The Culver City High School track and field teams proved once again they have one of the best programs in Southern California with a strong showing at the Mira Costa Mustang Relays last Saturday at Mira Costa High School. The 30-team invitational meet featured outstanding team and individual performances, ending with a super competitive 1600-meter relay where Mira Costa edged the Centaurs at the finish line.
Culver City’s next home meet is Thursday April 9, at 2:45 p.m. against El Segundo and Hawthorne.
Culver City posted its fastest time of the year when they ran 3:31.98 in the 1600-meter relay. Despite the loss in that relay, Centaur head coach Jahmal Wright was pleased with his teams’ performances.
“I am proud of the way we ran and jumped today. There was a lot of stiff competition today and we were right there in the mix,” Wright said. “Right now we are just fine tuning for the regular season and we want to win the meets in April, stay healthy and deliver our best performances in May. We are also excited about sending some of our student athletes to the Arcadia Invitational on Saturday (April 11).”
The Arcadia Invitational is one of the top invitational meets in the nation. One the athletes that will be competing at the Arcadia meet will be sprinter Cahlil Hooper. Hooper placed second in the 100 meters at the Mustang Relays and ran on several relay teams. His 100 time was 11.09, which is a good time for the early part of the season but Hooper wants to run faster.
“I want to improve each week and be ready for the CIF meets in May,” Hooper said last Saturday. Hooper and his twin brother Cameron have been running track since they were in the eighth grade and they really enjoy competing for Culver City.
“Some of the Culver City coaches ran track at the division one college level so they have a lot of experience,” said Hooper. “The coaches are also good motivators and they expect big things from us. It’s good to have coaches who have your back and believe in you. It is also very important that I stay humble and hungry.”
Other Culver City track and field athletes who turned in solid performances last Saturday were Jarrett Anderson, who placed third in the 100 meters with a time of 11.20 and freshman hurdler Samuel Robert placed sixth in the 300 meter hurdles with a time of 42.56.
The boys’ 4×100 meter relay team placed third with a time of 44.14 and they won the 4×200 relay with a time of 1:31.74. In the boys’ freshman/sophomore division the Centaurs had four relay teams finish in the top nine spots in two different relays. At the 4×100 Culver City took second and ninth and in the 4×400 Culver City placed second and fourth.
In the girls’ division Joylyn Dailey finished second in the 100 meters with a time of 12.18 and Veronica Mendez was ninth at 12.95. All-purpose performer Nia Garcia came up with two seventh place finishes in the 100 meter hurdles and the long jump and Cerrinae Thompson finished ninth in the 300 meter hurdles.
In the varsity girls’ relays Culver City placed fourth in the 4×100 with a time of 48.66, second in the 4×200 in 1:42.69 and fourth in the 4×400 in 4:09.51. The freshman/sophomore 4×100 relay team came in fifth place with a time of 52.59.
The freshman/sophomore girls were led by freshman-sensation Jasmine Marrero. Marrero is unbeaten this season in the 100- and 300-meter hurdles. She won both hurdle races in the Culver City and Mustang Relays. At the Mustang Relays she was the only girl out of 29 runners to break the 18 second barrier with a time of 17.46 in the 100 hurdles. In the 300 hurdles she was the only runner to break the 50 second mark when she turned in a time of 49.64. Marrero also runs legs on both the 4×100 and 4×400 meter relays.
“It feels good to win both hurdles but I want to my sure my technic is good and I also want to improve on my speed,” Marrero said last Saturday. “Coach B (Rayfield Beaton) pushes me and he is really funny.”