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Mayfield aims to extend historic season
Weston Ranch High junior Angell Mayfield will be the first Cougar to compete at the state meet Friday in Clovis. - photo by Bulletin file photo
Rick Cuevas said that his star Weston Ranch High pupil, Angell Mayfield, is just now realizing how good he is.
Scary thought considering the junior came into the season raw with just a year of hurdling experience under his belt.

With his place in school history already written as the first student-athlete to qualify for Friday’s California Interscholastic Federation State Championships, Mayfield will look to add one more piece to the trophy case.

The track trials at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Clovis begin at 5 p.m., with the 110 hurdlers scheduled to start the first of three heats at 6:19 p.m. The top nine finishers Thursday will advance to Saturday’s finals, where the best six are awarded medals.

Mayfield is Weston Ranch’s first individual to take first at a Sac-Joaquin Section Division III meet. His other accomplishments this season include: first place in the Modesto Junior College Invitational, first place and new 300-hurdles record holder in the Skyline Invitational and two-event winner in the Valley Oak League Championships.

“I don’t think it has sunk in yet for him — he still doesn’t believe it,” Cuevas said of Mayfield’s season-long feats. “He never thought he could run this fast at the start of the season, so he’s still in shock right now.”

Mayfield may still be in shock and realistic about his chances of medaling, but he isn’t low on confidence after placing second at last week’s Sac-Joaquin Section Masters meet in Sacramento. He set a personal record with a wind-aided time of 14.29 seconds.

Vacaville’s Kyler Martin, a state finalist a year ago, won Masters in 14 flat, sharing the top-seeded time with Taft’s Dale Morgan. Morgan was a runner-up finisher as a sophomore last year.

Mayfield is seeded 12th, but his seeded time is just two hundredths of a second shy of No. 9.

“It’s going to be hard for me to even qualify for the finals,” Mayfield said. “If I get out there and run my race I do think I have a shot at making the finals. I’m very confident of what I can do, but right now it’s a big accomplishment just making it to state as a junior.”

Cuevas believes Mayfield can make noise this week if he can improve his start off the blocks. Mayfield has worked all year on improving his starts to complement his always-strong finishes.

“Last week, he didn’t get out very well,” Cuevas said. “He was around seventh (place) off the blocks, but once he put it in overdrive he started to catch the guy out in front. We all saw it; he had a bad start but he’s so strong that he’s able to make up for it in the second half of the race.”