Great expectations from East County prep track and field leaders starting to separate from the pack

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The top track and field student-athletes of 2014 have started to emerge through the opening month of the season, and it appears East County will once again figure prominently in qualifying for this year’s state championship meet.

West Hills junior Melissa Mongiovi, a returning state meet medalist, leads Grossmont Conference athletes as the top-ranked runner in the San Diego Section in the 200-meter dash (24.76), 400-meter dash (56.84) and 800-meter run (2:16.99). She also ranks fifth in the 100-meter dash (12.48).

The top track and field student-athletes of 2014 have started to emerge through the opening month of the season, and it appears East County will once again figure prominently in qualifying for this year’s state championship meet.

West Hills junior Melissa Mongiovi, a returning state meet medalist, leads Grossmont Conference athletes as the top-ranked runner in the San Diego Section in the 200-meter dash (24.76), 400-meter dash (56.84) and 800-meter run (2:16.99). She also ranks fifth in the 100-meter dash (12.48).

Mongiovi placed fifth in the 400 dash at last year’s state finals in Clovis after timing a season-best 54.70 seconds.

Valhalla junior Leah Molter also ranks among the region’s top female track athletes this season with the second-best time recorded in the 100-meter hurdles (15.04) and third-best time in the 300 low hurdles (45.43).

Monte Vista senior D.J. Dosier ranks second best among San Diego Section runners in the boys 200-meter dash (22.01) and third-best among 100-meter sprinters (10.90) while Granite Hills senior Blake Dehaven (49.46) ranks second in the 400-meter dash.

Also of note, Steele Canyon senior Xavier Goodloe ranks second in the boys 300 intermediate hurdles (39.84) and fourth in the 110 high hurdles (15.20), Monte Vista senior Jordan Thibodeaux (15.12) ranks third in the 110 high hurdles, West Hills senior Nick Famolaro (1:55.51) ranks third in the 800 run and Steele Canyon junior Josh Paradise (9:35.06) ranks fourth in the 3200 run. 

Granite Hills has turned in the second-best time so far in the boys’ 4×100 relay (42.45), followed by Helix with the third-best time (42.94).

Granite Hills also ranks second in the section in the boys 4×400 relay (3:20.76).

In girls’ field events, Mt. Miguel sophomore Laulauga Tausaga ranks third in the shot put (40-0.50) while Steele Canyon junior Sabrina Dozier ranks third in the discus throw (117-7) and fifth in the shot put (38-0). Mt. Miguel senior Talisha Dozier also ranks fifth in the long jump (17-8).

In boys’ field events, Steele Canyon senior Alex Wiley ranks second in the section in the long jump with a mark of 22-7 and third overall in the triple jump with a jump of 44-11.75. Additionally, Helix senior Kordell Hampton ranks second in the section with a discus throw mark of 164-6 while Scotties teammate classmate Jalen Wyatt ranks fourth in the boys shot put (50-10.75).

State of mind

The top three place-finishers in each event at the section finals qualify to compete in the state championship meet, plus those who meet a predetermined time or mark. East County qualified 10 individuals, plus three relay teams, to compete in Clovis last year, led by gold medalist Brenden Song of West Hills in the boys’ discus throw with a mark of 188-8 set amid temperatures topping the 100-degree mark.

Also joining Song and Mongiovi in last year’s state finals were Steele Canyon senior Brandon Howard (boys 300 intermediate hurdles) and Helix senior Jashell Smith (girls discus throw). Howard finished third in his event while Smith was 11th.

The top six place-winners earn medals at the state meet.

Howard’s state medal was the first for a Steele Canyon athlete since 2009. He earned it by setting consecutive school records in the state prelims (37.99) and finals (37.65).

Mt. Miguel’s Dozier and Granite Hills’ Dehaven also qualified for last year’s state meet, but did not advance beyond the opening day prelims. 

For updates throughout the season, visit the website at www.sdtrackmag.com.

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