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Lots of drama in Foothill track and field finals

Posted: May 8, 2014 9:40 p.m.
Updated: May 8, 2014 9:40 p.m.

Canyon's Cole Mears, left, leans forward at the wire to win the 200-meter dash against Valencia's Nick Jones on Thursday at College of the Canyons.

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In what was billed as tighter-than-usual competition among the Foothill League track and field contingent, the league finals were every bit as dramatic as expected on Thursday at College of the Canyons.

Records fell and athletes provided some breakout performances in the biggest moments on a day that also had its fair share of surprises.

One of the top stories of the day was Canyon senior sprinter Cole Mears, who led a sweep in the 100 meters in 11.08 seconds, the 200 meters in 22.09 and ran the anchor leg for the winning 4x100-meter relay team in 42.66.

Mears, who is running track for the first time this season, edged Valencia’s Nick Jones by 0.03 seconds in one of the top races of the day.

“I’m feeling good. I met my goal. I didn’t think I was going to be able to (win both races) coming in,” Mears said.

Earlier in the day, Jones won his second straight 400-meter league title in 49.15.

Also continuing to prove Canyon’s strength on the boys side, junior Steven Childs won the long jump with a leap of 22 feet, 2 1/2 inches while also running a leg for the team’s 4x100 team.

Canyon won eight of the 16 boys events.

Another double winner for Canyon was senior Jarrett Davidson, who won the 110 hurdles (15.21) and the 300 hurdles (39.14).

"It felt good to finally get (league) prelims and finals over with, and now I can move onto CIF," Davidson said.

Fellow Canyon Cowboy Jeremy Kimmer leapt 15 feet to win the pole vault and break his own school record.

It was more of a mixed bag in girls events, where West Ranch’s Marisa Magsarili claimed league titles in both the 800 (2:16.21) and 1,600 (4:59.20).

This was her second straight league crown in the 800.

“I had confidence coming in today. I was a little worried I would be tired after the 1,600, but as soon I crossed the finish line, I was fine,” Magsarili said.

In the 3,200 final, Saugus’ Ashley Heys came from behind on Natalie Rodriguez in a wild final 100 meters of the race. Heys’ winning time of 10:49.51 was a hundredth of a second ahead of Rodriguez, who said her shoe came untied with three laps to go.

“The last 100 meters I didn’t even think I had it,” Heys said. “I was just zoned in on her back and I just went for it.”

The group of Golden Valley sprinters who helped win a team league title took a hit early in the day when Azaria Hill pulled a hamstring during the 4x100 relay, which Golden Valley won in 48.86.

Instead, the day's best sprinter was Saugus junior Avery Schulhofer, who won both the 100 (12.52) and 200 (25.94).

The other members of Golden Valley's winning relay team had successful days, with Jada Selexman winning the 400 and Crystal Orellana winning the triple jump.

Those two also helped win the 4x400 relay along with Bianca Tinoco and Zakora Merriweather. Merriweather also won in the 300 hurdles.

Fellow Golden Valley athletes Nikaela Harris (shot put) and Samiyah Hawkins (discus) also won league titles.

The two throwing events were won by West Ranch’s Nathan Bultman on the boys side.

In the distance events, the Saugus boys were solid, with Brian Zabilski winning the 3,200 and Alex Pearson winning both the 1,600 and running a strong anchor leg in the 4x400 relay to boost Saugus to a win.

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