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TRACK : Granville Sprints by State Frosh Record

April 18, 1993|KIRBY LEE | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Michael Granville's classmates at Bell Gardens High were well aware of his achievements as an age-group runner even before his first semester at the school last fall.

Granville has lived up to his billing. He set a freshman state record Friday in winning the invitational 400 in 48.40 at the Mt. San Antonio College Relays. His time eclipsed the mark of 48.56 set by Henry Thomas of Hawthorne in 1982.

Granville's run Friday was another in a series of assaults on the record books. He set a freshman national record in the indoor 500 meters of 1:00.1 at the Sunkist invitational in February, and a ninth-grade national record in the 800 of 1:51.61 at the Arcadia invitational on March 27.

"People have said: 'We heard about you last year, but we want to see what you can do this year,' " Granville said. "After Arcadia, they were pretty much satisfied."

But that didn't take the pressure off of the 15-year-old runner in the 400 on Friday.

"I was kind of nervous so I said (to myself), 'Keep cool, Mike. Just don't go crazy,' " the 6-foot, 165-pound Granville said. "I wanted to make sure I kept my mind on running my own race and not running for somebody else."

Granville was third through 200 meters, but overtook early leader Nathan Woods of Duarte with 150 meters to go and passed Derek Favorite of Corona Centennial down the final backstretch.

Favorite finished second in 48.43, followed by Woods in 49.60. Ben Martinez of Belmont was fifth in 50.68.

As an eighth-grader at Bell Gardens Junior High, Granville won the 400 and 800 in the youth boys' division in the TAC Youth Athletics championships last summer.

Granville, who holds school records at Bell Gardens High in the 100, 200 and 800, lowered his school 400 record of 49.5 run on a dirt track in an Almont League meet at Schurr in March.

He plans to concentrate on qualifying for the 400 in the Southern Section championships and state meet, but he said he may consider competing in the 400 and the 800.

"Put me in any event--I just love running," Granville said.

*

Notes--Belmont's Stanley Carranza and Brian Acevedo finished first and second in their section of the pole vault, clearing 14 feet and 13 feet, 6 inches, respectively.

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