SACRAMENTO — Hurdler Kenyon Rambo of Long Beach Poly calls Dominique DeGrammont of Tustin his biggest rival. DeGrammont says he pays no attention to those kind of things.
And so far, DeGrammont, who has recorded the second-best time in the nation this season in the 110 high hurdles, has dominated Rambo when the two have run head to head.
The matchup could be renewed one last time at the state track and field championships today and Saturday at Sacramento City College.
DeGrammont has turned in a wind-aided time of 13.54 seconds in the 110 high hurdles, better than Rambo's best of 37.18. DeGrammont has the better time in the 300 intermediate hurdles, running a 36.70. Rambo has gone 38.20. Both are expected to qualify for Saturday's finals out of separate heats in those events Friday. DeGrammont said he feels confident he can set a national mark soon.
"I want my record to stand for a long time," he said.
Other Orange County participants in Sacramento include El Toro high jumper Elliott Parks, the defending state champion who cleared 7 feet 2 inches to win the Southern Section Division II title. El Toro Coach Larry Nitta said Parks has made it his season-long goal to repeat as state champion.
"I think that if you look back at the records, you will see only two or three other people who have doubled as state champions," Nitta said. "He wants to do that too."
Scott Moser, who set the state record in the discus this season (213-11), is favored again. He also has the best toss in the Southern Section this season in the shotput (61-10 1/2) and will be among the favorites in that event too.
In the girls' competition, Laguna Hills high jumper Tayyiba Haneef, who has cleared 5-10 1/2, is among the favorites. She has had an easy time of it and hasn't been pushed by opponents in either the Southern Section preliminaries, finals or at the Masters meet, where she needed to clear only 5-6 to win. But she may receive a challenge from Vista Rancho Buena Vista's Lisa Underhill, who leaped 5-9, and Yreka's Susan Schaap, who qualified with a jump of 5-8.
Mission Viejo's Ashley Bethel will compete in three individual events--the high jump, 100 meter high hurdles and long jump, where her season's best of 18-11 3/4 will be tested by Michelle Berry of Quartz Hill, who has jumped 19-2 1/2.
Los Amigos' Carrie Axton has thrown 147-8 in the discus and is among the favorites in thatevent.
Prelims are today and the finals Saturday.