Williams, Wildcats waltz in 4-5A meet

CNJ staff

CARLSBAD — Apparently, the Clovis High boys track team left it all on the track.

After rolling up 11 event wins and cruising to a margin of nearly 60 points over runnerup Carlsbad in the District 4-5A meet Friday and Saturday, the Wildcats were apparently too tired to celebrate.

“The guys went to jog a victory lap around the track and they only got about halfway around,” CHS boys coach Darren Kelley said.

It was about the only area where the Wildcats came up short.

Clovis finished with 174 points to 115 1/2 for the host Cavemen in winning its fourth district title in six years.

Cibola, meantime, won a two-team battle with Clovis in the girls meet, finishing with 164 points to 145 1/2 for the Lady Wildcats.

Senior Phillip Williams, who signed recently to run track at the University of New Mexico, took individual wins in long jump (21-11), 100 meters (10.67) and 200 meters (21.99) to lead the Clovis boys to victory. He also ran on the Cats’ winning 1,600 relay, and anchored the 400 relay to a second-place finish.

Senior Matt Loewen added wins for the Wildcats in the 1,600 (4:39.70) and 3,200 (10:12.20), while freshman Manuel Robles was a winner in high jump (6-2) and triple jump (43-3) and finished second to Williams in long jump.

In addition, Damian Robinson led a 1-3-6 Clovis finish in the 110 hurdles while Deonte Hunter paced a 1-2-3 sweep in the 300 hurdles. The Cats also won the 800 relay.

“Everybody competed well,” Kelley said. “The guys did everything we asked them to do and then some.”

The Cats added four qualifiers for this week’s state track competition in Albuquerque — Rishard Mathews in the 400, Loewen in the 1,600 and Robinson and Hunter in the 300 hurdles.

“Our main focus was scoring points,” Kelley said. “We talked before the meet that times weren’t as important this weekend as where we placed.”

Cibola’s depth was too much for the Lady Cats to overcome. Clovis won nine events in the girls meet to eight for the Lady Cougars, but the other three teams combined for just 140 1/2 points.

“We got no help from anyone else,” CHS girls coach Darrel Ray said. “Plus, the Cibola coach said his kids did the best they’ve ever done. They had some timely performances.”

Cibola posted a big advantage in the three distance races, outscoring Clovis 34-7.

“We can give somebody first places, but we can’t give them fourths, fifths and sixths,” Ray said.

Junior Kim Perkins won in triple jump (33-3) and the 300 hurdles (46.86), while finishing second to teammate Teola Haskins (15.86) in the 100 hurdles and second to Cibola’s Tressi Richardson in the 100. She also ran a leg on CHS’ second-place 400 relay.

Other winners for the Lady Cats were Brittany Blackmon in high jump (5-2), Cristin Vick in pole vault (9-0), Kacee Escobar in discus (117-1), Vanessa O’Neal in the 400 (1:00.39), eighth-grader Caitlin Waters in the 800 (2:28.61), and the 1,600 relay (4:14.07).

New qualifiers for state were Perkins in the 100 hurdles and the 200 and O’Neal in the 400, with the latter two coming in season-best times.

Cibola got big meets from triple-winner Richardson, who also won the long jump and the 200, and double-winner Vanessa Ortiz (1,600 and 3,200).