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Cif Southern Section Divisional Championships:

Throwing Heat

TRACK & FIELD: Whiteside takes Division II discus title in 96 degree heat. Harbor has three Masters qualifiers.

May 18, 2008

For a photo gallery of the meet, click here.

WALNUT — Cecil Whiteside, this year’s CIF Southern Section Division II discus champion, couldn’t stand the heat, so he got out of the stadium.

Confident that his discus throw of 168 feet, seven inches would be good enough to allow him to advance to next week’s CIF Southern Section Masters meet at Cerritos College, the Newport Harbor High sophomore elected to drive home before the Division I results from Mt. San Antonio College were finalized.

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The top 12 throwers across all divisions advance to Masters.

“I’m pretty sure I’m already in,” said Whiteside, who had no desire to bake in the 97-degree weather in Walnut. “Something weird would have to happen if I don’t make it.

“It was extremely hot and extremely bad conditions for throwing. But it’s one of those things everyone has to do deal with.”

Besides, after missing the finals last year when he faulted on his last throw in CIF preliminaries, Friday’s triumph was more than enough for Whiteside. Whiteside, the only local CIF champion, was seventh in the Division II shot put with a throw of 51 feet.

Whiteside, who qualified fourth in the discus, was one of three Masters qualifiers for the Sailors.

Rex Nelson was the only participant Saturday to qualify in two events, the 1,600 meters and the 3,200, and senior Sophia Ditty qualified 12th in the 3,200.

Nelson qualified 11th in the 1,600 and fourth in the 3,200. Now, he and Coach Nowell Kay must make a decision about which event he’ll run at Masters Friday.

“That was really awesome to be able to qualify in both of those distance races,” Kay said. “The mile was at the peak of the heat.”

The big shock of the day was that no one from Corona del Mar, winners of the last three girls’ CIF Division III titles, advanced to Masters.

“We got nobody,” said Sea Kings coach Bill Sumner.

Sumner couldn’t remember the last time the Sea Kings didn’t have anyone on the boys or girls’ side advance, but estimated it had to be at least 10 years.

“You can’t have a world record every time you go out,” Sumner said. “It just doesn’t happen. That’s the hard part. Everybody expects that they’re going to win. But we can’t take that for granted. Nothing happened! You’re not supposed to win every year. We’ve got more than our share of championships.”

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