King City High School seniors Israel Limosnero and Sage Flores are the Mustang Athletes of the Year for the 2022-23 school year. (Contributed)

KING CITY — King City High School Athletics Program has selected senior student-athletes Sage Flores and Israel Limosnero as the 2023 Athletes of the Year.

An event celebrating their accomplishments as Mustangs took place May 22 at the school’s Robert Stanton Theatre.

Flores was a three-sport athlete competing for the Lady Mustangs team in volleyball, basketball and softball, while Limosnero excelled in cross country and track and field and reached the pinnacle of the two sports by qualifying for their respective California Interscholastic Federation State Meet.

Flores, daughter of Melinda and Landon Flores, was a first-team All-League player in volleyball as she guided the Lady Mustangs on the floor as the team’s libero. On the basketball courts, she averaged 13.1 points per game and finished with 28 three-point baskets.

Flores also excelled as a softball player with a .372 batting average, 39 hits with six doubles and five triples and two homeruns.

Lady Mustangs head softball coach Artie Carrillo has enjoyed having a reliable player on the field that took charge defensively and could produce timely hits.

“Sage is just a great kid on and off the field,” Carrillo said. “She is an excellent scholar-athlete but will not play at the next level, as she will be attending Cal Poly and wants to concentrate on her studies as she will major in ag business. Coaches, umpires and fans always told me that she was a fun player to watch as a shortstop and when she went up to bat or ran the bases. Sage always played her heart out and she will definitely be missed next season, but we wish her all the best.”

Flores and the Lady Mustangs completed the softball season by advancing to the Central Coast Section playoffs after a play-in victory against North Salinas. In the first round of the CCS playoffs, King City lost to Leland High School by a 2-1 score.

Limosnero, son of Claudia Zuniga, began his senior year with a third-place finish at the Pacific Coast Athletic League Cross Country Championships and earned a trip to the CIF Championships two weeks later with an eighth-place finish in the Division IV race. At the State Meet, he finished in 46th place at the finals.

“Israel Limosnero had a remarkable athletic career at King City High School,” said Mustangs cross country coach Miguel Zamudio. “His accomplishments place him amongst the greatest distance runner at KCHS. He assisted his team to earn a league title, earn a team appearance at the CCS championships, and an individual spot at State in 2022. He placed in the top 10 at the world’s largest cross country invitational, the Mt. SAC in Los Angeles.”

According to Zamudio, Limosnero saw a significant improvement in all the individual events he ran during the track and field season.

“Track and field sealed the deal to Israel’s high school athletic career,” Zamudio said. “Israel ran the 1600, 400, 800 and anchored the 4×400 relay. For Israel, Gilroy High School will be a memorable place. He earned his personal best in the 400 after running the 1600 at Gilroy in the spring of 2022. A year later, he earned another personal best. This time in the 800, which helped him advance to the CCS Finals. The following week, he earned his lifetime best, a new KCHS record in the 800, 1:55.17, earning him a spot in the 103rd CIF Track and Field State Championships prelims.”

Limosnero placed 20th at the State Meet last Friday, finishing the 800 in a time of 1:55.98.

“Israel leaves a distance legacy behind,” Zamudio said. “It’s been an honor to coach him along the way. All his coaches and teammates are proud and he will be missed next year, but we’re very glad we set the tone for the generations to come.”

Previous articleSalinas Valley News Briefs | June 1, 2023
Next articleSalinas Valley News Briefs | June 2, 2023


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here