The immediate future of the CNMI’s athletics program was in full display yesterday as the high school and middle school qualifiers for the 2021 Public School System All Schools Track and Field Championship kicked off at the Oleai Track and Field.
First on deck were competitions in the 200m, 800, long jump, and discuss and with 11 schools taking part in Day 1 of the high school and middle school qualifiers, the All Schools finished almost at 6pm.
In the discus, Grace Christian Academy’s Casey Chambers and Dandan Middle School’s Patty Mendiola in the 14U and Agape Christian School’s Bonny Bao and Kagman High School’s Maria Rasa in the 18U were the talk of the town with their hurling exploits.
Chambers topped his age group with a throw of 20.25m followed by Chacha Oceanview Middle School’s Luke Lizama (19.35m) and DMS’ Daniel Dela Cruz (18.30m). Mendiola was without peer in the girls 14U after throwing for a distance of 15.9m with Saipan International School teammates Hoo Wang and Yuky Claveria finishing second and third with hurls of 13.05m and 12.40m, respectively.
Bao edged Marianas High School’s Tyrik Basa and ACS’ Tychicus Su after registering a throw of 23.50m against Basa and Su’s identical 23.40m. Rasa, for her part, was the class of her division after impressing with a hurl of 22.3m that brought oohhs and aahhs not only from fellow competitors but also from field officials. Marianas High School teammates Angelyn Roligat and Kina Rangamar came in second and third with throws of 18.10m and 16.85m, respectively.
In the long jump, GCA dominated the boys 14U with Jasper Hall soaring with a leap of 5.1m followed by teammates Joseph Pangelinan (4.58m) and Takeru Jim (4.52m). DMS’ Ha’ani Passi topped the girls 14U after a jump of 4.6m with SIS’ Phoenix Gross (3.8m) and Tanapag Middle School’s Destinee Decena (3.8m) tied for second place.
In the boys 18U, SIS’ Frederic Guinto was No. 1 with a leap of 5.8m with ACS’ Eason Tang (5.5m) and Antonio Li (5.35m) finishing No. 2 and No. 3. ACS’ Sally Wu topped the girls 18U (4.16m) with GCA’s Soleil Lamar (4.08m) and MHS’ Leani Acosta (4.04m) coming second and third.
ACS nearly swept the boys 200m and 800m with Tang winning the 18U 200m, Peter Peng topping the 14U 800m, and Ray Qi triumphant in the 18U 800m.
Tang topped his age group with a run of 25.05, followed by teammate Bill Li (25.19) and SIS’ Kuu Nishimura (25.94). Peng tore the track by clocking in at 02:25 with GCA’s Theodore Rogers (2:48) and Saipan Community School’s Elijah Ye (2.51) coming in next. Qi, for his part, made his best Flash impersonation by crossing the finish line in 2.22. Nishimura finished second with his 2.23, while ACS’ Caleb Dai was third with his 2.30.
GCA’s Jasper Hall prevented ACS from going 3-for-3 in the boys track events by winning the 14U 200m in a time of 27.01m, followed by MCS’ Minsoo Kwon (28.8) and SIS’ Casey Chambers (28.38).
In the girls running events, the Lady Knights won two of four events. MCS’ wunderkind Andrei Kaithlyn Chavez won both the 200m and 400m in the 14U girls with runs of 30.21 and 02:48, respectively. Coming in next to the multi-sport athlete in the 200m were SIS’ Savita Sikkel (30.51) and GCA’s Ella Hall (31.93). Finishing second and third in the 800m, meanwhile, were GCA’s Fiona Regan (03.01) and Sikkel (03.04).
In the girls 18U 400m, Saipan Southern High School’s Casey Cruz rang the bell first with a time of 28.11 with KHS’ Filomenaleonisa Iakopo (28:72) and MCS’ Erina Frink coming in second and third in 28.72 and 29.72, respectively.
In the 800m, up-and-coming runner Tiana Cabrera finally broke out with a time of 02:46 with ACS teammates Eunice Yun and Grace Shi hot in her coattails with times of 02:55 and 03:03, respectively.
The Public School System All Schools Track and Field Championship, which is being held in coordination with Northern Marianas Athletics, continued yesterday with qualifiers in the middle school and high school divisions.