Speedburners represented well at the Nike Speed Showdown on Friday, July 16, 2004 at the University of Southern California. There were 30 speed coaches representing cities from Bakersfield to San Diego and 3000 speed participants. Thirty boy qualifiers were invited to the Showdown sponsored by Nike and Student Sports Magazine. Speedburners had three boy, and two girl speed athletes qualify, tying the former Olympian Quincy Watts led group for most qualifiers.
David Fullerton of Brea Olinda High finished second in his heat, and Shane Henry of Esperanza High won his heat and advanced to the semi-final where he finished in a very close second. Shane ran a personal best time of 4.45 seconds. Wesley Williams of Esperanza High won his heat, advanced to the semi-finals, where he won that heat, allowing him to advance to the final. In a very close race, Wes finished third behind Lionel Larry of Dominguez High, going to USC on a full track scholarship, and Desean Jackson of Long Beach Poly High, one of the most sought after football recruits in the nation. The times were 4.28, 4.29 and Wes at 4.31...a personal best! Absolutely incredible performances, which even had the seasoned Nike and Student Sports people looking at their watches and shaking their heads in disbelief.
On the girls side, Amanda Kronquist of Brea Olinda High finished second in her heat and fellow Wildcat Laura Fullerton finished third in her heat. The girl's race was put together as a late idea by Nike and only had three heats. Elizabeth Olear of Louisville High won the title, no surprise there as she is the reigning 100 meter champion in her CIF division.
All in all, the Nike Speed Showdown was an incredible event and a great experience for all of us. Speedburners was represented well by all of the participants. Coach Hagedorn received many compliments for not only the way our athletes performed, but also for our outstanding cheering section, many wearing their Speedburner attire. We look forward to competing there again next year with an even bigger Speedburner contingent. Great job 'burners and remember to always TRAIN FAST!!