“I was extremely fatigued,” says Torres of the CIF-State Track and Field Meet, in which he took an admittedly disappointing 21st in the 3,200 meters. “I really could feel how tired I was. ...Every step of that race really hurt.”
But every step leading up to it was far more glorious.
And had Torres’ stellar Crescenta Valley track career or his senior season been judged by one final race, it still would have seen him finish among the state’s elite.
But in looking at Torres’ entire body of work during a magnificent final campaign as a Falcon, the sports editors and writers of the Glendale News-Press, Burbank Leader and Valley Sun had no doubt in voting him the 2009 All-Area Track and Field Boys’ Athlete of the Year for the second straight time.
The mere advancement to state was a goal that Torres, along with a great many others, strive to accomplish and he was able to pull it off — along with Burroughs High’s Western Nelson as the only area athletes to make the trek to Fresno.
His best race came much earlier in the season, though, and, against the most arduous talent he would race, as he ran a personal-best 9 minutes 2.5 seconds to finish fifth at the Arcadia Invitational in the Men’s 3,200-Meter Invitational Run, a race that featured the best runners from not just California, but other states, as well.
From there, he won Pacific League titles in both the 1,600 and 3,200 before advancing to the CIF Southern Section Division I finals in both events, but gave up the 1,600 to focus on the 3,200. It paid off, as he advanced to the state meet a season after falling short at the Masters Meet.
All the while, he was the starting second baseman on the Falcons baseball team, hitting a team-best .378.
“I really worked hard at trying to balance both sports,” Torres says. “I really felt like this year, I finally got what I deserved.”