Crescenta Valley High's Megan Melnyk runs beyond expectations

Track and Field: Sophomore will attempt to match her divisional championship fourth-place effort in hopes of advancing to state.

May 22, 2013|By Andrew J. Campa,
  • Crescenta Valley High sophomore Megan Melnyk has defied expectations in advancing to Friday evening's CIF Southern Section Track and Field Masters Meet in the 800-meter run. (Cheryl A. Guerrero/Staff photographer)
Crescenta Valley High sophomore Megan Melnyk has defied…

Somewhere between uncertainty and faith is where Crescenta Valley High sophomore Megan Melnyk finds herself.

The La Crescenta resident is one of three local athletes who qualified to Friday night’s prestigious CIF Southern Section Track and Field Masters Meet at Cerritos College in Norwalk.

Melnyk is slated to participate in the girls’ 800-meter run at 7:22 p.m., either hoping to garner a top-six finish or hit the at-large qualifying mark of 2 minutes, 12.10 seconds to advance to the following week’s season-ending CIF State Track and Field Championships at Clovis Buchanan High on May 31 and June 1.

Ask Melnyk how she punched her ticket to the Masters Meet and her answer is part fact, part fable.

“I ran the best race I could have ever imagined,” Melnyk said. “I don’t really know how I did it. I still can’t believe it, but I thank God I was able to do it. I prayed before the race and my prayer came true.”


By her previous standards, Melnyk was amazing at Saturday’s CIF Southern Section Division I Championships at Mt. San Antonio College.

Melnyk entered the 800 with a personal-best time of 2:16 and a seeded mark of 2:16.63, which was good for fifth at the Division I prelims May 11 at Trabuco Hills High.

“When I looked at her marks before the preliminaries, I thought she was in the middle of the pack and had a chance to advance,” Falcons Coach Mark Evans said. “Her goal was to get to the divisional championships, which she did.

“Once she got there, I thought it was going to take a little bit more. She was kind of in the middle and was going to have to do better. I just told her to try as best as she could to stay with the pack.”

Melnyk’s mark of 2:16.63 was the 17th-best of any divisional competitor who advanced to the finals and well outside the top-12 position needed to move onto Masters.

Heading into the event, both Melnyk and Evans speculated that the 15-year-old sophomore would need to be near the No. 12-seeded time of 2:15.93, held by Mater Dei's Ashlyn Rambo.

“I thought that I would have to get 2:15, but I was really hoping for 2:14. I didn’t know what I would need,” Melnyk said. “I wanted to advance, sure, but more important was to get a PR, just in case it was my last race.”

Melnyk’s prospects looked grim midway through the race as she was in seventh after the first lap and appeared to be affected by the sun and light tail wind.

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