Robert Husseman, The Triplicate

Relays, Rowe, Gonzalez record personal bests

Four Del Norte High School track and field athletes and two relay teams finished in the top seven in their respective events at the North Coast Section/Les Schwab Redwood Empire Track and Field Championships, hosted Saturday by Santa Rosa High School.

Their placements qualify them for the NCS Meet of Champions, to be held Friday and Saturday in Berkeley - the final step before the California Interscholastic Federation State Championships.

The Warriors' 400-meter and 1,600-meter relay teams took on starring roles in Santa Rosa. In the 400 relay, the team of Kayla Costello, Katelynn Rowe, Kylee Bruder and Jennifer Goacher overcame a shaky second handoff to finish first in its heat and fourth overall in 50.86 seconds. That time represents the best of the season for Del Norte's top relay team.

The 1,600 relay team of Hannah Pickerall, Costello, Rowe and Goacher

was placed in the slowest relay heat but won in a season-best 4:08.05,

taking second in the overall meet. Costello and Rowe turned in the

fastest legs of the relay, running their laps in under a minute.

"We all had a plan as to what to run, and we accomplished that to perfection," Warriors coach Samuel Escobar said.

Goacher accrued a pair of fourth-place finishes at 100 (12.87) and 200 (26.01) meters, winning her heat of the latter race.

In the 400, Rowe set a personal record of 59.82 (fifth place overall)

in the fastest heat of the event despite her slow recovery from shin

splints. Rowe added to her excellent performances with a sixth-place,

Meet of Champions-qualifying performance in the 300m hurdles (48.55).

"The strategy was to be safe and run a smart (400-meter) race," Escobar said.

Kylee Bruder tied for fifth place overall in the high jump (5 feet

even) and was forced into a jump-off in the pole vault with two other

competitors after clearing 9 feet, 6 inches. Bruder won the jump-off

after three attempts, standing alone in seventh place and advancing to

the Meet of Champions.

Morgan Laney "had a bad day in both the discus (throw) and the shot

(put)," according to Escobar. The senior advanced only in the shot put,

taking second place (37-1.5); she finished 18th (77-5) in the discus


Escobar also praised the work of Guadalupe Gonzalez, who finished

outside the top seven in the 800 (14th) but set a three-second

personal-best time, clocking in at 2:28.77. Gonzalez also took 22nd

place in the 400 (1:08.55).

No Del Norte boys recorded top-seven finishes in their respective

events. Adan Rodriguez cleared 11-6 in tying for eighth place in the

pole vault. Chad Bell tied for ninth place in the high jump (5-8); Bell

also finished 12th in the long jump (19-1.5), 18th in the 100 (12.12)

and 20th in the 200 (24.73).

Also competing for the Warriors in Santa Rosa were: Victor Martinez,

110-meter hurdles (21st, 19.18) and pole vault (no height); Samuel

Aragones, long jump (22nd, 16-6.75); Pickerall, 400 (20th, 1:06.35) and

high jump (no height); Costello, 100 hurdles (16th, 17.83) and 300

hurdles (10th, 49.49); Brianna Wakefield, shot put (12th, 28-6) and

discus (17th, 82-5); and Kira Standring, shot put (16th, 27-9.75) and

discus (20th, 73-2).

Reach Robert Husseman at