It hasn’t taken long for 2010 Oakdale High graduates and sisters Juli and Jaci Powell to make their presence known at the collegiate level.
The former Lady Mustang track and volleyball stars are key figures on the track and field roster at Golden West (Community) College in Huntington Beach this spring.
Both have emerged as top competitors in multiple events in the Southern California Community College track scene this year. They have been a huge credit to the Rustlers sports program and are fantastic representations of Oakdale athletes.
Jaci, the 2010 Oakdale Leader female Athlete of the Year, is currently ranked first in the state in the seven-event heptathlon (4,409 points) and claimed an Orange Empire Conference title in that event, as well as the javelin (119 feet). She is also ranked No. 2 in the state for the long jump (18-10.5), triple jump (38-7.75) and is No. 11 in the state for the 100-meter hurdles (15.04).
Her incredible efforts at the Community College level have done much to impress longtime track coach, Matt Simpson.
“Jaci is probably the best female athlete I have ever coached in 20 years at Golden West,” coach Simpson said on Monday. “She is going to be special as she continues to improve.”
Jaci will join her sister on the 400 and 1600 relay teams when they take on the Orange Empire championships in those events on Friday.
Juli also competes in the pole vault, where her 10-7 personal best has landed her the sixth best mark in Southern California. If she can finish the season ranked sixth in the event, she will advance with Jaci (already qualified in Heptathlon, javelin) to the CC State Championships at American River College on May 20 and 21.
“Both those girls have been an exceptional addition to our program,” coach Simpson said. “Besides from being real good athletes, they come from a good family and are just real good kids.”