Fletcher Leans In as Latest Sprint King

Miguel Fletcher of Mission Hills Alemany High drew first blood in a battle of sprint kingpins.

Fletcher clocked a wind-aided 10.44 seconds in the 100 meters to defeat Long Beach Poly's Darrell Rideaux (10.46) and Notre Dame's Justin Fargas (10.60) in the Northridge-Alemany Relays at Cal State Northridge last Saturday in a race that featured the top three finishers from last year's state championships.

Fletcher and Rideaux had finished second and third behind Fargas in the state final in Sacramento in June, but they beat him out of the starting blocks at Northridge and Fargas never recovered.

Rideaux, a junior, led the race for the first 95 meters before Fletcher nipped him at the finish with a well-timed lean.

Fletcher, who will attend USC next fall on a football scholarship, later won the 200 in a wind-aided 21.32.

Sultan McCullough of Pasadena Muir won the 400 in 47.85.

McCullough, favored to win the boys' 100- and 200-meter dashes in the 1997 state championships before aggravating a hamstring injury, is expected to make his season debut in the 100 in the Pasadena Games at Occidental College on March 28.

Muir also boasts an outstanding hurdles corps. Elmo Traylor (38.66), Anthony Kelley (39.17) and Terry Jenkins (39.49) finished 1-2-3 in the boys' 300-meter intermediate hurdles at Northridge.

Long Beach Poly won six individual events in the girls' meet.

Shakerrah Merritt won the 100 in a wind-aided 12.02 seconds, Bunmi Ogunleye took the 400 in 58.13 and Arlene Bledsoe won the 800 in 2:20.87.

Blessing Ufodiama won the long jump and triple jump with wind-aided marks of 17 feet 2 inches and 38-1 1/2. Marryan Salamasina won the shotput (35-8 1/2).

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