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Ivie off to state final race

Jim Riggio

Burbank High distance runners have won state titles in the 800 and

the 3,200 meters.

This afternoon, senior Kyle Ivie will have a chance to give


Burbank a sweep among the distance events when he attempts to win the

CIF-State Track and Field Championship title in the boys’ 1,600.

Ivie -- who has signed with Chico State University -- finished

third in his qualifying heat Friday in a preliminary race at Cerritos


College in Norwalk, running 4 minutes 15.73 seconds to qualify for

the nine-runner final.

Phillip Reid of Oxnard Rio Mesa won the heat in 4:14.76.

“I thought the race was gonna go a little faster than it did, but

it worked out and I made it,” Ivie said. “This is a thrill. I’ve

never gotten this far. Not even in cross-country does this compare,

because of all of the qualifying [you have to go through].”

Ivie is the first Bulldog state-meet final qualifier since Issac


Turner made it in the 800 in 1993.

Burbank’s John Musich won a state 800 title in 1974, running

1:51.0. Burbank’s Jeff Nelson, the national record holder in the

3,200 at 8:36.3, won the 1978 title in 8:59.28 and the 1979 title in


Friday’s race didn’t go the Ivie had hoped. However, it did unfold

the way distance Coach Sasha Vujic envisioned.

“Yesterday, I realized that Reid has two races -- he also ran the


3,200 -- and there is a slight possibility that he’ll sit and kick,”

Vujic said. “We talked about it and said for whatever reason, we said

‘If it’s slow with 600 [meters] to go, I don’t care if you’re in lane

10, 14 or 90, you put yourself in position with them, because with

500, they start moving.’ ”

The race went exactly as Vujic had predicted, as the lead pack,

led by Reid, went out in 64 seconds for the first lap, and came

around the 800 split in a slow 2:10.

But things picked up on the third lap, as Ivie and the rest of the

pack began to distance themselves, just as Vujic wanted, with 600

meters to go. Ivie came around the 1,200 mark in 3:15.

Ivie said he hopes the final is not like Friday’s race.

“I hope it goes out fast, because I’m not an 800-meter runner. The

last couple of weeks, I’ve been going out at about 60 or 62

[seconds],” Ivie said of his first lap.

Ivie said his goal for the final is to better his personal best of

4:13.63, a mark he attained in the CIF Southern Section Master’s Meet

a week ago.

“If I can break 4:13, I don’t care if I’m dead last,” Ivie said.