PREP TRACK: Poly 400 specialist wins 200 heat and helps on two relay teams.
By Kirby Lee, Long Beach Press-Telegram
Article Launched: 05/10/2008 11:23:44 PM PDT


Joey Hughes' specialty is the 400 meters, but the Poly High senior also filled in other areas for the defending state champion Jackrabbits at the CIF Southern Section Division I preliminaries Saturday at Trabuco Hills High.

Hughes, the state leader in the 400 meters, had the fastest qualifying time in the event at 48.08. Hughes also won his 200 heat in 21.10 and ran on the Jackrabbits' heat-winning 400 and 1,600 relay teams that clocked 41.87 and 3:19.14, respectively.

Poly will need another big meet from Hughes in the CIF Southern Section finals at Mt. San Antonio College on Saturday to challenge Vista Murrieta and Dominguez for the team title.

Dominguez had the Nos. 2, 3 and 4 qualifying times in the 400 behind Hughes with sophomore Leon Dilihunt (48.13), senior Aaron Hester (48.22) and junior Kivon Grant (48.73).

Dilihunt, Hester and Grant teamed with Monoah Wesson on Dominguez's 1,600 relay that had the top qualifying time by more than five seconds over No. 2 Poly at 3:13.87. Dilihunt, Hester and Grant joined senior Jamel Hawkins on the 400 that had the second-fastest time of 41.72.

Da'Vron Walker, a 2007 state meet qualifier in the 110 hurdles, ran a state-leading mark of 14.14.

The Poly girls, paced by junior Jasmine Joseph and freshman Akawkaw Ndipagbor, had qualifiers in every event from the 100 through 1,600 and the 400 and 1,600 relays.

Joseph and Ndipagbor qualified in the 200 and 400 and teamed on Poly's heat-winning 400 relay that ran 47.17 and the 1,600 relay that was the top qualifier in 3:47.31.


Ndipagbor and Joseph had the top two marks in the 400 at 54.82 and 55.52. In all, Poly qualified three in the 400 with senior Tanisha Hawkins, who also advanced in 57.11.

In the 200, Joseph was a heat winner in a wind-aided 24.08 for the No. 2 mark, and Ndipagbor was No. 3 with a heat victory in 24.19.

Tara Richmond (39-2) and Melia Cox (38-0 ) were the top two qualifiers in the triple jump. Freshman Dynasty Gammage advanced in the 800 in 2:16.84 and in the 1,600 in a school-record 5:01.81.