By Riley Segal
Photos by Tucker Judkins
The track team showcased several strong individual performances in its last home meet of the year at the Rio Hondo League finals on Friday, May 6. The Tigers earned 11 first place league titles, and are sending 18 athletes, not including alternates, to compete in CIF.
Junior Kieran Press-Reynolds qualified in his three events, winning first in the 1600 and 3200 meter races with respective times of 4:30.55 and 9:49.43. Sophomore Oliver Chang was close behind, earning second in those two events, while senior Amador Lagunas captured first over Press-Reynolds in the 800 meters. For the girls, senior Emily Ye also qualified in all three of those events.
The girls’ 4×100 meter relay team managed to earn second behind Monrovia despite having to use an alternate, allowing the girls to advance. Junior Kate Kutzer garnered second in the 100 meter hurdles and first in the 300 meter hurdles. Senior Alexis Mora was right behind Kutzer in the 300 hurdles, and earned a new personal best of 45.53 seconds. Freshman Christina Taylor qualified for CIF in all four of her events, including the 400 meters, 4×100 relay, 200 meters, and 4×400 meter relay. Taylor placed first individually in the open 400 and with her 4×400 team. She also placed second in the 200 meters, while senior Rebecca Liston won third. South Pas swept the 400 meters in the girls’ division, sending all three to CIF.
The boys 4×100 relay team failed to advance, just missing qualification as it placed fourth. Senior Jonathan Jackson-Williams captured second in the 100 meters, and third in the 200 meters, and will move forward to CIF. The 4×400 relay team narrowly grabbed third place. Though each runner managed to stay near the leading competitors throughout the race, the Tiger’s final runner fell to fourth place. However, Blair’s fourth leg tripped before the finish line due to his momentum, allowing South Pas to barely win third.
The girls also found success in the field events. Kutzer placed first in the long jump, while sophomore Molly Round garnered third in the high jump. Also advancing to CIF are senior Grace Meier for triple jump and sophomore Cate Latting in the pole vault. For the boys, junior Max Schoerner earned first in the high jump, and senior Esteban Suarez easily claimed victory in the pole vault. No South Pas shot putters would qualify for CIF.
“Qualifying for CIF is always a different experience every year because you get to have new competition. I think that we have a strong shot at scoring really well, and possibly bringing home a CIF ring,” Mora said. “Overall, I hope that we can set some new personal records next week and continue to advance in CIF.”
CIF preliminaries are on Saturday, May 14 at Estancia High School. The Tigers hope to succeed at preliminaries in order to move on to CIF finals.