By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
CV standout runner Saldana returns from leg injury
Senior takes second in Hawks' 19-39 loss to crosstown-rival Bulldogs
Senior Ben Saldana finished second overall during the Central Valley High School varsity boys cross country team's 19-39 loss to Ceres High last Wednesday at Ceres River Bluff Regional Park.



Ben Saldana had high hopes for the 2014 varsity boys cross country campaign.

The senior standout suffered a right leg injury during the preseason and just returned to Central Valley High School’s lineup.

“It was hurting for quite a while,” Saldana said. “This was basically my first big race. I haven’t run in so long.”

Ben placed second overall during the Hawks’ 19-39 loss to the crosstown-rival Bulldogs on Wednesday at Ceres River Bluff Regional Park.

Saldana (19:10) was edged out by Ceres High’s Christian Linarez (19:10) on the three-mile course.

“I really didn’t know what to expect,” Saldana said. “I just went out and run. I was on his hip the whole time. It was back and forth. I gave it my all. I performed my best. I’m not in terrible shape. I just need to get in better shape.”

Saldana was sidelined for a month and a half with a calf strain.

“It’s disappointing I got injured,” Saldana said. “I’ve been going to practices and some of the meets. I help motivate the team.”

Ben made his 2014 Western Athletic Conference regular-season dual-meet debut with the Hawks on Oct. 15.

Saldana placed third in Central Valley’s 22-40 loss at Los Banos.

Saldana was selected to the WAC First Team as a junior.

He placed sixth (18:08) at the conference finals. The 2013 league championships were staged in Ceres.

Ben took 53rd (18:14) at the Sac-Joaquin Sub-Section Division-III competition in Angels Camp.