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Remington looks back, still wins for Jesuit track

by: TIMES PHOTO: MATT SINGLEDECKER - Jesuit senior Sam Remington won the 800-meter dash against Westview on May 1, and helped the Crusader boys track team take down the Wildcats

Sam Remington can’t cash in on his longstanding bet with his mom just yet.

The Jesuit long distance runner — who is in Metro’s 1,500-meter top-three, the top-four for the 800 and is part of the Crusaders’ top-ranked 4x400 relay — can win $10 from his mother if he can complete a race without looking over his shoulder to survey the competition.

On April 30 against Westview, fighting every natural inclination in his being, Remington kept his eyes ahead in the 800 dash, and took an early lead going into the second lap. Remington, it appeared, was about to break a lifelong habit of rotating his head and peering at the runners behind him.

Then, with just about 300 meters to go, the senior turned ever so slightly to take a gander at Westview’s Nikhil Anand who was 25 meters behind him.

“I have a really bad habit of looking back,” said Remington with a laugh. “Deep down, it has to be because I’m worried about competition. I’m a pretty competitive guy who doesn’t like to lose, when it reality it kind of messes up your form. I’m trying to see where the competition is in regards to me.”

Promptly, the $10 vanished, at least for this dual meet, though Remington was able to cruise to a first place 2:03 win to help Jesuit beat Westview, 111-34.

“Hopefully I’ll make some cash by the end of the season,” said Remington with a laugh. “I think (looking back) definitely helps spur me on when I see a guy out of the corner of my eye. It keeps me going.”

Remington said he felt Anand as the bell rang, signaling there was just one lap to go in the race, and then snuck a peak at the Wildcat with 300 meters left. Content with the lead, Remington made a break for it with 200 meters remaining and fought off a difficult headwind for the 2:03.09 win.

“The last 300 meters I wanted to stay relaxed,” said Remington. “I’ve been emphasizing staying relaxed while I run the last couple days in practice, and I think that helps keep my stride longer too. Having my body relaxed allows me to finish stronger. I was definitely hurting, but it felt good.”

by: TIMES PHOTO: MATT SINGLEDECKER - Jesuit senior Carlos Coleman anchored the Crusaders triumphant 4x100 relay and took first in the 400 against Westview on May 1.

Carlos Coleman decided against playing basketball for Gene Potter and the Crusaders in favor of off-season track sessions with star Max Dordevic and a handful of other fast standouts.

“They were a nightmare,” said Coleman. “Usually we’d have five (500’s), three or two in a day. We really got pushed, but it pays off, so it’s all worth it. Being at state last year was the biggest thrill of my life, so I really just want to be there again. That was in the back of my mind.”

Hurtling around the track with 500-meter sprints in 40-degree weather during the wintertime, helped Coleman — a part of Jesuit’s 4x400 winning relay at state that sealed the Crusaders’ team championship last year — expand his cardio base. The workouts were punishing, Coleman said, but they’ve helped him close the end of races with a roar, rather than a whimper. The senior won the 400 against Westview in 49.64, only hundreths of a second away from Dordevic’s top time in Metro.

“Last year I’d be dying on the last 100,” said Coleman. “This year it’s just easier for me. I just have to keep my form and focus on that last backstretch. I have to go around (the track), keep it chill and then see what I can do the last 100 meters.”

Coleman was also the anchor leg of Jesuit’s wining 4x100 relay along with Chase Morrison, Tanner Tropio and Geremiah Maxie.

Tropio won the 100 (10.96) and Maxie took first in the 200 (22.93). Michael Godbout won the 1,500 (4:07) and Sahil Doshi took the 3,000 (9:23). Henry Mondeaux threw 51-03 in the shot put for first place, and Nate Avery won the discus (129-01).

by: TIMES PHOTO: MATT SINGLEDECKER - Westview senior pole vaulter Austin Kwong celebrates his 12-06 seasonal best against Jesuit on May 1. Kwong has one of the best pole vault marks in Metro.

Westview’s Austin Kwong has upgraded to a bigger, 14-foot, 135-pound pole that he hopes will help him create sizable bends and reach taller heights. Kwong said he’s on the prowl for a new personal record, and wants to get close to Westview’s school record.

It hasn’t happened yet this year, though the senior said he’s “stoked” for the rest of the season and hopes to finalize a Hayward Field berth at districtts. The Metro pole vault field is certainly compelling with two entrants in the 13’ range and five others touching at least 12’. Kwong’s 12-07 is currently third-best in Metro.

“I’m looking out for everyone because we all have a chance at getting to state,” said Kwong. “For me it’s about mentality. I can’t overthink my jumps. I just have to make sure all the aspects of pole vault are sound.”

Kwong’s key to favorable outcomes is having a strong “plant”, driving the pole as hard as possible into the box underneath the bar in order to propel himself up the 12’ range high above the pit.

At a give-or-take 5-foot-7, 135 pounds, Kwong said he has to do everything right pre-flight: getting a solid, fast run down the runway, a stout plant and a steady climb to pass over the bar. Kwong said pole vault is a “heavy technique” sport that requires a lot of time in the pit and hours in the weight room, building muscle to get faster down the platform and establishing a bigger plant.

“I have to do all that because I’m a short kid,” said Kwong. “I don’t think being small is too much of a disadvantage though. My coaches tell me all the time, that pole vault is the one event where you don’t have to be the biggest. You don’t have to be the fastest or strongest. But, it takes a lot of dedication and hard work. And, that’s what I’ve been doing the last four years.”

Westview sophomore Evan Brehm (42-11) and freshman Mason Elliott (40-02) took first and second in the triple jump.



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