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Denair boys take first in SAL meet, again
SAL track pic1
Delhis Dylan Price leaps into the sandpit at Joe Debely Stadium on Saturday during the third SAL meet of the season. - photo by FRANKIE TOVAR / The Journal

Denair High continued its successful Southern Athletic League campaign on the track Saturday morning in the third SAL meet of the season. The Coyotes earned another first place finish in the boys division and nabbed a third place finish in the girls division despite a couple of absent athletes. Delhi and Turlock Christian High also experienced varying degrees of success with the Hawk boys taking third.

“Every meet we’ve won, so I think we have a really good chance at league,” Denair’s head coach Jim Wagner said about his boys. “And even though my varsity girls fell a little short, I still feel really confident at their chances as well.”

As has been the case all season, the Coyotes were led by Quentin Allen and Trey Howze. Allen put in a pair of first place performances in the 200m and 800m while Howze notched a trio of first place finishes in the 110m and 300m hurdles and high jump to add to a third place finish in the 400m.

“I believe they both will be peaking and the right time,” Wagner said of the two.

Allen also teamed up with Everett Wagner, Connor Sosa, and Patrick Dudley for a second place finish in the 4x100m relay. Dudley also competed in the long jump where he placed first. Other notable individual performances included Vandon Weaver’s first place win in the 3200m, Jesus Padilla’s second place finish in the 400m, Luis Mendoza’s second place throw in the shot put, and Darren Almaraz’s second place finish in the 110m hurdles and third place finish in the 300m hurdles.

As for the Lady Coyotes, Samantha Watts earned a pair of first place finishes in the 100m and 300m hurdles to add to a third place finish in the 100m. Bridgette Burgess took first in the long jump, Ciera Jantz placed second and third in the 200m and high jump, respectively, and Theresa Martinez took first in the discus before placing second in the shot put. Burgess, Jantz, and Watts also joined Samantha McVeigh for a first place performance in the 4x100m relay.

Delhi walked into Joe Debely Stadium on Saturday with victory in mind but only managed one first place individual performance in the boys division and one in the girls division.

Ryan Saavedra provided a first place finish in the discus along with a third place performance in the shot put while a handful of teammates came in second and third in their respective events. Hayden Steger took second in the 100m, Dylan Price took second in the triple jump, and the team of Erik Tapia, Fernando Nuno, Hector Jimenez, and Sergio Espindola placed second in the 4x400m relay. Espindola also had a third place finish in the 800m and was joined in the bronze category by Jesus Soto in the 3200m and Garret Thomas in both the 200m and triple jump. Thomas, Steger, Cosme Soto, and Rene Guerra also placed third in the 4x100m relay.

The Lady Hawks’ first place finish came via Ana Gonzalez in the 3200m. Gonzalez also placed third in the 1600m while Rosemary DaLuz nabbed a pair of second place finishes in the 800m and 1600m, Jennifer Garcia earned second in the discus, and Sarah Cruz took second in the long and triple jump.

And though its roster is on the smaller side, TC managed two first place finishes from Dante Barron in the 400m and the team of Cameron Pugh, Jose Almanza, Jared Zuniga, and Malik Portillo in the 4x400m relay. Portillo also placed second in the 200m and third in the 100m. On the girls side, Abi Bawcum emerged as the most successful Lady Eagle with a pair of third place finishes in the long jump and shot put.

All three teams now have another SAL meet to complete this Saturday before the all-deciding SAL Final meet on May 11.

“I expect our success to continue. Anything short of something major happening, we should be just fine,” Wagner said. “It all comes down to that one meet ... winner take all.”