By Steve Ramirez
DIAMOND BAR – Heat is normally not conducive to top performances in track and field.
Thursday was the exception.
Temperature which soared near 100 degrees did little to stop the efforts of area athletes competing at the Hacienda League finals at Diamond Bar High School’s Holmes Memorial Stadium.
Bonita High School’s Marissa Scott broke the stadium marks in the 800 and 1,600 as seven stadium records fell and 10 athletes won two events each.
Also setting stadium records were Diamond Bar’s Udodiri Okwandu in the girls 200; Bonita’s Mackenzie Landa in the 3,200, Rowland’s David Galvez in the 800 and 1,600 and Los Altos’ Mark Huizar in the 3,200.
The other double winners were Bonita’s Nikki Wheatley in the long jump and triple jump and Devin Rutherford in the 200 and 400; Los Altos’ Gabriel Aceves in the 110 and 300 hurdles; Rowland’s Devin Thompson in the long jump and triple jump and Desdrith Mejia in the 100 and 300 hurdles; Walnut’s Andres Shen in the shot put and discus and Carolyn Nguyen in the discus and pole vault and Okawandu, who also won the 100.
Scott lowered the stadium record by winning the 800 in two minutes, 18.95 seconds and the 1,600 in 5:02.97.
“It went really well,” Scott said. “That was my goal today. I wanted to make sure I just ran my races and I felt pretty good that if I did that, I would come out with wins in both (events).”
Landa lived up to the billing as one of the state’s top distance runners, easily beating the field to win the 3,200 in record time at 11:06.88.
“I just she ran a gutsy, determined race, especially in this heat,” Bonita coach Lonny Carr said. “She’s not a real physical girl, but she trains very, very hard. It was a nice pace. I think she tried really hard to go under 11. It backfired a little bit in this heat and eventually got to her. But it’s a league record and looks very good for CIF.”
Galvez also wasn’t fazed by the heat, winning his two distance events in record time. He won the 800 in 1:57.72 and the 1,600 in 4:21.63.
Huizar had an easy time in winning the 3,200 in 9:42.80, and Okwandu breezed in the 200 with a time of 25.55. She also won the 100 in 12.31.
Aceves breezed to win the 110 hurdles in 14.98 before being pushed in the 300, beating Walnut’s Daylon Gomez at the tape in 40.05.
“It feels really great to win twice in one day,” Aceves said. “I didn’t really think I was going to do it with this heat and running three events.
“In that last race, I felt like I was ahead and then the fatigue started hitting me. I stumbled on that last hurdle and it was all or nothing. We both dived for it, and I guess I made it.”
Wheatley doubled up with ease, winning the long jump with a mark of 16 feet, nine inches and the triple in 37-2.
Thompson also won those events on the boys side, winning the long jump in 22-1/2 and the triple in 43-11.
Rutherford had a sprint double, winning the 200 in 22.40 and the 400 in 45.54.
Shen took his wins the discus with a throw of 149-6 and the shot put with a mark of 47-5. Nguyen won the discus with a mark of 96-5 and the pole vault with a leap of 10 feet.
Mejia won both hurdle events in 15.20 and 46.84, respectively.
Other winners were Diamond Bar’s Jaelin Arielle in the 400 (59.48) and Tyler Brown in the 100 (11.06) and Walnut’s Ty’Jalayah Robertson in the high jump (5-4), Kim Anderson in the shot put (33-2 1/2), Johnathan Mau in the pole vault (13-6) and Kyle King in the high jump (6-4).
By Steve Ramirez