The Castle Park Trojans are the defending South Bay League boys dual meet track and field champions; the Sweetwater Red Devils are the defending SBL girls dual champions. Will both repeat in 2010 or will new challengers emerge?
"I think we will be back up there again even though we graduated a lot of talent last year," CP head coach Rudy Castillo said. "At the start of the year it's hard to tell what the other teams have."
The Trojans have several returning league champions on both the boys and girls sides. Lanita Sanders won the girls 100-meter low hurdles as a junior while Nick Martinez won the boys 3,200-meter run and finished second in the 1,600 run as a freshman. The Trojans' 4x100 girls relay team also returns.
Sanders will be competing for titles in both hurdles events this season.
Another top returner is Cesar Amparo, who finished runner-up in the boys discus throw as a junior last year, while Deshawn Walker is a transfer from Mar Vista. Walker finished second in the 100 dash and fourth in the 200 dash as a sophomore last season.
As for the Red Devils, Nancy Elizondo (girls 400 dash), Aylin Mejia (girls 800 and 1,600 run), Saira Carrillo (girls 3,200 run) and Tami Rojas (girls pole vault) all won league titles as underclassmen last year.
The South Bay's two invitationals return this year. The Sweetwater Relays is this Saturday, from 1 to 6:30 p.m. at Gail Devers Stadium in National City. The Mustang/Phair Co. Relays is scheduled April 24, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Otay Ranch High School.