Scotts Valley senior Jeremy Kain had a horrible start by his standards at the Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League Track and Field Championships on May 7.
The defending league champion said he couldn’t help but feel disappointed after he collided with a runner he was attempting to lap in the final stretch of the 1,600-meter, throwing him off his rhythm.
Kain placed second in 4 minutes, 20.46 seconds.
“At the end of the day it happened and I can’t change it,” he said, still sweating from the mile long run that ended in a sprint off against Aptos High junior Trent Nosky.
Kain was passed up at the last possible moment by Nosky, who bolted his way one hundredth of a second faster across the finish line in 4:20.45.
The Falcons placed second as a team with a score of 117. The Mariners (177) won the team title, followed by Santa Cruz High (93) in third, Soquel (42), SLV (36), Mount Madonna (7) and Harbor (6).
The top-two finishers from each event earned a spot to compete in the Central Coast Section semifinals at Gilroy High on Saturday starting at 10am.
“I am happy I achieved my first goal of qualifying for CCS because that just means there are more races down the line,” Kain said. “As of right now, I’d say I’m a little disappointed to be honest.”
Despite the setback in the 1,600, Kain stayed focused and went on to win the 800 (1:58.33). He also contributed to the Falcons’ first place finish in the 4×400 relay (3:31.47).
Kain, who is committed to compete next year at Duke University, said racing in three different events takes a certain amount of mental strength.
“It’s very easy to not stay focused throughout the whole race,” he said. “Whatever happens in a race, it can affect you but don’t let it affect how you want to perform.”
Scotts Valley junior Aiden Boothby won the 3,200 in 10:11.02 and fellow senior teammate Ryder Brabo (10:19.12) took second.
Scotts Valley senior Ben Westlund won the 100 in 11.38 but he was initially unsatisfied after seeing his result.
He had a shift in mindset upon reflection, appreciating a first place league finish for what it was.
“I was hoping for a [personal record], but with the wind…,” Westlund said as he shook his head. “You know 11.38, I’ll take it, it’s a good time nonetheless.”
Westlund plans to get in more strength training as he prepares for this week’s CCS semifinals.
“I like the  because I don’t have to think,” he said. “It’s just all the mental stuff in the beginning, hyping yourself up and then just pushing to give your best during the run.”
Scotts Valley senior Kiran Heine won the 300 hurdles in 41.41.
SLV sophomore Joshua Gabrielson placed second in the 110 hurdles in 17.18, just behind Aptos junior Aiden Buckler (16.62).
Scotts Valley’s (Sam Freeman, Sasha Miller, Austin George and Jeremy Kain) 4×400 relay team won its race in 3:31.47.
Scotts Valley senior Isaiah Velez qualified for a berth in the CCS semifinals, taking second in the 200 (23.13) behind Santa Cruz senior Caleb Womack (22.49).
Velez said that the goal of the day was to get into CCS. But after failing to do so with a fifth place finish in the 100 (11.66), the pressure for the 200 had really built up.
“It’s like a weight off my shoulders,” he said. “Now going [to CCS] for the 200, it feels so much better.”
Scotts Valley Senior Sam Freeman (49.79) qualified for CCS in the 400 meter dash, placing second behind Womack (49.68).
“Let’s give them a show, let them know what our league has in store for the .” Freeman said. “We’re going to come into CCS, and hopefully represent Santa Cruz [County] as best we can.”