Athlete of the Week - San Jose Mercury News


Sport: Track and field.

Event: 3,200 meters. Class: Senior.

It was a big week for Wolfsmith, who made his college decision, opting to continue his running career at the Air Force Academy. The former standout triathlete decided to focus solely on track this season and it paid off Friday as he bested a stellar field to win his first Central Coast Section title in the 3,200 meters with a personal-best time of 9 minutes, 7.10 seconds. Three runners led on the last lap, the final one being Wolfsmith, who held off Mountain View's Garrett Rowe (9:08.17) before collapsing on the track. "I haven't lost to a CCS runner this year, but I haven't raced against Garrett or (Palo Alto's Philip) MacQuitty," Wolfsmith said. "I wasn't familiar with them so I tried to stay aware of what they were doing. It was a tactical race rather than a time trial and we all seemed to have our legs for that last lap." Last season, Wolfsmith qualified for the state meet with a third-place finish at CCS, running his previous-best time of 9:11.86. This year Novato's Erik Olson is the state favorite with a season best of 8:55.06. "I'm confident I can break nine minutes," Wolfsmith said. "I just haven't been in the right race to do it yet. I've got a good kick so I do well in surging races, but I'm more comfortable running a faster, more consistent pace."


Sport: Track and field.

Event: High jump. Class: Senior.

After winning the Central Coast Section meet as a sophomore, Dolbec was ready to defend her title last year before appendicitis ended her season after the CCS semifinals. But the 6-foot-1 senior is healthy this year and won her second CCS crown Saturday with a leap of 5 feet, 6 inches. Also a standout middle blocker in volleyball, Dolbec will play both sports next year at UC-Santa Barbara, but first she has her mind set on a personal best at the State Track and Field meet Friday and Saturday at Buchanan High School in Clovis. Dolbec has cleared 5-10 in practice, and her personal best of 5-8 in competition this season is tied for the third best in the state. "Kiersten is very committed and has the spring that lets her jump so high," Saratoga jump coach Elie Younes said. "I think there is a great chance for her to win the state title." It will be the third state meet for Dolbec, who has learned from her experience. "It's a tough two-day competition and I've been tired on the second day in the past, so I hope to just jump high enough to qualify to leave some energy for Saturday so I can go for my best jump in the finals," she said.