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Hartnell College Men's  Cross Country

2012 Highlights

Freshmen Lead Panthers to Top 10 Finish

The 2012 Panthers managed a 10th place showing out of 28 teams at the California Community College State Championship in Frenso.. They maintained their third place regional team finish lead by freshman Michael Ramirez in 43rd place (21:18). Two more Panther freshmen followed right behind in 44th and 45th as James Palaniuk (21:21) and Said Hernandez (21:22) kept pace with Ramirez. Eddie Guzman (21:39) and Michael Young (21:44) rounding out the scoring Panthers. Ramirez, Palaniuk, and Hernandez all produced top 20 all-time performances. Guillermo Cuevas (21:53) and Omar Vasquez (22:24) also competed. With five of the top seven returning, next fall could be the Panthers best shot at a top three finish at the state championship.

For complete results from the State Championship:

Ramirez Leads Panthers to Third Place in Region

Although the men's team fell just short of their regional goal this weekend in Belmont, they will advance to the California State Championship in Fresno on November 17th. The Northern California Championship meet was highlighted by some notable individual performances.

Freshman Michael Ramirez has steadily improved over the course of the season with the help of his teammates. Ramirez, who came into the season having never run cross country and only one season of track while at Salinas High School, raced his way to the top spot for the Panthers and earned his first All-Region honors for his 10th place finish in the field of 100 runners. Ramirez recorded a time of 21:53 for the 4.195 mile course at Crystal Springs making him the 25th best performer in Hartnell history. He was also the top Coast Conference performer after finishing just sixth last week. Also earning top 14 all-region honors were sophomore Eddie Guzman (21:58) at eleventh and Coast Conference Champion James Palaniuk (22:07) in thirteenth. Hartnell College was the only school other than American River College to place more than two runners on the All-Region Team. Also competing for the Panthers were Michael Young (22:29), Omar Vasquez (22:38), Guillermo Cuevas (22:38), and Said Hernandez (22:58).

As a team, the Panthers placed third behind top ranked American River College and #8 state ranked College of Sequoias. The third place trophy marks third year in a row Hartnell College has
placed in the top three at the regional championship.

The men will compete against the best teams from Southern California in the
State Championship to be held at Woodward Park in Fresno on Saturday, November 17.

For full results from the Northern California Champoinships:

Panther Men Three-Peat at Coast Championship

For the third time in as many years, the Hartnell College men's cross country team were victorious at the Coast Conference Championship meet. This year's race was held on the historic
Crystal Springs cross country course in Belmont.

In an even more impressive streak, the overall winner remained a Hartnell runner for the eighth straight year as freshman transfer James Palaniuk took top honors in 21:59 for the 4.195 mile course. Palaniuk prepped at York High School where he was the CCS Division V Champion on the high school version of the course at Crystal Springs.

After Palaniuk, the Panthers demonstrated amazing depth placing eight other runners in the top 12, all earning All-Coast Conference honors. Sophomore Eddie Guzman took runner-up honors in 22:03 with Omar Vasquez fourth (22:05), Michael Ramirez sixth (22:07), Said Hernandez seventh (22:16), Guillermo Cuevas eighth (22:23), Michael Young tenth (22:29), Robert Valencia eleventh (22:33), and Andres Guerrero twelfth (22:36). All told, the Panthers placed 21 runners in the race of 63. As a team, Hartnell scored a very  low 20 points to runner-up Las Positas College at 57 points and DeAnza College at 73 points. It was the fifteenth conference title in last 25 years and third in a row. Palaniuk, Vasquez, Ramirez, Hernandez, Young, Valencia, and Guerrero all return next year to look to extend the streak to four titles in a row.

For complete results:

The Hartnell College cross country team will compete at the Northern California Championship on Saturday, November 3rd also at Crystal Springs.

Palaniuk and Panthers Storm Through
Mt. SAC Invitational

A fall storm preceded the arrival of the Hartnell College cross country teams to the 65th Annual Mt. SAC Invitational in Walnut, CA. Just as quickly as the storm came and went, the Panthers ran over the legendary hills named "Switchbacks, Poop-Out, and Reservoir" to impressive team finishes in just their third appearance in school history at the historic cross country competition. In a rare appearance south of the Grapevine, the Panthers demonstrated that they can compete with the larger colleges in the metropolitan Los Angeles area.

Inspired by the women's team finish, the Panther men worked a large group of seven runners through the field and stunned the Southern California dominated field with a second place team finish. The men placed only behind #2 state ranked Cerritos College and edged out #5 San Bernadino Valley College along with Saddleback College and El Camino College to round out the top five teams. Freshman James Palaniuk lead the charge with his top 15 finish at 13th in 21:34. The pack of Panthers were not too far behind with Said Hernandez 16th (21:37), Robert Hernandez 17th (21:39), Omar Vasquez 20th (21:41) and Guillermo Cuevas 33rd (21:57). Also running well were Michael Ramirez  34th (21:59), Eddie Guzman 47th (22:19), Andres Guerrero 58th (22:29), and Michael Young 59th (22:29).

For complete results:


The Panthers will compete on Wednesday, October 24th at the Coast Conference Championships hosted by College of San Mateo at the Crystal Springs Cross Country Course. The men will look to defend their conference title while the women will aim to improve on last year's team runner-up performance.

Panthers Victorious at Toro Park Invitational

On Friday, the men's and women's cross country enjoyed a rare home competition while competing just down the road from the college at Toro Park. This year's Toro Park Invitational attracted several of the top Coast Conference programs as well as some visitors from the Big 8 Conference.

On the men's side, three freshmen lead the Panther charge to victory by placing third, fifth, and sixth overall in the field of 89 runners. Robert Valencia (21:17) just narrowly missed taking second over and was followed by James Palaniuk (21:20) and Said Hernandez (21:23). The Panthers dominated on their home course placing seven runners in the top 15 overall. Also competing well were Michael Ramirez (21:29), Omar Vasquez (21:41), Andres Guerrero (21:49), Guillermo Cuevas (21:51) and Eddie Guzman (21:58). Valencia, Palaniuk, Hernandez, and Ramirez all moved on the top school's all-time performance list for the four mile course at Toro Park. The Panthers took the team victory with a score 29 points to the pesky team from Las Positas with 61 points. They were followed by Diablo Valley (80), DeAnza (95), San Joaquin Delta (142), Santa Rosa (151), West Hills (187) and the non-scoring San Jose City College team. Former Hartnell All-American Miguel Gallegos was the overall winner of the race at 20:53.

For complete results of the Toro Park Invitational

The Panthers will travel south to the Mt. SAC Invitational on Friday, October 12th. It will be the first time the Panthers have competed at Mt. SAC since 2007.

Panthers Improve at Crystal Springs Invite

With the Crystal Springs Invitational signaling the end of the first month of the cross country season, the Hartnell College Panthers raced with the goal of showing marked improvement toward Coast Conference and regional trophies in November. This year's Crystal Springs Invitational hosted by College of San Mateo served double duty as the preview meet for both the Coast Conference Championship as well as Northern California Regional. With ten women's and fourteen men's team in attendance, the meet exhibited the championship feel of a late season race. In both races, the Panthers scored team runner-up finishes behind the top ranked regional teams.

Freshman James Palaniuk was a double Central Coast CIF Division 5 cross country champion while a prep at York High School. One of those titles came on the 2.95 mile version of the Crystal Springs course. It was of no surprise that Palaniuk found the longer 4.195 mile college version to his liking as he lead the Panthers to a second place team finish. Palaniuk crossed the line in thirteenth at 22:14 with teammate Robert Valencia following next at 22:17. The Panthers were the only other team outside of top ranked and event winner American River to place five runners in the top 27. Michael Ramirez (22:24) was 20th followed by Eddie Guzman (22:29) in 21st. Guillermo Cuevas rounded out the team score in 27th (22:37). Those five along with Omar Vasquez (22:41) moved on to the school's all-time list for Crystal Springs. The Panthers first five runners tallied 89 points to trail American River College's 29 points but upset Norcal #2 Fresno City College with 111 and #3 College of Sequoias at 92 points. Also competing well for the Panthers were Andres Guerrero (23:05), Daniel Vasquez (23:39), Luis Romero (23:49), and Geo Oseguera (24:00).

For complete results: http://www.directathletics.com/results/xc/3721.html

The Panthers will compete on their home course at Toro Park on Friday, October 5th in the annual Toro Park Invitational. The three mile collegiate women's race will start at 3:30pm with the men's collegiate four mile at 4:15pm. Teams currently scheduled to compete are DeAnza College, Las Positas College, San Jose City College, College of Sequoias, Santa Rosa College, Diablo Valley College, and West Hills College.

Valencia Leads Panthers at Lou Vasquez

The Panther men demonstrated excellent group at the Lou Vasquez Invitational at Golden Gate Park. The men placed eight runner within just a scant 35 seconds of each other. Frosh Robert Valencia (21:09) was the top placing man in eighteenth with sophomore Guillermo Cuevas (21:13) right behind one spot later. Cuevas bettered his All-Coast Conference mark from last October's run at Golden Gate Park by 17 seconds. Freshmen Said Hernandez (21:20-23rd), James Palaniuk (21:28-28th), Omar Vasquez (21:33-30th) rounded out the team scoring for the men. The Panthers placed tied for third with Fresno City College based off the first five runners combined time but bested the Rams by 12 points under normal scoring. Top ranked American River College was upset by Southern California #1 Cerritos College. Also running well for the Panthers were Andres Guerrero (21:39), Eddie Guzman (21:42), Michael Ramirez (21:44) and Omar Pelayo (22:05). In total, 20 men toed the line for the Panthers with 19 running season bests for four miles.

For complete results: http://www.directathletics.com/results/xc/4073.html

Next week, the Panthers will travel north to Belmont for the College of San Mateo Crystal Spring Invitational on Friday, September 28th. This meet will serve as both the Coast Conference and Northern California regional preview meet.

Panther Men Dominate DVC Run

Running for the first time at Hidden Valley Park in Martinez, the Hartnell College men's cross country team dominated the George Brooks Invitational hosted by Diablo Valley College. The men placed nine Panthers in the top 15 finishers on their way to a dominating score of 23 points easily outdistancing Diablo Valley College at 55 points, San Joaquin Delta at 90 points, Sacramento City College with 98 points, and Santa Rosa College last with 113 points. Freshman Robert Valencia lead the men for the second consecutive outing taking the individual win by 9 seconds. Valencia, who prepped at Alisal High School, was timed in 23:02 for the 4.2 mile course. Guillermo Cuevas placed third, Eddie Guzman fourth, Michael Ramirez seventh, Michael Young eighth, Said Hernandez ninth, James Palaniuk eleventh, Omar Vasquez twelfth, and Omar Pelayo fourteenth. All totaled, the Panthers competed 22 runners in the field of 61.

Complete Men's Results Here:

The Panthers will have a short week heading into the Lou Vasquez Invitational at Golden Gate Park on Thursday, September 20th.

Hartnell Cross Country Records a Pair of Fifth Place Finishes in Fresno

Over the last two years, the men's and women's cross country teams have established themselves as one of the best combined programs in Northern California. The men have enjoyed back to back regional runner-up finishes with the women bettering them with a regional title in 2010 and runner-up in 2011. With the start of the 2012 season, the Panthers have their eyes set on placing no lower than second again this season. The Fresno Invitational served as this year's debut and both teams recorded identical team finishes placing fifth overall.

With a core of all-area guys, the men made some noise across the state with their fifth place finish. The team was lead by four freshmen in Robert Valencia (21:43), Omar Vasquez (21:55), Said Hernandez (22:03), and Michael Young (22:08). Sophomores Guillermo Cuevas (22:16) and Eddie Guzman (22:33) followed by frosh Andres Guerrero (22:45) rounded out the scoring seven. With one of the largest teams in school history, a total of 18 Panthers competed in the four mile race. Defending Norcal and state champion American River College won the team title followed by Glendale College, Orange Coast, College of the Sequoias, then Hartnell. Valencia, Vasquez, Hernandez, Young, and Cuevas all moved on to the school's all-time list for the course at Woodward Park. Woodward Park serves as the host site for the state championship in November.

Complete results can be found here: http://www.proracegroup.com/xcresults12.html

The Panthers will head to the George Brooks Memorial Cross Country Invitational hosted by Diablo Valley College on Friday, September 14th. The meet serves the Big 8 Conference preview meet and is new for the regional calendar this year.