Baler Boys Clipped at Finish - 2003

Baler boys clipped at finish

Friday, May 02, 2003

By John Reid/Sports Editor

Pablo Balancio/Free Lance Photographer
Siljef Tabancay established himself as the second-fastest sophomore in the Central Coast Section in the 110-meter hurdles when he clocked 15.83 seconds to win Thursday’s event in the Balers’ dual meet with Salinas. He also ran 42.3 in the 330-yard hurdles and won the event when the original winner was disqualified.
Sarah Groman jumped 5-0 to win the girls high jump.
The race for the Tri-County Athletic League boys track and field championship is officially on.

The wave of purple-and-gold-clad athletes flowed across Andy Hardin Field as Salinas’ Chris Choate cruised home with the winning 4X440 relay anchor leg in Thursday’s dual meet with Hollister High. With five points for first and none for second the meet came down to the final event, which wasn’t much of a surprise.

Salinas 71, Hollister 65.

The 20 straight dual meet victories by the Baler varsity boys is done, partly due to a disqualification of a Baler event winner who didn’t check in. That was basically a three-point swing, which meant if the disqualification hadn’t happened, the meet would have ended up in a 68-68 tie. Baler head coach Randy Logue noticed the infraction and, showing integrity to the highest degree, reported it to Salinas assistant Roger Chagnon.

“We still could have gained a point or two here or there in the other events,” said Logue. “Nobody wanted to see the streak end. But hats off to Salinas. They have some great athletes, but we knew that coming in.”

“Hollister has guys who have already competed in big meets,” said Chagnon. “We have some newcomers who are learning. It will all come down to the league meet anyway.”

The Baler boys received some outstanding performances and a few PR’s. Thomas Fernandez PR’d in the triple jump with a mark of 44-0. That’s the 10th best mark in the Central Coast Section behind Baler teammate Steve Bianchi, who was second Thursday with a leap of 43-2. Armando Larez made it a sweep in the TJ with a third place mark of 40-0. Larez also had his best 100-meter time, clocking 11.3 for third place.

Bianchi garnered a second in the long jump (20-0 1/2), which was won by Fernandez at 20-2. Siljef Tabancay’s 19-10 completed the sweep in the LJ.

The Balers went 1-2 in the high jump with Danny Brooks clearing 6-2 on his final jump to win it. Bianchi was second at 6-0.

“Those were the three top jumpers in the league out there today,” said Brooks, who was sporting his new shoes. “I need to jump 6-4 at CCS, minimum to go to state.”

Clay Peer keeps getting better and better in the shot put. Peer won with a PR of 49-1, which is tied for the eighth best mark in CCS.

One of the top performances of the day was by the sophomore Tabancay. Tabancay cooked in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 15.83, a personal best. That is one of the top marks in CCS. He added a 42.3 in the 330-yard hurdles.

“That was big to win the 110 hurdles,” said Tabancay. “I felt good today. I can go faster.”

The ironman award goes to distance runner Jonathan Rivera. Knowing the meet was going to be tight, Logue had Rivera run the 880, Mile and 2-Mile runs. Rivera won the mile in 4:39 and took second in the 880 at 2:03.9 and second in the 2-mile at 10:20.

Chris Pratt ran well, too for the Balers. Pratt was second in the 440 at 53.1 and second in the 220 at 23.7.

The Cowboys Andy Palacio, in his first year of track and field, put on a show in the sprints. He clocked 10.87 in the 100-meters, one of the fastest times in CCS and 23.13 in the 220. He also anchored the sizzling 4X100 relay team - consisting of Matt Bradford, Choate, Daniel Orozco and himself - and ran a strong leg on the 4X440 relay team.

“We need to get prepared for North Salinas next week,” said Logue. “That’s the most important meet in school history right now. If we lose that we’re down the road as far as winning the league meet.”

  • Frosh/soph boys score: Salinas 81, Hollister 55


    Jamie O’brian took the baton about 30 yards from behind her Salinas opponent in the final leg of the 4X400 relay. Within 220 yards, O’brian had passed Jessica Davi and zoomed the rest of the way to put a final statement on the Balers’ convincing dua meet win over the Cowboys - 80-55. O’brian anchored the Baler’s winning 4X100 relay and placed first in the 100-meters (12.6) and the 220 (27.2). O’brian is only a sophomore.

    “She’s scary,” said Chagnon of the young Baler talent. “She’s a fighter, too. She has something you can’t coach. I’d like to have her on my team.”

    Good news from the discus pit. Naomi Ruiz threw 129-11 to win the discus. It was her best mark since her CCS-best 133-0 at the King City Invitational. Ruiz was second in the shot put at 34-0 3/4, 1/4 inch past Stephanie Williams of Salinas.

    “A quarter inch,” steamed Ruiz. “A quarter inch short.”

    And more good news from the long hurdles. Junior Kory Case, who had such a promising sophomore season, had her best time in the 330-hurdles at 47.93. That’s ninth best in the CCS thus far. Case was second in the 100-hurdles at 17.13.

    Other top girls marks and times were by Dani Andrewson, who went 33-0 in the triple jump and Allison Schmidt, who looked strong in the mile at 5:42. Schmidt ran the 880 for the first time ever and clocked 2:34.6. Stephanie Starritt vaulted 10-6 in tough weather conditions. Jamie Flores PR’d in the triple jump at 32-10 for second place, while Mary Von Urff PR’d in the shot put with a heave of 29-5 3/4 for third place.

    “I was surprised the meet was as close as it was,” said Chagnon.

    “I wasn’t surprised it that close,” countered Baler coach Jennifer Logue. “We expected Salinas to be strong. We knew we had to have all the girls performing at or near the top of their capability and most of them did.”

  • JV girls score: Hollister 78.5, Salinas 56.5. The highlight was the 4X440 relay team of Stephanie Whitely, Hanna Guenther, Jamila Saqqa and Yraisa Cortez, which clocked 4:48.

  • Note: The frosh/soph and varsity trials will be at Andy Hardin Field on May 14. The finals are May 17 at Hartnell College.