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Lyons is king of Big Sky hurdle events
Paul Lyons, a 2011 graduate of Manteca High, competes in the hurdle events for Sacramento States track and field team. - photo by Photo courtesy of Hornet Sports

Manteca High graduate Paul Lyons wrapped up his successful sophomore season with Sacramento State’s track and field team last week.

Lyons competed in the NCAA West Preliminary in Austin, Texas last week, matching his personal best wind-legal time in the 110-meter hurdles on his final race of the year. He qualified for Saturday’s semifinals and placed 19th in 14.09 seconds. Lyons also competed in the first round of the 400 hurdles on May 23, taking 46th overall in 55.25 seconds.

Earlier this month, he clocked a wind-aided 14.04 in a runner-up finish in the Sacramento State Open. The time ranks him No. 3 in the all-time program record books, placing Lyons behind Ronald Brookins (13.42) and Tony Galaviz (13.76). That yielded a Big Sky Conference Male Track Athlete of the Week award.

The awards kept coming.

In Portland, Ore. on May 10 and 11, he defended his 2012 conference championship in the 110 hurdles in 14.23 seconds and added the 400 hurdles title to the resume. Lyons completed the 400 race in 51.36, a lifetime best and third fastest in Sac State history.

Lyons was just the second Big Sky athlete to win both hurdle events in the conference meet since Montana’s Tim Fox did it in 1980. For his efforts, Lyons was named co-Most Valuable Athlete along with Diego Estrada of Northern Arizona. He was also selected the MVP of the men’s team, which placed second in the Big Sky meet.

“My vision was for PJ to be the best dual hurdler in the Big Sky,” Sacramento State head coach Kathleen Raske said in a press release. “For him to accomplish that as a sophomore is impressive.”