"She's one of the hardest working athletes I've ever coached,'' Perry said. "She has plenty of natural ability, but is always looking to maximize what she has. She won the CCS 100 last year but has a hunger for more. She's a coach's dream.''
Eagle's teammate Maggie Hall, who won the CCS 200 last year and has accepted a track and field scholarship offer from UC Santa Barbara, is still rounding into shape after coming out late from soccer. But Hall joined Eagle, Autriyana Hardy and Lauren Collinsworth to run a time of 49.57 in the 4x100 relay last weekend, No. 2 in the CCS behind San Lorenzo Valley.
The Bears took second in the 4x100 at last year's CCS finals.
"The girls have talked about that,'' Perry said. "They want to improve from second to first. It doesn't sound like that much, but it's a big step.''
Menlo School's Charlotte Tomkinson, the defending CCS 800 champion, has the fastest time in the state so far in that event with the 2:10.61 she ran at the Dublin Distance Fiesta.
Tomkinson, who placed sixth in the 800 at the state finals last year as a sophomore, is also second in the CCS in the 400 (58.38), just behind Los Altos' Anna Zaeske (58.36), and second in the 1,600 (5:02.00), behind teammate and training partner Kyra Pretre (5:01.73). And Pretre, fourth in the 800 at last year's CCS finals, has the second-fastest 800 time so far this season at 2:14.29, trailing only Tomkinson.
With two middle-distance runners doing that well you might expect Menlo to put together a pretty good 4x400 relay team. And that has certainly been the case as the unit of Michele Louie, Lauren Hamilton, Pretre and Tomkinson has run a CCS-best 4:02.14. They're looking to crack the 4-minute barrier before long.
"Our team will definitely do it,'' Menlo coach Jorge Chen said. "It's just a question of when.''
At this point in the season, runners from Menlo-Atherton and Menlo School have the fastest or second-fastest time in every girls race from the 100 to the 1,600 and in both relays.
"It's really exciting to me,'' Chen said. "It's good to be a Palo Alto-area high school coach.''
Menlo's Alexandra Chan currently ranks third in the 100 hurdles in 15.42.
Gunn's Jared Freeman has the top marks in the CCS in both of the boys throws. He's gone 53-1 in the shot put and 164-0 in the discus. After finishing fourth in the discus at last year's CCS finals and just missing a trip to the state meet, Freeman looks well positioned to make it to state this year.
"I feel real confident with him in both throws,'' Gunn coach Michael Granville said. "I've already made reservations for rooms in Clovis.''
M-A football standout Noa Ngalu has the fourth-best CCS mark this season in the discus at 152-4.
Freeman is looking to move up on the all-time Gunn lists. The school records of 63-2 1/2 in the shot put, set by Scott Bunnell in 1986, and 195-4 in the discus by Tom Birtwhistle in 1969, are out of reach. But Freeman is fifth on the shot put list and eighth on a very strong discus list. A throw of 171 in the discus, definitely within his capabilities, will move him all the way up to second.
Other Gunn hopefuls currently ranked in the top three in their events include junior Justin Chiao, who is second in the CCS in the 800 with a mark of 1:56.66, and Ria Sood, who stands third in the girls 300 hurdles at 46.84.
Palo Alto's Henry Saul, a senior who has committed to Yale where he will join former Menlo standout Robert Miranda, had a big breakthrough last weekend at the Azusa Pacific Distance Meet of Champions. Saul ran a time of 9:14.42 for 3,200 meters, the best time among CCS runners by a whopping 13 seconds.
"I think I can run faster, but no complaints,'' Saul said. "I'm pretty happy about that time. Hopefully I can run low 9s at Arcadia in two weeks. ''
Saul began his high school career focusing on the mile.
"I think the two mile's my spot,'' he said. "It's a painful race and I'm good at that, pushing the hard-hitting pace in the middle laps and still being able to finish. My kick pushes me through at the end.''
Saul will run as part of Palo Alto's distance medley relay team at Stanford.
Paly's Miranda Jimenez is ranked fifth in the girls 3,200 with a season-best mark of 11:21.07. Defending champion Anna Mokkapati of The King's Academy moved up to second with the 10:55.33 she ran at the WBAL meet Tuesday. Castilleja's Tevah Gevelber is seventh (11;26.33) and Woodside's Sarah Perry 10th (11:29.31).
Priory's Aniyah Augmon, who placed second in the 100 behind Eagle and second in the 200 behind Hall at last year's CCS finals as a freshman at Silver Creek, currently ranks second behind Eagle in the 200 with a time of 25.55. Augmon also runs the anchor leg on Priory's 4x100 team, which has the third-fastest time in the CCS at 49.69.
Castilleja's Moorea Mitchell is another athlete within hailing distance of the leaders. She ranks fifth in the shot put (38-7) and seventh in the discus (117-5). The same can be said for Sacred Heart Prep's Keegan Shaw (tied for fourth in the girls long jump, 17-6 1/2) and Gunn's Kyla Tracy (tied for fourth in the girls high jump).
This story contains 969 words.
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