CIF-STATE MEET PREVIEW Closer Look at the Sprints


* * *


* * *

Next in a series of event-group previews


100-Meter Dash

State Meet Record: 10.30 tie (Riley Washington, Southwest (SD), 1992, Kenan Christon, Madison (SD), 2019)

The fastest 100m all-conditions dash time ever at the State Meet was the 10.13 Vista Murrieta's Javelin Guidry ran in 2017 aided by a 3.8 meters-per-second wind. That's the fastest all-conditions 100m in CA history. The wind-legal record is 10.30 (noted above). If Gardena Serra junior Rodrick Pleasant runs anything close to the CA record 10.14 (1.7) time he ran at Saturday's Southern Section Masters, it will not only obliterate the previous standard but also may be the only MR we see this weekend.

Absent from the field are two of the state's best in St. John Bosco senior Rayshon Luke -- fifth at State as a freshman in 2019 with a 2022 best of 10.32, but failed to get out of Southern Section Divisionals -- and Chaminade senior Patrick Ize-Iyamu, who had a best of 10.38, but pulled up midway through Saturday's Southern Section Masters. 

Pleasant's greatest remaining challengers -- other than the clock -- should come from the following (listed alphabetically):

Jaelon Barbarin (Simi Valley/SS), Jr. - An at-large entry into the Southern Section Masters, he made the best of the second chance, hitting right on the State at-large standard of 10.68. He has season bests of 10.37 (3.8) and 10.47 legal. (Barbarin has scratched.)

Devin Bragg (Los Alamitos/SS), Fr. - Southern Section Division 1 champion set a class record with his 10.45 finish at Masters. 

Cornell Davis (Pinole Valley/NC), Sr. - The NCS champ dropped a 10.47 on the Dublin straight last week. 

Evan Johnson (Stevenson/CC), Sr. - The CCS sprints champ has a windy best of 10.41 (2.4).

Nathan Johnson (Clovis/CS), Sr. - Utah football recruit also is a medal contender in the long jump. The Central Section champion went 10.43 at Masters. 

Jaelen Knox (Long Beach Poly/SS), Sr. - A 10.56 punched his ticket to Clovis where he will be looking to run closer to his 10.39 PR.

Max Thomas (Servite/SS), Sr. - After coming up short in the 200m, the USC recruit has only this event on his schedule. He has season-bests of 10.35 (3.8) and 10.40 legal. 

Jordan Washington (Long Beach Jordan/SS), So. - The Southern Section Division 2 champion ran 10.38 in Pleasant's wake last week, just 0.06 off the Serra junior's state class record from 2021.  

200-Meter Dash

State Meet Record: 20.30 (Michael Norman, Vista Murrieta (SS), 2015)

Pleasant's 20.40 from Section Finals ranks U.S. No. 1 and is only 0.10 off the meet record and 0.16 off the state junior class record. The competition thinned significantly with Thomas missing the top-six and the at-large standard a week after rolling to a U.S. No. 4 time of 20.68.

Fresno Central (CS) senior Jeremiah Walker, with a best of 20.80, figures to give Pleasant his toughest competition coming off a U.S. No. 3 (wind-legal) clocking of 20.89 last Saturday on the Buchanan track. 

This is a significant event for Central's push in the overall team race with junior Imari Conley (21.48/1.4) and senior Cameron Tarver (21.35/3.2) also in the mix. 

In addition to Pleasant and Walker, seven others come in with 21.30 credentials or faster:

Knox (20.77/2.5), Washington (20.93/2.7), Clovis North (CS) junior Nickolas Miller (21.00/2.9), his senior teammate Jake Parnagian (21.11/3.2), St. John Bosco senior Jaden Smith  (21.18/1.3), Upland senior Christopher Coats (21.21/2.5), and Granada Hills (LA) junior Dijon Stanley (21.30/nwi).

400-Meter Dash

State Meet Record: 45.19 (Michael Norman, Visa Murrieta (SS), 2015)

A lot of aforementioned athletes populate the middle lanes in the quarter, but one we haven't mentioned is the state leader, West Ranch (SS) senior Chris Goode, who improved his CA-best time to 46.75 at Saturday's Southern Section Masters. 

Stanley walked off with four golds at the LA City Finals, with his 400m 46.94 effort momentarily equalling Goode's previous state best. It now sits at CA No. 2.

No other boys in CA have run under 47 this season, so if Goode and Stanley are on their game, the rest of the field is battling for the remaining seven spots in the final. 

Leading that group is Central's Walker (47.27), Helix (SD) junior Adren Parker (47.31), Marshall Fundamental (SS) senior Logan Davis (47.31), Upland's Coats (47.42), Cathedral (SS) senior William Mullins (47.47), Villanova Prep senior Liam Gair (47.54), and SJB's Smith (47.73).


100-Meter Dash

State Meet Record: 11.14 (Marion Jones, Thousand Oaks (SS), 1992)

Serra (SS) junior Jordan Washington is coming off consecutive Saturdays where she ran a state-leading 11.55 (1.4) at Southern Section Division Finals and 11.64 at SS Masters as the top qualifier in the straight sprint for State. 

There are seven others among the state's top 12 in this event who have made it to this point. That group is led by Harvard Westlake (SS) junior Alyssa Thompson, an elite soccer player and member of the U.S. Women's U-20 National Team, put her speed on display rolling to an 11.69 (1.4) for a section division title. 

Oregon-bound Scripps Ranch (SD) senior Aaliyah McCormick is the SDS record holder in the 100m hurdles -- and the State Meet favorite in that event -- but she comes in here with an 11.71 (2.1) season-best (CA No. 4) and an 11.76 qualifying time that earned her Lane 5 in the third of Friday's three prelim heats.

Washington's classmate Brazil Neal ran her SB of 11.71 (1.4) at division finals and she's slotted in Lane 5 of Heat 2. Right next to her are Thompson and Golden Valley (SS) junior Ta'Ahjah Fann, whose 11.86 (2.6) qualifying time is an all-conditions PR.

Washington's heat also includes Carson (LA) junior Reign Redmond, whose 11.71 (0.1) from Arcadia is tied with Neal for CA No. 4. 

Others looking for one of those nine spots in the Saturday final include Redondo Union senior Eve Divinity (11.74/3.1), St. Mary's (SJ) senior Cameron Fields (11.81/3.7), and Long Beach Poly senior Aniyah Wyche (11.81/3.1).

200-Meter Dash

State Meet Record: 22.52 (Allyson Felix, Los Angeles Baptist (SS), 2003)

Only four of those mentioned above are also entered here with Washington among the favorites. Her 23.62 (2.2) State qualifying time ranks CA No. 2 behind that race's winner, Adonijah Currie of Golden Valley (SS), who rolled to a state-best 23.45 (2.2). Currie also anchors the team's state-leading relay team. 

Clovis North (CS) senior Takiya Cenci ranks fifth in the state at 23.90 (1.3) is among a handful of elite sprinters taking on the 200-400 double.

Roosevelt (SS) senior Naomi Johnson ranks CA No. 3 with here 23.69 (2.4) best to win a Southern Section Division title, just ahead in that race of Long Beach Wilson junior Aujane Luckey (23.82/2.4).

Poway (SD) senior Alyssa Bean is coming off an impressive double at the SDS finals, which included a 24.25 (0.6) PR. 

Others to watch her include Serra's Neal (24.00/2.0), Carson's Redmond (24.15/2.6), Redondo Union's Divinity (24.30/2.4), and St. Mary's (SJ) junior Kori Fields (24.44/-0.7). 

400-Meter Dash

State Meet Record: 50.74 (Monique Henderson, Morse (SD), 2000)

Cenci is the state leader with a best of 53.19 from early April. She has won all six of her 400m races this season, five of which have been 53.84 or faster. She has won 14 of 15 races at this distance dating to April of '21. Her PR is 0.50 faster than CA No. 2, Golden Valley's Currie who is not in this event. Next in the state rankings is Wilson's Lukey at 53.83. Roosevelt's Johnson at 53.87 is the only other CA girl this season to run sub-54. 

Wilson senior Samarra Monrroy, who was second at State in this event (54.25) as a freshman in 2019, has a senior-season best of 54.49. She ran her PR of 54.16 in May of 2019. 

Poway's Bean (54.96), San Clemente (SS) Caroline Hawkes (55.20) and  Glendora (SS) senior Maya Shinnick (55.23) are among those looking for one of the nine spots in Saturday's finals.

In addition to Luckey, the future will be on display with the Culver City (SS) duo of sophomore Morgan Maddox (55.56) and freshman Joelle Trepagnier (55.66). Also, a 200-400 qualifier here is Mountain View (CC) frosh Hannah Rutherford (55.88). Maddox is the state sophomore class leader (U.S. No. 10 in the class). Trepagnier and Rutherford rank 1-2 in the freshman class -- and U.S. Nos. 7 and 9, respectively, in the class.

Jeffrey Parenti is the California editor for MileSplit 

Photos by DeAnna Turner and Raymond Tran