell and Paige Coulam competed for the first time this spring. Annie held her gap to a trailing pack during the race after dispatching one competitor at 500 meters. She cruised the rest of the way while Erin pushed the pace before Milena took charge. Erin dropped back while Katie Malinak moved past as charged after Milena. Erin could not regain contact with her teammates as Milena had just enough left to hold off Katie. Katie hit a season PR in the heat as did Ashley Weger who took one second off her efforts from Long Beach. The remaining three stayed in contact with each other with Kristen getting past Kasey in the last half of the race. Paige pushed strongly in the final straightaway to just edge Kasey.

Mike Helms led the Broncos in the 1500 who ran listlessly as a group over the last half of their races due to the heat. Mike took the chore of leading the pack as Joe Carnegie and Ryan Wade tucked in behind for the first 800 meters in 2:05.5. Rickey Brackett established himself in a trailing pack with Devlin Croal pushing hard just behind. Mike Richmond closely followed and Michael Neumann looking smooth rounded out the Bronco contingent. Mike Helms pushed to keep contact but was not able to match the increased pace of the new leaders. Rickey Brackett slowed badly in the third 400 meters and did not recover his early pace. Devlin Croal came back to his teammates with Mike Richmond sprinting by to a two second improvement from his Stanislaus race. Devlin and Michael Neumann finished within a second of each other in their first collegiate 1500. Mike Helms came back over one hour later and doubled in the 800 meters. He got off to a good start and held form the entire race. The fatigue from the heat and his earlier effort in the 1500 kept him from dropping his seasonal PR that he ran at Stanislaus.

Continuing a string of misfortune on the day, a car carrying Toby Lopez and Chris Spicer broke down 10 miles from the track and prevented these Mission Harriers from making the 1500. The two and car mate Thomas Chapman made it to the track in time for the 5000. Chris Spicer ran 2000 meters at a furious pace before stepping off the hot track. Thomas Chapman, showing no signs of the stress of waiting for a ride to the track on the side of an interstate highway for an hour, paired with Ben Gauen as the pair pushed the pace despite the heat. Thomas was leading Ben to a PR before the heat took its toll on Ben over the last 2000 meters. Thomas worked on taking second place before surges by Joe Carnegie and Max Rodriguez weren't covered. Thomas reeled them back but could not overtake them. Both ran half a minute off their PR's, but reeled in the best performances of the day.

Annie Gastelum, 5:12.5
Milena Basile, 5:18.81
Katie Malinak, 5:19.91
Erin Skourtes, 5:24.42
Kristen Love, 5:30.99
Paige Coulam, 5:32.59
Kasey Shemwell, 5:33.43
Ashley Weger, 5:48.11

Mike Helms, 4:01.69
Rickey Brackett, 4:20.42
Michael Richmond, 4:32.70
Devlin Croal, 4:38.00
Michael Neumann 4:39.89

Mike Helms, 2:02.54

Thomas Chapman, 15:51.70
Ben Gauen, 16:10.07
Chris Spicer,DNF