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By Avry Photography
BY JOELLE MILHOLM Special to The Californian
In the Cal State Bakersfield track and field program's first appearance at the Great West Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships on May 12, sophomore sprinting star Jordan Taylor stole the show with record-breaking victories in the 100- and 200-meter dashes.
Taylor, a Palmdale native and William Knight High graduate, won the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete Award.
On Saturday at the NCAA Division I West Regionals, the sophomore's record-breaking season came to a close with a time of 21.02 seconds in the 200-meter semifinals. The time was good for 19th place; the top 12 spots advanced to the NCAA Championships held June 6-9 in Des Moines, Iowa. On Friday, Taylor finished 24th in the 100 semifinals at the Regionals, held in Austin, Texas.
Taylor was the lone student-athlete representing the Roadrunners at the West Regionals. It was the second time Taylor qualified for the meet in as many chances.
At the GWC Championships, Taylor, decked out in bright-red running cleats, set the fastest times in conference history in the 100 (10.27 seconds) and the 200 (20.84 seconds). The 10.27 also set a CSUB record, and Taylor is now second in the record books in the 200.
Taylor also qualified for the NCAA West Regional meet in the 100 and 200 in his freshman season in 2011, when he advanced to the second round in the 200 and settled for a 19th-place finish.
Before traveling to Texas to compete in the West Regional, Taylor stopped for a question-and-answer session.
Q: How would you describe this season and what you've accomplished?
A: It has been an up-and-down season, I am not going to lie. There is always soreness and injuries that you have to battle and my hamstrings were sore a lot throughout the season.
When I hit my best time of 10.52 in the 100, it took all season to hit that. I was in the 10.6 range for a while. It takes a lot to get it right, you have to get a good start, a good drive, a strong transition and then a good finish and I hadn't been able to put it all together in one meet.