BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Hilda Gonzalez is a junior at McFarland High School, a campus known for its nine state titles and profiled in the 2015 film, McFarland USA.
Hilda has been running for ten years, now she’s the 2019 BVarsity Cross Country Girls Runner of the Year.
She says when she was a little girl, she started ballet, but her father noticed her talent was elsewhere.
“My dad noticed I was a good runner so they put me in running and ever since I liked it,” said Hilda Gonzalez.
Ever since, she competed in many races, won many of them and took the BVarsity Cross Country Girls Runner of the Year for three years in a row.
Head Coach of McFarland High Track and Field Amador Ayón says Gonzalez has a lot of potential.
“Well Hilda is a tremendous athlete. She is one of those athletes that doesn’t say a whole lot, and all her actions and all her results, she speaks for themselves when she competes.”
Hilda’s fastest 5,000 meter race is 17 minutes and 15 seconds, and her fastest 1 mile race is 5 minutes and 17 seconds.
However, Hilda says that is not good enough for a runner who’d like to run for the University of Oregon.
“I am trying to pick it up,” said Hilda. “So my senior year, I want it to be my best year.”
Although the junior in high school believes she can do better, colleges from all over the nation are interested in having her a part of their cross country college team.
“A multitude of schools are looking at her, you know, Fresno State,” said Ayón. “She’s real talent,” said the head track & field coach.
Hilda’s mother, also named Hilda Gonzalez says her daughter’s talent shines across the state.
“When she’s competing, she tells me “mom there were some random students that I don’t even know, that know my name, and some of them approach her and say you’re my role model, I wanna be like you when I grow up, I want to be a good runner,” said Hilda’s mother.
The mcfarland runner has one message for the youth runners:
“Keep pushing and if you’re trying to achieve those goals, to motivate yourself.”