When Calexico High School's Donna Garnica stepped into the starting blocks to run the 300-meter hurdles in Calexico's track and field meet against Central Union High School on Thursday, it was the first time she had competed in the event.
With butterflies in her stomach and knowing she was competing against one of the Imperial Valley's best hurdlers, teammate Lisa Tittle, Garnica eased her tension by winning the event in 55.45 seconds.
"I had been wanting to do the 300 hurdles all season, but I never did. I asked coach (Cal Armstrong) if I could do it and he just said to go for it," said the 16-year-old junior. "I was a little nervous at first, but then I started feeling a lot more confident in myself.
"After that first hurdle I saw that I was ahead of the other girls and then I knew the race was mine."