BC’s athletes of the year
After not competing in about two years, Bakersfield College track and field athlete Chris Schwartz has progressively gotten back to the same level that had gotten him number one rank honors in the state while in high school.
“I’m doing very well this year, and it’s blowing my mind how fast I’m going right now,” said Schwartz. “I’ve exceeded all the expectations I had coming into this year, but I want to keep doing better. Also, I want to get under three minutes and 45 seconds in the 1,500, and for the 5,000 I want to get under 14 minutes.”
He started off the season with a time of 4:11.58 in the 1,500 and started the 5,000 with 14:53.09, which he didn’t start competing in until halfway through the season. He has continued to drop time on those events throughout the year, until he finally broke the records in both events at the Mt. SAC relays on April 14. In the 1,500 he had a BC record time of 3:49.19, and broke the school record in the 5,000 with a time of 14:34.38. The old record in the 1,500 belonged to Charlie Wallace with a time of 3:52.08 in 1981, and Angel Correo held the 5,000 record of 14:52.08 in 1978.
“I bike up here Monday through Friday and after classes I bike to work and bike back up here for practice has helped me get in shape,” he said. “I also think that Coach [David] Frickel helped me by giving me training that helped my speed and stamina for every race.”
He added that his most memorable moment this year was when he was able to break the records on the 1,500 and 5,000 at the Mt. SAC relays.
“I was excited that I broke them, but at first I wasn’t sure if I could do it,” he said. “So, to break them on the same day was just special and it made me feel overjoyed.”
Schwartz also mentioned that he will be returning next year and as of this moment hasn’t looked at any schools.
After leaving Ventura College after one year to come play for the Bakersfield College women’s basketball team, Jausecca Cockeral, starting point guard, was able to help BC to a good season along with winning Western State Conference Most Valuable Player.
“I thought I had a good year, and I think it was better than my first year in college,” said Cockeral. “I improved throughout the year, but I still think there are areas I can still improve on. I thought I improved on scoring the most because before I didn’t shoot often. I think it mostly had to do with confidence because in high school I didn’t have to shoot since we had a lot of good scorers so I was fine with just passing the ball. We have some good scorers here too, but my teammates always told me to shoot it more.”
She added that a memorable moment this year for her was the final game of the season because they were in a tough situation, but they found a way to win.
“We went into overtime and everyone on the team worked hard, and I was proud of how we played as a team.”
Cockeral graduated from Stockdale high school and then went onto Ventura before coming here. Along with getting WSC MVP, she also made the all-state team and averaged 13.8 points, eight rebounds and seven assists per game.
“Coming over to BC, I didn’t know what to expect or if the team would accept me, but it turned out great,” she said. “I think it was a lot easier to comeback home and play at BC because of everyone here,” she said. “They accepted me not only as a player but as a person, and I got a chance to play with a great bunch of girls and to learn under great coaches.”
She added that this is her final year at BC since it was her second year playing on a college team, but she wants to continue to play basketball and help contribute in any way to the school she decides to attend. The schools she is considering are University of Nebraska and University of Texas.