Friday, May 20, 2016

Local Athletes Shine At Section's Div. 1 Track Meet

The rain clouds were ominous to the north, but that where they stayed all night. An occasional drop of rain was felt over Thunder Stadium as the Sac-Joaquin Section held its Division I Track and Field Championships there Friday night. A brisk south wind turned the short hurdles and the sprints to the north rather than its typical direction.
Despite the grayness in the sky, track and field athletes still did quite well this night in a tune-up for the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Championship coming up next Thursday and Friday. The top 12 times/marks will advance from this meet to the Masters, which basically makes the Divisional meet a chance for track teams to accumulate points. Ten points were handed out to first place finishes and points were earned down to the 8th position.
Sheldon's Isaiah Brooks, finished 4th in the long jump
As is typical in recent years, those points generally were earned by athletes from Davis, St. Francis and Jesuit, but the Franklin girls and Monterey Trail and Pleasant Grove boys did pretty good in the point count.
First place medals were earned by Franklin's James Tillis in the 400 meters, Pleasant Grove's MacLean Connor in both the 110 meter and the 300 meter hurdles, Sheldon's Tai McDonald in the 100 meters and Monterey Trail's Myles Pruitt in the high jump. Franklin's Boys 4x400 meter relay team also was a first-place winner.
Pruitt just recently signed a National Letter of Intent to play football at the University of Iowa. Coaches saw some great potential in this Mustang, but he's hoping he can continue his jumping career with the Hawkeyes track team.
"I want to major in engineering and communications and minor in business so I'll be in school for eight years," he laughed.
Myles Pruitt, who won the high jump

Pruitt's leap of 6-2 Thursday was good enough for first place in the high jump for this meet, but he has gone as high a 6-6, second best mark in the Section. In practice he likes to wear a 15-pound vest to improve his performance.
"It makes me feel like I'm light," he laughed.
But, Pruitt fouled a couple times in the triple jump competition and ended up in 20th place, so he won't be competing in that event at the Masters.
"I changed my strategy and messed up," he admitted.
Tillis, wearing his chartreuse spikes and matching arm bands, looked the roll of a thoroughbred easily winning the 400 meters in a time of 48.40 seconds.
"I started wearing this color since freshman year and it's become my trademark," he said.
He actually began running hurdles his freshman season, but was hurt and switched to the 400 meters during his recovery and found it the right length of race.
Elk Grove's Madison Wong setting the starting blocks for the 4x100 meter relay
"You get out hard the first 100 (meters), then go into my 'float' and kick it all in the last 100," Tillis explained.
A junior, Tillis thinks he stands a good chance to qualify for the CIF State Track Meet in two weeks.
"I think if I work hard, I'll get it," he claimed.
Some second place finishes by local kids included Franklin's Girls 4x400 meter relay team, Adrianne Bautista of Monterey Trail in the triple jump, Jacob Cornelio of Elk Grove in the discus, Janessa Moses of Sheldon in the shot put, McDonald of Sheldon in the 200 meters, Cecily Montanez of Franklin in the girls 300 meter hurdles and James Hampton of Pleasant Grove in the 100 meters.
Records set Friday night included Jurnee Woodward of Vacaville in the 100 meter hurdles (13.88 seconds) and in the 300 meter hurdles (41.31 seconds). She also won the girls 200 meter dash.

Division II Track

Cosumnes Oaks won the 4x400 meter race at the Section's Division II Meet Friday, held at Bella Vista H.S.
Clinton Spellman of Laguna Creek won both the 100 meter and 200 meter dashes.

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