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Metro teams stretch their legs at Aloha

TRACK: Aloha, Beaverton and Jesuit get after it at Friday's Aloha Relays
by: JOHN LARIVIERE, HURDLE STARS – Jesuit’s Jessica Monk catches some air during her heat of the high hurdles at Friday's Aloha Relays.

ALOHA - As Trevor Rochlin prepared for the javelin competition at the Aloha Relays, he felt a swift wind at his back and figured it would be a good day.

Moments later, the tailwind calmed and with it the Aloha senior's chances of reaching his goal of 190 feet. Still, Rochlin unleashed a personal-best effort of 181 feet, 4 inches to place second at the meet held Friday at Aloha High School.

'The tailwind made me happy,' Rochlin said. 'But it just kept dying and dying. I wish I threw first.'

Canby's Britton Nelson produced the state's No. 3 throw of 2007 to win in 198-3, while Rochlin's effort puts him sixth overall in Class 6A.

'I just kept PR-ing and PR-ing and now again today,' said Rochlin, who started throwing javelin on a whim as a sophomore when a spot opened up at a dual meet. 'I want to get to state and maybe go to college for it.'

Teammate Jude Graves was the only local male athlete to take first at the meet which counted Aloha, Beaverton and Jesuit among its 15 teams. The senior soared 45-3 to win the triple jump by eight inches over runner-up Emerald Ressler of Gresham in a field of 28 athletes.

Graves was just off his personal best of 45-5 - the No. 3 Class 6A mark in 2007. He also placed sixth in the long jump with a personal-best of 21-1½.

Rochlin and Graves led the Warriors to the best team finish of the Metro schools, placing eighth with 36 points. A depleted Jesuit team, which sent some of its top athletes to a meet in Pasco, Wash., finished 10th with 32 points, while Beaverton was 14th with 18 points.

The Crusaders were led by a fifth from senior Isiah Burks in the long jump with a mark of 21-2½. He did so on his final attempt to move up seven spots. Burks also ran the third leg on Jesuit's 4 x 100-meter relay team that won its heat and placed eighth overall with a time of 45.25 seconds.

An injury and the split-squad forced some shuffling of Jesuit's sprint relay lineup, sending senior Steven Kiyokawa to the anchor position.

'It was a little nerve racking to be put in the last spot,' Kiyokawa said. 'Isiah came in fast around the inside, handed off and I took off. It was a lot of fun.'

Another member of the relay, sophomore Anthony Blake, was sixth in the 100 with a time of 11.83. Junior Ramazan Muhammad took fifth in the high jump with a personal-best 5-11, while the Crusaders' 4 x 800 and distance medley relay teams each finished sixth.

Beaverton's greatest success came in the relays, where its 4 x 400 team of Tyler McBee, Paul Fowler, Maneesh Arora and Brad Bettendorf placed second in 3:27.66. Gresham won in 3:26.21.

Arora, Bettendorf, Andrew Hair and Paul Fowler combined to place fourth in the 4 x 800 relay with a time of 8:22.92.

While a few of its key members were travelling to Pasco, Wash., for a meet, the rest of the Jesuit girls track team remained home and quite competitive at the Aloha Relays. The Crusaders placed second with 89 points, finishing behind Gresham's 109.5

points and 20 points ahead of third-place Canby.

Jesuit piled up a good portion of its points in the jumps, taking top honors in the pole vault, long jump and triple jump. Junior Emily Cornelius set a personal-best to win the pole vault with a clearance of 10-9 - Class 6A's No. 2 mark in 2007. Beaverton senior Sarah Curry was the runner-up at 10-0, while Jesuit's Meghan Pranger was sixth at 8-6.

Crusader senior Kalea Aguon and Beaver junior Ariel Shaw each set personal bests to tie for first in the triple jump with leaps of 34-8. Shaw, who also was fourth in the 100 in 13.08, broke her previous best by 6½ inches, while Agoun eclipsed her former top mark by nearly 2½ feet.

Jesuit sophomore Tegan Clark also set a personal best, doing so in the long jump with an effort of 17-11 that won the event by nearly a foot and moved her into the No. 2 spot in Class 6A this season. Beaverton sophomore Michelle Johnson was the runner-up at 16-11½, while Crusader freshman Ali Grauert took fourth at 16-7½.

The high jump competition also had a Metro flair with Jesuit's Erin Wood, a senior, and Beaverton junior Sydney Bowman tying for third with first-attempt clearances of 4-9.

The Crusaders had their share of success in the relays as well, placing in the top-6 in all five, led by a third in the 4 x 400 (4:07.06),

Freshman Sarah Bridges paced Jesuit's individual effort on the track, finishing as the runner-up in a highly competitive 3,000 with a time of 10:05.95. Bridges crossed just behind Clackamas' Claire Michel, the defending Class 4A champion in the event, who won in 10:05.39. Michel and Bridges produced the state's top times of 2007, while Aloha's Shelby Brennan ran the No. 4 time (10:18.13) to take third.

Beaverton junior Kelly Marineau led the Beavers to eighth in the team standings with 45 points after finishing as the runner-up in the javelin. Marineau opened with a throw of 129-7 that proved to be her best in the competition, won by West Linn's Ali Super at 137-4.

Marineau's top mark of the season (133-6) is No. 4 in 6A.

'It was surprising to me, but it's fun to be up there,' Marineau said. 'There's a lot of good throwers. It's good to have competition. It pushes you to throw farther for state and district.'

Aloha took ninth as a team with 33 points and were led by junior Emily Redmayne-Titley's runner-up finish in the discus with a throw of 107-0. Teammate Shannon Loggins added a third in the shot put (34-0), while Aloha's 4 x 200, 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 relay all had top-7 finishes.