SJMN - 05/25/13


GILROY -- From the pure joy of Andrew Hill's Miguel Vasquez winning the 1,600 meters to the disappointment of St. Francis' 100 champion Khalid Johnson injuring his hamstring in the 200, the Central Coast Section track and field championships had the full pendulum of emotions on the boys side Friday night.

Oak Grove's David Aguilar brought no game plan to the 800 but led wire to wire to finish first.

Bellarmine College Prep's Jaylen Wright improved his school record to win 110 high hurdles in 13.91 seconds and edged Prospect standout Kamara Biawogi to win the 300 hurdles -- 37.52 to 37.59.

Bellarmine's 4x100 relay squad, which has overcome injuries to three-quarters of the team, set a school record in 41.65 seconds to beat rival St. Francis, which finished second in 42.26.

The Bells went on to win the team championship.

But on the other end of the emotional spectrum was Johnson, who had won the 100 in 10.71 earlier in the meet. The senior was near the lead in the homestretch of the 200 when his right hamstring suddenly gave out.

After being consoled by other runners in the 200, Johnson was helped to the infield trainer's table. The trainer believes the injury is a strain -- not a tear -- and Johnson is keeping his fingers crossed that he will be able to run in the state meet.

"We hope to see him on the track next week," St. Francis coach Mike Saso said. "He deserves that."

Besides Johnson's disappointment,

the meet had many uplifting moments.

Vasquez entered the 1,600 having worked on nothing but speed drills since being disqualified for stepping on a line in the 3,200 at his league finals.

The work paid off.

The UC Riverside-bound senior ran a blistering final half lap to win the 1,600 in 4:12.48, easily surpassing his previous personal best of 4:18 and finishing more than two seconds ahead of runner-up Scott Edwards of Scotts Valley.

"I told myself that once I hit the backstretch that I was going to give it everything I had," Vasquez said. "I honestly didn't think of the time at all."

In the 800, Aguilar charged to the lead and kept it at a comfortable distance until the final 25 meters, then held on as Vasquez, Carlmont's Tim Layten and San Lorenzo Valley's Cody Johnson made a late push.

"I don't really have a strategy; I just run until I feel pain," said Aguilar, who won the race in 1:52.15.

Vasquez finished second in the 800 in 1:52.55.

Despite his impressive win in the 110 hurdles, Wright said, "I still have a lot of work to do. I am still confident that at state trials and state finals I can get my time down."

The 300 hurdles was much tighter as Biawogi and Wright finished nearly stride for stride.

"I knew going into this one, it was going to be close," Wright said. "This last straightaway, I saw him in the corner of my eye and I had to turn it on."

Milpitas' Yohaness Estifanos had to turn it on, too, to hold off Leland's Richard Ho in the 3,200. Estifanos ran in 9:07.58 to Ho's 9:07.85.

"I thought he was going to get it," Estifanos said. "He almost got me."

In the 400, San Mateo's Michael Beery crossed the finish line first in 48.78, edging Sacred Heart Cathedral's Edward Lampkin, who ran in 48.91.

"That's by far the best I've run all season," Beery said. "It's just putting it all together every single time, working on something new. It all came together at the right time."

In the long jump, winner Victor Du of Palo Alto leapt 23 feet, 4 inches on his first attempt and then watched as his competition tried to catch him.

Mitty's Matthew Wong, the CCS season leader at 23-6 ¾, came close but finished second in 23-3 ½. In all, six of the eight long jump finalists reached the state meet qualifying mark of 22-8.

"I was really lucky because I am not sure I would have made a second good jump because my heel has been bothering me all year," Du said. "So far I have been taking one jump at a meet for the last two months. Fortunately, that worked out for me."

Wong came back to win the triple jump in 45-4 ¼.

In the pole vault, St. Francis' Marc Toney repeated as CCS champion in 15-8 but missed at 16-3, which would have eclipsed his dad Steve's high school mark of 16-2. Steve Toney won a state title while competing for Menlo-Atherton.

"I've got one more inch to go," said Marc Toney, whose personal best is 16-1.

Serra's Jon Beering won the shot put (59-9), and Homestead's Joseph Ilaoa won the discus (165-9).

Palo Alto won the 4x400 relay in 3:22.77 as anchor Nick Sullivan made up a lot of ground after taking the baton with his team in fifth place. Serra finished second in 3:23.55.

Harker's Sumit Minocho won the 200 in 21.43 but felt bad for Johnson.

"He was gaining on me," Minocho said. "In the end, I just heard him screaming. Right after the race, I just came up and tried to comfort him."

For Minocho, a senior, the CCS title as his first.

"It feels amazing," he said.

Bellarmine's 4x100 relay team felt the same way after they opened the track portion of the meet with a school record.

It has been a tough road for the Bells.

Joey Sanfilippo, the relay team's anchor, suffered a broken bone in his calf at the end of football season. Aaron Chapman has come back from two anterior cruciate ligament tears, the most recent in a season-opening football loss to De La Salle on Aug. 31, and meniscus surgery. Nikolai Makarov has overcome severe hamstring problems.

"We've been working hard every single day at practice," Chapman said.

It was even more special for Champan because the school record the Bells' relay team broke was set by a squad two years ago that included Chapman's brother, Andre.

"I'm wearing his spikes from that year," Chapman said.


GILROY -- Menlo School's Maddy Price was a double winner Friday at the Central Coast Section track and field championships, setting season bests in each event.

Price won the girls 400 meters in 54.78 seconds and the 200 in 24.30. Her previous bests, both also tops in the CCS, were 55.16 and 24.50, respectively.

"I'm just so excited to get into the 54s," Price said of her time in the 400. "It's a dream come true."

Price trailed Ellisa Bryant of Piedmont Hills going into the final straightaway, made a move to go by and then held on at the end.

"It was definitely rough coming off the last turn at the 300,'' Price said. "I tried to stay relaxed the last 100 meters.

Bryant took second in 55.01.

"I know I need to work on my finish,'' Bryant said. "I'll get that down next week. I want to run in the 53s at state, skip over the 54s.''

In the 200, Price came from behind to catch Seaside's Jayla Scholis, the 100 champion, in the final 20 meters.

"I'm real happy with that time," Price said. "Hopefully I can drop that at state, get under 24."

One of the biggest personal breakthroughs was turned in by Gunn freshman Maya Miklos, who won the 300 hurdles in 43.39. Her previous best was 44.73.

"The first time this season (running the 300 hurdles) I ran 49, and I was so proud I broke 50," Miklos said. "I never thought it would come to this."

The big improvement came about as a byproduct of dramatic

improvement in her open 400 times. Miklos ran the 400 in 1:05.08 in eighth grade and has gotten her time down under a minute as a freshman.

Mountain View's Kolisa Nhlapo was second in 44.04.

Sabrina Mendoza of Mills won the shot put with a mark of 41 feet, 0 1/2 inches, quite a bit off her season-best of 43-4 but still a foot beyond runner-up Tiffanie Obilor of Presentation.

"I want to do better at state than I did last year,'' Mendoza said. "It's one more chance to compete in high school.''

Mendoza who will compete in college at the University of Hawaii, also took third in the discus (124-0) behind winner Anya Tonga (136-7) of Del Mar.

Wilcox's Marisa Kwiatkowski was a double winner, taking the triple jump at 40-0 and long jump at 18-41/2.

"One goal at state is to advance to the final in the triple jump,'' Kwiatkowski said. "To PR would be amazing.''

Teammate Alicia Yee took second in the triple jump with a personal-best 37-41/4.

Los Gatos, getting first-place finishes from its 4x100 relay team, Greta Wagner in the pole vault (13-0) and Melina Moore in the high jump, won the team title with 79.5 points. Piedmont Hills was second with 62, and Wilcox third with 57.

Los Gatos' sprint relay team ran 47.31, bettering its previous best of 47.61

Los Gatos received a big contribution from freshman Caice Lanovaz, who took third in the 100 hurdles, fourth in the triple jump, seventh in the long jump and ran the leadoff leg on the 400 relay. The other sprint relay members were Wagner, Hannah Chen and Rachel Staab.

Staab, a senior deflected talk of how fast the team might be able to run.

"It's not about time, it's about being a team,'' Staab said. "Being with these girls is awesome. What I like is to see what our bodies can do. It's so cool when you do something when your body has never done that before.''

Gunn's Sarah Robinson took second in the 3,200 and third in the 1,600. Her time in the 3,200 was a season-best 10:28.08.

It's a PR, so I'm happy,'' Robinson said. "Still I'd like to see myself run faster.''

San Lorenzo Valley's Anna Maxwell won both races. Her time in the 1,600 -- 4:42.57 -- broke the CCS record and is the fastest in the nation this season.