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Dorsey's Thomas Seeks Redemption


It's been a long wait for Janice Thomas of Dorsey High.

Thomas, a senior sprinter, has been waiting two years to reclaim the City Section titles in the 100- and 200-meter dashes that she won as a sophomore.

Thomas will have her chance today as she is favored to win both races at the section's track and field finals at Birmingham High in Van Nuys. Competition begins at 4 p.m.

"I haven't stopped thinking about winning these races since I was beaten last year," said Thomas, who lost to LaTroya Mucker of Hamilton in both races at the section finals.

Thomas, who at 6 feet is tall for a sprinter, had the top qualifying times in both the 100 (12.22 seconds) and 200 (24.64) at the preliminary meet last week.

"I think I thought that because I won as a sophomore that I would automatically win the next two years," said Thomas, who has been an All-City Section forward in basketball the last two years. "I realize now that nothing comes easy, especially repeating."

The Dorsey girls also will attempt to win their third consecutive team title, but the Dons are co-favorites at best. Both Westchester and Woodland Hills Taft are considered strong challengers.

Westchester and Taft each qualified 400- and 1,600-meter relay teams. Westchester is led by senior Jonie Hunt, who will be a contender in the 100 high hurdles and 300 low hurdles, and junior Tasha Bruner, who will challenge Thomas in the 100.

The boys' team title, which Dorsey has won three times in the last four years, also appears up for grabs and may come down to the final event, the 1,600 relay. Dorsey, Crenshaw, Birmingham and Taft all have strong sprint teams and expect to be in the title hunt.

Crenshaw senior Kevin Howard is the favorite in the 100 and 200 and senior Sharif Paxton is the state leader in the 110 high hurdles (13.39 hand-timed).

The top three finishers in each event advance to the state finals, June 6-7 in Sacramento.

On Friday, the Southern Section Masters meet will be held at Long Beach City College beginning at 5:30 p.m. The top five finishers in each event advance to the state meet. The Pasadena Muir boys and Long Beach Poly girls are each expected to lead the pack of qualifiers. Muir won the Southern Section Division I boys' title last Saturday.

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