CLOVIS — Manteca High’s Paul Lyons outlasted all the other athletes in the area to finish eighth in the 110 hurdles of the California Interscholastic Federation State Track and Field Championships on Saturday in Clovis.
Lyons’ time of 14.66 was just two-tenths of a second off runner-up Kiethyon Moten at 14.46.
No. 1 seed Jonathon Cabral earned the state championship with a time of 13.79 to secure the state title for the second consecutive season in the 110-hurdles.
“That was a pretty close race,” Manteca head coach Seth Hogan said. “The problem was the hurdles were exploding all over the place on everybody. That’s why the rest of the field was so much slower than the No. 1.
“But, No. 8 in the state of California is pretty respectable.”
Lyons showed state meet potential throughout the entire season, posting blistering times in the 110 and 300-hurdles throughout the Buffaloes’ Valley Oak League season. Lyons’ trip south, which included a berth into the 300-hurdles as well, made the Buffalo the first area athlete to qualify for two events in the state meet since the 2008 season.
“You don’t get to tell a kid everyday that they’re in the finals of the state meet in the State of California,” Hogan said. “I don’t think there’s a bigger track meet for high school kids (tied to a) state competition anywhere in the United States except maybe Texas or Florida.
“I think he understood how special of an athlete he was for us.”