All-Area Boys Track and Field: Cal’s Jorge Zapien is Athlete of the Year

California’s Jorge Zapien, who won finished first in the at the Arcadia Invitational, is the Whittier Daily News boys track and field athlete of the year. (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

California’s Jorge Zapien, who won finished first in the at the Arcadia Invitational, is the Whittier Daily News boys track and field athlete of the year. (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

By Keith Lair
Jorge Zapien was Mr. Consistent while on the pole vault runway this season.The California High School senior won nearly every competition he was in, and if not, he was on the podium. The result was a berth in the CIF Southern Section Masters Meet and Daily News Athlete of the Year honors.“I did so much for myself and my coaches did so much for me,” he said of the season. “I can’t ask for anything more. All this (postseason competition) was extra.”Zapien won two invitational competitions, the Jim Polite Invitational in Walnut and the Friday competition of the Arcadia Invitational.That Arcadia win was a big weekend and the telltale sign of things to come. The day before Arcadia, he cleared a then-season-best 14 feet, 8 inches in a dual meet against La Serna. On the first day of the prestigious Arcadia Invitational, he bettered 15 feet for the first time, jumping 15-3, an improvement by 7 inches. He then finished sixth in the Saturday morning portion of the Arcadia Invitational.The next big step was the CIF-SS Division 1 finals. Zapien cleared 15-6 to finish second in the meet.“I was just trying to go to the Masters Meet,” he said after that finish. “I could have not asked for anything more. If I had no-heighted at 13-6, I would have been content.”

COACH OF THE YEAR
Mando Padilla, California
FIRST TEAM
Samuel Bautista, California, senior (1,600, 3,200)
Nick Capranica, Schurr, senior (100, 200)
Josh DeFrancesco, St. Paul, senior (long, triple jumps)
Mark Diego, California, junior (shot put)
Aleksie Dominguez, St. Paul, senior (800, 1,600)
Christian Duran, La Serna, senior (1,600)
Andrew Hernandez, Montebello, senior (discus, shot put)
Da’Juan Massenberge, Santa Fe, senior (100, 200)
Thomas Medina, Santa Fe, senior (200, 400)
Ricky Rodriguez, California, junior (110 hurdles, high jump, triple jump)
SECOND TEAM
Lance Babb, Schurr, freshman (100, 200, 110 hurdles)
Kedrick Conner, El Rancho, senior (100, 200, long jump)
Vincent Cuevas, El Rancho, junior (110 hurdles)
Miguel Fuentes, St. Paul, junior (100, 200, triple jump)
Joe Gallardo, St. Paul, junior (discus, shot put)
Landon Jones, La Mirada senior (100, high jump, long jump)
Eric Lancaster, La Habra, junior (110, 300 hurdles)
Matthew Marshall, La Serna, sophomore (100, 200)
Craig Rogers, Whittier, junior (110, 300 hurdles)
Garrett Silva, California, sophomore (pole vault)
HONORABLE MENTION
Donald Brown, El Rancho, sophomore (1,600, 3,200)
Ben Lyzenga, La Habra, senior (1,600, 3,200)
Abraham Roman, La Habra, junior (800)
Nick Martin, Schurr, senior (300 hurdles)

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