Clovis News: Sports

State track meet will go on as planned

If there are people concerned with Saturday's weather forecast for the finals of the CIF State Track and Field Championships at Buchanan's Veterans Memorial Stadium – a plunge to the upper 60s with a 40% chance of rain – meet director Brian Weaver isn't one of them.

"That means there's 60% chance it's going to be great," the Bears' coach said with a chuckle Tuesday. "You've got to be an optimist. And, if it does rain, it won't rain for very long or very hard."

Bottom line, he added: "We will run it."

There has been one rain postponement in the 92-year history of the meet.

It occurred in 1993 at Cerritos College, and the finals of the two-day meet were moved back a day, to a Sunday.

Weaver and Valley track and field historian Ron Blackwood remember the change, and what they remember isn't good – there was a significant drop-off in attendance and participation on that Sunday, they said.

While confident Saturday's finals will flow as scheduled from 4:30 until 9:45 p.m., Weaver did say the only real concern with rain – regardless of the intensity – would be in the pole vault because of the grips on the poles. To help, he said, a canopy would be set up to keep poles dry when not in use.

The forecast calls for a high of 80 degrees and dry for Friday's qualifying, which will run from 3 until 10:30 p.m.

This will be the third of six years the meet is scheduled for Buchanan. Total attendance was 17,660 in 2009 and 17,358 last year.

Tickets for Friday's preliminaries are $7 for children under 13, students with identification and seniors; and $8 for general admission. Saturday, it is $8 and $12.

Gold medalists return

Ten of the 28 individual events will be graced by athletes who won state titles last year. And three – Agoura-Agoura Hills hurdler Johnathan Cabral, Covina sprinter Remontay McClain and Harvard-Westlake half-miler Amy Weissenbach – are current national leaders.

Cabral won the 2010 110-meter high hurdles in 13.54, and arrives this time top-ranked nationally in that event (13.24 wind-aided, 13.43 legal) and the 300 intermediate hurdles (36.19).

McClain won last year's 200 in 20.85, and leads the nation now in the 100 (10.28 wind-aided, 10.31 legal) and 200 (20.68).

Weissenbach has run the 800 in 2:06.18 a year after winning it at 2:07.52 in a thriller over Templeton's Savannah Camacho (2:07.73), who also returns.

Other national leaders entered are Trabuco Hills-Mission Viejo's Jantzen Oshier in the 1600 (4:04.24), Long Beach Poly's Melia Cox in the 100 high hurdles (13.34) and James Logan-Union City's Ciarra Brewer in the triple jump (wind-aided 43-3 1/4).

Clovis' Jenna Prandini beat Brewer last year while winning the triple jump in a wind-aided 42-7 1/4, but the Cougars' senior All-American has dropped the event at this weekend's state meet to concentrate on the 100, 200 and long jump.