The third time was truly the charm for Bakersfield Christian’s Ryan Bashirtash.
The Eagles senior, who lost in the singles semifinals of the Central Section boys tennis championships the past two seasons, finally broke through Saturday.
The second-seeded Bashirtash, who cruised into the semifinals with a pair of victories on Friday, won again Saturday morning to set up a showdown with defending champion and top-seeded Ryan King of Clovis East.
It certainly wasn’t easy, but Bashirtash survived three tough sets, eventually outlasting King to score a 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 victory to capture the section singles title at the Reedley-Immanuel Sports Complex.
Bashirtash’s victory caps an impressive season that includes a Division II team title, the school’s second straight section title. BCHS won the D-III championship last year.
Another pair from that squad, fourth-seeded Zeb Duket and Austin Cusator, finished third at the event, surviving a marathon match to upset No. 3 Christian Castillo and Jandel Maranan, 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2 in the third-place match. The tandem placed fourth last year.
Track and field
Liberty seniors Ethan Mahanke and Christian Edwards each won individual events and were part of the winning 1600 relay team and teammate Bella Turner swept the hurdles events to help the Patriots boys and girls teams each finish fifth at the Central Section Division I Championships at Clovis East.
Mahanke won the 400 with a 48.42 and was third in the 200 with a 21.59. He teamed with Brock Wattenbarger, Ermiah Harrison and Edwards to win the 400 relay, with Edwards and Mahanke also part of the runner-up 1600 relay squad, which included David Avena and Harrison.
Edwards won the long jump with a PR of 24-0, with Turner posting personal records in the girls 110 hurdles (14.62) and 300 hurdles (44.02).
Liberty senior Emma Fredrick also had a big day, placing as runner-up in the girls high jump (5-3), triple jump (36-10.5) and long jump with a PR of 18-1.
Bakersfield High was runner-up in the boys 3200 relay with Daniel Hall, Kamren Owens, Landon Noel and Liam McKnight in 7:56.95. The Drillers’ Abigail Varner was second in the 800 with a 2:18.66.
Frontier’s Kenahdi Haslip was second in the girls 400 with a PR of 56.81, and also helped the 400 relay and 1600 relay teams to a runner-up finish.The 400 relay team featured Natalia Carrillo, Haslip, Avianna Carrillo and Adeline Rangel, while Haslip, Rangel Kaitleigh Downing and Giuliana Contreras ran the 1660 relay.
Their teammate, junior Brycen Tablit was third in the 100 with a 10.74.
South High senior Shane Carr led the way, winning the triple jump with a PR of 47-6.25. He was second in the long jump (PR of 22-8) and third in the high jump (5-11). The Spartans finished fifth in the boys team standings.
Highland’s Mia Torrecillas won the girls 1600 in 5:03.22, with Independence freshman Natalie Flores taking third with a PR of 5:17.80. Torrecillas also won the 3200 in 10:55.21, just ahead of teammate, Scots senior Lianna Guerra’s 11:19.81.
Tiana Grady of Independence swept the girls 100 hurdles (PR of 14.83) and 300 hurdles (46.0), was second in the 100 with a PR of 12.37 and third in the 200 with a PR of 25.86 to help her team finish second in the team standings.
The Falcons’ 3200 relay took first with Elena Baltazar, Cynthia Fletes, Flores and Trinity McLean in 9:53.83. Stockdale was third with Hannah Pacheco, Mia Leisenfelder, Brooklyn Madrigal and Roseli Diaz in 10:08.50.
Ridgeview senior Myli Level won both the shot put (33-7.25) and discus (121-8). Shafter freshman Joslyn Pierucci was second in the discus with a PR of 118-5 and third in the shot put (31-11.5). Stockdale freshman Emilee Anderson was second in the shot put with a PR of 32-3.
Wolf Pack senior Mekyi Patterson was second in the boys 110 hurdles with a PR of 14.97, finishing just ahead of Stockdale’s Vincent Carnegie, who PR’d with a 15.11. Carnegie was second in the 300 hurdles with a 39.9.
Ridgeview’s boys 400 relay team of Angel Corona, Jesse Gonzales, Zamir Hall and Ezekiel Thomas was second in 43.07, just ahead of Independence’s Angel Arceo, Marshall Almonte, Diego Hernandez and Amarius Rowell, who finished in 43.28.
Centennial’s Anna Josephson was second in the girls 400 with a PR of 58.25, with Stockdale junior Anthony Acosta was third in the 100 with a 11.1, and his Mustangs teammate Nyli Greer placing third in the girls triple jump with a 34-1.75.
Arvin’s boys 3200 relay team was third with Edgar Gil, David Martinez, Bryan Cisneros and Noel Huato with a 8:27.72.
North High’s Verquel Turner swept the boys 100 hurdles (15.52) and 300 hurdles (41.62), and also teamed Josiah Chavira, Brian Contreras and Josue Ruiz to win the 1600 relay in 3:30.83 as the Stars finished fifth in the team standings.
Kennedy with Franklin Medina, Eddie Bianco, Estevan Orozco and Sebastian Castaneda was second in 3:31.73, followed by Delano and Aaron Segura, Ricardo Guerrero, Marcus Segura and Cesar Reyes in 3:33.23. Reyes was also second in the 800 with a 2:00.70.
The Tigers’ Kaeleigh Cezar won the girls 100 hurdles (16.68) and 300 hurdles (46.64) in personal-best times. North’s Kylie Thomas third in the 100 hurdles (17.45) and fifth in the 300 hurdles with a PR of 51.02. Delano was fifth in the girls team standings.
Kennedy’s Adrian Ochoa was second in the shot put with a 44-8, and teammate Erik Torres was runner-up in the pole vault with a PR of 11-0.
McFarland’s Annika Fernandez was second in the shot put (34-11) and Taft’s Paige Merickel took runner-up in the discus with a 109-7.5. Her Wildcats teammate, senior Jaylynn Dowden, was second in the high jump at 5-0.
Tehachapi’s Jacob Betancourt was third in the 100 (11.44) and 200 with a PR of 23.04.
Foothill was third in the 3200 relay with JuanAndre Ramirez, Ozni Boyar, Francisco Nevarez and Julian Lopez in 8:33.76.
The Bakersfield Christian boys squad had three individual champions and finished second in the team standings.
The Eagles’ Andrew Mueller won the high jump with a personal-best 6-6, topping the mark by second-place Austin Reed of Visalia-Central Valley Christian by seven inches. Mueller’s teammate, senior Luke Ostly, won the boys pole vault in 12-8, with teammates Emily Musolf and Lola Phillips going 1-2 in the girls pole vault with a 9-2.
BCHS’s Ava King was second in the high jump at 4-9, and the Eagles’ 400 relay team of Jacob Perez, Tyler Stewart, Dylan Johnson and Kolton Thorsen was third in 43.85. Eagles junior Nathan Bloemhof was third in the 110 hurdles with a PR of 17.32 and sixth in the 300 hurdles (PR of 44-0).
Kern Valley’s Jayda Bushling won the girls 100 in a PR of 12.68 and was second in the triple jump with a PR of 32-8 to help her team finish third in team standings.
Her teammate, senior Daimon Dedmon, won the boys 100 (10.69) and long jump with a 22-2, with Broncs sophomore Aspen Hacker third in the girls 1600 with a PR of 5:17.11
Desert was second in the girls 1600 relay with Akeira Carter, Lailah Coulter, Camryn Freeman and Maleah Mata in 4:27.99, with Scorpions senior Derek Pangilinan finishing third in the boys 300 hurdles with a PR of 42.7.
Liberty won the B-Final of the girls 200 medley and 200 freestyle relays to finish ninth in both at the CIF State Swimming and Diving Championships at Clovis West on Saturday.
The quartet of freshmen Sophia Munoz-Rodriguez and Gracie Dean, sophomore Samara Moseley and junior Rylie Moxham posted a 1:45.13 in the 200 medley and a 1:35.45 in the 200 free.