The Bearcats return four championship and undefeated Lake Division teams to Track and Field this Spring. In their 4 league dual meets last year, both men’s and women’s teams won at both the Varsity and Frosh-Soph levels at each meet giving returning coach head Ed Riley a tough feat to duplicate. Taking the helm for his 14th season at SMHS, Coach Riley could have the horsepower to repeat. First however, he’ll need some help in the medical tent with his two top sprinters on the men’s team.
Leading the Bearcat speedsters this year should be seniors Kevin Grant and Jake Jeffries. Both will have extra motivation this season having run well enough at the PAL championships last year to advance to CCS but neither was able to compete in the regional competition. Jeffries enters 2018 as the clear-cut favorite in PAL to win both his feature races, the 110m and 300m hurdles, having taken 2nd and 1st respectively in those events last year. Grant enters 2018 ranked as the 3rd fastest 100m sprinter and 4th in the 200m in PAL. The problem lies in that both sprinters may take a while to get up to full speed as they recover from injuries suffered in other Varsity sports. Once healthy, they will be joining junior sprinter Noa Mandorf who won PAL Frosh-Soph last year in his specialty, the 400m. He brings the 6th fastest time to PAL this spring in that event. The trio will make a strong base for the both the 4x100m and 4×400 relay races. On the field, senior Galo Reyes will bring his springs to the high, long and triple jump pits.
On the women’s side, standout middle distance runner Mallorie Jenne will be making her Varsity debut. Jenne had a sophomore season to remember capped by a remarkable sweep in 3 events at the PAL Frosh-Soph Championships last season when she took gold in the 800m, the 1600m and the 3200m. The Fess sisters, Marina, Andora and Seanna will all be competing hard in their senior season in the pole vault, hurdles and middle distance runs respectively. Each is a proven winner and will add great depth to the women’s team. In the field events, junior Jocelyn Cristin-Barron will be looking to fly her discus as she enters the season with a top 10 PAL mark in that event. Evelyn Contreras will also add strength to the team in the sprints and long jump in her first year on Varsity.
On the Frosh-Soph teams, 10th grader Lydia McIntyre looks to be an outstanding up and comer in the throws. McIntyre enters 2018 with the 2nd best shot put and 3rd best discus mark for sophomores. Trevor Wong on the men’s side shows promise in the Pole Vault posting the third best height for freshman at PAL last year.
Coach Riley and his assistants are always looking for new and hidden talents to develop and teach. Come on out and run, jump, vault and throw your way to lots of fun in the sun this spring! The first meet of the season will be on March 3 in Manteca at the Tom Moore Relays. The schedule includes 6 other invitational meets, 4 Lake Division dual meets, and the PAL Championships in May. On April 14th, SMHS will once again host one of the biggest meets in the region, the Bearcat Invitational which last year saw over 1,000 athletes from nearly 50 schools participate.