Chandler HS tops Sun Angel field without Jasmine Todd

Lauren Hicks from Gilbert High School won the triple jump at the Sun Angel Classic.  And all Jasmine Todd could do was stand by and let it happen.

Todd, the record-setting senior from Chandler High School, has owned the triple jump for the past four years.  She holds three state championships in that event… as well as two state titles in the long jump and a couple in the 100-meter dash.  Oh, and she also runs a leg of the 4×100 relay.

Just a couple of weeks ago at the Chandler Rotary Invitational she set a meet record in the girls’ long jump with a leap of 20’01.5 – which also qualified as the top jump in the nation.  She also won the triple jump and combined with teammate Ky Westbrook to give the Wolves a 1-2 finish in the 100 meters.

She was preparing for the final stages of an incredible prep career when time caught up to her and her body gave out.  Todd tore the anterior cruciate in her knee while practicing for the Sun Angel Classic.

Now, instead of looking ahead to more state titles, she faces surgery and many months of rehabilitation work.  She may even be looking at a redshirt season when she begins her scholarship at Oregon in the fall.

There is little doubt she would have walked away with a couple more state titles, at least in the long jump and triple jump, and maybe another record.  She holds the state record in the triple at 41’05” and her mark of 20’1.5″ in the long jump is the best in the country.

Chandler has always been able to count on points from Todd, but the truth is, they don’t need them this year – any more than they have in the last few years.

The Wolves, who have won the national championship the last two years, are so deep again this year that they literally ran past a field of more than 30 Arizona schools that participated at the 33rd annual  Sun Angel Classic at Arizona State over the weekend.

Their boys’ team dominated the field, scoring 134 points to finish way ahead of second-place Mountain Pointe High School that managed 55 points.  Sandra Day O’Connor High and Valley Vista High tied for third with 40 points each.

On the girls’ side, it was a similar scenario, as the Wolves racked up 141.5 points – even without Todd’s usual contributions.  That put them well in front of Highland High (87.33) and third-place Desert Vista High School (40.33).

Westbrook took care of business, as usual, in the 100-meter dash, setting a meet record in the process with a winning time of 11.68.  She just didn’t have her teammate crossing the line just off her shoulder to give Chandler that 1-2 punch.

The sophomore is 2-for-2 at the Sun Angel; she won it last year on a cold, windy afternoon in a time of 11.80.

In the long jump, Makaila Flannigan stepped into the void to win for Chandler with a jump of 18’10.75″ – and then the rest of the squad jumped in for good measure as the Wolves took three of the top four spots.  Mountain Pointe’s Shaman Bailey took second at 18’7.25″, followed by Chandler’s Salimah Muhammad (17’1.5″) and Kennedy Broom (16’10.5″).

The Wolves apparently didn’t need Todd for the 4×100 relay, either.  Westbrook and Flannigan joined with Tope Williams and Dominique Jackson to claim that title with a time of 47.14.

While the Chandler High girls’ team didn’t need Todd’s abilities to win another meet, they undoubtedly will miss her presence as they go for another state championship in a few weeks.

And for the kid who started running track as a gangly eighth-grader on a youth club team, this will be one of the most difficult state meets of her career.

Not because of the competition, but because she won’t be on the track for this last one.