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Journey ends at Masters
Several athletes come up just short of State qualification
track masters pic1
Pitman's Aaron Mayfield competes in the 800m at the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Track meet on Friday. The Pride runner finished 9th. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO / The Journal

Pitman High was well represented during this year’s CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Track and Field Trials and Finals on Thursday and Friday at Elk Grove High School as at least eight of its 12 qualifying athletes finished in the top 14 of their respective events.

While the Pride athletes failed to finish in the top three and advance to the State meet, a couple underclassmen came very close. Lauren Cariaso was the closest of them all with her fourth place finish in the triple jump while Lindsey Phillips finished two spots short in the pole vault with a fifth place finish.

“She finished fourth, which was great, but her goal was to get to State,” Pitman head coach Thad Moren said of Cariaso.

“And Lindsey, she’s finished top five in the section two years in a row. So hey, we still have another year,” Moren added about Phillips.

Another Pride athlete, Aaron Mayfield, was also close to a top three finish though his 9th place final in the 800m might not indicate so. Mayfield, who finished third in the 800m during Thursday’s trials, was en route to repeat his performance in the final race when he was stifled via interference.

“Aaron was in third with about 200 meters to go and somebody rubbed paint with him a little bit,” Moren said. “He just came to a complete stop because someone hit him, but it is what it is.”

Other top 14 finishers from Pitman included D’Andre Griffin, who finished 11th in the high jump and 14th in the triple jump; Claire Littlefield, who finished 13th in the triple jump; Jamie Stroup, who finished 8th in the high jump; and Sydney Holmes, who finished 12th in the long jump. Isaac Gonzalez finished 10th in the 3200m with a personal record time.

But Pitman wasn’t the only local school present at Masters, Turlock and Hilmar High athletes competed as well.

Bulldogs Cierra Booz and Justin Serpa cracked the top 14 with Booze finishing 14th in the long jump and Serpa finishing 13th in the long jump, while Yellowjacket Dani Olsen notched a 13th place finish in the 300m hurdles.