Valdez sets another record for CSUB cross-country


Angel Valdez, runs near the Student Recreation Center on Sept. 21. Valdez was named Western Athletic Conference Women’s Cross-Country Athlete of The Week for Sept. 4-10. Photo by Simer Khurana/The Runner

By Vincent Perez 
Assistant Sports Editor 
  Three CSU Bakersfield women have ended their cross-country seasons on a high note. On Friday, Nov. 10, in Seattle, WA, senior Angel Valdez claimed CSUB’s best-ever finish at the NCAA Division I West Regional 6-kilometer Championships. Valdez finished 74th out of 243 in 21:08.8, 14 seconds short of her CSUB 6k record.

  Sophomore Paradise Pelzer placed 198th overall, in 23:02.5. Pelzer improved her place from 2016’s NCAA Division I West Regional Championship race, where she finished 228th.

  Redshirt-freshman Alejandra Frausto, in her first NCAA Division I Regional Championship race, finished in 23:53.3, in 220th.

  Valdez, Pelzer and Frausto talked about the regional championship race, season and their accomplishments.
  “I went out really confident. I kept passing girls. I’m pretty happy with how I did,” said Valdez.

The two-week layoff from Western Athletic Conference Championships on Oct. 28, was not enough rest for Valdez. She said she gave her all in the WAC Championship 5k race.

   “I knew it was going to be pretty hard,” said Valdez about the muddy, wet course in Seattle. Valdez said her goal was not to re-set her 6k record. “I knew there was a lot of factors. I had more things against me, then for me.”

  The leader of the cross-country team, Valdez, holds the 4k, 5k and 6k records for CSUB. Valdez earned first team WAC honors this season. She will compete in the spring in the outdoor 5k and 10k and the indoor 5k and 3k in track and field.

  Future leaders are not far behind Valdez.

  Pelzer said about her regional championship race that her time was not a personal record, but she is happy with how her season went.

  “Standing on the start line, I thought, ‘these girls are going to be good.’ There’s no room to doubt any of my training,” said Pelzer. “There’s always someone better, there’s always room for improvement.”

  Pelzer is looking toward her track and field season in the spring.

  “I know I have had one breakthrough this year and that will carry over to track.” Her events in track and field are the steeplechase and the 1,500-meter race.

  A standout redshirt-freshman, Frausto, earned the right to be the third runner for CSUB at the West Regional Championships. She said, “Next year, I want to go back and more prepared for the mud and experience in running in dirt.”

   She said she felt inspired, “You have some amazing runners who run 19-minute 6k’s. It made me think about what I want to do these next couple years.”

  Frausto is not settling for her time at her first regional championships. “I want to go back and compete against them later in my career.”

  She added she wants to be more competitive. “[I want to] compete against bodies, rather than against time,” said Frausto.

  In her first full season, Frausto said she felt accomplished. She looks forward to the spring track and field events where she’ll be running the 5k and 10k events.

  CSUB took their best three athletes to NCAA Division I West Regional Championships this season, meaning they did not qualify for a team score, needing 5. The University of San Francisco women’s team finished first overall, with a combined score of 59. San Francisco had three athletes finish in the top 7.