Any athlete wants their performance to peak at the right time.
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Cambron Lyles’ timing couldn’t be better — literally.
Lyles, a four-year performer for the El Dorado Track and Field team, has done just that — hit his stride in both the 100 and 300 hurdle events — as he awaits the start of tomorrow’s two-day Masters Meet at Elk Grove High.
With strong performances in league and Divisional titles the past two weeks, the Cougar senior and team track Most Valuable Player sits on the verge of a berth in the state finals early next month at Buchanan High in Clovis.
“I’ve been able to do some good things this year. I learned a lot about hurdles the past three seasons and took that into my senior year,” Lyles said.
Lyle’s multi-event victories at the Sierra Valley Conference meet in Folsom and then the Division IV/V meet in Turlock were the only dual wins (both events) turned in by an El Dorado County track and field athlete. Lyles is also the SVC pole vault champ and ran the second leg for the Cougars’ 4×400 relay team.
As he enters the final stages to his prep career, Lyles has gotten better. Currently ranked No. 2 in the section for the 110 hurdles, Lyles blazed to a personal best 14.47 seconds at the Divisional finals and now sits .21 seconds off the section leader.
“That was really exciting to set a PR in the 100 hurdles and moved up in section ranking,” Lyles said. “If I can run that same time I’ll automatically (at large) qualify for states.”
In Division IV/V, Lyles is ranked No. 1 in both hurdle events and fourth in pole vault.
“Cambron is an extremely gifted athlete who I believe can be a Division I Decathlete if he dedicates himself to the sport,” El Dorado coach Peanut Harms said. “Our hurdle coach (Christine Diehl) has done a great job managing his four years at El Dorado High School.”
Overall, his times steadily crept down as the season went. He went undefeated in Sierra Valley Conference competition, saving his best for the championships where he turned in what was then a career-best 14.48 seconds.
For the 300 hurdles, Lyles’ current ranking in the section is fifth after his 39.33 PR (personal record), also last week.
At last year’s Masters meet, Lyles placed 13th in the 100h and 11th in the 300h. A season removed, Lyles has a definite shot to get through to Clovis, especially in the 100h after a solid senior season that’s seen him register 11 straight wins in meets he’s entered according to athletic.net — including the Golden Spike Friendship meet to kick off the season, the Cougar Relays, the Bella Vista Bronco Invitational and the Sacramento Meet of Champions.
His one deviation from the top medal was a sixth place at the 10th Annual CSUS Track and Field Meet where he competed with some of the best hurdlers in the section.
In the 300h event, Lyles has four straight victories after taking second at the Sacramento MOC earlier this month. He’s the school record holder after setting it last season and then resetting it again at the SVC League Championships.
Based on his high section ranking, the 100h could be Lyles best chance to advance. His main competition will be section leader Austin Carter (14.26, Folsom), Kyle Clancy (14.74, Davis), Nicholas Valdes (14.75, Sierra), Deion Lightfoot (14.83, St. Marys) Kris Sutton (14.83, Center) and several others, all from large schools.
The first action for Lyles will be tomorrow’s trials which begin at 4:25. Lyles will also compete on the boys 4×400 relay team.
“I need good seed times to place myself in the middle lanes and then I’ll try my best to get to the state finals,” Lyles said of his hurdle events.
Other D-IV/V area athletes competing in Elk Grove are Union Mine pole vauler Leah Bertuccelli; D’back Sarah Vasquez (discus); El Dorado’s Trinnity Arriola (discus); the Cougar 4×100 boy’s relay team of Garrett Scalero, Aaron Line, Nick Bloss and Gabe Ferges; El Dorado long jumper Samantha Engel, high jumper Makayla Hoyt and 100m runner Gabe Ferges; El Dorado high jumper Makayla Hoyt and the Cougar boy’s 4×400 relay team of Scalero, Lyles, Gabe Hurwitt and Line.