It’s here…..the Arizona Track and Field State Meet Championship starts tomorrow with division 1 and 2 prelims and some finals in the Girls 4x800 relay and 3200 meter run and the boys 800 and 1600 meter runs.
Desert Vista leads the 4x800 meter relay with a 9:20.54 followed by Xavier College Prep (9:32.82), Highland (9:33.98) and Chaparral (9:38.85). Desert Vista will be defending their 9:16.13 title from 2013 with the addition of Dani Jones (Jr, photo left) who has not yet run the event.
Jones and Highland junior Lauren Ellsworth (photo right) are both ranked 1 and 2 in Arizona and will be battling for top honors in the 800, 1600 and 3200.
Jones ran her first race of the season at the Arcadia Invitational finishing the mile in a near AZ record time of 4:50.81 and a 1600 time of 4:49. A week later at the Hohokam Invite she ran a 10:37.87 in the 3200 and at the Tempe City Meet she ran a 209.24 in the 800 meter run.
Ellsworth started her season with a 4:53.43/1600 at the Chandler Rotary, a 10:51.93/3200 at the Sun Angel Invite and a 2:10.97/800 at the Hohokam Invitational. The three races between the two should be some of the best for division 1 girls.
Both girls will push each other and two records could fall - the 800 (2:08.61/Natalie Johnson/Xavier/2007) and the 1600 (4:49.11/Sara Gorton/Mtn. Pointe/1999).
Baylee Jones (Fr., Desert Vista) in ranked 3rd in Arizona and will be in the mix in the 3200.
In division 2 Catalina Foothills junior Katie Izzo leads the group with a 2:16.31 800. Cactus sophomore Drianna Mustin will be trying to improve on her 2:18.62 time along with Gila Ridge senior Haylee Dahl at 2:19.02. Both will be pushing Izzo.
Division 2 Bridgette Doucet (Jr., Canyon del Oro) is the leader in both the 1600 (5:11.67) and the 3200 (11:00.65) but sitting in 2nd place is Tatiana Gillick (Sr., Flagstaff) the division 2 state champion in both events. Gillick won the 1600 in 2013 and the 3200 in 2012 and 2013. Although Doucet has the advantage, Gillick will go all out to defend her title.
Nathan Rodriguez (Sr., Corona del Sol) enters the 1600 with a school record time of 4:09.01 (previously held by his Dad (story coming soon)) and is hoping to better his time. Nick Dale (Sr., Mtn. Ridge) is set to challenge Nathan and could push himself and Nathan to new PR’s.
Rodriguez is also the leader in division 1 in the 800 meter run but Perry sophomore Cade Burks is close behind with a 1:54.90.
Rodriguez also leads in the 3200 meter run (9:07.38) with Lucky Schreiner (Jr., Campo Verde) close behind with 9:08.10……however……Schreiner will be racing in division 2 against Alex Stephens (Jr., Saguaro) 9:10.90. Nick Dale has the 3rd fastest time with a 9:09.27 and will be pressing Rodriguez in division 1. It will be great race but would be even better if all 4 athletes were running in the same race.
Lucky Schreiner is also the top seed in the 1600 meter run for division 2 with a time of 4:13.45.
Paul Lucas (Jr., Mtn. Pointe) and Ky Westbrook (Sr., Chandler) are both favored to win the 100 and the 200 meter dash. Up until this past Saturday Lucas was ranked #1 in the US in the 200 dash (20.84) but has moved to US#3. He is also ranked US#4 in the 400 dash with 46.86 and will be tough to beat.
Westbrook (24.42) will be challenged in the 200 by North Canyon Junior Jasmine Stauffacher-Gray (24.57) and Chandler teammate Tope Williams (24.98), however, she will be challenging Ashlee Moore (Sr., Hamilton) in the 100 hurdles. Moore has the fastest time of 14.04 in the hurdles with Westbrook at 14.48.
Moore also has a chance to win her 3rd state championship in the high jump. Moore jumped 5-10 her freshman year for the win and has a seed jump of 5-8. Zarriea Willis (Jr., Alhambra) has a seed time of 5-7 but has jumped 5-8 in a quad meet in April. Moore is also the favorite in the long jump with an 18-08.25.
In division 2, Aaliyah Cook (Sr., Cactus) and Darreyl Woodson (Sr., Higley) are neck and neck heading into the long jump with Cook at 18-1 and Woodson at 18-0.75 and Emily Gerard (Sr., Catalina Foothills) is just on the cusp of 18 with a 17-11.
Stauffacher-Gray (photo right) is ranked #1 in Arizona in the 400 dash (54.69) and will attempt to hold off Highland freshman Alena Ellsworth (55.36). Stauffacher-Gray added the 300 hurdles this season and quickly moved to the top spot on the Arizona Leaderboard (42.27) in her first meet - putting herself .26 from the Arizona State Record and at Arizona #2 all time.. But Stauffacher-Gray has a busy night on Saturday with the 400 dash, the 300 hurdles and the 200 dash with only the 800 races between the hurdles and the 200.
Robert Grant (Sr., Brophy Prep) is hoping to break his own newly set State Record this week. His time of 36.24 puts him at US#1, a position he has held since Arcadia. Grant is also ranked US#16 in the 400 dash with a 47.50 but should improve his time with competition from Paul Lucas.
Tevin Mayfield (Sr., Corona del Sol) is the top seed heading into the 110 hurdles with a time of 14.13 with Robert Grant on his heels at 14:20. Also trying to unseat Mayfield are Chaparral sophomore Brandon Jamison (14.25), Mesquite senior Josh Davis (14.25) and Thunderbird junior Adam Turner (14.28).
Another nail biter race to watch will be the girls 4x400 relay. Three teams are within a second of each other with Highland (3:54.06) at the top followed by Chandler (3:54.34) and Corona del Sol (3:55.75). It’s going to be fast!
Sam Shoultz (Jr., Corona del Sol) and Bryant O’Georgia (Sr., North Canyon) will be jumping for the gold in the high jump. Shoultz jumped 6-9 at the Sun Angel Classic the night before jumping 6-7 at the Arcadia Invite. O’Georgia jumped 6-8 twice this season including the Arcadia Invitational where he placed 4th. He won the state championship in 2013 with a 6-10 jump and later jumped the same height at the Great Southwest for 2nd place.
Tim Duckworth (Sr., Arcadia) jumped 6-10 this season but will be jumping in Division 2 against Justice Summerset (So., Marana Mt. View) 6-9 and Christian Poe (Sr., Cienega) 6-9. Duckworth also has the highest pole vault jump across all divisions with a 16-5.
Beau Eggers (Sr., Hamilton) is the favorite in both the shot put and the discus, however, Jordan Rezac (Sr., Desert Vista) is less than 3 feet behind Eggers and could put a dent in Eggars double win.
Jake Alme (Sr., Desert Vista) has been very consistent with jumping over 15 feet in the pole vault in division 1 and enters the meet at 15-6. Four jumpers trail him at 15-0 including Matt Eckles (Sr., Corona del Sol), Chase Lewis (Sr., Basha), Tristan Slater (Sr. Basha) and Conner Stevens (So., Hamilton)
Bianca Finn (Sr., Chandler ) is the favorite in the shot put and discus with Makenzie Holmes-Digiovine (Sr., Desert Vista) a close 2nd in the Discus and 3rd in the shot put behind Ky Westbrook.
Vanessa Davis (Jr., Desert Vista) is the only girl to jump 13 feet this season and she did it twice, first at the Chandler Rotary and then at the Peoria Invitational. Davis will be defending her state championship title and will a
lso be challenged by Nicole Baker (Jr., Highland) who has hit the 12-6 mark in all 4 of her invitationals.
Athena Masolini (Sr., Saguaro) is the favorite in the pole vault for division 2 with an 11-6 jump.
The 400 meter dash could be the race to watch in division 2 with 6 sprinters in the 49 second range. Christian White (Sr., Paradise Valley) leads the group with a 49.35 followed by Bobby Cooper (Sr., Washington) at 49.38. Isaac Allanarem (Sr., Desert Edge), Anthony Stennis (So., Camelback), Andre Walters (Tolleson Union), Tyler Berson (Ironwood Ridge) and Alex Poe (Tolleson) all have times in the 49 second range and will be pushing White and Cooper.
Another top race to watch will be the boys 800 meter run in Division 2. William McClelland (Sr., Arcadia) has a 1:56.62 time but Brandon Boys (Sr., Campo Verde) is less than 1/2 second behind in 1:57.01 with Emilio Vasquez (Jr., Catalina Foothills) at 1:57.37 and Lucky Schreiner (photo right) at 1:57.83.
Alexis Center (South Mountain) leads the 100 and 200 dash with a 12.03 in the 100 and a 24.94 in the 200 but don’t count out Sasha Jarrett (Jr., Raymond Kellis) with a 12.19 in the 100 and a 25.04 in the 200.
There are still many races and field events with great marks. Good luck to all the competing athletes and remember……nothing is set in stone!