More mix-up in Noelle Chavez’s CIF-Southern Section girls’ Division 4

discus-throwing championship back on May 11:

Not only did Royal Results log her as finishing third, but we reported that

Chavez as only the second female from Aquinas High School ever to win a CIF

track & field championship.

Turns out she’s the second athlete from Aquinas, period. There’ve been no

previous boys’ champions, according to CIF-Southern Section record books.

Erin Texeria won the 1988 girls’ hurdles championship at Division 1A,

scoring first place in 14.81 seconds.

That was it for Aquinas until Chavez’s breakthrough moment back on

May 11 at El Camino College in Torrance, folks.

Not that Aquinas doesn’t have quality athletes; At CIF championship meets,

however, all arrows have to be pointing in the same direction -- health, luck, training, you name it.

So, moving forward, it’s Texeria and Chavez as Aquinas’ top track & field athletes.

* * *

Sure, Aquinas High’s softball team won 23 straight before dropping a CIF

Division 4 second-rounder. But check out the Lady Falcons’ roster;

One senior is gone, headed for graduation. Scheduled to return is sophomore Reina Castillo, as a junior, of course. Bobbiann Pratt will be a senior. Dannika Merlos will be a junior.

There were six sophomores and two freshmen on this year’s roster.

Anyone think they won’t be back in 2020?

* * *

High school playoffs can be heart-breaking.

In one day, it was over at San Gorgonio. The Lady Spartans lost, 5-1, in a

second-round softball game. Suddenly, baseball and track & field, plus softball had disappeared.

That’s the way it rolls come playoff time. It can be over in a snap of a finger.

* * *

If Citrus Valley’s girls ever rolled into CIF finals with a top-flight shot

putter, discus thrower, maybe a high jumper, the Lady Blackhawks could emerge with a Division 2 championship.

They’ve got the relays, hurdles (Sandris Ejede Kome), long jumper Kamryn

Hughes (we’re thinking she be a factor in the triple jump), plus quarter-mile specialists all lurking.

Where’s distance star Claire Graves?

“We need help in the 8(00), 16(00) and 32(00),” said third-year coach

Carlton Austin, who has a lifetime of experience coaching the sport.

Tied for 12th place with 16 points, Mission Viejo won the meet at 72 points.

The Diablos pulled that number without sprinters, depth in the shot

put/discus, jumps, both relays and middle-distance events.

Austin noted that Yucaipa, usually the Citrus Belt League’s top team, is

losing virtually its entire lineup of 800, 1600 and 3200 runners to graduation.

“Yucaipa didn’t go any further (in CIF) than league,” said Austin. “That tells you how bad we are.”

CV, he thinks, is right on a threshold of being the Big Girl in 2020.

“We had six runners make the league finals in the 400,” he said, “and it was almost seven out of nine (finalists).”

The way Austin sees it, 400-meter runners can run occasional 800s, or drop

down and run a 200, or even the 100. Don’t forget the relays.

That’s a lot of points up for grabs in a dual meet.

* * *

Highland resident Roger Sadler, the long-ago track & field coach at

Redlands High, was asked who his top athlete over the decade-plus time that he coached.

He had plenty to select from, naturally, but he cheerfully plucked out the

name of Celeste McVey, who was the 1991 girls’ discus-throwing champion.

McVey, who transferred into Redlands that season, not only won the CIF-4A

championship with a 132-foot, 1-inch effort.

A week later, she won CIF-Masters with an improved 139-6 effort.

And a week after that, McVey won at State with a remarkable 160-11 mark.

After that, she headed to USC on a track & field scholarship.

* * *

San Gorgonio’s always on the hunt for college recruiting news.

“Every year,” says Athletic Director Matt Maeda, “we have 30 to 40 college

recruiters come through San G.”

Definitely, he says, the Spartans are on the map with two CIF-Southern

Section football titles over a three-year span.

Here are few of the campuses: Utah State, USC, UCLA, La Verne, Azusa

Pacific, Nevada-Las Vegas, Dixie (Utah) State, Lake Erie College, Washington, Redlands, Sacramento State, not to mention San Bernardino Valley College.

Stuck in a grading decline? Can’t qualify for a 4-year school? A good JUCO

can help bail that out.

The key stat, said Maeda, and this is a biggie: Average GPA for Spartan

football in 2016 was 2.31. Last fall, it was 2.77. “This year’s team had 14 scholar athletes.”

Just three in 2016.

Why does this matter?

If you have to ask, you’re in trouble.

Got a sports tip, some rumblings or just want to chat about sports? Hit me

up at

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