FAIRFIELD — Now it’s time to prove that all the hard work this spring – and beyond – has paid off.
The Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Track and Field Championships get under way Thursday at Elk Grove High with all the running trials – except for the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs – and select field event trials and finals.
Field events are scheduled to start at 2, 3 and 5:30 p.m., with the running portion of the meet set to begin at 4 p.m.
The finals for running events and the other field event trials and finals are Friday. Again, the field meet is scheduled for 2, 3 and 5:30 p.m., with the running finals set to begin at 6 p.m.
Any athlete finishing in the top three in any finals event or meeting an at-large mark advances to the CIF State Championships June 6-7 at Veterans Memorial Stadium at Buchanan High in Clovis.
There’s no shortage of local athletes at Masters, with several near or at the top of the seedings list.
After running to four wins at the SJS Div. II-III championships last Friday at Bella Vista High, Vanden’s Tyler Koss will be busy again starting Thursday.
Koss won the boys 200- and 400-meter dashes, and also ran a leg on both the victorious 4×100 and 4×400 relay teams for the Vikings.
Koss is teamed with Jadon Brisendine, Isaiah Hamilton and Christian Pointer on the short relay (42.73), and joins Justin Alvarez, Antone Phillips and Dion Williams in the long relay (3:23.15).
Hamilton and Williams will also compete in the boys long jump, Friday, while Hamilton is in the 100, Thursday.
Koss, who’s seeded third in the 400 (48.45 seconds) and tied for fifth in the 200 is looking to help keep both his season and his relay team’s seasons alive.
“I’m actually thinking about dropping (the 200) because of the 4×400,” Koss said. “I’ll see how I feel after the 400 trials and focus on the 400 and 4×400 and save as much as I can.
And his approach to the 400?
“I’m just going to go out like I always do, run a strong first 200 and then give it everything I got the last 200,” he said. “I got a taste (of a high level of competition) a couple of weeks ago at the Meet of Champions (in Sacramento, finishing fifth). I ran against the top two qualifiers. It’s going to be the matter of pacing myself and keeping up with them.
“I’m going to need to have a strong finish. I kind of died the last 100. Hopefully the 300 and 100 training I’ve been do will help me out.”
Koss was also a star on the Vanden football team, leading the Vikings in solo tackles (67), and was second on the team in total tackles (135), sacks (7) and quarterback hurries (3).
Also competing in the boys 400 is Rodriguez’s Armando Day (50.19) and Vacaville’s Daniel Mewborn (50.29). The Bulldogs’ David Mewborn is also running the 100 and 200, and teams up with his twin brother, Mykal Walker and Elgin Lovell in both relays.
Walker (38.71), Armijo’s Delton Engell-Sorrell and Fairfield’s Anthony Bryant (42.30) are also entered in the boy’s 300 intermediate hurdles.
Rodriguez High’s Megan Dulaney will be looking to take home the championship in the girls shot put and the discus.
Dulaney in ranks first in the shot (45-10 1/2) and third in the discus (132-7) after placing first at the SJS Div. I meet in the shot and second in the discus last week.
The Mustangs’ Alanna Epps will also be busy, competing in the 100, 200 and running a leg on the 4×400 relay (4:02.68) with teammates Diamond Gilliam, Salma Srour and Lauren Reed.
Also running in the girls 4×400 relay will Armijo’s team of Kolbi Quist-Richard, Gabriella Nathan-Funk, Tyra Holt and Lovenie Dantes (4:08.41), and Vanden’s team of Malia Bryant, Kiana Moore, Alex Jenks and Mikaila York (4:06.78).
The top-seeded Bulldogs (3:46.92) are the head of the class in the long relay, setting a school record last week. They are currently ranked third in the state by dyestatcal.com.
Malia Bryant (56.71) and Holt (58.58) are also in the girls open 400, while Nathan-Funk (2:19.20) is entered in the girls 800.
The girls hurdlers will be the ones to be reckoned with in both events.
Pattriana Perry is seeded No. 1 in the 100s (14.16) and ranks No. 2 in the state (13.67) by just .01 of a second. Teammates Jurnee Woodward (14.19) and Daria Cook (14.72) are seeded No. 2 and No. 3, respectively.
In the 300-meter low hurdles, Perry comes in at No. 1 in the section at 42.69, while Woodward (42.79) is second. The Bulldogs’ Hannah Davis (43.78) and Cook (44.81) could be right in the mix at the end, too. Davis is also entered in the girls triple jump (35-2).
Fairfield’s Ra’Shanae Johnson (46.03) is also entered in the 300s.
Rodriguez High’s Nonye Nwaoha, Rontavist Williams, Jonathan Carmichael and Day (3:26.25) will team up in the boys 4×400 relay.
The Indians’ Quist-Richard, Dantes, Holt and Camille Dolcee (50.11) will also run in the 4×100 relay.
Other local athletes competing in field events are Vanden’s Aryel Moreland (long jump, 15-10 1/2, triple jump, 33-11 3/4), Vacaville’s Nia Vance (long jump, 17-3 1/2, triple jump, 37-2 1/2), the Bulldogs’ Skyler Takeda (discus, 106-4), Vacaville’s John Herkins (shot, 47-4 1/4), Vanden’s Javin White (high jump, 5-11), Vaca’s Elizabeth Roark (shot, 34-2), Rodriguez’s Jacob Azevedo (discus, 141-7) and the Bulldogs’ Brandi French (shot, 44-9 3/4).
Vacaville’s Breanna Sewell is scheduled to run the 1,600 (5:18.80) and the 3,200 (11:15.61) on Friday.
Reach Brian Arnold at 427-6969 or firstname.lastname@example.org/ Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/barnolddr.