The Saddleback men's track & field team finished fourth at the Orange Empire Conference Finals on Friday in Santa Ana. The Gauchos were led by the throws team, posting one individual championship.
Saddleback will send a number of athletes to the Southern California Regional Prelims this weekend in Riverside. The Gauchos picked up an Orange Empire Conference Championship in the shot put this past weekend when Blake Baloun posted a season-best toss of 15.29 meters. It was the third best throw in the state this season and gave Baloun an Orange Empire Conference title.
Saddleback could also be a factor in the hammer throw where Alex Schechter enters the Southern California Regionals as one of the favorites. Schechter finished third at the OEC Finals but has the third longest fling of the season this year after a distance of 53.90 meters at the Prairie War event last month. In addition to Schecter, Baloun is also in the top-20 in the state in the hammer as he has a throw of 48.93 meters at the Arnie Robinson Invitational in early April.
Two more that seem to be hitting his stride at the right time are Collin Hurd and Collin Sample. Hurd was fourth at the OEC Finals in the 400 meter hurdles when he posted a time of 56.39. He is currently 13th in the state after running a 55.20 at the Prairie War Meet last month. Sample finished in fourth place this past Friday at the OEC Finals in the long jump when leaping 6.82 meters. It was a personal-best for Sample, who currently is 24th in the state in the event.
The Southern California Regional Prelims take place this Saturday at Riverside City College with the finals the following Saturday.