Break­ing through

Prep track & field: Cents’ Castillo fin­ishes first in Brooks PR In­vi­ta­tional

The Signal - - SPORTS - By Ha­ley Sawyer Sig­nal Sports Ed­i­tor See CASTILLO, B2

Mariah Castillo just wanted to feel a fin­ish-line tape across her waist.

She didn’t get to feel it at the Mt. SAC In­vi­ta­tional (they didn’t even have a tape). She didn’t get to feel it at the Ar­ca­dia In­vi­ta­tional, ei­ther.

But af­ter run­ning 1600 me­ters on a misty day in Shore­line, Wash­ing­ton on Fri­day, the Sau­gus run­ner got her wish.

“I saw them get­ting the tape out and I got re­ally ex­cited,” Castillo said. “That was one of my dreams. Just to cross the tape. I was get­ting re­ally ex­cited and once I crossed it I was like, ‘Oh my god.’”

Castillo has more than just tape to be happy about. Her time of four min­utes, 41.40 sec­onds not only got her first place at the Brooks PR In­vi­ta­tional, it also ranks her first in the coun­try cur­rently and eighth all-time in the 1600-me­ter race in state his­tory.

Ad­di­tion­ally, she now holds Sau­gus pro­gram records in the 800, 1200, 1600 and 3200 dis­tance events. She clocked 2:09.76 on Tues­day evening to break the 800 record.

Her Brooks PR fin­ish held spe­cial mean­ing, how­ever. Af­ter plac­ing sev­enth in the 1600 and 12th in the 3200,

Castillo’s spir­its were low.

“I was very con­fi­dent in my train­ing and ev­ery­thing that I put into this … and I think I put too much pres­sure on my­self through­out the whole sea­son and it built up in­side me and I felt like I blew up,” she said. “It was the worst feel­ing ever.”

A firstin place fin­ish a nais tional race just what she needed.

The trip to Seat­tle wasn’t with­fi­culever. out its dif­fi­culever. ties, how­ever. She flew out on Thursrived day and ar­rived in Wash­ing­ton at 3 p.m., which was also the sched­uled time of her “shake­out” run. Stress en­sued un­til she found a group of fel­low com­peti­tors to run with.

Shoreron­ment line’s en­vi­ron­ment was some­what of a com­fort, too. It was Castillo’s sec­ond time run­ning in the Pa­cific Northwest in the last six months af­ter tak­ing third at the Nike Cross Na­tion­als in De­cem­ber in Port­land, Ore­gon.

“Weather-wise it was per­fect,” she said. “It wasn’t hot, it wasn’t too cold. It did rain but it was a mist. I feel like run­ning in the heat is way worse so I think it’s just bet­ter in gen­eral.”

Castillo’s next race will be at the NCAA Di­vi­sion 1 level as she heads to Texas Chris­tian Univer­sity later this month to start her col­lege ca­reer.

“I’m re­ally ner­vous. It’s some­thing new,” she said. “New coach, new team, but I’m also ex­cited and it’s like another op­por­tu­nity to grow as a run­ner and work with peo­ple that I don’t know and have dif­fer­ent per­son­al­i­ties than the ones I’m used to. I’m just re­ally ex­cited to see what hap­pens at TCU.”

“That was one of my dreams. Just to cross the tape. I was get­ting re­ally ex­cited and once I crossed it, I was like, ‘Oh my god.’”

Mariah Castillo,

Sau­gus run­ner,

Cour­tesy photo

Sau­gus run­ner Mariah Castillo smiles af­ter win­ning the 1600-me­ter race at the Brooks PR In­vi­ta­tional in Shore­line, Wash­ing­ton last week.

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