Cardinals’ Garcia owns Valley record

When Harlingen High sophomore sprinter Jose Garcia walked off the track following the 100-meter dash at the 31/32-6A area track & field meet, he soon learned his time of 10.30 seconds set a new meet record.

What he didn’t know is that his time also set a Rio Grande Valley record, breaking the 10.23 hand time set by Mercedes’ Alex Trevino in 2008.

Garcia’s 10.30 fully automatic time tops Trevino’s 10.23 hand time, which would be comparable to a 10.54 FAT after rounding up to the nearest tenth and adding the .24 factor, a common track & field protocol.

The time was confirmed by longtime RGV track historian Carlos Vela late Friday night.

“It meant a lot to me,” Garcia said of learning about the record. “When I was running and I finished crossing the line, I felt that it was going to be a good time. It just meant a lot to me when they announced the area record and that I now hold the Valley record.”

Harlingen High coach Efrain Ambriz said after the area meet that Garcia had been on fire as of late and was consistently getting better, which is a testament to the type of athlete he is.

“I think (the record) shows not only (Garcia’s) power, but I think it shows the hard work that he’s bringing along with it,” Ambriz said. “You see a lot of talented runners, but sometimes, they don’t put in all the work that’s necessary to take them to the next level. He definitely is, and it makes us really proud of what he’s doing. The sky is the limit for him. We don’t put any limitations on our athletes. We just want to see him maximize his abilities along with the hard work he’s putting into it, and I’m sure that he will.”

Garcia also set an area meet and school record in the 200 with a 21.30, qualifying for the Region IV-6A meet next weekend.

The sophomore sprinter also qualified in the long jump after a second-place finish (21 feet, 4.5 inches) and as a part of the area-winning 400 relay team (42.71).

With the RGV record under his belt, Garcia hopes to grab a berth in the state meet.

“I want to improve more,” Garcia said. “I want to continue working and working until I get to the point that I want to. I feel like I’m ready for regionals after getting to experience it as a freshman. I’m not nervous anymore. It’s also good that coach took me to the Texas Relays, so I can experience those higher levels. I’m ready to see what’s going on up there.”