The Union Democrat Sports Department

Sonora's Steven Grolle took Valley Oak League titles in three events on Saturday in Tracy. Grolle won the 3200, 1600 and 800.

Also for Sonora, Samantha Smith earned the VOL titles in the 3200 and 1600.

Wildcats Jeff Storey took first in the long jump, Abby Runte also took a first-place medal in the long jump, Sean Adams took third in the 110 hurdles and Clancy McConnell took third in the 3200.

For Smith, a junior, this was the third consecutive year she took the VOL crown in both the 3200 and 1600.

"I wasn't focusing on the past," said Smith. "I was really worried

about the second-place girl in each of those events (Frankie Loayza)

because she had beaten me in cross country in the fall."

The top three qualifiers in the VOL move on to Divisionals.

"I knew the Top 3 advance to Divisionals, but I definitely wanted to beat her," said Smith.

The 1600, said Smith, "was close. It was very windy so my strategy

was to stay behind her (Loayza) most of the time and then pass her at

the end."

And that's what happened.

"But in the 3200," said Smith, "Frankie didn't want to take the

lead. It was a close pack of four or five of us until the last two laps

then three of us pulled away."

Smith took the lead for good in the last 300 meters.

"Because this meet was so windy," said Smith, "I wasn't really

focusing on times, just winning. But from here on in, I hope to improve

on my own PRs."

Frosh-soph-For Sonora, Colton McCurley finished second in

the discus. Andrew Nessi took third in the shot put, Ryan Puou third in

100, and Hannah Smith third in pole vault.