Sports

A tough triple helps Gunn girls win in track

 

Running the 1,600 meters and two mile is one of the toughest doubles in track and field. Gunn freshman Sarah Robinson did that on Thursday, and more. Robinson also competed in the 800 and helped the Titans defeat visiting Los Altos, 69-56, in a SCVAL De Anza Division dual meet.

Battling cold winds all afternoon, Robinson first won the 1,600 in 5:23.56. She returned just four events later to win the 800 in 2:24.69. Then, with the outcome of the meet still undecided, she finished second in the two mile to her sister, Erin, who won in 12:00.17 with Sarah close behind.

While Sarah Robinson's performance was the most outstanding on the day, Gunn senior Kiana Choroski added victories in the 100 hurdles (16.21) and 300 hurdles (48.99), just off her season bests, as Robinson and Choroski accounted for four of Gunn's seven victories as the Titans improved to 3-1 and handed Los Altos its first loss in four meets.

Choroski led a 1-2-3 finish in the 300 hurdles and the Titans weren't swept in any events. In a stretch of four events (800, 300 hurdles, 200 and 2 mile), Gunn outscored Los Altos 27-9 to clinch the meet before the final relay.

The Gunn boys, meanwhile, also won seven events and got a double from Andrew Prior in a 68-58 triumph over the Eagles. Prior won the 1,600 in 4:33.06 and returned to take the 800 in 2:02.01. Rory Runser added an important win in the 3,200 in 10:06.27 as the Titans improved to 3-1.

The Palo Alto boys and girls also swept their respective SCVAL De Anza Division dual meets on Thursday, blowing away visiting Milpitas on the blustery afternoon.

The Paly boys welcomed back senior Maurice Williams, who made his season debut by running a second leg on the winning 400 relay team (44.16), winning the 100 (11.27) and taking the long jump (21-8 ½). Grant Sauer added a fast 15.10 to win the 110 high hurdles and sophomore E.J. Floreal moved down from the 400 to win his first 200 (23.06). The Vikings swept the field events while improving to 3-1.

In the girls' meet, Palo Alto also swept both relays and won all five field events on the way to overpowering Milpitas, 78-48. The Vikings (2-2) got victories from three members of their CCS championship basketball team – Lindsay Black (shot put, high jump), Katerina Peterson (discus) and Stephanie Allen (200).

Baseball

In a stark contrast to Tuesday's high-scoring game at Lynbrook, Gunn used a 4-2 victory over the visiting Vikings on Thursday to take both its SCVAL El Camino (4-3) and overall record (7-6-1) over .500 for the season.

The primary story line was Gunn's pitching. Junior starter Ryan Gorman (3-2) limited Lynbrook (1-6, 4-7) to two unearned runs on two hits while going six innings for the win. Gunn senior Joe Snyder was equally effective, once again coming on in relief and holding Lynbrook in check – giving up one hit in the top of the seventh inning to earn his first save.

Offensively, senior Jack Hannan had the Titans' first home run of the season, a two-run shot to left field in the bottom of the first inning. Hannan was involved in three of the four Gunn runs. Not to be outdone, junior Ramsey Salah-Mars went 3-for-4 on the day.

Boys' golf

Despite playing on a windy and cold afternoon, sophomore Andrew Buchanan still managed two birdies and a single bogey while earning medalist honors with a 1-under-par 34 to pace Menlo School to a 184-220 victory over Harker in a West Bay Athletic League dual match at Palo Alto Hills Golf & Country Club on Thursday.

The 184 by Menlo (6-0) is the lowest team score ever by the Knights in a WBAL match. The top five finishers for Menlo shot a combined 9-over par for 45 team holes. Buchanan led the way with his 34, while seniors Patrick Grimes and Bobby Pender both shot even-par 35. The scoring was rounded out by juniors Jackson Dean and Will Petit shooting 40. Junior James Huber, the medalist on Wednesday, shot a 45.

Buchanan overcame a tough break on the first hole as his tee shot leaked into a fairway trap on the right side. Buchanan blasted his second shot out of the trap to eight feet and barely missed a birdie putt while saving par. Pender also got off to a hot start after his approach shot on the first hole landed in a greenside bunker on the short, downhill par-4. Pender climbed into the trough and feathered a bunker shot softly onto the green and watched it roll in for birdie.

Girls' lacrosse

Palo Alto saw its perfect season in the Santa Clara Valley Athletic League come to an end following a 9-8 loss to visiting St. Francis on Thursday night. The Vikings fell to 5-1 (5-6 overall) while the Lancers pulled into a tie for first place, also with a 5-1 mark (6-2 overall), after avenging their earlier loss to the Vikings on March 17.

Palo Alto scored the first three goals of the second half and held a one-goal lead with seven minutes left to play. The Vikings, however, suffered a yellow penalty card with 6:31 remaining and was a player short the rest of the way. St. Francis capitalized on the player advantage and scored goals at 6:11 and 5:08 to go ahead for good, despite numerous possession changes after that.

Kimmie Flather and Charlotte Biffar each scored twice for Paly, with each contributing an assist.

In nonleague action, sophomore Michaela Michael scored six goals and added three assists as Menlo School rolled over visiting St. Francis (Sacramento), 16-5, in a makeup match on Thursday. Sophie Sheeline, Elyse Adler and Ali Kim all had hat tricks against St. Francis-Sacramento.

Michael's nine points tied her season high. She had seven goals and two assists earlier in the week in a win over Menlo-Atherton and takes 39 goals and 12 assists for the season into Saturday's annual Western States Invitational, held on Treasure Island. Menlo (5-3) is the defending champion.

Softball

Palo Alto managed just three hits and committed four errors while dropping an 11-1 decision to host Homestead in SCVAL De Anza Division action on Thursday. The Vikings fell to 2-3 in league (4-9 overall).

Elsewhere, Katie Vallarino had two hits and drove in four runs and Lauren Diller added three hits and scored three runs as Menlo-Atherton opened its PAL Ocean Division season with a 7-4 victory over visiting South San Francisco on Thursday. Erin LaPorte and Vallarino combined to limit the visitors to just four hits as the Bears improved to 1-0 (6-3).

Swimming

On a cold and windy day not conducive to good times, the Gunn girls won 10 events and had plenty of depth to dispose of host Lynbrook, 125-52, in a SCVAL De Anza Division dual meet on Thursday. Rachael Acker took the 100 fly and 100 free and swam on the winning 200 free and 400 free relay teams as the Titans headed into spring break with a 4-1 record. Emily Watkins won the 100 breast in a good 1:08.90 and also swam on two winning relays.

In the boys' meet, Ben Hendricks won the 200 free in a solid 1:50.73 and swam legs on the winning 200 free and 400 free relays to help Gunn splash past host Lynbrook, 99-81, aa the Titans improved to 4-1.

In the PAL Bay Division, Nick Henze clocked a season-best 1:46.77 to win the 200 free, added a 49.03 winner in the 100 free and swam legs on two winning relays to spark the Menlo-Atherton boys to a 113-56 victory over visiting Sequoia on Thursday. M-A's Evan Navarro took the meet's shortest (50 free) and longest (500 free) races while also swimming on two relays, including a 3:23.12 in the 400 free relay

In the girls' meet: Needing no worse than a first and third place in the final 400 free relay to win, that's exactly what the Bears got in an 86-84 dual-meet victory over visiting Sequoia to keep them unbeaten after four PAL Bay Division outings. Neither team led by more than four points throughout the meet. M-A's Holly Chen came up with a crucial victory in the 200 IM as her time of 2:21.18 nipped Sarah Beach of Sequoia by 0.18 of a second. Freshman Kindle Van Linge was the Bears' only double-winner, taking the 100 fly and 100 breast.

Sacred Heart Prep will host the second annual California Catholic Invitational on Saturday morning. The meet will include the host Gators along with Santa Margarita, Cathedral Catholic (San Diego), St. Francis (Mt. View), SI (San Francisco), and Marin Catholic.

Boys' tennis

The Menlo-Atherton boys' tennis team removed the final main hurdle to an unbeaten season in the PAL Bay Division with a 5-2 victory over host Woodside on a cold and windy day. The Bears improved to 12-0 in league with only matches at San Mateo and home against Aragon on the schedule next week.

The Bears (14-2 overall) dropped the first two singles matches, but swept the rest. Twins Jesse and Christian Perkins remained unbeaten this season at No. 1 doubles with a 6-1, 6-4 victory. Nick Fratt and Matt Giordano also continued their solid play at No. 3 and 4, singles, respectively.

In the SCVAL De Anza Division, Gunn (4-7, 9-7) headed into spring break with a solid 5-2 victory over visiting Lynbrook on Thursday. Gunn's Kevin Macario celebrated his birthday by teaming with Thomas George for a 6-1, 6-1 victory at No. 3 doubles. Adam Zorin and Nabil Hamade won at No. 3 and 4 singles, respectively, while the Gunn doubles teams all swept in straight sets.

-- Palo Alto Online Sports

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