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Pleasanton Preps: FTC Track Club athletes compete against nation's best

Also: Start of fall sports season on the horizon

Eight athletes from the Pleasanton-based FTC Track Club competed at the United States Track and Field Association (USTAF) National Junior Olympics Track and Field Championships held in late July in Sacramento.

Over 2,000 athletes, aged 8-18 from across the country participated in the national championship.

"It was incredible to have so many of our FTC athletes competing on a national stage, and I'm immensely proud of all of them" FTC head coach Jorge Quero said.

From the FTC team, Tomas Kersulis of Pleasanton made it to the finals of the 400-meter (boys 17-18 age group) and placed eighth, running a personal record of 49.11 seconds in his semifinal qualifier in the event.

Other FTC athletes competing included Isela Ochoa (400 hurdles) in girls15-16, and Arjun Kasthuri and Lesly Townsend competed in their respective 13-14 age groups for the triple jump and high jump.

In boys 13-14, Bibek Das ran the 400-meter and also competed in the 4x400 relay with teammates Wyatt Sattley, Ronit Prakas and Jackson Chandler.

Fall sports underway

Practices for fall high school sports are underway, so that means it's time for me to plead for the results from the respective teams so we can share the accomplishments of our hard-working student athletes!

By my count, we have football, girls tennis, girls volleyball, cross-country and water polo taking place this season. Between Amador Valley and Foothill, that's a lot of teams and athletes working heard each day in practice to get ready for games representing their schools.

I think they deserve recognition, don't you?

It's simple -- I just need one parent per team that is willing to spend 20 minutes a week to send me the results and highlights of the week's activities by noon Sundays.

I ask for a parent because the coach is already putting in a ton of time, as well as dealing with the grief of being a high school coach for very little money. Let's give the coaches a break here and have a parent step up. I don't think that's too much to ask, do you?

So, what's involved? Just get the scores and highlights of games played that week and send them to me at acesmag@aol.com each week. You don't have to be writer -- that's my job -- but if you want to try, have a shot at it and I will use as much of it as I can.

We are always looking for pictures as well, with all we need being the identification of your athletes in the picture as well as a credit for who took the high-resolution photo.

We are coming off a spring season where we saw tremendous participation from the teams. I would love to build on it and get some great information on all our teams this fall.

I write this column to get the kids recognition. After spending 26 years with the now-defunct Tri-Valley Herald and seeing the level of appreciation of the athletes and their parents, it was tough to see the neglect from the local papers regarding local sports, that is unless you go to De La Salle.

The Weekly gives me 650 words a week for this column, but during the spring we hit 750-800 words a week thanks to all the parents and the Weekly was more than happy to make sure everything got in the paper.

Let's keep the roll going this year. Best of luck to all athletes and teams this year, and I look forward to keeping track of your efforts!

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