Kelly Peacock didn't get a chance to read the newspapers Friday, but several of her friends did.
And what they told the Van Nuys junior didn't exactly put her at ease.
"They said that the paper had me made the favorite in the long jump and the 300 hurdles," Peacock said. "That put some pressure on me."
But none that Peacock couldn't handle.
Peacock went 18-5 in the long jump and ran a 44.67 in the 300-meter intermediate hurdles to win two titles at the City track and field championships Friday night at Birmingham High.
Her victory in the long jump was easy. The next best finisher was Belmont's Connie Navarro at 17-0.
Peacock's championship in the 300 hurdles came with a lot more difficulty.
She trailed Fremont's Michelle Kendricks by a stride approaching the last hurdle.
"At that point it was just a matter of who didn't stutter (step) on the last hurdle," Peacock said.
And the result was a victory over Kendricks, whose time was 45.08.
"I think I was more relaxed today," Peacock said. "I felt more under control and concentrated on running my race. That's why I passed (Kendricks) on the last hurdle."
Peacock was especially pleased to win two titles after her performance in the 100-meter hurdles.
She did not expect to win that event, the honor going to Locke's Chewuakii (Choo Choo) Knighten with a time of 13.78. But Peacock did expect to break the 14-second barrier.
Peacock went 14.41 to finish second. She also competed in the 100-meter dash, finishing fourth.
"I feels good to get the championships," Peacock said. "I was really down after the 100 (hurdles) and my energy level was down. But I said, 'Don't give up. This is what you have worked for all year.' "
And now Peacock will go to Sacramento for next week's state championships.
Several other Valley athletes will compete next week after winning titles Friday.
Michael Pringle of Kennedy won the long jump after finishing third the last two years.
Pringle jumped 21-5 to win. "It's feels real good to stand on top of that victory stand," he said.
Steve Broussard of Manual Arts just edged Pringle for the 100-meter dash championship. Broussard and Pringle, who are both going to Washington State on football scholarships, ran 10.98 and 11.03, respectively.
Pringle collected a fourth place in the 200-meter dash and anchored the Kennedy 400-relay team to a second place (41.84). Gardena won it at 41.58.
Even though he won just one event, Pringle was happy.
"I qualified in all four events," he said. "That's what I was looking for."
Had Pringle or any other member of the Kennedy boys team finished higher, the Golden Cougars would have won the team title.
Instead, Belmont won with 44 points, Gardena finished second with 43 points, while Kennedy was third with 42. Locke, with 76 points, easily won the girls' team title.
Keith Bryant of Birmingham threw his personal best, 57-6, to win the shotput championship. Granada Hills' Scott Schain also had his best toss ever, 56-2, earning a second-place medal.
"I said I wanted to see how it felt to win the City championship," Bryant said, "and now I know. It feels great, it feels great."
The Kennedy girls' 400-relay team blazed to victory. Madelyn Tyrone, Teresa Watterson, Phyllis Manigault and Stephanie Jones circled the track in 48.00 to defeat Dorsey (48.40).
Anthony Lewis of San Fernando captured second in the triple jump. His mark of 44-2 was behind only the 45-10 3/4 posted by Fremont's Trent Miller.
In the girls' shotput, Lauren Halliwell of Chatsworth had a toss of 36-4 1/2 to finish third. Theresa Williams of Fremont won it at 40-8.
Cleveland's Trevor Wilson, who was expected to contend for the high jump title, managed only a sixth-place tie with Grant's Donald O'Neal. Both went 6-0.
The high jump was won by Gardena's Lyndon Earley at 6-7.
Kennedy's Freddy Kober was third in the 800 with a time of 1:57.17. Roman Gomez won at 1:54.91.
Granada Hills' Kiersten Church grabbed third place in the 100, just ahead of Peacock. Church's time was 12.64, Peacock 12.73.
Locke teammates Tesha Giddens and Knighten went one-two in the 100. Their marks were 12.08 and 12.11, respectively.