Angel Hernandez of Los Angeles Trade Tech and Janice Velie-Sellon of Mt. San Antonio College both shattered course records Friday at the Southern California Cross-Country Championships at Irvine Park in Orange.
Hernandez won the men's four-mile race in 18 minutes 48 seconds, breaking the record of 19:24 set in 1984 by Aldolfo Garcia of Pasadena College. Hernandez jumped to a 10-yard lead and passed the mile mark in 4:30, 10 seconds ahead of Mark Dani of Grossmont, who finished second in 19:19.
Velie-Sellon won the women's 5,000-meter race in 17:28, breaking the 18:29 mark set by Tracy Wright of Orange Coast last week. Velie-Sellon ran the first two miles of the race with teammate Carmen Maldonado, who finished second in 17:45.
"I think I have a pretty strong pain threshold," said Velie-Sellon, 32. "The others stayed with me and really pushed (the pace), but I just forced it a little more. It was all a battle of the mind today."
Orange Coast placed five runners in the top 30 to finish second in the women's division with 85 points. MiraCosta won the women's division with 80. The top five teams in both divisions advance to the California cross-country championships Nov. 21 at Woodward Park in Fresno.
"I think we can beat them (MiraCosta) at the state meet," said Gordie Fitzel, OCC coach. "They only have a few runners in front of ours. I think we have the best chance of anybody."
Orange Coast was led by Wright, the Orange Empire Conference champion, who finished fifth overall in 18:02. She was followed by teammates Loi Curl (16th, 19:04), Candice Hansen (21st, 19:19), Debbie Lies (23rd, 19:29) and DeLinda Patino (29th, 19:42).
In the men's division, Rancho Santiago placed five runners in the top 30 to finish fourth with 118 points. El Camino was first with 66 points, Grossmont second (87) and San Diego Mesa third (111).
The Dons' Jim Sorensen, the Orange Empire Conference champion, was about 20th with less than a mile to go, but passed a pack of runners to finish sixth at 19:48. Sorensen dueled Orange Coast's Charlie Yu throughout most of the race, outkicking Yu in the final 800 yards. Yu finished 13th in 19:57.
"We were battling each other most of the way," Sorensen said. "When we got to (the 3 1/2-mile mark), Charlie said, 'C'mon Jim, let's go.' We kind of shook hands, then we both took off."
Rancho Santiago was helped by Art Garza (36th, 20:24), Dave Moore (39th, 20:25), Carlos Nava (40th, 20:26) and Gilbert Vasquez (44th, 20:29).
Saddleback's Ken McFadden, who placed fourth in last week's Orange Empire Conference championships, placed eighth (19:51) in the men's race, advancing to next week's state final as one of several top individuals.
Other individuals who qualified for the state final include Yu, Marcial Beltran of Fullerton (21st, 20:10) and Kenge Kallin of Golden West (31st, 20:18) in the men's division, and Maura Daly of Saddleback (21st, 19:24) in the women's.