CA All-State T&F: Boys Field Athlete of the Year

MileSplitCA 2018 Track & Field Boys Field Athlete of the Year

Sean Lee shattered the 7-foot barrier with a season-opening 7-3 clearance that set the tone for the season.


Trabuco Hills/SS | Sr.

As a sophomore, Sean Lee cleared 7 feet in the high jump three times, the final time earning him a 3rd place medal at the CIF State Championships, his second medal in as many trips to the State finals (he was 2nd as a freshman). 

As a junior, the highest Lee could get was 6-11, of which he did twice, the final time earning him a 1st place medal at State. 

So when he opened his senior season on his home apron at Trabuco Hills High clearing a whopping 7-3, it was a sign of big things to come. 

Although Lee was never able to equal that height the rest of the spring, he was consistently big over 7 feet throughout the season, including a 7-2 clearance to win a second consecutive CIF-State Championships gold medal in the high jump.

Lee, bound for UCLA, is a two-time State Meet champion, four-time State Meet medalist, and four-time Southern Section Division 1 champion with seven 7-foot clearances during a senior season where he won all 15 competitions he entered. In a season with a handful of extremely worthy candidates, Sean Lee earned the 2018 MileSplitCA Boys Field Athlete of the Year

In a season of elite specialists, it was a difficult choice between Lee, record-setting pole vaulter Sondre Guttormsen, and horizontal jumper CJ Stevenson (the only other boy at the State Meet to repeat as champion).  Lee's overall body of work and senior year consistency over 7 feet -- a height he didn't clear at all as a junior -- lifted him above the other two extremely worthy candidates as well as the other State Meet champions who were considered. 

Among his 15 victories during the spring of 2018, Lee had five meets where his winning jump was 7-2 or higher, including the Mt. SAC Relays and the SS Division 1 finals, where his 7-02.50 clearance was a divisional meet record. 

At State, Lee was clean up to and over the winning height of 7-2 at which point he took three strong attempts at 7-03.50, a quarter-inch over the State Meet record.

"Those jumps, I was over, it was just little timing issues coming down on the bar," he said in a post-meet interview. "I felt like I could have cleared it. I was a little disappointed that I didn't because I really wanted to attempt that state record (7-04.50). But I'm satisfied with the win and to jump 7-2 again."

In 30 meets over the past two seasons, trials and prelims included, Lee cleared the top height in 29 of them. 

Others Considered

Malcolm Clemons (St. Mary's College High/NC) So. -- CIF-State champion in the long jump with a consistent six-jump progression that led to a 25-01.00 (2.5) winning jump. That mark ranks CA #1 and US #2 (tie) among all-condition jumps. His wind-legal best of 24-05.25 (to win at Stanford) is US #1, regardless of class. He also had the fifth best qualifying mark at State in the triple jump (47-7.5) but scratched out of the for the finals because of a tender leg from the long jump. 

Sondre Guttormsen (Davis Senior/SJ) Sr. -- Transfer from Norway headed to UCLA was unchallenged throughout the CIF season in the pole vault where he won the CIF-State title in a meet record 17-10, set a state record of 18-02-50 to win at Arcadia (US #4) and had five meets where he went 17-7 or higher, including 17-11 to win at Texas Relays and 17-9 to win the Halden Invitational at Davis. 

Jalyn Jackson (Eastlake/SD) Sr. -- Runner-up at State in the triple jump (49-03/1.1) and placed 3rd in the long jump (23-08.50) a year after placing 2nd and 6th, respectively. Jackson, headed to Cal, hit his triple jump PR of 49-10.25/0.9 at Arcadia (CA #2, US #12 among wind-legal marks) and his long jump PR of 24-10/2.5 to win the San Diego Section title (CA #3, US #7 all-conditions).

Christian LaValle (Mission Viejo/SS) Sr. -- CIF-State champion in the discus throw (182-07). His winning throw is a PR and CA #11t. Emerged from the crowd of top throwersat the end of the season. Won at Mt. SAC Relays in the seeded division. Football linebacker headed to Arizona State certainly saved his best for the end of the season and was clutch when the pressure was at its peak. Had the best three throws of his career in the last three meets, going 180-09 for 2nd at SS Masters and 176-10 for 7th at State Prelims before winning gold at the State final.

CJ Stevenson (Great Oak/SS) Sr. -- Defended his CIF-State title in the triple jump (49-11.75/0.6) and also placed 5th in the long jump (23-04.50/1.1) while competing on an injured knee (and also ran the third leg on the gold medal-winning 4x100 relay). Texas A&M-bound Stevenson had a triple jump PR of 50-06.75 to win his second consecutive Southern Section Division 1 title. That mark ranked CA #1 and US #5 for wind-legal marks. Long jump PR of 24-03/0.0 (to win at Arcadia) is US #6 (tie among wind-legal marks).

Daniel Viveros (Liberty/CS) Jr. -- State champion in the shot put (62-05.50). He also qualified for the final in the discus throw, placing 12th (172-02). His shot put PR of 63-10.25 (from winning his first Central Section title) is CA #1 overall, US #3 in the junior class, and US #14 overall. His discus throw PR of 184-2 (from winning the Battle of Central Cal) is CA #10 overall, CA #4 in the junior class. Viveros had 10 meets with shot puts of 60-plus including seven at 61-plus. He had 10 meets with discus throws of 175 feet or farther. He went 16-0 in the shot this year, including winning at Arcadia (61-07.75).

Two-time CA triple jump champion CJ Stevenson was a triple-medalist at State. (Frank Bellino photo)