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The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Big wins at the Big 8: City track and field teams set for NorCal action
City College sprinter Sianna Willis won her second consecutive 100-meter dash at the Big 8 Championships April 26 at American River College. | Photo by Dianne Rose | [email protected]

Jason Reed
Staff Writer
[email protected] 


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The City College women’s track and field team put together a strong performance with 14 athletes finishing in the Top 5 in their events, including six first-place finishes at the Big 8 Conference Finals April 26 at American River College.

The Panthers took third place (132 points) behind Modesto Junior College (138) and winners of the Big 8, American River College (239).

City College head coach Marissa Avendano said based on her projections and where individual performers were ranked, her team shouldn’t have been as close as they were in overall points to the other colleges.

“They really stepped up and did an amazing job,” she said.

The women took first place in both the 4×100 and 4×400-meter relays. In the 4×100 the participants were Sianna Willis, Lauren Smith, Kiara Flenoid, and Chidinma Nwokocha. They were able to finish in 48.13 seconds, holding off second-place (48.53) American River.

Avendano said she was pleased with how the team was able to focus in the 4×100. She credited the team’s aggressiveness and the fact that it was able to execute.

“We had amazing handoffs. Our girls were aggressive, and it was all about being aggressive and sticking with the game plan,” said Avendano.

City College sprinter Chidinma Nwokocha races in the Big 8 Championships April 26 at American River College. | Photo by Jackson Durham | [email protected]

Before running the 200-meter and finishing fourth place (26.29 seconds), Willis took first place (12.10) in the 100. Along with Willis, City College had two other runners finish in the Top 5 in the 200. Flenoid (26.21) came in third and Smith was two spots behind (26.34) coming in fifth. Panthers’ sophomore hurdler Alyssa McAlister took third in the 100 hurdles (18.39) and fourth (1 minute, 22.14 seconds) in the 400 hurdles.

In the 4×400, Nwokocha, Flenoid and Smith were joined by freshman Daryia Greene, and the women finished in the time of 4:00.83. The time was a team best this season in the event.

In the Northern California Prelims scheduled for May 4, Greene will not participate in the 800-meter run, an event in which she holds one first-place finish this season, as she prepares to focus on the 400.

Greene was able to finish first in the 400 at the Big 8 Finals with the time of 57.18 seconds. Shortly after that, she took second place in the 800. Greene credited Destiny Williams of Santa Rosa College for helping her through the race.

“Having her close to me really helped motivate me,” she said.

Greene said at the prelims she wants to use the event to focus on strategy and also as a workout in preparation for the California State Championships May 18–19 at Bakersfield College.

“It’s going to be a whole new level of competition and I’m really excited for it,” Greene said.

Jasmine Loyola had a busy day herself with two long races. She first ran the 5,000-meter and captured third place, coming in at 19:40.75. Loyola said she was really pleased with her performance, considering that she did the 3,000-meter steeplechase earlier in the day.

“I didn’t know I was going to perform that well,” Loyola said. “Coach (Avendano) was really proud of me, and I’m really proud of myself for that.”

In the 3,000, Loyola took first place at 12:29.95 and is now setting her sights to the state championships.

“My goal is to qualify for state (after the NorCal Finals),” she said.

City College had two athletes participate in the throwing events. Riley Cannon came in first place in the shot puts with the distance of 12.83 meters. Behind Cannon was teammate Janessa Moses, who threw the shot put 12.22 meters. Cannon also competed in the discus throw where she threw it 37.35 meters.

Panthers’ men’s track and field coach Rob Dewar thought his team performed well.

“I was very proud of everyone,” he said.

City College thrower Trevor Holt competes in the shot put at the Big 8 Championships April 26 at American River College. Holt was the conference champion in the hammer throw. | Photo by Dianne Rose | [email protected]

Dewar said his message to the runners and throwers that advanced to the NorCal Trials is to make the Finals.

Kamil Jones advanced to the trials when he took fourth place (54.98) in the 400 hurdles. Jones will also join Ibn Frazier, Torrey White, and Daryl Moppins in the 4×100 at the NorCal trials May 4 at Hughes Stadium. At the Big 8 Championships the relay team finished third (42.33) in the 4×100. In the men’s 400, White came in fourth (49.83) in the finals and will also be advancing.

The men were able to score five points for the Panthers in the 4×400. Aries Loeza ran with White, Jones, Frazier in the event and they finished in the time of 3:27.38.

City College thrower Trevor Holt took first place in the hammer throw, distancing 47.37 meters. Jorgue Hernandez followed up with third place (38.98) after fouling on his first two attempts.

At the NorCal Trials, Dewar said he wants his athletes to focus strictly on making it to the Finals and not to think about what is ahead. The Finals for the northern region will be held May 11 at Hughes Stadium.

For more info on SCC men’s and women’s track and field, visit and

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