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The Foothill Dragon Press

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The Foothill Dragon Press

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Track and field makes program history at CIF finals

Lauren Kaller
On the warm day of May 11, 2024, Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) competes in a long day of running and field events at California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Southern Section Finals. Foothill Tech boys make history, achieving the first CIF Finalist title with a combined point total of 33. Each of the seven boys that made it to CIF Finals earned points for the team and were able to place as one of the top six athletes on division four.

As the 2023-2024 sports year comes to an end, the Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) track and field team competed one last time at Moorpark High School in the California Scholastic Federation (CIF) Southern Section Finals on May 11. Foothill Tech had nine Dragons competing who all came away with medals in their individual events. As a team, the Foothill Tech boys earned the school’s first-ever CIF runner-up award.

Merric Bayless ’24 had a very successful morning at the long jump pit, jumping 20′ 1 1/2″. He placed third in division four, earning the team six points. He, along with Conor White ’25 and Cody Bondy ’24, made it to CIF Finals for two events. (Lauren Kaller)

Merric Bayless ’24 spoke on the boys team earning CIF runner-up, saying, “It felt like the best way to end my high school career … It’s awesome to have everyone’s individual efforts culminate in an awesome team achievement.”

The meet began with those competing in field events. Foothill Tech’s Elijah Spencer ‘26 competed in the shot-put, placing fifth with a distance of 13.77 meters. The next throwing event was discus where Cody Bondy ‘24 earned himself sixth with a throw of 39.52 meters.

Bondy spoke about his performances saying, “The meet was good for me … nice to end my last high school meet with 2 medals and trips to the podium.”

Bennett Rodman ‘25 was the only Foothill Tech girl to make it to CIF and performed outstandingly. Rodman competed in the girls high jump where she set a personal best of 5’ 2’’, six inches higher than her previous best. Rodman’s jump also earned her second place which was the highest place finish of any Foothill Tech athlete that day.

The last athlete competing in field events was Bayless who jumped 20-01.5, earning him third place and crucial points for the Foothill Tech boys team.

As the day wore on, it was time for Foothill Tech’s distance runners to take to the track. The first Dragon to do so was Conor White ‘25 who ran the 1600 in a time of 4:24.3, earning fifth place.

Conor White ’25 qualified for the 1600-meter race. As the starting gun sounds, he reacts quickly, getting himself a good position for the start of the race. He placed fifth in division four with a time of 4:24.30, earning four points for the Dragons. (Lauren Kaller)

The next event was the 800 where runners Braeden Elliott ‘24 and Viggo Bortolin ‘27 competed. Bortolin placed fifth with a time of 2:00.16 followed by Elliot in sixth, running 2:00.43. Lastly, Chance Leandro ’25 competed in the 3200 placing sixth with a time of 9:52.24.

Foothill Tech’s last event was the 4×400 relay; the team was made up of Bayless, White, Bondy and Ian Clayton ‘25. In the end, the team ran a season-best of 3:28.55 and placed third, pushing the Foothill Tech boys into second place overall.

Clayton shared his experience, “When I crossed the line and heard we got second I was super excited since it’s our first plaque in program history.”

Elliott shared his thoughts on his time as a Dragon saying, “I have met some of the most amazing people that are as close as family … It has been an honor to be a part of the Dragon Legacy and see the program continuing to grow and improve.”

The Dragons season came to a close, ending a chapter for many seniors departing from the team and opening a new one for all athletes returning as they look to the future.

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About the Contributors
Julia Geib
Julia Geib, Assignment Editor
Parmesan cheese lover.
Lauren Kaller
Lauren Kaller, Photographer
6'4" baller. 

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    merricMay 14, 2024 at 8:06 am