Soratos finds success in 2nd pro season

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BOZEMAN, Mont. - A former Bobcat track and field All-American is excelling at the 2017 USA Track & Field Outdoor Championships.

Cristian Soratos, who graduated from Montana State University in 2015, qualified for the 1,500-meter run finals by winning his first round heat in Sacramento, California, Thursday night.

"I actually had a couple of shaky races leading into this," Soratos said in a post-race interview. "But I knew that had nothing to do with my fitness, I just had to execute properly. I knew if I did execute properly I could run well and get through."

Soratos, who now runs for Adidas, finished first in the second heat with a time of 3 minutes, 42.01 seconds, which is the eighth-fastest time of the 13 runners who qualified for the final heat.

Soratos has been on fire lately in his second professional season.

He finished in second place in the mile at the 2017 USATF Indoor Championships in March after failing to qualify for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials.

After Thursday's race Soratos said a change in attitude has made all the difference for him.

"I think last year, the first full year in the pros, it's kind of hard to, you know, walk into some of those races and expect to beat guys you kind of looked up to before you joined the pro circuit.

"It's a mental block more than anything. I was in shape last year, I just didn't run well. This year, I'm in even better shape, but I've kind of made the mental jump to where I know I can compete with these guys and even beat them," he said.

The 1,500-meter final is scheduled to start Saturday afternoon at 3:41 Mountain time.