Local teams and their athletes excelled in last week’s CIF-Los Angeles City and Southern Section Track and Field Championships.
Last Friday, there were several local athletes but it was Gardena Serra High’s boys’ team that continued to dominate and that is despite the knee injury of top sprinter Malik Roberson while long jumping in the Southern Section Masters Finals at Cerritos College.
Serra had three long jumpers in the meet and junior Adoree Jackson only jumped once but made the most of it by winning the event at 24 feet, nine inches. Jackson, who leaped 25 feet in the Southern Section Division IV Championship on May 18 at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, still has the best prep mark in the United States this year.
Senior teammate Darrell Fuery also advanced after a sixth place finish at 22-7.
However, it was another nationally ranked athlete in both hurdles, senior Lloyd Sicard, that could have been the most impressive. Sicard won the 110-meter highs at 13.96 seconds and the 300 intermediates clocking 37.23, and is expected to be the favorite to win both events at Friday and Saturday’s California State Championships at Buchanan High’s Memorial Stadium in Clovis.
Even without Roberson, who is currently questionable for the state meet, the Cavaliers continued to excel in the 4×100 relay. The team of Marques Rodgers, Fuery, Jackson and Ronny Hall pulled away from the field and won handily in 40.91. They have a 40.73 from the Divisional Finals, which is one of the top times in the country for 2013.
Serra’s 4×400 squad also advanced to state as Reuben Guy, Hall, Jordan Lasley and freshman Stefon Goudeau were sixth timing 3:18.22.
After winning the state championship last season, the Lady Cavaliers are faced with a little rebuilding, but managed to advance Chimere Ezumah in the 400 after she finished a close second behind Santa Ana Mater Dei’s Tara Radan (55.76) in 55.79.
Culver City’s boys will have its 400-meter team involved, led by senior Jonathan Moniz. Moniz finished fourth in the event clocking 48.75, but he anchored the Centaurs to a second place finish in the 4×400 at 3:17.26. The squad that also included sophomores Stanley Norman, Isaiah Jewett and Brandon Hasson, placed behind champion Vista Murrieta (3:16.59).
St. Mary’s Academy, an all-girls Catholic school in Inglewood, had a champion by Rachel Toliver in the triple jump at 39-3.25. Toliver has a personal best of 40-0.5 she did at the Divisionals on May 18.
Also getting to state was Kaayla Phillips in the triple jump who was third at 38-4.
Junior Sierra Peterson advanced to state after a fifth place finish in the 200 clocking 23.96, nad ran on the second leg of the Belles’ state qualifying 400 relay squad with a strong time of 46.12. Other runners were Allanah Hughes, Aliyah Hale and Toliver. St. Mary’s finished behind champion Long Beach Poly, which recorded one of the top prep times in the U.S. in 44.94.
Danielle Shanahan from Torrance Bishop Montgomery sparked the local distance runners with second place finishes in the 1,600 (4:52.17) and 3,200 (10:25.4). Sarah Baxter of Simi Valley continued to dominate the 3,200. Baxter, ranked No. 1 in the nation at the event, won timing 10:17.58.
Also in the 3,200, South Torrance’s Kimberly Coscia was third clocking 10:28.23 to make state. That was her personal best time.
Also in the girls’ 1,600, Redondo had a fourth place finish by Cara Ulizio (4:54.39) and seventh by Kayla Ferron (4:55.6), both state qualifying times. Ferron, however, may be questionable for state with a painful right foot.
The Lady Sea Hawks also had a third place finish by sophomore Amber Gore in the 800 in 2:13.05.
Also advaning to state was Rolling Hills Estates Peninsula’s Tammy McVickar in the high jump, leaping 5-5.
A highlight of the meet was accomplished by Khafani Muhammad from Sherman Oaks Notre Dame, who won the 100-meter dash in a CIF-Southern Section record time of 10.22, breaking the previous record of 10.25 set in 1984 by HenryThomas from Hawthorne. Muhammad is aiming at the national record of 10.15 set in 1990 by Henry Neal of Greenville, Texas.
In last Wednesday’s CIF-L.A. City Section Championships at Birmingham High in Lake Balboa, Carson High’s freshman sensation Jeanette Paul was a triple winner that included nationally ranked times of 55.13 in the 400 and 14.46 in the 100 hurdles.
Paul, whose run in several World Junior Olympic and national youth meets, also ran a leg in the Colts’ winning 4×100 relay squad that was timed in 47.78. Other runners were Dayna Hurd, Mylia Gray and Dierra Haven.
She was a key factor inthe Colts’ second place finish behind Palisades (97) with 78 points.
Hurd also won the 300 hurdles in 45.53 for Carson.
Other local female winners included Westchester’s Destinee Brown in the 100 (11.69) and 200 (24.2) and Harbor City Narbonne’s Ashley Anderson in the triple jump (39-5.5).
Carson’s boys also had a runner-up finish behind traditional City power Dorsey (100) with 52 points.
The Colts had a second place finish by Isaiah Marshall in the 800 (1:54.45).
Carson also had a second place finish by Julian Walker inthe shot put (47-7.5), along with second and third places by McKenzie Rickmon (14.44) and Justin Collins (14.74), in order, in the 110-meter high hurdles.
San Pedro’s Steve Correa won the 1,600 clocking 4:19.17.
All of these athletes also advanced to the state meet. The meet begins with the prelims starting at 1 p.m. on Friday and the finals beginning at 4 p.m. on Saturday.