HONORS MileSplitCA Track and Field Athletes Of The Year

MileSplitCA 2021 Track & Field Athletes of the Year

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It was 16 months ago when the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the 2020 outdoor season and would force the cancellation of two CIF-State Track and Field Championships.

That we had a 2021 outdoor season -- as uneven and imperfect as it was -- is nothing short of a blessing. 

We stand in awe of all of the track and field coaches, administrators, timers, officials, meet directors, and of course, athletes whose positivity and perseverance made the 2021 outdoor season one we will never forget.

We salute all of you and we particularly honor the athletes who left indelible marks on high school track and field in California and beyond. 

Here we honor four MileSplitCA State Track and Field Athletes of the Year. Below that we recognize top athletes for each of the 10 CIF sections. 

Congratulations and thank you for the memories!

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Girls Track

MIA BARNETT (Crescenta Valley/SS/Sr./Distance)

How She Crushed 2021: Completed the most accomplished distance track season in state history, ending the season as the national leader in both the 1600m (4:37.58) and 3200m (9:52.23). Ranked U.S. No. 3 for the mile (4:39.41). Her mark for 1600m ranks third all-time in California history. Her 3200m mark ranks CA No. 4 all-time. She also ran a 2:07.31 for 800m, a mark that led the state, ranked U.S. No. 12, and CA No. 25 all-time. Selected as the Gatorade California Girls Track and Field "Player" of the Year award recipient. Signed with Virginia.

Girls Field

PAIGE SOMMERS (Westlake/SS/Sr./Pole Vault)


How She Crushed 2021: Cleared 14-9 to set a national high school record in late May, eclipsing the 14-8.50 national mark she had set in early April. One of only five girls in state history to clear 14 feet and she had six meets since March with top clearances of 14 feet or higher (and three others in 2020). Won 14 events, including Arcadia Invitational, Ventura County Championships, CIF-Southern Section Division 1 and CA State Championships. Competed at U.S. Olympic Trials. Signed with Duke.

Boys Track

COLIN SAHLMAN (Newbury Park/SS/Jr./Distance)

How He Crushed 2021: U.S. No. 1 for 3200 meters (8:43.42), CA No. 10 all-time. U.S. No. 3 for 1600 meters (4:03.58), CA No. 16 all-time. U.S. No. 6 for the mile (4:04.86). Won all nine races between 1600m and 3200m, including Arcadia Invitational, four races at the Sundown Track Series, and the season-finale at Music City Track Carnival in Nashville. Ranks No. 1 in the class of 2022 for 3200m, and No. 3 in the class for both the mile and 1600m. Selected as the Gatorade California Boys Track and Field "Player" of the Year award recipient. 

Boys Field

GARRETT BROWN (La Costa Canyon/SD/Sr./Pole Vault) 


How He Crushed 2021: Cleared 17-2 in the pole vault to set a San Diego Section record, a mark that ranked U.S. No. 3 for the season and is tied for CA No. 13 all-time. Had eight meets of 16-8 or higher (two inches above the next highest vaulter in CA). Won 17 meets, including Arcadia Invitational, West Coast Relays, Gateway to Track and Field, California Relays, San Diego Section Division 2, and San Diego Section Open. Signed with Stanford.

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Track and Field Athletes of the Year by Section

(Selections are subjective; in some cases, more than one athlete is recognized in a category.)

Central Section

Girls Track - Lauren Fowler (Buchanan/Sr./Sprints)

Girls Track - Takiya Cenci (Clovis North/Jr./Sprints)

Girls Field - Faith Bender (Liberty/Sr./Throws)

Boys Track - Jeremiah Walker (Central/Jr./Sprints)

Boys Field - Cyprus Rice (Clovis North/Sr./Pole Vault)

Central Coast Section

Girls Track - Luci Lambert (Sacred Heart Prep/Sr./Distance)

Girls Track - Kaley Peterson (St. Francis/Sr./Sprints)

Girls Field - Jessi Barry (Valley Christian/Jr./Jumps)

Boys Track - Nolan Topper (Bellarmine/Sr./Distance)

Boys Field - Aaron Kim (Palo Alto/Sr./High Jump)

Los Angeles City 

Girls Track - Reign Redmond (Carson/So./Sprints)

Girls Field - Jazzmine Davis (El Camino Real/Sr./Triple Jump)

Boys Track - Dijon Stanley (Granada Hills/So./Sprints)

Boys Field - Collin Harris (Dorsey/Sr./Long Jump)


Boys Track - Mario Giannini (Chico/Jr./Distance)

Boys Field - Anthony Rogers (West Valley/Sr./Throws)

Boys Field - Daiven Atwal (Sutter/Sr./Jumps)

Girls Track - Kylie Atteberry (Las Plumas/Fr./Sprints)

Girls Track - Abbey Lair (Red Bluff/Sr./Distance)

Girls Field - Kiana Emerson (West Valley/Sr./Throws)

North Coast 

Boys Track - John Lester (Amador Valley/Sr./Distance)

Boys Field - Sean Huckleberry (San Francisco University/Jr./Jumps)

Girls Track - Sophia Nordenholz (Albany/Jr./Distance) 

Girls Track - Cate Peters (Monte Vista/So./Mid-Distance)

Girls Field - Lily Mulligan (Maria Carillo/So./Pole Vault)

Girls Field - Julia Alexander (St. Mary's College/Jr./Jumps)


Boys Track - Jonathan Simmons (Skyline/Sr./Sprints)

Boys Field - Miles Bond (Skyline/Sr./Jumps)

Boys Field - Jeremy Barr (Skyline/Jr./Jumps)

Girls Track - De'Saya Smith (Skyline/Sr./Hurdles)

Girls Field - Jane Heida (Skyline/Sr./Jumps)

Sac Joaquin

Boys Track - Jadyn Marshall (St. Mary's/Jr./Hurdles)

Boys Track - Ajani Salcido (Jesuit/Sr./Distance)

Boys Field - Christopher Buck (Whitney/Sr./Throws)

Girls Track - Riley Chamberlain (Del Oro/Jr./Distance)

Girls Track - Aspin Oliver (Vacaville/Sr./Hurdles/Relay)

Girls Field - Sydney Johnson (Whitney/Sr./Jumps)

San Diego

Girls Track - Aysha Shaheed (Madison/Sr./Sprints)

Girls Track - Aaliyah McCormick (Scripps Ranch/Jr./Hurdles)

Girls Field - Elise Miller (San Pasqual/Sr./Jumps)

Girls Field - Ashley Callahan (Rancho Bernardo/Sr./Pole Vault)

Boys Track - Maxwell Jefferson (Poway/Sr./Hurdles)

Boys Field - Garrett Brown (La Costa Canyon/Sr./Pole Vault)

San Francisco 

Boys Track - Zayar Myint (Lincoln/Jr./Sprints)

Boys Track - Oliver Witt (Lowell/Jr./Distance)

Boys Field - Eric Yu (Lowell/Sr./Jumps)

Girls Track - Jenna Satovsky (Lowell/Jr./Distance)

Girls Field - Mackenzie Leung (Lincoln/Jr./Jumps)


Boys Track - Colin Sahlman (Newbury Park/Jr./Distance)

Boys Field - Darius Hill (Vista Murrieta/Sr./Jumps)

Boys Field - Cade Moran (Murrieta Mesa/Jr./Throws)

Girls Track - Mia Barnett (Crescenta Valley/Sr./Distance)

Girls Field - Paige Sommers (Westlake/Sr./Pole Vault)

Cover photos by Karen Ocskasy, Angel Pena, Raymond Tran.