9:37 PM PDT, April 6, 2013
Khalfani Muhammad of Sherman Oaks Notre Dame proved once again that he is the fastest high school athlete in California, winning the 100 meters in 10.46 seconds at Saturday's Arcadia Invitational.
His time is the third fastest in the nation this year and the fastest he has ever run this early in a track season. He's the defending state 100 and 200 champion, so his quick time demonstrates his improved strength from a successful football season when he was running the ball for the Knights.
He also became the first Notre Dame athlete to win an individual title at Arcadia in the 32-year coaching career of Joe McNab. Former state sprint champions Justin Fargas and Rodney Glass never won at Arcadia.
"I think he ran a great race," McNab said of the 100 performance. "He stayed calm and relaxed."
Said Muhammad: "It shows that we're on the right path running pretty fast early in the year, and hopefully we can continue that through the season."
Elijah Mitchell of Eastvale Roosevelt, who finished second to Muhammad in the 100 in 10.58, came back to win the 200 in 21.21. Muhammad was second in 21.40.
In the girls' pole vault, Santa Margarita's Kaitlyn Merritt set a meet record with a winning mark of 13 feet 8 inches. It's also a national sophomore record.
"It was just super exciting," said Merritt, who finished second in the state last year as a freshman.
Adoree' Jackson of Gardena Serra won the long jump with an effort of 24-61/2 and was part of a 400-meter relay team that won in 41.45.
Simi Valley's Sarah Baxter won her third Arcadia title in three years, taking the 3,200 in 10:08.76, the second-fastest time in the nation. Ariana Washington of Long Beach Poly ran a nation-leading 23.34 to win the 200.
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