SAN LUIS OBISPO — All of the schools that make up the County of San Luis Obispo made the trip out to Cuesta College on Saturday morning to measure themselves with the rest of the county before entering their league meets next week.
The Arroyo Grande Eagles won on both the boys and girls side of the meet, proving that they will be the team to beat in the PAC 8 Finals which will take place May 3 at Atascadero High School. The Eagles scored 127 points on the boy's side, edging out the Bearcats (who beat them in a tri-meet earlier this month) by just nine points and ran away with the meet on the girl's side by scoring 188 points. In fact, the seventh-place team was closer in points to the second place team (San Luis Obispo) than the second-place team was to Arroyo Grande.
Overall the Bearcats boys varsity took second place with 118 points and the Lady Bearcats finished in third with 61 points. Paso Robles won the most events of any of the North County teams by placing seven crimson-clad athletes atop the podium on Saturday (Templeton had four, Atascadero had none).
Cade England continued his dominance in the jumping events and continued to prove he is going to be the man to beat at league finals by taking first in both the long jump and the triple jump. England jumped 20’02 in the high jump and 43’02 in the triple.
As expected, the boy's distance runners were all over the leaderboard on Saturday. Steven Scruggs and Damien Gavilan took first and second in the 1600-meters respectively and Gavilan also took first in the 3200-meters.
Brendan Farnsworth also had a terrific day for the Bearcats and won both hurdling events, the 110-meter with a time of 15.44 and the 300-meter with a time of 41.49.
Junior runner Kendall Caruana ran away from the competition, setting a personal record in the 400-meters, running a 1:01 and, in a literal photo finish, took second in 800-meter with a time of 2:18.47.
Kade Gaertner, of Templeton, just barely edged out Corban Payne in the shot put but won the discus handily with a throw of 134’05.
Although one of the smaller schools in attendance, the Templeton Eagles took first place in four different events Saturday. Kirk Russell won the high jump with a mark of 5’08”, Gaertner recorded the longest throw in the shot put at 46’11”.25 and Julia Aurignac won both the 100-meter hurdles (17.25) and the 300-meter hurdles (47.48).
Freshman speedster Merran Grindley ran with the frosh/soph heats instead of the varsity on Saturday but still ran the fastest 100-meter hurdle time for a girl in the meet. Grindley ran in the heats before the varsity and posted a time of 16.69, just barely behind the school record of 16.40 that was set by Katie Walker in 2000, and just ahead of the time her teammate posted to win the varsity race.
Both teams are preparing for league prelims that will take place on Friday and Saturday. PAC 8 teams will be running the prelims and finals at Atascadero High School while Los Padres League opponents will travel to Santa Ynez.