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First-rate performance » Ventura County Star

Published by
Scott Joerger   May 1st 2010, 6:29am
First-rate performance
By Derry Eads
Posted May 1, 2010 at midnight

Photo by Joseph A. Garcia // Buy this photo

Oxnard High’s Gustavo Mena, front, celebrates his upset win over Royal’s Travis Edwards in the boys’ invitational 1,600-meter run at the Ventura County Track and Field Championships on Friday at Moorpark High. Finishing in third is Thousand Oaks High’s Kevin Joerger.

Had Gustavo Mena not known better, the end of the Ventura County Championship boys’ 1,600 appeared more fiction than fact.

Not only did the Oxnard High senior produce one of the fastest times in the event in program history, he ended the two-year championship reign of 2009 state finalist Travis Edwards of Royal on Friday at Moorpark High.

“The whole race was a blur,” said Mena, who had a personal-best time of 4 minutes, 18.54 seconds. Trailing the whole race, Mena used a strong finishing kick to pass Edwards in the final 50 meters.

“Going into the final lap, I thought he was too far away,” said Mena. “This was surreal. Oxnard has not had a strong distance program for a while. They’re starting to pick it up.”

In the final tuneup to next week’s league championships, one county and six meet records were broken.

For the second time in four days, Alex Morgan of Ventura bettered the girls’ discus county record. The No. 4-ranked thrower in the nation cruised past the 5-year-old meet record on her first throw with a personal-best throw of 166 feet, 8 inches. That was 4 inches farther than Morgan’s county record mark last Tuesday in a Channel League dual meet.

“I threw better on Tuesday,” said Morgan.

“My personal goals today were to better my county record and get closer to 180. It was good to see that even if my rythmn is off, I can still throw good.”

Morgan won the shot put with a mark of 44-1 (3 inches shy of a 17-year-old meet record).

Rounding into form after missing the first month of the season with an injury, defending state girls’ 100 champion Valexsia Droughn of Rio Mesa won with a season-best time of 11.93.

Westlake’s Sam DeMello erased the boys’ 800 meet record with a 1:52.74, which ranks No. 6 in the state. Sean Grumney of Newbury Park was runner-up with a school record 1:53.76.

Jamison Jordan of Rio Mesa was a quadruple winner. He set a meet record in the boys’ 100 (10.63), won the 200 in 21.63 and was a member of Rio Mesa’s winning 4x100 and 4x400 relays that were without two of its members due to injuries.

Owner of area records for the boys’ 110 and 300 hurdles, Jonathan Cabral of Agoura swept both races, including a meet mark in the shorter event. Cabral is ranked high in the state in both events.

Jazzelena Black of Pacifica bettered a 23-year-old record in the girls’ triple jump with a winning leap of 37-3. It was the third meet in seven days that Black has gone 37-0 or better.

Simi Valley’s Liberty Miller missed setting a meet record in the girls’ 1,600 by one second, finishing with a 4:54.57.

“I wanted the record,” said Miller, “but by the last lap, I was so tired.”

Miller is undecided about which event — the 1,600 or 3,200 — she’ll devote her attention for the postseason.

“The 1,600 is exciting,” said Miller. “I think I can run faster in the 3,200.”

In the 3,200, Miller posted one of the fastest times in meet history with a 10:45.76, edging defending Masters champion Melissa Skiba of Oak Park, who finished in 10:48.52.

Competing on special elevated runway purchased by Moorpark this season, Oak Park’s Madison Stark matched the girls’ pole vault meet record of 11-6.

Oaks Christian broke the meet record in the girls’ 4x800 relay in 9:56.47.

Oaks Christian’s Nick DiMartino won the boys’ long jump (24-0) and was second in the 100 (10.65).

Read the full article at: www.vcstar.com
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