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Fountain Valley shares Surf League girls’ track and field crown with Los Alamitos

The Fountain Valley High girls’ 1,600-meter relay team competed against Surf League rival Los Alamitos at the Arcadia Invitational national meet on April 6 and won.

Almost three weeks later, the Barons knew that they had the stuff to beat the Griffins again. They needed to do so in the final race on Friday night in the Surf League finals at Los Alamitos.

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The Barons and Griffins were tied in points prior to the quarter-mile relay, but Fountain Valley anchor leg Kaho Cichon was not sure if she would have enough left in the tank to get the job done. She had already qualified for CIF in the 400 meters and the 800.

After no one dropped the baton and Cichon crossed the finish line first, the Barons edged the Griffins 85-81 to win the league finals meet.

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Los Alamitos earned a share of the girls’ league title by virtue of going undefeated in the league dual meets during the regular season.

Sophie Lopez, Crystal Nguyen, Amie Le and Cichon ran a time of 3 minutes 59.75 seconds to give the Barons their first girls’ league title since 2013.

“I’m really happy,” Cichon said. “I was worried because my 400 was a [personal record], but it got me really tired. I didn’t know if I would have energy for this race.

“I’m glad that I got to redeem myself from getting second in the 400.”

Barons coach Brian Bivens felt that it was fitting to see his team clinch the title with one of its best events.

“I’m pretty excited,” Bivens said. “I think the girls worked hard all year, and Los Alamitos is a tremendous program. To even be in it half the time, in any sport, is a big deal.

“Give our girls credit. They took care of it when they needed to. I ran the [1,600 relay] in college. It’s what I pride myself on. The entire program is based on quarter-mile training, and to win it in that is poetic.”

The Griffins won the boys’ league title outright, beating Edison 89-77 in the league finals meet. Abraham Lotfy swept the hurdles, and Sean Ayale won the long jump and triple jump to spearhead the Los Alamitos boys.

Fountain Valley got more highlights from Yuki Watanabe on the boys’ side, as the senior pulled off a distance double. He began his day with a win in the 1,600 with a time of 4:29.34, beating the field by six seconds.

Fountain Valley High's Yuki Watanabe reacts after finishing first in the boys' 1600-meter race of the Surf League finals at Los Alamitos on Friday.
Fountain Valley High's Yuki Watanabe reacts after finishing first in the boys' 1600-meter race of the Surf League finals at Los Alamitos on Friday. (Kevin Chang / Staff Photographer)

Later in the evening, Watanabe battled Los Alamitos senior Klaus Quinonez in the 3,200 (9:53.96). Watanabe and the hometown favorite were neck-and-neck in the final lap, but the Barons’ distance ace pulled away coming around the final turn.

“It’s just really great to have teammates that really care about you, really cheer for you and support you,” said Watanabe, who was lifted up by his teammates in celebration following the race. “The last 100 meters, I heard their voices, and I think that’s really what got me through the last 100 to get this win.

“I’m just really happy for my team, and I’m so thankful. Thank you so much to everyone on this team.”

More than a few football coaches have seen the benefit of their players competing in track and field to better themselves in the offseason.

Edison’s Ryan Rivituso thinks that is sound advice. After playing baseball as a freshman, he came out to compete in track this spring.

The Chargers may soon have a wide receiver that can take the top off of the defense.

Rivituso sped past the competition in the Surf League finals, taking home first-place medals in four different events.

The sophomore speedster won the 200 meters (22.20) and the 400 (49.06) individually. He also served on the Chargers’ victorious 400 relay and 1,600 relay teams.

“I ran the [400 relay] two weeks ago, and I ran it in [48 seconds], so I knew what I was capable of,” Rivituso said after lowering his personal record in the 400 by more than a second. “I came into this race and I just started off a little harder and ran it faster than I normally would.

“In the second 200, I used everything I had. I just went all-out and tried to keep my form. I’m satisfied with my time. That is what I was going for.”

Edison High's Aiden Garnett clears 6 feet, 4 inches during the Surf League finals at Los Alamitos on Friday.
Edison High's Aiden Garnett clears 6 feet, 4 inches during the Surf League finals at Los Alamitos on Friday. (Kevin Chang / Staff Photographer)

Edison also got wins from Aiden Garnett in boys’ high jump (6 feet 4 inches) and Megan Weiss in the girls’ 100 high hurdles (16.13).

Corona del Mar received first-place showings from Cole White in the boys’ discus throw (150-8) and Paige Damron in the girls’ 300 intermediate hurdles (46.61).

BOYS’ TRACK AND FIELD

Surf League Finals

At Los Alamitos High

(*) Denotes CIF qualifier

Team Results

1. Los Alamitos 89; 2. Edison 77; 3. Corona del Mar 41; 4. Fountain Valley 38

Individuals

100 – 1. Gillmore (Fountain Valley) 11.13*; 2. Reyes (Los Alamitos) 11.15*; 3. de Bos (Edison) 11.36; 4. Williams (Edison) 11.42; 5. Dunn (Fountain Valley) 11.44

200 – 1. Rivituso (Edison) 22.20*; 2. Reyes (Los Alamitos) 22.55*; 3. Williams (Edison) 22.70; 4. Gillmore (Fountain Valley) 22.81; 5. Biagi (Corona del Mar) 23.36

400 – 1. Rivituso (Edison) 49.06*; 2. Luis (Los Alamitos) 50.79*; 3. Olsen (Corona del Mar) 51.65; 4. Hass (Edison) 52.14; 5. Fontaeus (Corona del Mar) 52.71

800 – 1. Johnson (Los Alamitos) 1:59.26*; 2. Schwarz (Edison) 2:00.20*; 3. Means (Corona del Mar) 2:03.25; 4. Schmidt (Fountain Valley) 2:05.90

1,600 – 1. Watanabe (Fountain Valley) 4:29.34*; 2. Pence (Corona del Mar) 4:35.26*; 3. Schmidt (Fountain Valley) 4:37.99; 4. Mockus (Fountain Valley) 4:38.25; 5. Rogers (Los Alamitos) 4:39.86

3,200 – 1. Watanabe (Fountain Valley) 9:53.96*; 2. Quinonez (Los Alamitos) 9:55.13*; 3. Pence (Corona del Mar) 10:10.40; 4. Rosenthal (Los Alamitos) 10:11.66; 5. Mockus (Fountain Valley) 10:15.15

110HH – 1. Lotfy (Los Alamitos) 14.51*; 2. Spradlin (Edison) 15.71*; 3. Adele (Los Alamitos) 15.87; 4. Koffler (Edison) 15.88; 5. Nunes (Fountain Valley) 16.14

300IH – 1. Lotfy (Los Alamitos) 39.90*; 2. Spradlin (Edison) 41.92*; 3. Lujan (Corona del Mar) 42.02; 4. Adele (Los Alamitos) 42.09; 5. Ayale (Los Alamitos) 42.92

400 relay – 1. Edison 42.98*; 2. Los Alamitos 43.12*; 3. Corona del Mar 43.76

1,600 relay – 1. Edison 3:25.25*; 2. Los Alamitos 3:25.78*; 3. Corona del Mar 3:36.18; 4. Fountain Valley 3:36.95

HJ – 1. Garnett (Edison) 6-3½*; 2. Kimura (Los Alamitos) 6-2*; 3. Hampton (Edison) 6-2*

LJ – 1. Ayale (Los Alamitos) 22-7*; 2. Wright (Corona del Mar) 22-1*; 3. Lu (Fountain Valley) 21-5; 4. Campbell (Edison) 20-4¾; 5. Reid (Fountain Valley) 20-2½

TJ – 1. Ayale (Los Alamitos) 43-6½*; 2. Campbell (Edison) 42-1½*; 3. Kersey (Los Alamitos) 40-11½; 4. Trinh (Edison) 40-5¼; 5. Keehn (Edison) 40-1½

PV – 1. Brok (Los Alamitos) 12-0*; 2. Delapre (Edison) 11-6*; 3. Kelley (Edison) 11-0

SP – 1. Howard (Los Alamitos) 56-1½*; 2. White (Corona del Mar) 51-4*; 3. Nasrallah (Los Alamitos) 47-3; 4. Heinemann (Corona del Mar) 45-4; 5. Conaway (Edison) 44-9

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DT – 1. White (Corona del Mar) 150-8*; 2. Nasrallah (Los Alamitos) 146-5*; 3. Lewis (Edison) 130-9; 4. Heinemann (Corona del Mar) 127-0; 5. Wright (Corona del Mar) 124-6

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GIRLS’ TRACK AND FIELD

Team Results

1. Fountain Valley 85; 2. Los Alamitos 81; 3. Corona del Mar 51; 4. Edison 39

Individuals

100 – 1. Poland (Los Alamitos) 12.56*; 2. Hoffer (Edison) 12.66*; 3. Rosenthal (Los Alamitos) 12.82; 4. Forest (Edison) 12.84; 5. Maxwell (Fountain Valley) 12.89

200 – 1. Limp (Los Alamitos) 25.04*; 2. Hoffer (Edison) 25.65*; 3. Poland (Los Alamitos) 25.79; 4. Le (Fountain Valley) 26.05; 5. Nguyen (Fountain Valley) 26.28

400 – 1. Limp (Los Alamitos) 58.33*; 2. Cichon (Fountain Valley) 58.75*; 3. Dang (Corona del Mar) 58.90; 4. Le (Fountain Valley) 59.50; 5. Lopez (Fountain Valley) 59.92

800 – 1. Cichon (Fountain Valley) 2:19.95*; 2. Gallegos (Fountain Valley) 2:21.14*; 3. Sharp (Corona del Mar) 2:22.15; 4. Velasco (Los Alamitos) 2:22.93; 5. Feitz (Fountain Valley) 2:24.24

1,600 – 1. Gallegos (Fountain Valley) 5:11.01*; 2. Feitz (Fountain Valley) 5:12.49*; 3. Buchwald (Corona del Mar) 5:15.71; 4. Faller (Fountain Valley) 5:17.0; 5. Guerra (Fountain Valley) 5:18.80

3,200 – 1. Faller (Fountain Valley) 11:33.99*; 2. Jahshan (Fountain Valley) 11:41.60*; 3. Faris (Los Alamitos) 11:45.15; 4. Boudreau (Corona del Mar) 11:45.76; 5. Buchwald (Corona del Mar) 11:47.16

100HH – 1. Weiss (Edison) 16.13*; 2. Cargile (Corona del Mar) 16.57*; 3. Humphreys (Los Alamitos) 16.76; 4. Chis (Fountain Valley) 17.12; 5. Stolaruk (Edison) 17.85

300IH – 1. Damron (Corona del Mar) 46.61*; 2. Fuerte (Fountain Valley) 49.41; 3. Nelson (Los Alamitos) 50.54; 4. Stolaruk (Edison) 50.86; 5. Wilde (Corona del Mar) 51.85

400 relay – 1. Los Alamitos 47.69*; 2. Edison 49.46*; 3. Fountain Valley 49.67; 4. Corona del Mar 49.99

1,600 relay – 1. Fountain Valley 3:59.75*; 2. Corona del Mar 4:01.99*; 3. Los Alamitos 4:10.79; 4. Edison 4:19.15

HJ – 1. Kirk (Los Alamitos) 5-1*; 2. Wiggs (Los Alamitos) 5-1J*; 3. Hart (Edison) 4-11; 4. Powers (Fountain Valley) 4-9; 5. Bennyworth (Edison) 4-7

LJ – 1. Wright (Los Alamitos) 16-2¼*; 2. Glessing (Corona del Mar) 16-2*; 3. Frye (Edison) 16-2; 4. Nguyen (Fountain Valley) 16-1; 5. Chis (Fountain Valley) 15-10

TJ – 1. Kirk (Los Alamitos) 35-¾*; 2. Frye (Edison) 33-11¼*; 3. Truong (Fountain Valley) 33-8½; 4. Nguyen (Fountain Valley) 33-¼; 5. Forest (Edison) 32-6¾

PV – 1. Millar (Los Alamitos) 11-0*; 2. Cruz (Los Alamitos) 9-10*; 3. Strassman (Corona del Mar) 9-10*; 4. Peterson (Fountain Valley) 9-4; 5T. Gavia (Fountain Valley) 8-6; 5T. Pestel (Fountain Valley) 8-6

SP – 1. Togafau (Fountain Valley) 33-5*; 2. Gregory (Corona del Mar) 32-8½*; 3. Hatcher (Fountain Valley) 31-6½; 4. Taylor (Fountain Valley) 31-4; 5. Novela (Corona del Mar) 30-8

DT – 1. Villagran (Los Alamitos) 107-3*; 2. White (Corona del Mar) 105-3*; 3. Trester (Corona del Mar) 103-5; 4. Taylor (Fountain Valley) 103-3; 5. Mallon (Corona del Mar) 101-8

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