Best friends outside the ring, Buchanan High’s Jacob Wilson and Clovis North’s McKay Johnson are now state medalists inside it.
Wilson and Johnson medaled in both throws at the CIF State Track and Field Championships before an announced crowd of 7,547 on Saturday at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Wilson finished third (188-6) and Johnson fourth (188-4) as Central Section competitors captured three of the six podium finishes in the boys discus.
They reversed order in the shot put, with Johnson third (60-7.25) and Wilson fourth (59-8.75).
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“That just shows how hard we push each other,” Johnson said. “You see other people crumble under pressure. Jacob thrives in it. I try to thrive in it. We love what we do. And it ends up inches separating us most of the time. That’s the fun part.”
The Clovis Unified rivals’ day began with the discus, where Johnson uncorked his best throw on his second attempt and Wilson bettered him on his final throw, finishing 2 inches better.
I hope every time McKay hits the best throw of his life, but I get him by one inch.
Buchanan’s Jacob Wilson on his friendly rivalry in the discus with Clovis North’s McKay Johnson
“It’s been crazy competition,” Wilson said. “I hope every time McKay hits the best throw of his life, but I get him by one inch.”
Wilson didn’t look like he’d be a factor early in the discus competition after he fouled on his first throw and went a substandard 160-10 on his second.
“I’m happy,” Wilson said. “It was really rough at the start. My first two were not good at all, then I got some mojo going.”
Wilson continues a family tradition in track and field. His father and coach, Dave Wilson, threw at UCLA and siblings Zach and Jenny competed in the state meet in the pole vault. And cousin Jonah Wilson of Clovis finished sixth in the discus Saturday in 182-9.
And it was Dave Wilson who helped his son get over his rough start.
“He told me to take a deep breath and you can do this, you’ve done it so many times,” Jacob Wilson said. “I just had to stay relaxed. I was rushing those early throws.”
In the shot put, Wilson got off to the stronger start, throwing increasingly better than his opening 59-2 on three of his first four attempts.
Johnson fouled his first toss, went 53-9.5 on his second, 58-7.75 on his third and fouled his fifth and sixth before unleashing a throw that moved him ahead of Wilson for third place.
“I had to bring myself up and recover,” Johnson said. “I was happy with how I recovered and pulled myself back up.”
Esperanza-Anaheim’s Bronson Osborn won both events, tossing 200-10 in the discus and 69-10.75 in the shot.
Family tradition – Jocelynn Budwig added to the family treasure chest on a blistering 102-degree afternoon.
The Fowler High School freshman placed sixth in the girls discus, joining her father and older brother as well as an aunt, uncle and cousin who have medaled at the state meet.
“I’m so excited,” Budwig said. “It’s amazing to me coming out here as a freshman and getting podium.”
Budwig unleashed her best throw of 144-3 on her first attempt.
She sat fifth of the 12 competitors who made the finals after the first round and dropped to sixth after Del Norte’s Michelle Altice reached 146-5 in the second round.
Budwig held sixth through her third attempt, earning a spot in the cut down to nine. Neither of the three competitors behind her – Costa Mesa’s Felicia Crenshaw, Mission Viejo’s Emma DeSilva or Los Osos’ Ashley Anumba could top Budwig’s 144-3 over their final three attempts.
Lincoln-San Francisco’s Pamela Amaechi won the event with a throw of 164-1.
She wanted podium and she did. It’s been a long season and a grind, but she finished well.
Jeff Budwig, father and coach to Fowler High freshman Jocelynn Budwig, the school’s first CIF State Track and Field Championships girls medalist
Budwig became the first girls state medalist in Fowler history, according to track historian Ron Blackwood.
“I’m happy,” said Budwig, a former sprinter who switched to throws during the middle of her seventh-grade season because of shin splints. “It’s what I wanted and was hoping for.”
So was her father and coach Jeff Budwig.
“It was really outstanding,” he said. “She wanted podium and she did. It’s been a long season and a grind, but she finished well.”
Jocelynn Budwig joins Jeff and brother Jacob as state discus medalists. Jeff and Jacob each went on to compete in the event at Fresno State, as did Jocelynn’s mother, the former Jayleen Romberger.
Jeff was fourth for McLane in 1980, while Jacob took third for Fowler in 2010. Jeff’s brother and sister, Robert and Debbie, also earned state medals, Robert placing fifth in the 300 hurdles in 1982 for Clovis West and Debbie third in the 100 hurdles for Clovis West in 1983. And Debbie’s son, Matthew Bender, was sixth in the discus for Shafter in 2012.
Jocelynn’s older sisters, Jessica and Jayme, also have excelled in track and field for Fowler.
Jocelynn’s performance at the state meet caps a sensational freshman year that also saw her contribute 513 assists and 101 digs as the starting setter on the Redcats varsity volleyball team.
Repeat performance – Buchanan’s Paramveer Chohan improved his time but not his placing during a second appearance in the 300 hurdles finals.
After entering with the third-fastest time in the state (a personal record 37.05 seconds) and then running the second-fastest time in qualifying (37.19) on Friday, the Bears’ senior finished fourth in the finals at 37.48.
Chohan was fourth in the 300 hurdles in 2015 in 37.53.
“I’m slightly disappointed,” Chohan said. “My (PR) would have gotten second. I wasn’t feeling good going out in the race, but it’s good to place two times.”
La Quinta’s Koty Burton was first in 36.34.
Chohan also made the finals in the 110 hurdles, finishing ninth in 14.92, well behind the winning mark of 13.59 ran by Upland’s Joseph Anderson.
Brothers’ act – The Brooks twins of Kingsburg, Emmett and Seth, captured their second state medals in the jumps.
Emmett placed second in the long jump for the second straight year, leaping 24-3 on his first attempt and eventually finishing behind Oakmont’s Isaiah Holmes, who went 25-5 on his final attempt. Emmett went 24-1 while finishing second last season.
Seth was fourth in the triple jump, going 48-1.25 on his second attempt. Antelope Valley’s Morrell Osling won in 48-9.25. Seth was third in 2015 in 48-10.25.
The brothers also starred on the Vikings football team, with Emmett gaining 901 yards receiving with five touchdowns, while Seth rushed for 1,466 yards and 22 scores.
CIF State Meet
1. Pamela Amaechi, Lincoln, 164-01; 2. Elena Bruckner, Valley Christian, 160-09; 3. Hannah Chappell, Oakdale, 149-03; 4. Ailini Williams, Paramount, 148-10; 5. Michelle Altice, Del Norte, 146-05; 6. Jocelynn Budwig, Fowler, 144-03; 7. Felicia Crenshaw, Costa Mesa, 143-06; 8. Emma DeSilva, Mission Viejo, 142-01; 9. Ashley Anumba, Los Osos, 139-08; 10. Hannah-Sophia Hall, James Logan, 136-08; 11. Lauren Anderson, California, 134-06; 12. Christy Norris-Dow, Exeter, 128-06
1. Bronson Osborn, Esperanza, 200-10; 2. Seth Knowlton, Great Oak, 195-03; 3. Jacob Wilson, Buchanan, 188-06; 4. McKay Johnson, Clovis North, 188-04; 5. Nathan Esparza, Amador Valley, 186-04; 6. Jonah Wilson, Clovis, 182-09; 7. Tyler Moulton, Burroughs-Ridgecrest, 178-08; 8. Robbie Otal, Oak Park, 172-04; 9. Cole Smith, Newport Harbor, 169-03; 10. Jordon Ammann, Esperanza, 168-07; 11. Namontte Grisby, Pittsburg, 160-06; 12. Iffy Joyner, Pittsburg, 154-11