All photos by Margot Kelly unless noted.
Arizona is hot and we're not talking about the weather!
3 New Arizona Records!
Arizona Track and Field hit a new level this weekend as some Arizona teams went west to compete in the Arcadia Invitational bringing home 6 Gold, 1 Silver and 1 Bronze Medal in the Invitational events as well as 3 State Records and 8 US top ten marks. Another record was broken at the Sun Angel Classic in Arizona with a few top ten marks on the National leader board.
Devon Allen (Jr., Brophy College Prep) had the Midas touch, turning every performance into gold and earning the distinction of being named the boys "Athlete of the Meet."
The 5 medal weekend started Friday evening when Brophy College Prep (D'Amani Grayer (JR), Isaiah Oliver (FR), Robert Grant (SO) and Devon Allen (JR)) won the 4x110 meter shuttle hurdle relay. Allen was behind when he headed into the final set of hurdles but quickly moved into the lead. Allen clipped the last hurdle sending him into a roll on the track, "I saw a kid fall on one side and one fall on the other side so I figured if I got up quicker then them, I'd win." Allen said after the race. And he did roll up to his feet quicker and cross the finish line in first place for a team time of 1:02.97.
Devon Allen's Medal Run
Allen started his Saturday 4 gold medal run with the boys 4x100 meter relay, running the second leg. The team (Robert Relf (JR), Devon Allen (JR), Robert Grant (SO) and D'Amani Grayer (JR)) entered the race with the 8th fastest seed time and won the race with a US#6 time of 41.25.
Next Allen took flight in the 110 meter hurdles and won the event with a new Arizona State record of 13.52 breaking his own State Record time of 13.62 from the Chandler Rotary 2 weeks ago. Allen's time puts him at US#2 and 3rd on the Arcadia all time list.
A little over an hour later, Allen blew away the field in the 300 meter hurdles finishing with a new Arizona State Record of 36.39 and a US#2. The previous state record of 37.01 was set by Cylend Simmons of Westwood in 2006.
Allen was seeded 4th in the 200 meter dash and up against Ryan Bozmans of Fort Collins Colorado whose seed time of 20.87 is ranked US#2. As the two sprinters hit the 100 mark they were in a dead heat until they crossed the finish line but when the scoreboard lit up it was Allen who hit the line first with a finish time of 21.10 to Bozman's 21.11.
After the race Allen had this to say about the his historic weekend:
"The meet was great as always. The competition every year is the best in the world and the officials who ran the meet were great! I can speak for my team and say the experience was awesome and none of my teammates would complain. Some of us had been at Arcadia and some of us were new to it and I think it still felt new to everyone, because when we woke up Saturday morning it felt like Christmas morning we were so excited.
In the 200 I didn't really know what I had in the tank, I have only run one other 200 this year but I felt that i could run fast and I did well. It was awesome for me to beat such an elite field and this will really help my confidence for the rest of the season."
The 3200 meter run has always been the race to watch at the Arcadia Invitational, producing the fastest times of the year…….and lots of them. This year lived up to expectations with 30 runners representing 16 states towing the line. The group held a tight pack for the first mile with NAU bound Futsum Zeinasellassie (North Central, IN) taking the lead in the 2nd mile. Bernie Montoya (Jr., Cibola, in photo behind Futsom) held back in almost last place for the first 3 laps before starting his surge to the front. With 800 to go Montoya started his surge and moved ahead of Zeinasellassie with 600 left. Zeinasellassie responded quickly and moved back into the lead by the time the two rounded the curve at the 100 mark (500 to go). The duo ran in tandem until they crossed the finish line with Zeinasellassie winning the event in 8:47.25 for US#1 and Montoya finishing 2nd in 8:48.25 for US#2 and a new Arizona State Record eclipsing Billy Orman's (Tuba City/Harvard University) record of 8:48.63 from last year.
After the race (and after he recovered) Montoya had this to say:
"Well honestly the main goal was to break 9 for the 2 mile so we ran the strategy of being dead last back in the pack. It was tempting to move up early in the race but I needed to be smart about it so I just stayed relaxed through mile one. On lap 5 and 6 we needed to surge up and put ourselves in a good position for lap 7. Then I was even more surprised I was behind Futsum and we were by ourselves the last lap. So I felt great the last 300 meters and I just got this excitement or a type of rush to kick it with 250 to go so I tried for the win. Yet in the end Futsum got me at the straight away but he's an amazing runner and a great guy and I'm glad that I was able to compete against him and all the rest of the top elite runners in the race.
After the race I was just so happy and excited to get second! Honestly going into the race I was thinking geeezzz I'll be lucky to even break 9 or get top 10 in the race especially going into the race with a 9:22 two mile PR. I think we went beyond our goal, claimed 2nd place and an 8:48.25 PR and also a state record! When I realized I broke the record so many things were running through my mind……… the sense of excitement! There are really no words to describe it. Its a blessing to have such an achievement. Now I just need to stay hungry and humble."
Chandler High School/Sun Angel Classic Arizona
The Chandler High School girls added to the State Record count with a new State Record in the 4x400 meter relay of 3:50.83. Contributing to the new record were Imani Adams, Sterling Bacall, Makaila Flannigan and Dominique Jackson. The previous record of 3:51.02 was set by South Mountain High School in 2005.
Other Top Performances
Jaide Stepter (Sr., Canyon del Oro) came very close to breaking her own state record set 2 weeks ago. With Jordie Munford (Jr., Rancho Cucamonga) on her left, the two battled for the win and as they approached the final hurdle they were step for step but Munford used her hands and plowed through the hurdle instead of going over it and was disqualified, giving the win to Stepter. Stepter's time of 42.22 was very close to her 42.18 state record time and would put her at US#3 but she is already there with her 42.18 time.
Stepter also finished 8th in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 14.76
Ryan Silva (Jr., Rincon University) photo left, ran the Invitational Mile and stayed close to the front through the final 800 meters, surging at the end to finish 3rd with an Arizona #1 time of 4:10.33 and a US#3. Arizona has 2 milers in the top 4 with Bernie Montoya at #4 with a 4:10.37.
Brandon Wheat (Sr., Mesa Mt. View) finished 5th in the 800 meter run invitational with a US#11 time of 1:52.21. Wheat bettered his PR by more than a second.
While Wheat was moving up the leader board in California, David Graham (Sr., Highland photo right by Keith Vanderhout) and Dylan Traywick (Westwood) were doing the same over at the Sun Angel Classic in Arizona. Graham had the fastest time coming out of the prelims and won the finals in 1:51.80 to top the Arizona leader board and finish US#10. Traywick finished 2nd in 1:52.48 for a US#18.
More Outstanding performances
Mesa Mountain View ran a 7:54.19 in the 4x800 meter relay to finish 9th for an AZ#1, US#18
Tevin Mayfield (So., Corona del Sol) finished 2nd in the seeded 300m hurdles in 38.82 AZ#4
Robert Grant (So., Brophy Prep) finished 6th in the 300 meter hurdles in 39.17
Vanessa Davis (Fr., Desert Vista) finished 8th in the pole vault 11-7
Scott Marshall (Jr., Desert Vista) finished 5th in the pole vault at 15-00.75
Matt Arseneau (Sr., Desert Vista) finished 10th in the pole vault at 15-00.75
Monica Huston ran a 5:10.80 in the seeded mile finishing 7th and finished 5th in the 3200 meter run seeded race in 10:51.92 for an Arizona #2
Dani Jones (Fr., Desert Vista) finished 3rd in the mile run in 5:07.14 for an AZ#4 and 2:14.91 in the 800 meter run for a US#31 and an AZ#1
Nathan Rodriguez (So., Corona del Sol) won the boys rising stars mile in 4:21.85 for an AZ#4
RJ Massey (Sr., Mesa Mountain View) ran a 4:22.20 in the mile to finish 4th in his section for an AZ#6
Chris Hawks (Sr., Verrado) ran a 39.45 in the 300 hurdles earlier in the day for an AZ#6
Jenna Maack (Jr., Desert Vista) ran a 10:57.55 in the rated 3200 meter run for an AZ#3
Sun Angel Classic
Travonn White (Mountain Pointe) jumped 24-10.50 in the long jump for a US#1 and an AZ#1
Ky Westbrook (So., Chandler) won the 100 meter dash in 11.68 US#6, AZ#1
Nina Dorner (Rosemont, CA) won the 400 meter dash in 55.23 for a US#12. Jasmine Stauffacher-Gray (Fr., North Canyon) finished 2nd in 55.65 for an AZ#1 and a US#17.
Alysoune Coleman (Desert Ridge) won the girls 800 meter run in 2:17.37 AZ#2
Kristi Rush (Highland) won the girls 1600 in 5:06.98 AZ#5
Ben Trotter (Mountain Pointe) won the boys 100 meter dash in 10.60 for an AZ#1.
Javon Williams (Chandler) won the boys 200 meter dash in 21.55 AZ#4
Michael Wagner (Sr., Mountain Ridge) won the boys 1600 meter run in 4:22.75. AZ#8
Paul Perkins (Chandler) won the boys 300 meter hurdles in 38.63 for an AZ#3
The Chandler boys won the 4x400 meter relay in 3:15.86 for a US#8 and an AZ#1
Dobson High boys broke the 8 minute mark in the 4x800 meter relay in 7:57.22 AZ#2
Andrew McDonald (Sr., Sandra Day O'Connor) jumped 6-8 in the high jump AZ#1
Grant Sisserson (Horizon) jumped 15-00 in the pole vault AZ#6