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SOL Continental Championships: CB West sweeps 4×8’s on Day One

Central Bucks West’s Sam Ronald competes in the pole vault at the SOL Continental Championships on Friday, May 11, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

WARRINGTON >> Vying for conference glory, the Central Bucks West boys 4×8 ran like the best team in the state.

The Bucks set their own pace Friday, leading from the start and pulling away to a Suburban One League Continental Conference title with a time that would currently rank 10th in the nation.

“We wanted to stack this one,” said Brian Baker, who ran the third leg for West, “because we’re trying to get our fast guys out there and get us prepared for districts and eventually states. So we just came out here, tried to give it our all, and that’s what we did.”

The CB West girls also raced to victory in the 4×8, making for a Bucks sweep of the event on Day One at sunny Central Bucks South. West also notched a pair of wins in the field on Friday, with Day Two scheduled for Saturday back at South.

Central Bucks West’s Jake Claricurzio competes in the 4×800 relay at the SOL Continental Championships on Friday, May 11, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

“It was a good win. It was hot out today — I was glad to get that one,” said Baker, who helped power the Bucks to a winning time of 7 minutes, 48.17 seconds, the top time in the state this spring.

Ben Bunch (1:59) led off, followed by Luke Fehrman (1:55). Then came Baker (1:56), and Jake Claricurzio (1:56) hammered it home. The Bucks were able to hold off a tremendous top three that all broke 8 minutes — Pennridge (7:53.58) was second and CB East (7:56.0) third.

“It was a good time. We’re always trying to run faster,” said Baker, one of three returners from last year’s state title squad, along with Fehrman and Claricurzio. “We ran 7:40 (at states last year for a national-best time) so we’re trying to chase after that again. We have the potential to do that and that’s what we’re working towards.”

West Is Best

The West girls 4×8 improved upon their season best, hammering out a 9:20.92.

“We’ve been working really hard this season, especially this past week — we had four meets, and so we’ve just been trying to pull it out every time,” said a smiling Piper Wilson. “But it feels really good.

“(Winning the conference gold) doesn’t happen every year so it’s really awesome.”

North Penn’s Jenna Webb competes in the 4×800 relay at the SOL Continental Championships on Friday, May 11, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

Wilson handed off to freshman Emmi Simon. Vanessa Barrow and Darby Roth took care of legs three and four.

“It’s been a challenge between us and a couple of the other schools but we really pulled it out today,” said Simon, who helped the Bucks overcome CB East (9:26.66) and North Penn (9:30.39). “We came for it.”

The Bucks’ time of 9:20.92 is currently fourth in the state.

Out Here In The Field

It was a record day in the long jump.

William Tennent’s Markeith Baxter set a meet record on the boys side, leaping to a mark of 23 feet, 1.5 inches. That surpassed the 22-5 by North Penn’s Sean Gentry in 2009.

Pennridge’s Ty’Shawn Hopkins competes in the long jump at the SOL Continental Championships on Friday, May 11, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

And for the girls, North Penn’s Natalie Kwortnik set a meet record with a 19-3, which topped the 18-5.5 by Pennridge’s Ariana Przybylowski in 2014.

CB West’s Samantha Ronald got over 10 feet to win the girls pole vault, and also for the Bucks, Kevin Guevara threw 47-11 to win the boys shot put.

Pennridge’s Vincent Polignano cleared 6-4 to win the boys high jump and Souderton Area’s Maria Deaviz threw furthest in the girls discus, with a mark of 112-10.

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