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CdM quartet wants more

High School Track & Field

Boys' 4x400-meter relay team broke school record last month, now wants to lower it in CIF competition.

May 10, 2012|By Steve Virgen
  • From left, the Corona del Mar High boys' 4x400-meter relay team of John Swigert, Troy Hardy, Kyle Iverson and Ryan Rodrigues broke a school record that had stood for 29 years.
From left, the Corona del Mar High boys' 4x400-meter… (SCOTT SMELTZER,…)

Troy Hardy, Ryan Rodrigues, John Swigert and Kyle Iverson laughed at the notion of being compared to a boy band, just before practice Wednesday at Corona del Mar High.

The boys' 4x400-meter relay quartet may run in One Direction and must be 'NSync (pardon the spellings), but they're not ones to be trendy or plastic as a group.

The Pacific Coast League champions just run fast, the fastest ever in school history and they are wanting to take it up a notch for the CIF Southern Section Division 3 preliminaries Saturday at Jim Scott Stadium.

Now, mostly every boy band has a formula. The CdM quartet has a different recipe for success.

It has led to the PCL title in their event, as well as helping the CdM boys' track and field team to its first league title since 2003. And of course, their formula has led to a new school record.

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When they won at the Orange County Championships April 21, they finished in 3 minutes, 20.2 seconds, breaking a school record that had stood for 29 years. They lowered two seconds off the previous record set by Jon Forte, Lance Martin, Dave Patterson and Vince McGuinness.

These four were quicker. They are No. 9 in the state and No. 7 in the Southern Section. That school-record time is also No. 2 in CIF Southern Section Division 3, according to dyestat.rise.espn.

Coach Bill Sumner said the relay team has become special because the four boys are motivated to break the school record and to finish the meet on a high note. As the last event in the meet, they know all eyes are on them.

They must trust each other and they must complete successful hand-offs of the baton.

"Continuity is important," Sumner said of what it takes to make a great relay team. "When they are smooth and together, and they are spirited about the event, that can make a good team. It takes the talent and you have to be motivated too. They all have to be on the same page."

The relay starts with Hardy, who could be known as the New Kid on the Block. This is his first season competing in track and field. He had been competing in cross country and in the spring he would transition to volleyball.

But he gave up volleyball, even after competing club, to go all in for track.

"I played volleyball the past two years," said Hardy, a junior. "I would've been on varsity, but I'm too competitive, because I'm not good enough to start. I'm too competitive to sit on the bench and watch."

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