by JON DYKSTRA The Iola Register | April 17, 2017
TORRANCE, Calif. — The motto of the Mount SAC Relays in Torrance, Calif., is: 'Where the world's best athletes complete.'
Two Allen Community College runners were among those world-class athletes competing in the prestigious event this weekend.
Ricardo Banuelos made the journey to the West Coast to test their skills against the nation's best 10,000 meter runners.
"It is the who's who of meets," Red Devil coach Vince DeGrado said.
Banuelos was the only male junior college athlete in the field. DeGrado credits that to the tremendous support his team has received from the administration at Allen.
"What I really enjoy about working for Allen Community College is they allow us to travel to meets that provides are top level kids with the event they need to run fast." DeGrado said. "I told the kids that if Allen didn't support us and this program, they would not be running this fast, because you look at what the weather has been like the past few months in Kansas and there aren't many opportunities to run fast.
"I'm so grateful that I work at Allen and they let me take these kids, who have earned the right to go, to these types of meets. That is how they get recruited. We are very fortunate."
Banuelos didn't quite provide the fireworks that Shoemaker did, but the sophomore was still able to post a 30:41.81 and finish 25th in the A-Division out of 35 runners and beat out runners from schools like UCLA and Purdue. However he still managed to break the school record and is currently sitting 2nd in the nation.
"Ricardo was a little sick, but still broke the school record," DeGrado said. "He had a bad race, but he was still on pace to break 30 minutes which was our goal, but the last 4,000 meters he fell apart."
Most of the middle distance runners ran at the Azusa Pacific Invite and they did not disappoint either. Anthony Glasgow ran a new school record with a time of 1:52.96 in the 800m which was nearly a 3 second increase from his last 800m time. 600m Indoor All American Ka'ven Berry ran his 2nd ever 800m to a national qualifying time of 1:54.27. Vinny Butera 1:55.35; 85. Ryan Yarde, 1:56.38; 96. Chris Martin 1:57.53. Women's 800 — 127. Maria Puente 2:24.28; 134. Gemma Gonzalez 2:29.45; 139. Hannah Johnson 2:35.54.
Other results follow:
Men's 5,000 — 14. Paul Becker 15:32.7; 18. Ludreche Bougana 15:48.35. Women's 5,000 — 18. Abby Steinhauser 19:14.49; 20. Kristina Silvers 19:50.61. 3,000 Steeplechase — 11. Chris Dunn, 9:57.64.