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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS

Taft Boys Hope to Run Up the Score

Track & field: Toreadors could become the first team to score 100 points in City Section finals since 1952.

May 25, 2000|JOHN ORTEGA | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Taft High could become the first boys' track and field team since 1952 to score 100 or more points when the City Section championships are held at Birmingham today.

Jefferson totaled 104 points in 1949, 111 in 1950 and a record 121 1/2 in 1952.

No other boys' team has cracked the century mark since the City meet went to its current scoring format in 1946 in which the top six finishers in each event are awarded points on a 10-8-6-4-2-1 basis.

"If everyone does what they're suppose to, we should win easily," senior Fred Williams of Taft said after the preliminaries last week.

Taft, led by Williams and juniors Chris Morgan and Daniel Clements, is capable of placing first or second in 10 of the 15 events.

Cleveland, led by junior Jason Lovell, could score 60 to 70 points, but that is expected to leave the Cavaliers well back of Taft, which is trying to win its third boys' title and first since Quincy Watts led the Toreadors to consecutive championships in 1986-87.

"We got just about everybody through," Coach Mel Hein said after the preliminaries. "We're in great shape."

Williams, who has signed with Cal State Fullerton, has run 10.68 in the 100 meters and 21.13 in the 200, and is heavily favored to win those events. He'll run the anchor leg on a 1,600 relay team that should battle for second behind Cleveland.

Morgan, state leader in the 110 high hurdles at 13.94, is heavily favored in that event and the long jump, and is regarded as a contender in the 300 intermediate hurdles. He could finish among the top three in the 100.

Clements is an underdog to senior Sergio Campos of Marshall in the 1,600 and 3,200, but runner-up finishes in those races would give Taft 16 points.

Seniors Fernando Lopez and Jamaal Crawford could also score a lot of points for Taft.

Lopez is defending City champion in the high jump and was the No. 4 qualifier in the long jump.

Crawford qualified second in the long jump and triple jump.

Lovell, state leader in the 400 at 47.43, is tabbed to win that event, battle senior DeJuan Crockett of Gardena for second in the 200 and run legs on the 400 and 1,600 relay teams.

Senior Shane Hackett of Verdugo Hills is favored to win his second consecutive title in the pole vault and junior Chris Wells-Anders of El Camino Real is tabbed to win his first championship in the 800.

The meet begins with the freshman-sophomore field events at 3:30 p.m., with the running events starting at 5:30.

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