Six Pirates qualify for state after strong regional performances

Six Pirates qualify for state after strong regional performances

NORWALK -- The Orange Coast College men's track and field team will have six athletes represent its squad after their strong performances at last weekends Southern California Regional Finals, held at Cerritos College.

A pair of athletes -- Justin Gibbons and Lucio Ramirez -- have earned spots in two different events at the state meet for the Pirates. Gibbons, who qualified for the decathlon earlier this month, also qualified for the 110-meter high hurdles after finishing fourth at the regional meet with a time of 14.79 seconds, less than a half-second behind regional champion Cameron Akins of Mt. San Antonio College (14.3). 

Ramirez, OCC's distance runner specialist, qualified for the 5,000 meters after finishing sixth with a time of 15:07.31. The standout sophomore also earned a spot at the 10,000-meter event after finishing third overall with a time of 31.27.53.

In the 800 meters, Eamon Smthye went head-to-head with Mt. SAC's Gabe Toscano and in the end, Smthye finished second in Southern California with a time of 1:53.88, just .45 seconds off of Toscano's time of 1:53.43.

Triple jumper Chris Henderson put forth a strong jump at regionals and finished second overall with a mark of 47-1, topped only by West L.A.'s Zain Palacio's jump of 47-4 3/4.

Coast also had a pair of pole vaulters -- Kyle Victoria and Jason McKinnon earn state final spots at regionals. Victoria finished eighth overall after clearing 14-4 1/2, the same mark as McKinnon, who placed 10th.

The California Community College Athletic Association State Track and Field Meet will take place on Friday and Saturday at the College of San Mateo.