A meet that began with a disappointing second-place finish in the 400-meter relay ended with a victory in the 1,600 relay -- and a second consecutive team title -- for the Compton Dominguez boys’ team in the Southern Section divisional track and field championships at Cerritos College in Norwalk on Saturday.
Anaheim Servite had finished a hundredth of a second ahead of favored Dominguez in the Division III 400 relay with a 42.06-second clocking, but Dominguez went on to win five events for a 68 to 33 1/2 victory over runner-up Santa Margarita on a cool, overcast day. Last year Dominguez won the Division II title, the school’s first in track.
“That was not necessarily the way we wanted to start the meet, with a bad race,” Dominguez anchor runner Lionel Larry said of the 400 relay. “So we had to start all over again. Me and my teammate, Craig Woods, felt we had to start it off right again.”
Larry, a junior, and Woods, a senior who recently signed with California, had a hand in all five of Dominguez’s victories.
Larry won the 100 in 10.68 seconds, the 200 in a wind-aided 20.85 and ran a 49.3-second anchor leg on the victorious 1,600 relay team that clocked 3:18.15.
Woods won the 110 high hurdles in a career-best 14.24, the fastest time of the meet, the 300 intermediate hurdles in 38.01 and ran a 48.4 split on the third leg of the 1,600 relay. In addition, he ran the second leg on the Dons’ 400 relay.
“It was real important that we won again,” Larry said about Dominguez’s team title. “We wanted to show that it wasn’t a fluke the first time.”
In other team competition, Long Beach Poly won its third consecutive Division I title, Los Angeles Loyola won the Division II championship and Gardena Serra won its second consecutive Division IV title.
Poly posted victories in three events as senior Edward Giles won the 800 in a career-best 1:52.29 and the Jackrabbits placed first in the 400 relay in 42.09 and in the 1,600 relay in 3:17.56. But junior sprinter Derrick Jones was upset by senior Brian Woods of Los Alamitos in the 100 and 200.
Jones had run a career-best 10.44 in the 100 to finish second in the Arcadia Invitational last month, but he ran 10.87 in that event and 21.54 in the 200 on Saturday after recently sitting out two weeks of training because of an injured left ankle. Woods ran career bests of 10.61 in the 100 and 21.41 in the 200.
Seniors Phillip Reid of Oxnard Rio Mesa and Joe Cowan of Bellflower St. John Bosco turned in notable performances in Division II competition.
Reid posted the fastest times of the meet in winning the 1,600 in 4:10.76 and the 3,200 in 9:10.49 and ran a leg on a team that finished fourth in the 1,600 relay in 3:23.91. Cowan won the 400 in a career-best 48.01, the 300 intermediate hurdles in 37.92 and ran the anchor leg on a team that won the 1,600 relay.