THE MILE RUN
Dubbed "THE" glamour event of Track & Field, the Mile Run (1600 in the 80's and 90's) has been one of the CCS's most exciting races. Over the years many fine runner's and many great races have developed out of the Central Coast Section. Our section's pioneer milers actually came out of the old NCS. Mike Ryan of Wilcox was our sections first State Champion when he won that prestigious meet in 1964 as a junior in 4:09.5, placing 2nd to Tim Danielson (Chula Vista-San Diego) the following year (Danielson became one of two prep runner's to break the infamous 4:00 minute mile that year). Other impressive milers from the CCS were Robin Ruble (Los Altos-'60), Bob Scurich (Watsonville-'64) and Don Bowden (Lincoln-'54; while at Cal-Berkeley became the first American to break 4:00!). After Ryan (Wilcox-65) graduated (He went on to the Air Force Academy where was the NCAA XC, see 2 mile) the Mile Run became even more competitive at the CCS level in the late 60's. Manny Mahon (Lynbrook, state meet finalist as a junior), Klaus Hoffman (SI-'68), Eugenio Amaya (Burlingame-'69), Jamie Baldevinos (Willow Glen-'68), Larry Churchill (Mt. Pleasant-'68) and Jack Christiansen-Homestead-'69) represented the strength of the CCS, as more runners ran faster over the four lap event.
The 70's premiered two outstanding milers in Mark Stillman (Willow Glen, CCS leader, All-Time) and Stan Ross (Serra, #2 All-Time). These two runner's treated us to great mile battles with Stillman always on top at the finish. Any other year and Ross would have easily outdistanced the field. It's highly likely that Stillman would not have run faster without Ross, as he usually ran to win and Ross always pressed the pace! Kick in John Sup (Palma-'77) and Paul Brewer (Leigh-'78) and 1977 was a huge year for milers.
Other standout milers from the 70's in the section were Steve Crowley (Gunn-'73), Kobert Smith (Awalt-'78), Conrad Suhr (Leigh-'74), Ernie Ferral (WC Overfelt-'72), George Manriquez (Mt. Pleasant-'72), Carlos Carrasco (Mt. Pleasant-'78, Steve Brooks-'72), Todd Baker (Westmont-'79) and the first ever CCS double Mile/2 Mile winner, Champion Fernando Balderas (San Jose-'79).
In the 80's milers from the section were still very competitive as we saw the only other CCS double winner in Matt Guisto (San Mateo-'84, later became one of 4 CCS milers to break 4:00) and state finalist Gary Lewis (Gunderson-'82, 6th; broke 4:00 while at Fresno State), Jeff Purrington (Willow Glen-'81), Paul Cox (Los Gatos-'81) as well as standouts Tom Legan* (Del Mar-'83), Brian Dulin (Leigh-'81), Jesse Torres (Independence-'81), and #3 CCS All-Time, State Champion, Scott Robinson (Bellarmine-'87).
The final decade in the section produced excellent milers in Brendan Fitzgibbon-St.Ignatius-'97, 2nd in the state meet) and teammate Brad Hansen (SI-'98). Danny Skirik (Leland-'98), Gary Passanisi (Aptos-'97, State 3200 Champion), Matt Ringer (Homestead-'90), Andrew Wulf (Bellarmine-'97) and Jason Balkman (Lynbrook-'95) a fine miler and another State 3200 Champion.