Sports


Menlo grad Price advances in 400 at World Junior track

Recent Menlo School grad Maddy Price had the fourth-fastest qualifying time during the women's 400-meter prelims at the IAAF World Junior Track and Field Championships at the University of Oregon's Hayward Field on Wednesday.

Price, who came into the meet with the 10th-fastest qualifying time, clocked 53.86 while finishing second in Heat 5 to advance to the semifinals on Thursday.

The only runners faster than Price, who is competing for Canada, were Kendall Baisden of the United States (53.28), Gilda Casanova of Cuba (53.43), and Yana Glotova of Russia (53.61).

Also advancing to the semifinals was incoming Stanford freshman Olivia Baker. She ran 54.09 in Heat 4.

"I just wanted to get out there, execute my race plan the way I always do in any race, and get in one of those auto-qualifier spots," Baker said. "I was able to do that today, so I'm proud of that."

The 400 finals will be Friday, the same day of the heats for the 1,600 relay. Price will run on the Canadian foursome.

In the men's decathlon, incoming Stanford freshman Harrison Williams Williams finished sixth overall with a career high 7,760 points, which set a high school record for the decathlon.

The total was also equal to the fourth-highest ever among U.S. junior men (19 and younger).

Williams set six personal bests during the 10-event competition, including in the final two events: the javelin and 1,500.

His 4:41.01 time was good for 674 points and enabled him to surpass his previous best of 7,734, which he scored while winning the U.S. junior title in Sacramento on June 26.

The two-day competition had its ups and downs for Williams. After three events, he was in 16th place. Williams inched up to 10th, only for a poor discus performance (115-1) to drop him to 12th with three events to go.

Williams cleared 16-4 to finish second in the competition in his best event, the pole vault, and earn 880 points. On the ninth event, Williams threw the javelin 184-9, over 20 feet farther than in Sacramento, and clipped his 1,500 best by one second to complete the competition.

Williams' total strengthened his position as the No. 3 performer in U.S. junior history, behind only Gunnar Nixon (8,018 and 7,760) and Kevin Lazas (8,016 and 7,935).

Williams' total of 7,760 points broke the national prep record of 7,748 set by Nixon of Santa Fe (Edmond, Okla.) High in 2011.

Book signing

In conjunction with the WTA's Bank of the West Classic taking place at Stanford this weekend, former WTA player and Stanford All-American Marissa (Irvin) Gould will hold a book signing to promote her new children's book, "A Magical Racquet Ride: Journey to the Four Grand Slam Tournaments of Tennis".

The book signing will take place Saturday at Kepler's Books in Menlo Park at 1 p.m.

After competing in 22 Grand Slam events, Gould retired from professional tennis and decided to turn her attention to her other passions -- children and education.

"Tennis has so much to offer young people," Gould said. "It's great exercise, accessible, and instills sportsmanship, and it can be played by teams or individuals. But, what really makes tennis special is that it is played all over the world by people of all ages."

Wanting to share the joys of tennis with a younger generation, Gould wrote the inspiring and beautifully illustrated story about two twins who take a magical ride to the four Grand Slam events of tennis.

Gould is a California native, mother of three and an elementary school teacher. During her tennis career, she notched wins over players who reached No. 1 in the world -- including Justine Henin, Anastasia Myskina, Dinara Safina, and Aranxta Sanchez-Vicario.

She holds a BA in Political Science from Stanford, where she was also an NCAA champion, Pac-10 champion, four-time All-American, Academic All-American, and the winner of the Honda Award for the Nation's top female collegiate athlete in her sport.

Men's volleyball

Stanford sophomore middle blocker Kevin Rakestraw is among the 12 players who will compete for the United States in El Salvador beginnig Monday at the NORCECA Men's U21 Continental Championship.

After training at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid, N.Y., the training team was cut from 21 players. The team's head coach will be Dan Friend, the men's head coach at Lewis University.

Golf

Palo Alto's Anna Zhou, who'll be a senior at Gunn High this fall, suffered a double-bogey on the back nine and fell well off the pace at the girls' USGA Junior Amateur Championship at the par-72 Forest Highlands Golf Club (Meadow Course) on Tuesday in Flagstaff, Ariz.

Zhou, who shot an even-par 72 during Monday's opening round, shot a 3-over 75 on Tuesday. She made the turn with a 1-over 37 but took a double-bogey seven on the 552-yard 14th. She followed that with a bogey on the 16th before rallying with a birdie on the par-5 18th.

Coaching positions

Castilleja is looking for a number of coaches for the upcoming school year: JV tennis, JV basketball, JV soccer, lacrosse assistant varsity coach and swimming assistant varsity coach. Interested candidates should contact new Athletic Director Mary Jo Pruitt at mpruitt@castilleja.org.

Tennis

Palo Alto High grad Mira Khanna was one of six Hamilton College men's and women's tennis players to earn 2014 scholar-athlete status from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA).

In order be an ITA scholar-athlete, a player must be a varsity letter winner, have a grade point average of 3.50 or better (on a 4.00 scale) for the current academic year, and have been enrolled at their present school for at least two semesters (including freshman through senior year).

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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