Posted: 8:10 am Friday, May 6th, 2011
By Matt Porter
Though he won state gold last year in the 1600, John I. Leonard’s Ryan Pickering is seeded ninth heading into this year’s Class 4A state meet, held Saturday in Winter Park.
Senior slump? Not exactly.
Aiming to set a state record in the 3200, Pickering has logged more training miles, so his 1600 time has slowed considerably.
His best 1600 race this year was 4:15.68 at the April 2 Florida Relays and his state qualifying time is 4:23.64 – well off the 4:11.77 he ran last year to win state gold – but Pickering’s focus on the 3200 could pay off.
“He’d like to break nine minutes,” John I. Leonard distance coach Al Jordan said. “That’s the goal.”
The FHSAA record in the event is 8:59.03, set by Atlantic’s Sean Jefferson in 2001. Pickering, who won the 3200 and placed second in the 1600 at regionals, may skip the 1600 to try and set the record in the 3200. The 3200 is run at 8:30 p.m., an hour and a half after the 1600. Pickering is also slated to run in the 3200 relay, which begins at 1:30 p.m.
Jordan said his Oregon-bound pupil has ‘struggled’ recently in the 1600, but with more speed training and fewer miles over the last few weeks, he has an outside shot at double gold. “We’ll see,” Jordan said.
Elsewhere, Santaluces junior Miriam Pierre has a chance for two medals, posting the best shot put mark (41 feet, 8.5 inches) and the third-best qualifier in the discus (138-2).
Royal Palm Beach senior Trisha Leger and Palm Beach Central sophomore Lia King should challenge for gold in the girls triple jump. Leger’s qualifying leap of 39 feet, 11 inches is well ahead of King’s second-seed mark of 38-9. King is also seeded third in the long jump.
Noteworthy: Lake Worth’s girls 1600 relay team has won every race this season. Sophomores Shakira Batley, Tatianna Etienne, Tiah Sanborn and freshman Oneisha Glover comprise the youngest squad in the field. Sanborn is seeded second (5-4) in the girls high jump. … Jupiter sophomore Heath Appleman is part of a cluster of high jumpers who could challenge for a top-three spot. Four jumpers qualified at 6-6, while Appleman and three others are at 6-4. … Park Vista sophomore Christopher Grinley has the No. 2 seed in the boys 300 hurdles (37.36). … Relays and throwing events begin at 1 p.m. Running event prelims start at 4 p.m.; finals begin at 6:30 p.m.
Did you know? Boca Raton (boys, 1971) and Pahokee (girls, 1981) were the first Palm Beach County schools to win state team track titles. Palm Beach Gardens’ Mary Bowman (mile, 1975) and Dwight Roadman, Palm Beach High (440-yard dash, 1930) were Palm Beach County’s first individual champions.
Oddball events: For two years (1951-52), the FHSAA experimented with a boys football throw event. Plant City’s Fred Cason holds the state record with a throw of 215 feet, 10 3/4 inches (about 72 yards). In 1975, a girls softball throw event was held. Mary Kirby of Coral Gables won the only state title ever with a toss of 227’4″.
Class 4A state meet
When/where: 1 p.m. Saturday, Showalter Field, Winter Park
GIRLS (seed times, marks, distances in parentheses)
High jump – Tiah Sanborn, Lake Worth, Soph. (5-4)
Long jump – Lia King, Palm Beach Central, Soph. (18-9); Clariwin Dameus, Santaluces, Jr. (18-3.75); Alexa Wood, Park Vista, Jr. (18-3)
Triple jump – Trisha Leger, Royal Palm Beach, Sr. (39-11); Lia King, Palm Beach Central, Soph. (38-9); Alexa Wood, Park Vista, Jr. (37-2.5)
Discus – Miriam Pierre, Santaluces, Jr. (138-2)
Shot put – Miriam Pierre, Santaluces, Jr. (41-8.5); Alexandria Jackson, Seminole Ridge, Soph. (38-3); Jaylisha Griffin, Palm Beach Gardens, Jr. (36-9.5)
400 – Michelle Howell, Seminole Ridge, Soph. (56.77)
100 hurdles – Clariwin Dameus, Santaluces, Jr. (14.50)
300 hurdles – Clariwin Dameus, Santaluces, Jr. (45.37); Shakira Bartley, Lake Worth, Soph. (45.51)
1600 relay – Lake Worth (Shakira Bartley, Soph., Tatianna Etienne, Soph., Oneisha Glover, Fr. and Tiah Sanborn, Soph.) 4:00.78
800 – Tatianna Etienne, Lake Worth, Soph. (2:20.08)
3200 relay – Park Vista (Jascity Hutchinson, Sr., Kylie Steele, Fr., Sophia Bou-Ghannam, Sr. and Kayley Doyle, Fr.) 10:07.65
BOYS (seed times, marks, distances in parentheses)
High jump – Heath Appleman, Jupiter, Soph. (6-4); Yephnick Adelphonse, Park Vista, Soph. (6-2)
Pole vault – Matt Burroughs, John I. Leonard, Sr. (13-6)
Long jump – Marc Clerveaux, Park Vista, Sr. (22-10)
Triple jump – Marc Clerveaux, Park Vista, Sr. (45-7.5)
Shot put – Patrick Palmer, Atlantic, Sr. (51-3.5)
100 – Karus Hunter, Centennial, Soph. (11.0)
400 – Edens Thermidor, Park Vista, Jr. (48.66); Walter Smith, Atlantic, Jr. (48.92)
300 hurdles – Christopher Grinley, Park Vista, Soph. (37.36)
1600 relay – Park Vista (Anthony Sidden, Sr., Christopher Grinley, Soph., Matthew Wadford, Sr. and Edens Thermidor, Jr.) 3:21.24
800 – Anderson Charles, John I. Leonard, Jr. (1:56.86); Matthew Wadford, Park Vista, Sr. (1:58.22)
1600 – Ryan Pickering, John I. Leonard, Sr. (4:23.64)
3200 — Ryan Pickering, John I. Leonard, Sr. (9:29.08)
3200 relay – Park Vista (Edens Thermidor, Jr., Yephnick Adelphonse, Soph., Neil Upadhyay, Jr. and Matthew Wadford, Sr. ) 8:04.10; John I. Leonard (Anderson Charles, Jr., Ryan Pickering, Sr., Joshua Visi-Clark, Sr. and Alex Hepburn, Sr. ) 8:06.78