Track & Field 2014

Girls Crowned Champions of the North Coast Section!

May 31st, 2014 

 

Led by victories in both relays and bolstered by two individual wins, the girls team cemented itself as 2014’s best with a huge team championship at the North Coast Section Meet of Champions.  “I could not have scripted this any better,” said coach Jay Lawson afterwards.  “We started the meet with Ma’ane getting a big 2nd place in the long jump… and then we shocked everyone by winning the 4 x 100.  The momentum we built early from those two events set a tone that we carried through the whole meet.  It was awesome.”

   “Awesome” is but one of the adjectives used to describe the performances of senior Carly Schulz and junior Chloe Jenkins on Saturday.  Both girls left Edwards Stadium sporting 3 gold medals and shared in 2 different school records.  Carly, last year’s 300m hurdles champion, defended her title in school-record fashion… running a lifetime best 43.43 for the win.  She also ran a huge 2nd leg (55.8) on the victorious 4 x 400 squad that broke the school record. 

  “Carly looked phenomenal today,” remarked hurdles coach Moses Jocko.  “I could tell after the 4 x 100 that she wasn’t going to get beat today.  She had the look of a champion… for sure.” 

** Check out the girls 4 x 400 race here **

  ** Check out the girls 4 x 100 race here **

**Check out the boys 110m hurdles race here **

** Check out the girls 1600m race here **

** Check out the girls 300m hurdles final  here **

Perhaps nobody donned  that championship look on Saturday as much as junior Chloe Jenkins.  After anchoring the  4 x 100 team, she dismantled a talented 800 meter field to win going away.  Her 2:12.47 was the fastest time in the NCS this year by almost 2 seconds and ranks 2nd on the school’s all-time list.  For an encore, she had to overcome a slight deficit and simply ran the fastest 400 meter split ever recorded for a Saint Mary’s athlete.. anchoring the girls 4 x 400 team in 53.6 to finish 1st in a school record 3:47.04. 

  “There was not an athlete at the meet who looked and performed as dominantly as Chloe,” said coach Denis Mohun.  “She was a woman amongst girls today.  She looked like she had an ‘S on her chest today.   I checked her uniform afterwards to see if the ‘M’ was still there.  Fortunately, it was.” 

** Check out the boys 300m hurdle race here **  

**Check out the boys 1600m race here **

** Check out the girls 300m hurdles trial heat here **

** Check out the girls 800 meter final here **

The Panthers amassed 20 of their team’s 49 points in the two relays.  The 4 x 100 quartet of Ma’ane Mosely, Carly Schulz, Kenady Jackson, and Chloe Jenkins were simply outstanding… passing the baton effectively, and out-sprinting all other teams on their way to a 47.62 win.   “All four of those girls ran great,” said Lawson.  “Mo and Carly had such a great pass.  We immediately jumped into the lead after their pass and never gave it up. “ 

   Junior Ma’ane  Mosley, still just a novice to the sport, was a few granules of sand away from shocking all prognosticators and winning the girls long jump.  Her 18’2” jump was the same distance as the winner… Mo having to settle for 2nd based on an inferior 2nd best jump.  Still, the 8 points awarded in the LJ were crucial to the team’s success. 

  On Friday, Briahn Brown placed 6th in the girls high jump to complete the team scoring for the Panthers.

  For the boys, they advanced 7 athletes from the qualifying rounds into the finals in 8 different events… advancing 3 to the state meet next week in Clovis.  Junior Ron Smith made the finals in 3 events (triple jump, 300 hurdles, 4 x 100), took home 2 medals and secured a spot in the state meet in his best event… the triple jump.  Likewise, seniors Ja’Vion Robinson and Harold Terrell will also be making the trip to state in their specialty events… the 110 hurdles and high jump respectively.  Ja’Vion overcame a bad start and worked his way into and onto the podium… running 14.43 to grab the last qualifying spot.  Harold, a state meet performer from last year, also qualified in the 3rd position… jumping 6’7” on his first try to secure his bid. 

“It’s really nice to see those 2 seniors get a chance to finish off their high school careers at State,” said Lawson.  “They’ve both worked hard and deserve a chance to go down and see if they can get into the finals on Saturday.”

    Overall, this weekend’s Meet of Champions was truly a meet that crowned several Panthers  and the girls team “champion”.  It is quite an accomplishment and one that the coaches and athletes are very proud of.  Congratulations to the both boys and girls teams… coaches and athletes for a great meet and a great season.. and good luck to the 8 athletes who will be traveling to the state meet this weekend!  

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Girls Capture NCS Bayshore Area Championship; Boys Edged for 2nd… Finish 3rd

May 25th, 2014

After a dominating team performance at the TCAL league championships, the girls team once again flexed their collective muscles in capturing the NCS Bayshore Area Championship.  Led by double winners Chloe Jenkins and Spencer Moore, the lady Panthers easily out-pointed runner-up James Logan for the team championship.  Meanwhile, the boys team performed extraordinarily well against the teams from the TCAL, WACC, and MVAL leagues… finishing 3rd behind James Logan and Castro Valley.  The top 7 individual performers from the meet will advance to next week’s North Coast Section “Meet of Champions” at CAL. 

  “Our girls team, despite some nagging injuries to a couple of key people, looked pretty dominant today,” said coach Jay Lawson.  “We won 8 events and set numerous seasonal bests against very strong competition.”  Indeed, track and field, unlike other NCS sports, does not divide teams into divisions based on school size.  Instead, teams are divided up geographically upon entering the post-season.  Therefore, “we have to compete for team championships against schools that have 3, 4 and sometimes 5 times as many students,” says coach Lawson.  “To win a team championship is pretty amazing accomplishment.”

  Leading the girls team, once again, were seniors Carly Schulz and Spencer Moore… as well as junior Chloe Jenkins.  Carly once again won her specialty race, the 300 meter hurdles, while also placing 4th in the 100 meter hurdles, as well as running the 2nd leg on both victorious relay teams (4 x 100 and 4 x 400).   Meanwhile, teammate Spencer Moore had quite a day… winning both the 1600 (5:05) and 3200 (11:24) meter… while also running the opening leg on the 4 x 400 meter relay.   Still, the performer of the meet had to be junior Chloe Jenkins.  Her day began with a huge come-from-behind anchor leg in the 4 x 100… with the Panthers winning in a NCS leading time of 48.00.  Then, she convincingly won the 400 meters, then the 800 meters… then ushered in another come-from-behind victory in the 4 x 400.  By day’s end, Chloe was wearing 4 first place medals… a feat no other athlete in the meet accomplished.  Needless to say it was quite a day for Chloe and her teammates. 

Other notable performances went to high jump winner Briahn Brown (5’4”), long jump qualifier Ma’ane Mosley (17’8”), triple jumper Margaret English (36’3”), quarter milers Kenady Jackson (59.70) and Zoie Campbell (59.72), and distance runner Ella Hymel (5:34, 12:17). 

  The boys, while not victorious, showed a lot of grit and determination while fighting to a 3rd place finish.  “Our boys performed about as well as they could,” said coach Jeff Rogers afterwards.  “Finishing 3rd to powerhouses James Logan and Castro Valley is nothing to be disappointed about.  Both those teams are amongst the top teams in the entire North Coast Section and we gave them a very good run today.  Our guys should feel proud.”

  Leading the Panthers were seniors Ja’Vion Robinson, Harold Terrell and Jovani Barajas… as well as junior Ron Smith.  Ja’Vion was the Panthers lone individual winner, claiming the top prize in the 110 meter hurdles (14.79) while also finishing 2nd in the 300 meter hurdles in a lifetime best 39.38.   Jumper Harold Terrell scored well in both the high jump and long jump… placing 2nd in the HJ (6’6”) and 3rd  (also in a lifetime best) in the LJ at 22’1”.  Jovani Barajas took the lead with 150 meters to go in the boys 1600 and looked for a moment like he may steal the race before finally succumbing and finishing 3rd in 4:26.50.  Finally, junior Ron Smith recorded 3 lifetime bests on Saturday…. jumping 47’0 to finish 3rd in a stacked triple jump competition, running 15.94 to place 4th in the 110m hurdles, and finishing his day by running a PR 39.48 to place 3rd, right behind Ja’Vion, in the 300m hurdles. 

 Other qualifiers on the boys side included senior Zeke Knox in the 110m hurdles, sophomore Malik Stinson in the triple jump, and both the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 meter relay teams.

   In all, Saturday’s Bayshore meet was quite an affair for the Panthers.  With team championships and individual qualifiers decided, they now look to this weekend’s much anticipated NCS Meet of Champions in hopes that they will earn one of the three coveted state meet qualifying spots.  The meet is held at CAL’s Edwards Stadium, with the qualifying rounds contested on Friday and the finals held on Saturday.  Good luck to the Panthers as they try and qualify for state!

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Panthers Continue Dominance of League Competition with Huge TCAL Championship Wins

May 17th, 2014 

   

The 2014 Tri-County Athletic League (TCAL) track season ended on Saturday in familiar fashion with the Panthers once again claiming boys’ and girls’ league championships.  For the boys, this title was the 28th consecutive league championship… dating back to 1987.  For the girls, it was the 17th championship in their 19 year existence on campus.   For the team, the victories were resounding and littered with excellent performances and efforts.

    In the girls meet, the Panthers claimed victory in 11 of the 15 events contested while piling up more team points than the next 4 teams combined!  Leading the way were a bevy of stars… including Spencer Moore who won both the 4 lap 1600 and 8 lap 3200 races; Chloe Jenkins who won the 1 lap 400 meter and 2 lap 800 meter races; sophomore Kenady Jackson who took the ½ lap 200 meter race; senior Carly Schulz who won the 300m hurdles; Margaret English who hopped, stepped and jumped her way to a triple jump win; and juniors Briahn Brown and Ma’ane Mosely who leaped their way to the high jump and long jump crown, respectively.  In addition to their individual wins, the Panthers also claimed top honors in both relays.  The team of Kenady Jackson, Carly Schulz, Chloe Jenkins and Zoie Campbell combined for the 4 x 100 gold… with Spencer Moore joining Kenday, Carly and Chloe to win the  4 x 400. 

     “Our girls really dominated the competition today,” said coach Jay Lawson.  “We have such top talent up front, but also have incredible depth to back them up.  The way we looked today, it’s obvious to me that we’ll be one of the few schools vying for a NCS Area title as well as the Meet of Champions title.”

   Other strong performances on the girls side included Margaret English’s 5’0, 2nd place high jump, Zoie Campbell’s 2nd and 3rd place finish in the 200 and 400, Briahn Brown’s PR 2nd place finish in both the long and triple jump, Avi Perteet’s runner-up finish in the girls 800, and Soraya Shockley’s pair of 4th place finishes in the shot put and discus.  “We’ve come to expect that our top 6 or 7 girls will perform well and grab the headlines,” said coach Jeff Rogers.  “But to amass 214 points in a league championship meet, you must have a lot of others performing and contributing.  Girls like Giauna Nu’man, Ella Hymel, Miriam Raffel-Smith, Jamaica Greenwood, Carolyn Gill, and Isabel Havens all scored points for the team.  I’m especially proud of what those girls were able to do today.”

   For the boys, their 74 point win over runner-up Hercules was quite impressive considering that 8 weeks ago the Panthers escaped with a just a 1 point win over the Titans in their league dual meet.  “Was it 74 points?” queried coach Jay Lawson afterwards.  “Wow!  I wouldn’t have called that going into this meet.” 

   Like the girls, the Panthers dominance was a complete team effort… led by the hurdlers and jumpers.  Ja’Vion Robinson easily won the 110 hurdles, but it was the 2-3-4 finish by Ron Smith, Liam Godfrey and Zeke Knox that allowed the Panthers to amass 28 points in the event.   Likewise, the 300 hurdles garnered the Panthers another 19 points when Smith, Robinson, Godfrey and Knox went 2-3-4-6.  The 54 points scored in the jumping events showed the Panthers were just as dominant there.  Ron Smith and Malik Stinson went 1 -2 in the triple jump; Harold Terrell, Malik, Ron and freshman Sanjay Kettles went 2-3-4-5 in the long jump; and Harold and Roman Grace went 2-5 in the high jump to account for the bulk of the scoring. 

“I was really proud of all my hurdlers today,” said coach Moses Jocko.  “This group has worked hard all season, not giving up and not quitting.  Because of the difficulty of the event, a lot of kids quit… but not this group.  I’m glad they were able to see the benefit of their work today.”

   Indeed, the entire Panther squad was able to reap the benefits of their work at the TCAL championships.  Personal bests and/or league wins were also recorded by Kristian Barchard (200), Marquis Chambers (200, 400), Diego Jara (1600), Donye Green (800), Jared Flint (800), Steve Harvey (100, 200), Owen Woo (1600), Arias Williams (TJ), Miles Joyner (300H), Lorenzo Logwood (100), Kameron Jackson (100), Sanjay Kettles (400), Malik Stinson (LJ, TJ), Ben Schrider (SP), and Faraz Khan (1600). 

     In all, the Panthers head into the Bayshore Area meet with plenty of momentum.  The Bayshore meet features the top athletes and qualifiers from the TCAL as well as the WACC and MVAL leagues.  The meet is on Saturday at Castro Valley High School.  The top 7 placers from this meet advance onto the Meet of Champions at CAL the following week.  Good Luck to the Panthers at Bayshore! 

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Team Pictures This Friday!

May 7th, 2014

The Panther track & field team has team pictures on Friday after school.  Each team member should bring their uniform and order envelope if they would like to purchase team or individual pictures.

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Panthers Show No Sign Of Vacation Hangover With Huge TCAL Wins

April 30th, 2014

Coming off an Easter vacation that lasted a week and a half, head coach Jay Lawson was a bit unsure of how his Panther team would perform coming out of the break. “Extended breaks can be both a blessing and a curse,” said coach Lawson.  “I’ve seen kids really benefit from the rest they’re able to get, but I’ve also seen kids come back flat and a bit out of it.  Coming into today, I wasn’t quite sure what we’d get.” 

Fortunately for coach Lawson and the entire Panther coaching staff, the athletes seemed to not miss a beat.  Led by a huge performance from senor Harold Terrell, both boys and girls team easily defeated the Pride, Eagles and Oilers from Salesian, Kennedy and Richmond respectively.

Having competed at last year’s state championships, as well as most of the prestigious meets Northern California has to offer, senior Harold Terrell is no stranger to big meets and big performances.  However, Tuesday now serves as the best day in his track and field life so far.  After having soared a lifetime best 21’0” to win the long jump, Harold stepped over to the high jump apron and set another lifetime best of 6’8”… which also makes him the #5 performer in school history.

“Harold seems to be rounding into form,” said coach Jeff Rogers afterwards.  “I’m not sure I’ve seen anyone jump that high in a home dual meet.  Hopefully this is the start of a great post-season-to-be.”

Also starring for the Panthers on he boys side were junior Ben Schrider, who won the shot put and discus; Jovani Barajas who won the 800 and 1600; Marquis Chambers who won the 100 and 200; Roman Grace who recorded lifetime bests in the long jump, high jump and 200 meters; and freshmen Owen Woo and Jared Flint who both PR’d in the boys 1600… Owen at 4:49 and Jared at 4:56.

For the girls, it was business as usual… with the usual suspects performing at their usual high level.  Senior Carly Schulz won the 200 and 400, Chloe Jenkins won the mile, Kenady Jackson won the 100, Spencer Moore won the 800, Margaret English won the long jump and triple jump, and Soraya Shockley won the shot put and discus to lead an overwhelming Panther onslaught.

“Our team is so deep, so talented and so motivated that if other teams aren’t prepared they can really get overwhelmed.  That’s what happened today,” said coach Kim Pacatte.  Indeed, the Panthers are now just one meet victory away from clinching yet another league championship.  The final TCAL league meet of the year will be next Thursday here at Brady Park on the Saint Mary’s campus.  Hope to see you there!

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Records Fall, All-Time Lists Lengthened at Woody Wilson

April 20th, 2014 

   Two school records were broken on Saturday when the Panthers travelled to Davis for the Woody Wilson Invitational.  Junior Chloe Jenkins was the first to the top of the all-time list, breaking the 400 meter dash record of 56.77 set in 2008 by Taylor Lawson.  Chloe’s time, 55.93, bettered the invitational field by almost an entire second and now ranks her second in the entire North Coast Section. 

   Some 25 minutes after Chloe’s record-setting run, the school record in the girls 300 meter hurdles went down.  Senior Carly Schulz, whose assault on this record has been a year in the making, finally eclipsed the old record of 43.76 set by Danielle Stokes a dozen years ago.   Her 43.68 is the best time in the North Coast Section this year and the 10th best time in California for 2014. 

   While those two record-setting performances served as the highlights, several other athletes had seasonal and/or personal bests. Junior Ron Smith asserted himself as one of the top triple jumpers in Northern California when he bounded a lifetime best 46’11¾” to win the boys triple jump.  Sophomore Kenady Jackson recorded 2 personal bests… first in the girls 400 meters (59.54) and later in the 200 meters (26.37).    UNLV-bound senior Spencer Moore won the girls 1600 meter run, finishing in 5:03…. which is currently the top time in the North Coast Section.  Finally, juniors Zoie Campbell and Mickey Tessema each ran faster than they ever have in their respective event specialties.  Zoie, a top quarter miler in her own right, broke the 58 second barrier… running 57.92… while teammate Mickey… running in the shadows of teammate Jovani Barajas for much of the season… ran a very fine 4:33.95 in the boys 1600 meters.  All of these performances place the athletes on the school’s all-time list… the much-talked about list that chronicles the top track and field performances in school history.   Congratulations to all the athletes who cracked this list this weekend!

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Panthers Among State’s Best at Arcadia

April 13th, 2014 

Over the weekend, the Panthers travelled to Southern California for the Arcadia Invitational, widely regarded as the nation’s gold standard of high school track and field competitions. The meet features the top talent from around the Golden State as well some of the top athletes from around the country. North Carolina, New Jersey, Nevada, Washington, Arizona, Maryland, and Idaho all sent much of their best talent to Arcadia in what amounts to a Pre-National, Championship-Caliber meet. Joining the fray were 16 of our own Panthers… all anxious to test their talents on the prestigious stage.  When it was over, the Panthers had proven themselves not only capable, but worthy of a place at such a meet.

    As expected, no one fared better for the Panthers than the girls 4×400 meter relay. With all four members of the 5th place state team returning, the Panthers have dominated competition in Northern California so a trip to the Southland was truly a gauge of the team’s 2014 talent. Spencer Moore’s 60.5 first leg got the Panthers off to a solid start. After that, the trio of Carly Schulz, Zoie Campbell Chloe Jenkins proved their meddle… running splits of 56.9, 57.6, and 54.8 while leading the Panthers to a state #2 – 3:50.15.

 **  Check out the video of the  girls 4 x 400 relay here **

      “The girls were awesome tonight,” says Coach Jay Lawson, after the race. “We’ve run some solid races so far this year but haven’t really faced the type of competition that will bring out our best. Tonight we did and we responded just the way I thought we would. All four girls ran great, and I think Chloe is starting to prove herself as one of the top talents in California.” 

   Indeed, Chloe Jenkins had a monster of a meet. On Friday night, she joined her 4×400 meter teammates to run the seldom contested 200-200-400-800 meter sprint relay, which posted the third best time in California this year. Then, on Saturday evening, she ran a near personal best in the Invitational 800 meters. 

    Another Panther who rubber stamped his position amongst the state leaders  was senior high hurdler Ja’Vion Robinson. Just a week after winning the Stanford Invitational with a huge 14.48 personal best, Ja’Vion shredded another .3 seconds off of his personal best, running a wind-legal 14.16 … finishing second in the boys seeded section race. This not only catapults Ja’Vion into the top five in California, but also way up on the school’s All-Time List.

** Check out the video of Ja’Vion’s 110 meter hurdle race here **

     “Ja’Vion competed and performed as well as any of our athletes here.  Two weeks ago, his PR was 14.7. Tonight he ran 14.1. Give him another six weeks, and who knows where he’ll be,” remarked Coach Lawson after the race. 

     Besides Chloe, Ja’Vion, and the girls 4×400 team, several other Panthers also recorded seasonal or lifetime bests. Senior Margaret English, competing in her first Arcadia Invitational, made the most of her opportunity… equaling her lifetime best in the triple jump at 36 ‘3″.   “It was one of my goals to make it to Arcadia,” said Margaret afterwards. “After making it here, I really wanted to jump well. Having two jumps over 36 feet felt good and makes me think that 37 feet is just around the corner.” 

      Another senior, Jovani Barajas, also making his Arcadia debut, ran his best ever 800 meters (1:59.1) on the anchor leg of the boys 1600 meter sprint medley. Afterwards he quipped, “I’ve heard and read a lot about Arcadia and I’m really happy I finally got to compete here. I can’t believe how much talent is at this meet. You have to see it to believe it.” 

    Three other athletes, Sac State-bound hurdler Carly Schulz and high jumpers Harold Terrell and Briahn Brown also posted solid performances in their respective specialties. Carly posted her seasonal best in the  300 meter hurdle race , running 44.98 seconds. Likewise, Harold jumped 6’5″, a mere one inch below his lifetime best of 6’6″, while Briahn failed to match her seasonal best of 5’6″, finishing with a best of 5’4″. 

    Finally, two sprint relay groups also recorded near seasonal bests for the Panthers. The quartet of Kristian Barchard, Marquis Chambers, Tony Lawson, and Tamarick Pierce ran a seasonal best 1:32 in the boys 4 x 200, finishing third in their heat and earning themselves a coveted Arcadia Invitational medal. Meanwhile, veterans Carly Schulz and Zoie Campbell teamed with first-timers Kenady Jackson and Zoe Roberts in the girls 4×100 meter relay, almost eclipsing the 49 second barrier, finishing in 49.08 seconds. Coaches were especially  impressed by sophomore Kenady’s explosive first leg. 

    Said coach  Jeff Rogers after the meet, “Arcadia is one of those meets that can bring out the best or worst performances in an athlete. The atmosphere is intense, which inspires some and intimidates others. I was impressed with how our team handled the pressure, especially those who hadn’t been here before. It certainly speaks to the desire and fortitude this group has.” Clearly, this 2014 Arcadia experience will pay big dividends for the rest of this season and beyond. 

    Up next for the Panthers is the Woody Wilson Invitational at Toomey Field on the campus of UC Davis. After that, the league competition continues in late April with the league championship meet scheduled for May 17th.

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Panthers Claim 3 Victories, 1 State Best at Stanford Invitational

April 6th, 2014 

   With roughly a third of the 2014 season in the books, the Panthers travelled to Stanford this weekend for the Stanford Invitational.  Featuring most of the top talent from Northern California, Stanford serves as the base for prognosticator’s to preview and offer their predictions about who’s who in the Northern California track world.   After Saturday, the Saint Mary’s Panthers are proving themselves worthy of discussion… showing that they are indeed capable of competing with the best talent the state has to offer. 

    Headlining the Panther team was high hurdler Ja’Vion Robinson.  After posting a personal best 14.65 in the preliminary round, Ja’Vion came back later that same afternoon to run 14.48… another personal best and, more importantly, win the race.  “The success Ja’Vion is experiencing is a culmination of years of hard work and total dedication to his craft,” said coach Jay Lawson.  “It’s really nice to see that type of hard-work pay off.  It’s a great example to so many of the younger kids… and of course it’s great for Ja’Vion.  And, I expect he’s not done.  He’ll go faster as the season progresses.”

    Not to be outdone, the quartet of Spencer Moore, Carly Schulz, Zoie Campbell, and Chloe Jenkins continue to show that they are amongst the top foursomes in California.  With their eyes firmly set on the Nike backpacks awarded to the event winners, this group not only won their  4 x 400 specialty, but they also ran the fastest 4 x 800 in California this year, smashing the school record by an incredible 7 second along the way.   Carly Schulz opened the event, running a season best 2:27.  Senior Spencer Moore, running from the middle of the pack, ran the next ½ mile in a season best 2:16… handing the baton to junior Zoie Campbell, who trailed another runner by less than a second.  As she’s prone to do, Zoie quickly captured the lead, running her third leg in a lifetime best 2:22.  At the hand-off, the Panthers still trailed by a step or two.  Fortunately, Zoie handed to the North Coast Section’s fastest half-miler in Chloe Jenkins.  After it was over, Chloe had run 2:16, the Panthers had won by 4 seconds, the school record had been shattered, and each of the girls donned a new backpack. 

  “That group of girls is simply outstanding,” said coach Lawson.  “They battle, they compete, they’re hungry, they’re not afraid.  I love coaching that group.” 

   The same quartet replaced distance star Spencer Moore with sophomore upstart Kenady Jackson in the girls 4 x 100, running 48.44 in the final… which was good for 3rd overall.  Other highlights included high jumper Harold Terrell placing 5th, tying his personal best of 6’6”; triple jumper Ron Smith placing 5th in the triple jump at 45’0”; the team of  Jovani Barajas (2:00), Mickey Tessema (2:03), Nabai Habtemariam (2:07), and Diego Jara (2:04) ran a season best 8:14.99 in the invitational section of the boys 4 x 800; and the girls 4 x 400 team won their race, running the 4th fastest time in California this year (3:53.26).

    “Anybody discussing Northern California high school track and field will certainly make us part of their conversation,” said coach Denis Mohun afterwards.   “One relay team ranked #1 in California, another #4… several individuals in the top 10…. what’s not to talk about?”   Indeed coach Mohun … there is certainly plenty to talk about with Saint Mary’s track and field!  

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Panthers Take Two in Home Opener

March 27th, 2014

  Led by a bevy of familiar faces, as well as some surprising newcomers, both boys and girls track and field squads posted victories over league opponents St. Joseph’s – Notre Dame and St. Patrick’s-St. Vincent on Thursday at Brady Park.  “Both St. Joe’s and St. Pat’s have some quality athletes,” said coach Jeff Rogers.  “Fortunately for us, we not only have quality athletes, we have depth.  Our depth and ability to cover all areas of track and field seem to overwhelm most teams.  That’s what happened today.”

   Indeed, depth… as well as talent and desire… have been hallmarks of the Panthers program for years.  Thursday was no different.   For the boys, 5 different athletes scored individual wins… led by seniors Ja’Vion Robinson (110m hurdles), Jovani Barajas (800m), Liam Godfrey (300m hurdles), Lorenzo Logwood (100m) and junior Marquis Mahone –Chambers (200m, 400m).  After that, depth and desire took hold.  Sophomore Kameron Jackson celebrated his birthday with a huge 20’11 personal best in the long jump; sophomore Tamarick Pierce ran a lifetime best 11.2 in the 100 meters; junior Diego Jara ran his best ever 800 meters, finishing in 2:04; and junior Ben Schrider threw the shot put farther than he ever has, heaving the 12lb implement 38’0”. 

   Like the boys, “depth” and “desire” accurately describe the girl’s team. However, “talent” carries this group a long way.  The girls team saw 7 different athletes win 11 of the 12 events they were entered in to score resounding victories over their league opponents.  Sacramento State-bound senior Carly Schulz led the way for the Panthers, winning both the 100m hurdles and the 200 meters; Margaret English won her specialty, the triple jump; Briahn Brown was the high jump victor;  junior Chloe Jenkins won the mile… a rather unfamiliar event for her.  Likewise, sophomore Ella Hymel won her first ever 400 meter race, Avi Perteete won the 800 meters, and Ma’ane Mosley, fresh from the basketball court, leaped farther than anyone else in winning the long jump at 15’ 10½”. 

   Overall, both Panther squads performed excellently.  “Our team is progressing nicely,” said coach Jay Lawson.  “I like the way we supported each other today.  I like the way our kids were open to competing in events that were not their primary events.  That shows resiliency and a dedication to our team goals.   I’m impressed by certain individual performances, but I’m more impressed by our team’s performance.” 

   Next up for the Panthers is a split weekend for the frosh-soph and the varsity.  Friday afternoon/evening, the frosh-soph team will travel to Castro Valley High School for the Trojan Relays.  On Saturday, the varsity team will be in action at the annual Oakland Invitational.  TCAL action resumes on Tuesday when the Panthers travel to Salesian to face the Pride of Salesian High School and the Eagles from J.F. Kennedy.  That meet will begin at 3:45 pm.  Hope to see you there!

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Boys Eek Out A Close One Against Powerful Hercules

March 21st, 2014

Returning from two weeks of final exams and enrichment week, the Panthers, along with Pinole Valley, Richmond and DeAnza high schools, traveled to Hercules for their inaugural TCAL league meet of 2014. 

After having won the past 26 consecutive league championships, the Saint Mary’s boys team faced a very tough challenge from the talented and hungry Hercules Titans.   After a full afternoon of throwing, jumping, hurdling, sprinting and running… the Panthers squeaked out a 64-63 win over Hercules.  The girls meet, in contrast, was not nearly as close…. with the lady Panthers winning 10 events en route to 4 dominate team victories.

For the boys, the jumpers and distance runners proved the difference.  Senior Harold Terrell won the high jump, sophomore Kameron Jackson, and freshman Sanjay Kettles teamed with Harold to go 1-2-3 in the long jump, and sophomore Malik Stinson and  juniors Aren Ulmer and Roman Grace teamed to sweep the triple jump.  The 23-5 point advantage in the jumps was huge for the Panthers.  Meanwhile on the track, the 110 hurdle senior trio of Zeke Knox, Ja’Vion Robinson and Liam Godfrey grabbed the top 3 spots and the distance running group of Jovani Barajas, Mickey Tessema, Nabai Habtemariam, Diego Jara, Jon DeLeon, Owen Woo and Zach Wilkinson outscored Hercules 19-8 in the distance events to lead the Panthers to victory.

According to coach Lawson, “This meet was as close as they get.  I’m extremely proud of our group.  Obviously the jumpers and distance runners led us in scoring… but the effort and contributions we got from the entire team was just tremendous.  Marquis Chambers getting 2nd in the 100 and 200 was absolutely essential.  Lorenzo Logwood getting 3rd in the 100 may have turned the meet completely around.   Also, our young throwers getting a couple of points is all we needed to get the win.  This was truly a team win.”

For the girls, their dominant performance is getting quite routine.  Many athletes competed in events outside their specialty.  Zoie Campbell won the 800, Chloe Jenkins won the 400, Nia Joyner won the 100, and the girls 4 x 100 team ran an impressive 49.04 to open their sprint relay season…. leading the way for the victorious lady Panthers.

Next up for the Panthers is the new Bay Area Relays, hosted by Foothill High School of Pleasanton.  The meet is a rare Friday evening affair.  First event begins at 4:00 pm.  Come out and support the Panthers as their invitational season resumes.  

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Panthers Track & Field now on Shutterfly!

March 6th, 2014

  

Check out the new Shutterfly site dedicated to chronicle the 2014 track and field season.  Photos from many of our meets will be posted, along with “classic” pictures from years past.  Feel free to download, order or copy pictures of any or all of our track & field athletes as they progress through the 2014 season!

Click here to see view the site.

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Big Performances for Panthers at Dan Gabor Invitational

March 1st, 2014

Individual victories by Chloe Jenkins in the 800m, Harold Terrell in the high jump and Carly Schulz in the 400m and 300m hurdles… as well as a record-setting girls 4 x 400 meter relay highlighted a day of impressive Panther performances at the Dan Gabor Invitational.   “Overall we had quite a meet,” said coach Jay Lawson.  “Along with our headliners winning their individual events, we had a lot of athletes achieve lifetime bests. Considering this is only the first day of March, I’d say the rest of the season looks really good right now. “

The day began with the jumps, sprints, hurdles and relay portion of the meet.  As noted, Carly Schulz stayed undefeated in her best race, the 300 hurdles, running 45.97 for the win.  Later she came back to edge teammate Zoie Campbell in what was her first open 400 meter race of the season.   Senior Harold Terrell won a close high jump competition, clearing 6’4” on his initial try to claim the top prize.  Later, junior Briahn Brown would try to duplicate Harold’s 1st place feat…. unfortunately falling a bit short in finishing 2nd.   Hurdler Ja’Vion Robinson finished 2nd in 41.20 in his first 300 hurdles race of the year, just .01 seconds from first place.  Teammate Ron Smith finished 3rd in 41.44.   Other standout performances were turned in by freshman De’Jah Robinson (13.25), sophomore Kenady Jackson (13.36), and senior Nia Joyner (13.44) in the girls 100 meters.

The distance portion of the meet, which took place after the morning sprint/jump/hurdle session, also shined bright for the Panthers.   Junior Chloe Jenkins, who emerged as one of the brightest lights in the meet, won the highly competitive and hotly contested 800 meter race in a personal best 2:14.29.  “Chloe’s race was certainly the highlight of the evening,” said coach Denis Mohun.   “She’s won races before, but to come from behind the way she did and to show the kind of toughness she did was really great.”

Several other Panthers also ran personal bests and/or had outstanding races.  Senior Spencer Moore finished 3rd in the 1600; freshman Avi Perteete won her 800 heat in 2:33; Amanda Keith (6:01), Taryn Gallagher (6:06) & Ariana Corwin (6:10) all ran seasonal bests in the 1600…. as did Diego Jara (4:42),  Owen Woo (4:51), Jon DeLeon (4:53) and Zach Wilkinson (4:56).  

“I was proud of all our runners tonight,” said coach Mohun.  “I was especially impressed with Chloe and Jovani.  Jovani broke 4:30 in the 1600 and 10:00 in the  3200.  Both of those are big barriers to get through and he did that tonight.”

In all, the Panthers competed very well in their 2nd outing of the season.  Next up will be the Sacramento State Invitational on March 8th at Sacramento State University.  

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Panthers Open Season with 7 Individual Wins at the Skyline Invitational

February 23rd, 2014

 

Led by senior Carly Schulz wins in both the 100 and 300 meter hurdles, the Panthers posted victories in 7 individual events and had 25 other top 5 finishes on their way to an impressive beginning to the 2014 season at the Skyline Invitational.  

     Carly won both hurdle races quite easily,  staring with a 2½ second win in the 100h race before capping her day with a near 2 second win over freshman teammate De’Jah Robinson.   Look for many more dominate wins from last year’s North Coast Section 300 hurdles champion who seems to be in fine form already. Fellow hurdler, senior, Ja’Vion Robinson, opened his season with a near 1 second win in his specialty the 110 meter hurdles.    Ja’Vion, like Carly, is one of only a handful of hurdlers around the section that appear to be able to contend for a coveted lane at state meet.  His opening race, just a shade above 15 seconds, suggest he is certainly on track.  Junior 400 meter runner Zoie Campbell opened her season with a win in the 400 meters, running the fastest opening season race of her life.  Her 58.44 will certainly create some anxiety for other hopeful 400 runners from around the section.   Other notable performances on the track for the boys included a trio of distance runners –  Jovani Barajas, Nabai Habtemariam and Diego Jara – who finished 2nd, 3rd and 5th respectively in the boy’s 1600 meter run; and a trio of sprinters – Lorenzo Logwood, Tamarick Pierce and Ron Smith – who all finished in the top 5 in the short sprint races.   For the girls, junior Isabel Havens ran a personal best in winning her heat of the girls 1600, while teammates Taryn Gallagher and Ariana Corwin also recorded personal bests in the same race.  A quartet of newcomers, De’Jah Robinson, Avi Perteete, Mia Young and Kenady Jackson, received special praise from coaches Jay Lawson and Kim Pacatte for their efforts on Saturday.  “Those three girls, along with Giauna Nu’man, maybe the next dominate group of Panthers,” said coach Pacatte.  “I’m loving their effort and commitment in practice so far, and it showed on Saturday. “

   In the field, the Panthers were equally dominate, scoring 3 firsts and 3 seconds.  High jumpers Harold Terrell and Briahn Brown both won their specialties, while triple jumper Ron Smith out-distanced his competition by nearly 3 feet to win his event.  Senior Margaret English opened her outdoor season with a solid 35’5” jump in the triple jump, while sophomore Malik Stinson bounded out to a PR 41’6” to claim the silver medal. 

   Overall, the Panthers opening meet was filled with fast times and big marks.  Afterwards, coach Jay Lawson was more than pleased with this year’s Skyline Invitational.  “I thought our kids ran, hurdled, threw and jumped great today.  The older athletes did what we knew they could do, but the newer athletes really surprised me.  Some are way ahead of where we thought they were.  Our coaching staff got a big charge out of what we saw today.  I speak for all of us when I say we can’t wait for next Saturday.”

   On Saturday, the Panthers will compete at the Dan Gabor Invitational, hosted by Amador Valley High School.   The sprint, hurdle and jump portion of the meet will be contested in the morning and early afternoon, with the late afternoon and evening portion of the meet dedicated to the distance runners.  Hope to see you at the meet.

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Panthers Anticipate Challenge and Success in 2014

February 10th , 2014

 

Over the past 25 years, the Saint Mary’s track and field team has established itself as a bon fide powerhouse at both the league and North Coast Section level.  With the return of several state level competitors, both a boys and girls cross team that earned league and section titles, as well as the entire record-setting girls 4 x 400 meter relay team back from a year ago, the 2014 team looks to continue its long run of consecutive league championships… as well as compete for a possible North Coast Section championship.    ‘There are some individuals on this team who are as good as any kids we’ve ever had,” said head coach Jay Lawson.   “We’ve had a productive fall conditioning program; one that suggests that we’ll be ready to go once the season starts.”   Below is an introduction to the both boys and girls teams and a preview of the upcoming season.

Sprints and Hurdles

Leading the sprint and hurdle group this year will be a pair of state meet hopefuls in seniors Carly Schulz and Ja’Vion Robinson.   Carly enters her senior campaign as one of the most versatile girl track athletes the school has known.  She is the defending North Coast Section champion in the 300m hurdles, is a member of the state medal-winning 4  x 400 relay team, and is on the school’s all-time top ten list in several other individual and relay events, including the 200m, 400m, 4 x 800 relay and 100 meter hurdles.   She will combine her talents with her 4 x 400 teammates – talented juniors Chloe Jenkins and Zoie Campbell – to form three of the best long sprinters in the section.  Senior Nia Joyner and junior Zoe Roberts look to compliment these three to form a group that will certainly be heard from by their Northern California competitors.

            For the boys, senior Ja’Vion Robinson is a returning Meet of Champions medalist with high aspirations for his senior season.  While barely missing out on an individual state meet birth a season ago, Ja’Vion is focused and ready to compete for not just a birth into the meet but possibly a spot in the finals.  He will be joined by fellow 300m hurdle specialists Liam Godfrey and Ron Smith to form a trio of hurdlers that should score very well for the Panthers.  Coach Lawson also has been impressed with the progress and dedication this fall of seniors Zeke Knox, Tony Lawson and Bobin Chin.  Throw in the sprint capabilities of junior Marquis Chambers, seniors Kristian Barchard and Lorenzo Logwood, as well as sophomores Tamarick Pierce and Steve Harvey and the Panther boys hope to put together a sprint corp that will score well in and around the TCAL. 

Jumps

            The Panther coaches and prognosticators believe that the jumping events could be the key to attaining those coveted championship banners this season.  Returning this season are a trio of Meet of Champions finalists, a school record holder, a state meet competitor, and a bevy of young, talented leapers that hope to compete for their own individual accolades.  Leading the way for the girls will be senior long-triple jumper Margaret English and junior high jumper Briahn Brown.  Margaret ended her 2013 campaign on the field at Edwards Stadium in Berkeley in the Meet of Champions.  This year, Margaret hopes to extend her season yet another week… to the field at Veterans Stadium in Clovis as part of the state meet field.  Her pre-season has been solid, consequently those around her are very optimistic.  Optimism is also the adjective used to describe the season outlook for school-record holder Briahn Brown.  As a sophomore, Briahn captured the state’s attention with a record-setting leap of 5’8”.  This season, she looks to establish the type of consistency that will make the air above 5’8” a little bit thinner.

            For the boys, Harold Terrell is a returning state meet competitor, having jumped 6’5” at the Meet of Champions a year ago to claim his spot in the big meet.   Now in his senior season, Harold has turned all his attention to track (and particularly the high jump) which should bolster his chances of competing for one of the top podium spots at MOC.  Alongside Harold is junior Ron Smith, who in his first season as a triple jumper showed that he maybe one of the section’s best.  As a 10th grader, Ron jumped nearly 44 feet and advanced all the way to the Meet of Champions… where he finished 13th.   Look for Ron to make a big move upwards and outwards this season.  Others to watch for this year include emerging sophomores Malik Stinson and Kameron Jackson… as well as juniors Jamaica Greenwood and Roman Grace.

Distance

            Coach Denis Mohun’s group, traditionally a very strong one, will be no stranger to success this season.  The distance squads – fresh off a cross country campaign that saw the boys win a NCS championship while the girls finished an-oh-so-close second – should accumulate an impressive point total for the team this season.  The girls, led by decorated senior Spencer Moore, are the dominate group in and around the TCAL.  In 2013, Spencer once again advanced to the state meet in the 1600, running a  season best 5:05, while also being part of  the quartet that obliterated the school 4  x 400 record.  Coming off a top 10 finish at this year’s state Division IV cross country race,  Spencer seems to have the conditioning an the experience to be amongst the top middle-distance runners in Northern California.

Alongside Spencer will be the aforementioned Chloe Jenkins, herself a member of the celebrated 4 x 400 team, as well as a top flight 400/800 meter runner.   Coach Mohun also has high hopes for rising sophomore Ella Hymel and juniors Josie Smale and Isabel Havens.  Add seniors Amanda Keith and Mischa Vernon-Wyatt to the already talented group and the final product should dominate the league and beyond.

            Perhaps no other group seems to be as focused and improving as the boys distance group.  Seniors Jovani Barajas and Nabai Habtemariam, fresh off stellar cross country seasons, will lead the way… with fast-approaching junior Mickey Tessema more than ready to challenge as the team’s top runner.  In the end, whoever emerges as the top gun will certainly push this trifecta to times that hopefully will exceed 4:30 for 1600m and 10:00 for 3200m.   It maybe wise to also follow the progress of senior Jon DeLeon, juniors Diego Jara and Zach Wilkinson, and freshman Owen Woo…. who all appear to have caught the running fever this winter.

Throws

            This years throwers will be a blend of old and new faces, with both groups being led by first-year throws coach Ty Amey.   Coming from the football field, Coach Amey’s emphasis on strength, conditioning, power and explosion should serve this group well.  Says coach Lawson, “Coach Amey is a strong addition to our program.  I’ve been a fan of his since he’s gotten to Saint Mary’s.  His coaching style puts high demands on athletes, but I think he knows when and how high to set the bar.  We hope he will be the cornerstone of our throwing program for years to come.”

The boys squad, led by footballers Ben Schrider and Peter Sekona, should be much-improved from last year and will be needed to provide a share of the team’s points.   The girls, meanwhile, should have multiple athletes to choose from, many who are new and eager to develop their throwing technique.