LEMOORE — Paso Robles Bearcats boys track and field team proved they were the best in the Mountain League and followed it up in Lemoore by showing they are one of the best in the CIF Central Section by taking first place at the West Area meet. It wasn’t only the boys who showed their speed and power over the weekend as the Lady Bearcats also took second in the meet only losing to the San Luis Obispo girls who have one of the deepest teams in the state.
The PRHS boys ran away with the meet scoring 156.5 points, 70 more points than second-place Arroyo Grande, while the girls proved that there is SLO, them, and then everyone else scoring 108.5 total points, the Tigers scored 179.5. Seven Bearcats took first place in nine different individual events with three Bearcats taking home first place in two different events.
Jordan Summers continued his amazing reign in the 200-meters and 400-meters finishing first in both at the same meet for the fifth time this season. In 19 individual races this season, in the 200 and 400, with three 100-meter races thrown in as well, Summers has finished first in all but one and that one came in the first 400-meter race of the season.
Senior jumper Connor Lacy, who has also spent most of this season atop the podium in both the long jump and the triple jump, bounced back from his second place in the long jump at the Mountain League finals to win both events at the West Area meet with marks of 21 feet and 4.75 inches in the long jump and 45-10.25 in the triple jump.
Even with Lacy’s and Summer’s success, the most impressive day on the track was had by freshman Bearcat Charlotte Castelli who won both long distance events by the slimmest of margins. Castelli was engulfed in a pack of SLO Tigers in the 1600 but was able to leg it out down the stretch beating Emma Manderino by less than a second with a time of 5 minutes and 19.01 seconds. Castelli’s task did not get any easier in the 3200 where she was again racing the senior in Manderino and again outlasted her taking first with a time of 11:44.67. Castelli wasn’t the only freshman taking home gold on Saturday as Sophia Berry continues to dominate the 800-meters. Berry took first in the Mountain League two weeks ago and hasn’t finished lower than second in the 800 all year.
Where Paso Robles really separates themselves from other teams is their depth. The Bearcats dominate in all phases of the meet, the speed, the distance, the jumping and especially the throws. Buchanan punched her second consecutive ticket to the Masters in the shot put after taking first on Saturday. Buchanan hurled the shot put 39-0 which put her just in front of Atascadero’s Deandra Tyler who finished in second place with a mark of 38-07.50. While Buchanan took the gold it was her teammate Hailie Abel who actually scored more points finishing third in the shot put with a mark of 37-08 and second in the discus at 120-2.
The Bearcat boys took first in both throwing events with Corban Payne taking first in the shot put at 53-02 and junior Gabe Katches taking first in the discus at 162-02.
The Bearcats placed two more athletes on top of the podium with height being the key component as they also won the boys and girls pole vault. Juniors Clay Wilshusen and Shasta Garcia each finished six inches ahead of their next closest competitor with Wilshusen hitting 14-0 while Garcia hit 10.
This weekend the Bearcats will be at Buchanan for the CIF Central Section Master’s meet with a shot at the State meet on the line.