LA CRESCENTA — If the possibility of competing for a Pacific League team title weren’t enough for the Crescenta Valley High and Glendale track and field programs, Wednesday afternoon’s meeting in La Crescenta also provided a tuneup for one of the most competitive months of the season.
For the Falcons, not only did they shine in a few events, but they also picked up victories, as the boys won, 83-53, and the girls had no problems in a 102-29 triumph.
“We have some very important meets coming up with the Arcadia Invitational and the Muir-Burroughs meet next week,” Falcons Coach Mark Evans said. “So, you’d like to be running pretty well heading into those events.”
Sophomore Megan Melnyk helped keep the Falcons (4-0) stay atop the league standings on the girls’ side with a stellar effort, individually winning the 400- and 1,600-meter runs in times of 59.8 seconds and of 5:17.55, respectively, while teaming up with Kayleigh Carrillo, Hannah Ruby and Emmie Walker to race away with a victory in the 1,600 relay in 4:04.50.
Out of those three victories, perhaps Melnyk’s signature triumph came in the 1,600.
Melnyk trailed through the first three laps behind Glendale dynamo Leanna Setian (5:30.3), before pulling even with Setian with 150 meters left and then delivering an impressive kick in which Melnyk sprinted over the final 100 meters in racing to an almost 13-second victory.
“Leanna is my racing buddy and I’ve been running with her for years,” Melnyk said. “I know how good she is and I didn’t know what she had left, so I just gave everything I had.”
While the Glendale boys (3-2) went down in defeat, perhaps the only other dominant effort that could mirror Melnyk’s was the one that came from BYU-bound Michael Davis.
The two-sport star is already well ahead of last season’s pace in the 100, as Davis cruised to a winning mark of 10.5.
“I’ve been working and putting in the time on releasing from the blocks faster,” said Davis, who has already surpassed his CIF Southern Section Division I finals mark of 10.76. “Right now, it’s about getting better.”
Davis had the audience’s attention when he sped to victory in the 200, the event in which he advanced to state last season, in a time of 22.03.
Maybe no one had a better overall day than did Carrillo, who was victorious in four events.
Beside the 1,600 relay, the junior took home victories in the 100 (12.4) and 200 (25.02) and joined the trio of Noel Wong, Walker and Grace Keller in capturing the victory in the 400 relay (50.7).
“This is a fun meet and we always get great competition. Glendale beat us last year, so we had to get it this year,” said Carrillo, who will compete in Friday’s Tiger Invitational at South Pasadena.
Crescenta Valley’s other victories on the girls’ side came from Sarah Lapides in the 100 hurdles (17.2) and 300 hurdles (50.0), Walker in the high jump (5 feet 2), Ruby in the 800 (2:25), Haley Witzeman in the 3,200 (11:49.47), Paige Pitino in the shot put (23-2), Rachel Nakamura in the pole vault (8-0), Amelia Palacios in the triple jump (28-4 1/2) and Wong in the long jump (15-1).
Alexandra Stone turned in the long victory for the Nitros in the discus (76-2 1/2), as Glendale dropped to 3-2.
On the boys’ side, victories came from Gabe Collison in the 1,600 (4:30), David Shahmanyan in the 110 hurdles (17.1) and 300 hurdles (43.6), Alex Damla in the 400 (53.3), Matt Manalo in the 800 (2:01), Matt McDonald in the 3,200 (10:18.9), Jeremiah DeKruyf in the shot put (36-3), Steve Lee in the long jump (19-0), Juho Kim in the high jump (5-8), and from the 1,600 relay team (3:33.6) for Crescenta Valley (3-1).
Glendale (3-2) was more competitive on the boys’ side, as demonstrated with wins from the 400 relay team (44.8), Michael Williams in the pole vault (12-6), Krisnel Miraflor in the discus (98-8) and Karlo Madrano in the triple jump (37-6 1/4).