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By Zach Cavanagh
Hawkes Repeats as Sprinter of the Meet at County Championships
For the second consecutive year, San Clemente senior Caroline Hawkes won the girls 200- and 400-meter sprints at the Orange County Championships to be named the sprinter of the meet on Saturday, March 26, at Mission Viejo High School.
Hawkes’ top highlight was the 400-meter race, in which the Montana State-bound senior was clocked in a personal record time of 55.23 seconds to win the county title again. The mark is the fastest 400 in San Clemente girls track and field history. Hawkes ran the event in 57.36 seconds in 2021.
Hawkes also won her second consecutive county title in the 200-meter race with a wind-aided time of 24.75 seconds. Hawkes won the event in 25.38 last season.
As a team, San Clemente finished eighth overall in the girls standings, with Hawkes leading the way. The Tritons just missed out on top-five finishes elsewhere in the meet.
Senior Kennedy Banks finished sixth in the 800-meter race with a personal-record time of 2:18.63.
Sophomore Chloe Waters finished sixth in the 300-meter hurdles at 49.85 seconds.
Senior Portia Kipper cleared 4 feet, 8 inches in the high jump for a seventh-place finish.
Boys Track Takes Second at County Championships
The San Clemente boys track and field team didn’t capture any gold on Saturday, March 26, at Mission Viejo High School, but the Tritons racked up plenty of points to take runner-up at the Orange County Track and Field Championships.
Junior distance runner Juan Chantaca, junior jumper Griffin Schwab and senior vaulter Aidan Bennett each earned a second-place finish in their events to help the Tritons compile 46 team points and edge out Orange Lutheran’s 44 points for runner-up. Mater Dei dominated the meet with 82.33 team points for the county title.
Chantaca finished second in the 3,200-meter race with a personal-record time of 9:30. Junior teammate Rory Catsimanes also earned the podium in the 3,200 in fourth place with a personal record of 9:31. Chantaca also took fifth in the 1,600-meter race with another personal record of 4:20.
Schwab cleared a height of 6 feet, 2 inches in the high jump to take second in the event. The first-place clearance was 6 feet, 6 inches. Schwab also finished eighth in the 110-meter hurdles at 16.13 seconds.
Bennett set a personal record in the pole vault with a clearance of 14 feet, 6 inches. That was the top mark in the event for the top-three places, but based on the number of attempts, Bennett took second.
Senior Hayden Beauchemin earned a top-five finish in the 800-meter race with a fourth-place, personal-record time of 1:57.46, which barely split the difference between third place (1:57.42) and second place (1:57.39).
San Clemente’s last top-five finish came in the 4×400-meter relay, in which the Tritons came in fifth at 3:33.
Zach Cavanagh is the sports editor for Picket Fence Media. Zach is multiple California Journalism Award winner and has covered sports in Orange County since 2013. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @ZachCav and follow our sports coverage on Twitter @SouthOCSports. Email at firstname.lastname@example.org.