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CV, CHS standouts give it their all
The pressure intensified each time Cristian Chavez stepped in the ring.

Seeded sixth, the Central Valley High School senior fouled three times in the prelims and failed to make the finals in the shot put at the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Track & Field Championships on Thursday at Elk Grove High School.

"The caliber of athletes at that level is incredible," Hawks head coach Mike Reynolds said. "It's hard not to get intimidated."

The top three placers in each event qualified for the CIF State Meet.

Hawk senior Matt Menor improved his school record in the 110 hurdles for the third week in a row.

Menor placed 20th in 16.49 seconds.

"It was a big surprise for him to get to Masters," Reynolds said. "Each week, he got faster and faster. He peaked at the right time. He worked pretty hard this year."

Central Valley senior William Hunnel missed all three attempts at the opening height of 12 feet 9 inches in the pole vault on Friday.

"His first try was his best one," Reynolds said.

Hunnel bettered his school record by six inches when he cleared 12-6 en route to a fourth-place finish at the Division IV-V competition.

Chavez's final attempt at Masters was similar to his first two throws.

The shot put landed 12-14 inches out of bounds to the right.

"It just wasn't his day," Reynolds said. "His marks were well over 53. He would have made it to the finals and got three more throws. To be that close and know one of your throws was within reach, it's heartbreaking."

"It was a good experience," Chavez said. "I know if I would have got a good throw in, I'd be going to state. That's the disappointing part. I still had a really good season. I had fun. I improved a lot."

Chavez, who will continue his track and field and football careers at Modesto Junior College, placed second in the shot put with a school-record toss of 51-91/4 the previous week. Cristian shattered his personal-record by five feet, one-quarter inch.

Ceres High varsity girls standout Bryce Ford placed 11th in the high jump (5-1), 14th in the 300 hurdles (47.17) and 17th in the 100 hurdles (16.53) at Masters.

Bulldog senior Bella Carlyle took 17th in the shot put (32-81/4).

Ford had a stellar junior season with the Bulldogs.

She finished first in the 100 hurdles (16.28), 300 hurdles (47.92) and high jump (5-1), and second in the triple jump (34-10) at the WAC Championships.

Carlyle placed third in the shot put (31-11/2).

Chavez, Menor and Hunnel earned the praise of their head coach.

"All three of them PR'd and set school records this year," Reynolds said. "I can't complain one bit. They had a good season."