Category Archives: Sports

Cross Country Titans Take on Seattle

Iliad/ Luke Beckwith

The Iliad/ Luke Beckwith

Left: Seniors Jarett Chinn, Tyler Neal, Kyle Kesler, Michael Downs, Zach Kraft, and Cameron Hirsh

MASON KERN/Sports Editor

Poway High has a history of competing in big cross country events, including the Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto, California last year. This year the team was looking for a bigger challenge, even outside of California, which led them to take their talents to Seattle, Washington.

Lakewood High School hosted the 33rd annual Nike Hole in the Wall Cross Country Invitational on Oct. 8, which saw teams spanning from Hawaii to British Columbia and even up into Canada— including our own Titans.

At this largest cross country race in Washington State, including college and professional races, the Titans placed extremely well, securing first place for varsity boys, and a respectable 12th place for varsity girls.

“For me, it was one of my better races, but it was our teams’ depth that really helped us prevail and show the state of Washington what Poway Cross Country was really about,” senior Jarett Chinn said.

The boys’ team took first place overall in the 5,000 meter run with a total of 169 points, lower than any other team. The second place team was Glacier Peak with 192 points followed by Camas with 197 points.

Chinn was Poway’s top finisher, placing ninth in a time of 16-minutes, 1.6-seconds. Senior Michael Downs was next at 27th in 16:23.4 and senior Tyler Neal landed 33rd with a personal best of 16:31.3. Senior Gavin Blaine was the biggest surprise coming in at 48th in 16:40.4, which was also a personal best. The same for senior Cameron Hirsch at 67th in 16:57, senior Zach Kraft at 83rd in 17:07.8, and senior Kyle Kesler at 93rd in 17:14.5.

“I was the last choice to go on the trip, and I was expected to finish last on the Poway team for our heat,” Blaine said. “I told myself this was the last time I could run this race, and I ran really well. Nobody there knew of Poway, so I knew we needed to make sure they all remembered our name.”

The girls’ varsity team scored 362 points for their 12th place win. The top three teams included Jesuit with 52 points, Camas with 99 points and Edmonds-Woodway with 110 points.

Katie Downs secured the best time for Poway coming in 48th place with a time of 19-minutes, 30.6-seconds. She was followed by Alex Calegari at 50th in 19:32.4 and then Kinley Williams at 77th in 20:07.6. Sarah Chittle followed immediately after at 78th place in 20:10.7, and freshman Eva Rethmeier at 140th in 21:08.0

“I expected it to be a tough race because many of the top teams from Oregon and Washington were there, and they knew how to run in those conditions,” Kraft said.

The Titans likewise found success at the 69th Mt. Sac Cross Country Invitational on Oct. 22, finishing in 13th place. The top runner was again Chinn placing 23rd for the Titans, followed by Downs at 30th and senior Kit Carter at 51st.

They hope to run into CIF with a high seed, and to compete well at the North County Conference Finals on Nov. 12.


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Track CIF update

On May 30th at Mount Carmel High School the Titans who competed in CIFs astonished with record breaking results. Hayley Leonard raised the crowd with her lightning speed and broke the school record in the 400, and helped break another record in the 4×400 relay. She placed 4th in the 400 and her team placed 1st in the 4×400. The 4×400 relay team will now be moving on to state.

Along with Leonard, Titan stars Maddie Murray placed 4th in the 300 hurdles, and Kayla Meyers placed 1st in the pole vault and beat her personal record by 10 inches. All three will be moving on to state.

On the boys’ side, Jarrett Chin placed 1st in the 800 and will compete at state and the boys 4×4 relay placed 3rd in Division 1.

The State Meet will be held on June 5th and 6th at Buchanan High School in Fresno and the Titans are expected to conclude the season with an outstanding outcome while there.

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Lacrosse takes CIF

On May 27, the guys took on Coronado, who they had lost to by a score of 9-8 earlier in the season. Thanks to a game winning shot by Cole Landolt with 5 seconds remaining in the game, they moved on to the CIF championship, this time on the winning side of a 9-8 score.

The CIF championship was on May 30, between Poway and Torrey Pines. Zach Hodge had three out of the Titans’ eight goals and a solid Titan defense thwarted Torrey Pines’ comeback attempt in the final minutes, leading to a 9-8 win. This was the Titans first CIF championship since 2002.

Boys’ lacrosse has had a successful season to this point, as they did well enough in the regular season to make it to the CIF semifinals against Coronado High School on May 25.

They finished the regular season with a record of 15-6, which was good enough take league.

Some standout players included the four captains: Cole Landolt, Jake Fiske, Zach Hodge, and Nick Beeson. As three juniors and one sophomore respectively, the four will be returning next year, which is good news for the Titans.

“I am very impressed with the way the season has gone so far and have high hopes for the playoffs,” Fiske said.

One highlight of this season was when the Titans played La Costa Canyon High School. The Mavericks were CIF champions last season but the Titans were able to edge out a win by a score of 8-7.

Cole Landolt shot the winning goal with 56 seconds left in the game to take the win from last year’s champs.

The Titans ended the regular season as league champions and went undefeated in league. This is even more impressive if you consider the fact that the team has only one senior, and will be returning, basically intact, next season.

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Donald Sterling’s racism deals a blow to LA Clippers

BEN HOUT. Staff Writer.

In the midst of one of the best first round of NBA playoffs in years, it became public via phone recordings that the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, Donald Sterling, was racist. Though the team was ignorant of the ownership’s discriminatory tendencies, it was their image and the organization’s as a whole that suffered. Immediately in the first week, 10 big-name Clippers endorsers dropped their sponsorship of the team, including State Farm with their endearing Cliff Paul commercials.

Thankfully, Cliff Paul has made his way back into State Farm ads, and the Clippers have been sold. Former Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer purchased the team, and for a record two billion. Sterling’s wife, Shelly Sterling, was handed over the ability to sell the team by her husband, and has jacked prices to ridiculous heights. It seems the Sterling family wants to go out of the NBA in the same manner they carried themselves throughout their infamous career. It wasn’t until his racist remarks were unveiled in the recorded phone call, that the league realized Sterling had gone too far.

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Chargers: What could have been

HAMID KOLAHDOUZ. Sports Columnist.

When the Charger’s comeback bid against the Broncos in the divisional playoffs fell short, the most exciting season in recent Chargers’s history commenced. While the season saw the rise of Ryan Mathews out of a shroud of doubt and Philip Rivers erase his turnover tendencies, it is troubling to think of what could have been if first year General Manager Tom Telesco had resigned a few key veterans in the past offseason.

Imagine if this year’s defense still had veteran nose tackle Abrayu Franklin, who went on to start on the vaunted 49er’s defense after Telesco declined to resign him, or even still had cornerback Antoine Cason, who while not an outstanding player to say the least would be a considerable upgrade over Richard Marshall.

Losing Abrayu Franklin hurt the run defense badly as it quickly became apparent that Cam Thomas could not get the job done. The worst non-signing has to be that of pass rusher Sean Philips, the Chargers’ second all-time sack leader, because he went on to make an impact for the Superbowl-bound rival Denver Broncos. The defense could have kept at least part of the dominance it flashed in 2012 if the team had resigned its veterans. The Chargers’s offense was superb this year, but the team’s lack of defense dragged the team to seven losses and allowed the Broncos to overpower the Chargers in the playoffs. If Telesco had just signed the veterans he had available for very economical salaries, then the team could have gone the extra distance.

Telesco had an excellent draft and made great free agency signings in left tackle King Dunlap and running back Danny Woodhead, but in 20/20 hindsight we can see he made a few vital mistakes. Cornerback Derek Cox ended up being a gigantic whiff in free agency and was eventually benched and rookie Manti Teo looked enormously underwhelming during the season. Granted, Teo missed significant developmental time in the pre-season to injury. Overall Telesco improved the team considerably in the off season and turned the team into a real playoff contender; however, in his zeal, he brashly discarded key veterans who could have pushed the team to the next level. Hopefully, Telesco will learn from these early mistakes and successes and elevate the organization to the ultimate goal: the Superbowl.

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Kolahdouz on Sports

HAMID KOLAHDOUZ. Sports Columnist.

These days the Chargers have found themselves in an odd position. The team is in a rebuilding mode and has a severe dearth of talent on the defensive side of the ball, yet the team is still finished in the top eight of the league, after losing in the divisional round to Denver. The coaching scheme, the play of Philip Rivers and his playmakers, not turning the ball over and a decent amount of luck just sneaked the Bolts into the playoffs.

The expectation for the Chargers from the organization and fans will be to win a championship, or at least get in the playoffs in the coming season. However, sneaking into the playoffs this year won’t be as easy. Last year, the Chargers played one of the league’s easiest schedules; next year, they will play one of the hardest and face stiff competition playing against the NFC West and, of course, in division. The Chargers can still realistically reach the post season if they avoid playing down to competition like they did this year against teams like Miami and Tennessee, winning all of their winnable games.

Due to the large amount of salary taken up by dead money owed to bad players no longer on the team, like Gaither, Meacham, and Cox, the Chargers will likely need to find solid starters for the defense in the draft, not free agency. Thankfully, the 2014 draft is expected to be the deepest in years and starters are expected to be found up into the middle rounds. The Chargers will have to draft starting-caliber players at the corner, nose tackle, and sub-package pass rusher. Starting-caliber players at these positions are likely far out of the Chargers price range in free agency and not much more than stop-gap players could be found, regardless.

On the offensive side of the ball, expect General Manager Tom Telesco to draft offensive linemen and add speed to the receiver position. The Chargers should have no trouble finding a quality right guard and a sizeable, speedy receiver to complement Keenan Allen.

If the Chargers are able to improve their already powerful balanced offense and field a serviceable defense, they, prove to be a very dangerous team next season.

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