The Arcadia Invitational always attracts many of the top high school track and field performers in the nation, and this year is no exception.
The 22nd annual meet at 5:30 p.m. Saturday at Arcadia High is expected to lure athletes from 300 schools and 15 states.
Among the top out-of-state stars are long jumper Dion Bentley of Pittsburgh Penn Hills, who holds the national indoor record with a leap of 26-6 1/2, and pole vaulter Jayson Lavender from Wichita Falls of Texas, who set a sophomore national record of 17-0 3/4 last year.
The San Gabriel Valley will challenge with sprinter Inger Miller of Muir and distance runner Karen Hecox of South Hills.
Miller will have a rematch against defending state champion Angela Burnham of Rio Mesa in the 100- and 200-meter dashes. Miller, a junior, defeated the senior Burnham for the first time in the 100 at the Northridge Relays in March and has produced a top time of 11.5 seconds. She has run the 200 in a swift 23.5.
Miller will also run the anchor leg for Muir's outstanding 400-meter relay team, which has a 46.8 this season.
Hecox will be one of the favorites in the 1,600-meter run, where she has produced a best of 4:50.93. She figures to receive strong opposition from defending state champion Kira Jorgensen of Rancho Buena Vista, Rayna Cervantes of Montebello and 1989 National Scholastic indoor two-mile champion Lisa Dressel of Rogers High in Spokane.
Two other top valley performers in the meet are Mark Wilson of Charter Oak in the high jump and Billy Ivey of West Covina in the triple jump. Wilson has a best of 6-11 and Ivey's top leap is 49-1 1/4.
The Broncos, who entered the week ranked No. 7 in NCAA Division I at 24-9 and in second place in conference play at 12-2, visit Cal State Long Beach at 4 p.m. today and San Jose State at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Pomona has won behind the one-two pitching combination of senior Lori Thompson and sophomore Nicky Luce. Thompson, who tossed a no-hitter in a 1-0 victory over San Diego State last week, is 11-2 with an 0.62 earned-run average. Luce is 11-5 with a 1.17 ERA.
The Broncos have received outstanding play from third baseman Heather DeLuca, outfielder Nikki Busch, catcher Denise Correa and shortstop Shellie McCall. DeLuca is batting a team-leading .291, followed by Busch at .280 and Correa at .277. Busch and McCall, a freshman, are tied for the team lead in runs batted in with 14.
Their opponents today and Saturday are both at .500 in conference play. Long Beach is 7-7 in the Big West and 21-14 overall; San Jose is 5-5 in the Big West and 19-15 overall.
Long Beach, which lost to Pomona in the Division I West Regional last season, is ranked No. 15 behind the pitching of Karrie Schott and Annette Gonzalez. Schott is 6-2 with a 1.01 ERA and Gonzalez 5-5 with a 0.74 ERA.
San Jose has been led by the pitching of Gale Dean, who is 13-6 with a 0.73 ERA.
The Cal Poly Pomona baseball team will take a break from California Collegiate Athletic Assn. play with non-conference games against U.S. International University on Friday and Saturday.
The Broncos, who entered the week in second place in the CCAA at 8-6 and 12-21 overall, play host to USIU at 3 p.m. Friday and visit the Gulls at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Pomona had mixed results in six games last week, dropping non-conference games to Division I opponents Washington State, UC Irvine and Loyola Marymount before taking two of three games against Cal State Dominguez Hills in CCAA play.
The Broncos have been led by catcher Chris Goldbach and outfielder Chris Butterfield. Goldbach entered the week leading the team with a .424 batting average, six home runs, 38 runs batted in and a 25-game hitting streak. Butterfield was at .388 with three homers and 17 RBIs.