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Servite’s Max Thomas wins two events at O.C. Championships, then sprints off to help soccer team

MISION VIEJO — Servite’s Max Thomas is one of the top sprinters in the state, and under normal conditions he would have competed in four events at the Orange County Championships on Saturday at Mission Viejo High School.

But the junior also plays soccer for the Friars, who had a CIF-SS Division 1 playoff game against Long Beach Poly on Saturday afternoon.

Thomas made the best of the situation, winning the 100 meters and anchoring the Friars’ 4×100 relay, which also finished first.

Thomas would have also competed in the 200 and 4×400 relay but he had to leave the meet early to join the soccer team for its 3 p.m. game at the Great Park in Irvine.

“I’m ready to win that too,” Thomas said. “We’re looking to have a deep, deep CIF run.”

Thomas started the day by winning the 100 in 10.81 seconds.

In the 4×100 relay, Servite was in third place when Thomas got the baton from Brad Riehl and sprinted past Tesoro and Aliso Niguel runners to cross the line first in 42.64.

“I like taking the baton when I’m behind so I run faster,” Thomas said.

If the Friars’ soccer team continues to advance through the playoffs, future conflicts between the sports are possible, Thomas said.

“Right now, we’re not worried about that,” Thomas said. “We’re just trying to do our best in both.”

For the second week in a row, the anticipated showdown between Thomas and Mater Dei’s Domani Jackson didn’t take place.

Jackson, who also plays football for the Monarchs, didn’t compete in last week’s Arcadia Invitational because of soreness in his leg and wasn’t on the starting line for the 100 on Saturday.

“Hopefully, we’ll get to race each other later, so that will be cool,” Thomas said.

Mater Die captured the team title with 61 points, but it wasn’t decided until the 4×400 relay, the final event of the meet.

The Monarchs’ foursome of Aiden Azar, Danny Wacker, C.J. Williams and Mason Bowels won the event in 3:25.79, edging Tesoro (3:26.16).

Aliso Niguel, which had been in first place heading into the 4×400, dropped into second with 57.75 points.Tesoro was third with 48.

In the 400, three one-hundredths of a second separated the top three finishers.

El Toro’s Camden Patterson was in a virtual tie for first with Trabuco Hills’ Carson Kaminiski in the final 10 meters before Patterson leaned forward at the finish line two-one-hundredths of a second ahead of Kaminiski.

Newport Harbor’s Carson Bauers finished third, one one-hundredth of a second behind Kaminiski.

“I was just trying to out-lean him (Kaminiski) at the end,” Patterson said. “It was a good race between us two.”

Kaminiski came back later in the meet to win the 300 hurdles in 38.69.

“The outcome in the 400 wasn’t what I wanted,” Kaminiski said. “But I just took that race and kind of used it for fuel and energy for the first race.”

A week after running into some trouble in the 800 at Arcadia — he made contact with another runner — it was a smoother trip for Jai Dawson of Dana Hills on Saturday, as he easily won the race in a personal-best time of 1:53.79.

Dawson led the entire way, finishing two seconds ahead of second-place finisher Jacob Robison of Foothill.

“The game plan was to hit a 55 or 54 (seconds) in the first lap and then maintain from there,” Dawson said.

Mater Dei sophomore Logan Lyght won the 110 hurdles in a county-best time (15.08) this season. He had the previous best of 15.17.

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