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Raider boys, Kofa girls take first at 10-team Scorcher Invitational
All season long, Cibola track coach Brett Pavey has noted his team's appetite for more despite being last year's best local outfit. On Saturday, the Raider boys reigned supreme at the third annual State Farm Cibola Scorcher Invitational, defending their title in the 10-team meet.
“Win, lose or draw, I would have been happy with everything they did,” Pavey said. “We had a lot of great performances today, all the kids really stepped up. I wouldn't have cared if we came in last place the way our kids performed.”
A scoring change on Monday gave the girls title to Kofa. A scoring error in the 3,200-meter relay resulted in a 12-point swing, enough for the Kings to overcome Cibola.
The Cibola boys had a dominant performance, earning 225 points, while second-place Gila Ridge had 104 and third-place Kofa posted 90. Meet records were falling all over the place, thanks in large part to Cibola's athletes.
Dewayne Dukes was named the Scorcher's most valuable male athlete after winning the 100-meter, 200, 400 dashes and anchoring the first-place 400 relay. Deante Gaines won four events (110 hurdles, high jump, long jump and triple jump), Monica Houston won both the 800 and 1600, Michelle Soto won the 200 and 300 hurdles, Bernie Montoya won the 1600, Richard Clayton won the 3200, the Raiders won the 1600 boys relay and their boys 3200 relay established new school and meet records, while automatically qualifying for the state meet.
Cibola also swept the throwing events, as Adam Vidal topped the shot put and discus while Kelsey Pangerl won the discus and Savannah Miller won the shot put. Though Vidal said he reached the 50-foot mark on three straight occasions in shot put warmups, his 46-foot, 6 3/4-inch throw was good enough for the victory.
“When I start off cold I always get something really good and then I'm finally warmed up and I get little marks that aren't really worth it,” Vidal said. “But I'm feeling good, I know I got a little bit more in me.”
The Kofa girls ended officially with 154 and Cibola with 146. Orginailly, the Cibola girls (148 points) claimed a four-point victory over Kofa, who was led by Kacey Nady, the Scorcher's most valuable female athlete. The sophomore tied with Gila Ridge's Destiny Dilworth in the high jump with a 5-foot leap but was awarded the victory because of fewer faults. Nady also notched a slim victory over Gila Ridge's Sheridan Smith in an exciting 100 race, anchored the first-place 400 relay and finished second in shot put. Not bad for someone who considered quitting track after a physically-demanding freshman year.
“I'm really glad that I came back because the team is really, really great this year,” Nady said. “Any points we can get, I'm willing to help.”
Kofa also received victories from Brianna Ross in the 100 hurdles, Paige Perry in the 400 and Adam Spencer in the 800.
Dilworth starred for the third-place Gila Ridge girls (136.5 points), as she also won the long jump with a 15-foot, 1/2-inch mark.
“We had some confidence coming in,” Gila Ridge coach Duncan Sullivan said. “But we've got some tough teams in our region and a couple of these schools have a lot of depth. We were battling that a little bit, but I'm pleased with the way our kids did.”
Yuma High finished sixth in each the boys and girls team rankings, with David Stiles, who finished second in the 110 hurdles, earning individual praise from coach Curt Weber.
“Not bad for a last-second replacement,” Weber said.
Yuma Catholic, a 2A school, placed eighth in the boys and sixth in the girls, while 1A San Pasqual finished 8th in girls and 9th in boys. Still, San Pasqual coach Jason Sanchez said several of his athletes set new personal records.
“It's the competition,” Sanchez said. “When you run against faster kids, you get faster times.”