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50th Golden West Invitational slated for Saturday

By: Staff Report
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The 50th annual adidas Golden West Invitational Track and Field Meet will be held Saturday at Prairie City Stadium at Folsom High School. The meet draws the top high school athletes from across the country to one venue to compete against the best in what can be considered the national championship meet. Only those who meet the Golden West Invitational’s event standards can compete. Past participants in the meet have represented the United States in every Olympic Games since 1964 and have filled more than 150 positions on the American Olympic Track and Field teams. They’ve won more than 75 medals, 40 of which have been gold. Among the top Golden West alums include Evelyn Ashford, Bob Beamon, Marion Jones, Marty Liquori, Steve Prefontaine, Jim Ryun and Dwight Stones. Recent Olympic medalists include Stacey Dragila, Allyson Felix, Joanna Hayes, Monique Henderson and Jeremy Wariner. Athletes who went on to become NFL stars who participated in the Golden West include Terry Bradshaw, James Lofton, Bob Hayes, Art Monk and Michael Carter, among others. Among the feature athletes scheduled to compete on Saturday include Tavaris Tate, who returns to the meet with the top 400-meter time this year; Jordan Hasay, who will be competing in a record fifth Golden West race and Mason Finley, among many others. Tate, a recent graduate of Starkville High in Mississippi, has run the 400 in 45.71 seconds this year and will be looking to defend his title from a year ago. He also placed third in the Golden West 200-meter run a year ago in 21.27. In 2005 Hasay placed fifth in the mile run at the Golden West as an eighth grader, and has since won the mile in 2006 and 2007 and the 800 meters in last year’s race. Hasey, now a senior at Mission College Prep who’s headed to the University of Oregon in the fall, plans to run the mile again on Saturday. Finley, a 6-foot, 8-inch, 330-pound senior at Buena Vista High in Colorado, is headed to UCLA on a track and field scholarship. In April he set a national record by throwing the discus 236 feet, 6 inches. He recently won both the shot put (67’10 ¼) and discus (214) at the Colorado 3A State meet and will be looking to win the discus at the Golden West meet on Saturday, the same event which his father won in the 1977 Golden West Invitational. Opening ceremonies begin at 5 p.m. * The Golden West Invitational will be preceded by the Pacific Association Masters Track and Field Championships, which is for the top athletes 30 and older. The meet begins at 7 a.m. and admission is free. Several local athletes from area teams such as the Golden West Athletics Club, Nike Fleet Feet and the River City Rebels will be competing.