High temperatures and heated competition are expected at state track and field championships

Eric Sondheimer
Contact ReporterVarsity Times Insider

With the temperatures expected to be sizzling in Clovis this weekend, the 99th CIF state track and field championships at Buchanan High should once again produce lots of top individual performances.

All eyes on Friday and Saturday will be on Tara Davis of Agoura as she tries to win three events and set records in the 100 hurdles, long jump and triple jump. The senior headed to Georgia has the nation’s top marks in the long jump and hurdles.

The talent in the girls’ events is particularly strong. Rachel Baxter of Anaheim Canyon is the national leader in the pole vault at 14 feet, 4 inches. Sophomore Claudia Lane of Malibu is No. 1 nationally in the 3,200 meters at 9 minutes, 57.52 seconds. Shae Anderson of Norco is the No. 1 in the 400 in 51.99 and will be challenged by defending state champion Kaelin Roberts of Carson.

For the boys, the state meet record for 100 meters is 10.30 seconds, and it could be challenged by Javelin Guidry of Vista Murrieta, last week’s Masters Meet champion, and Isaiah Cunningham of Moreno Valley Rancho Verde, the Southern Section Division 1 champion.

In the 400, with no Michael Norman around, a healthy Zach Shinnick of La Verne Damien has been improving each week and appears ready to win a state title after missing last year’s event because of a hamstring injury.

“It was pretty hard,” he said of shutting himself down at the end of the 2016 season. “I really wanted to run. It was hard to say no, but I think it paid off.”

He ran a career-best 46.38 400 at the Masters Meet.

Joseph Anderson of Upland leads the qualifiers in the 110 high hurdles in 13.56 and the 300 hurdles in 36.58.

In field events, Tate Curran of Redondo will be shooting for 17 feet and higher in the pole vault. CJ Stevenson of Temescal Great Oak has gone 48-9 in the triple jump. Arrun Palacio of Dorsey won the City title last week at 48-2. Robbie Otal of Oak Park has the No. 1 mark in the discus at 201-01.

Running events are set to begin at 5 p.m. on Friday and 6 p.m. on Saturday.

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