Black helps team earn CIF track crown

May 21, 2002|By ERIC GALVAN, Sports Writer

Heading into the CIF San Diego Section Division II track and field championships at Poway High School on Saturday, Southwest High's Jennifer Black was hoping to do well.

Deep inside, however, she expected to get caught in the shuffle in her events and not place toward the top.

The 15-year-old sophomore was undefeated in the 300-meter hurdles during the season and unbeaten in the 100 hurdles and high jump in the Imperial Valley League and should have entered CIF with a little more confidence.

It wasn't until the end of the CIF competition that Black's confidence was riding high. It wasn't only Black, it was all four teammates as they accomplished something that has never been done in Southwest's history — the Eagle girls track and field team won the CIF San Diego Section Division III championship.

Of the 62 total points Southwest netted, Black accounted for 20 with a win in the 300 hurdles in 47.15 seconds, second place in the 100 hurdles in 16.41 and fifth in the high jump with a leap of 4 feet, 10 inches.


"When we all talked before the meet, we just told each other that we were going to have fun, do our best and keep positive attitudes. And we were able to do that," said Black. "You know, considering that we only had five people on our team and there were other teams with as many as 20, I thought what we did was impressive."

Black said she and her teammates — Rashauna Amos, Tasha Ernest, Monica Gamboa and Erica Holmes — earned a great deal of respect from the San Diego-area athletes.

"Those people over there normally don't really think much about us just because we are from the Imperial Valley. But I think when we were all on that winner's podium, we definitely got their respect," said Black.

While Black credited her teammates, family and coaching staff for helping her and the Eagle squad win the championship, she said most of the credit goes to Alvis Harrington.

She said it was workouts with Harrington before and during the season that pushed her to test her limits and become one of the best in the area.

But Black's quest isn't over. On Saturday, she and her four other teammates will have an opportunity to qualify for the CIF state meet as they compete in the Masters at Poway High.

"Going into Masters I'm ranked fifth in the 300 hurdles and seventh in the 100, so I'm not really sure what to expect because that meet has the best of the best," said Black. "But we're still going in there trying to let people know who we are.

"Winning CIF was good enough for now, but we all plan on going to Masters and turning some heads."


>> Rashauna Amos, Southwest High School track and field, had four wins at the CIF San Diego Section Division II championships in Poway on Saturday, leading the Eagles to the team title.

>> Melanie Medina, Imperial High School softball, went 3-for-4 with four RBI in the Tigers' 13-3 CIF San Diego Section Division IV playoff win over Guajome Park Academy on Saturday. She also scored the game-winning run in Imperial's 2-1 10-inning victory over Palo Verde on May 13.

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