Wilvers’ duels in the desert are jaw dropping | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Wilvers’ duels in the desert are jaw dropping

Chad Sellmer, Tribune staff writer

Chad SellmerSouth Tahoe High senior Hudson Wilvers leads the state's best 1,600 runners in the finals Friday in Henderson. Wilvers finished second to Stephen Pottey of Galena, directly behind Wilvers, and just ahead of Reno's Jonathon Cardenas, left

HENDERSON – South Tahoe High distance runner Hudson Wilvers tasted what it would be like to win the 1,600 meters against some of the best competition he could face as a prep athlete.

But just as suddenly as Wilvers jumped out ahead of the pack in the boys’ 4A event in the Nevada state meet Friday afternoon at Foothill High School, that lead disappeared.

Stephen Pottey of Galena ended up taking first with a time of 4 minutes, 20.53 seconds, leaving the Vikings senior with a respectable second place with a time of 4:21.62. Jonathon Cardenas of Reno was third at 4:25.41.

The two visibly exhausted runners battled it out in a tight pack for three laps. Wilvers held the lead for a short period, but Pottey passed him midway through the last lap and didn’t relinquish the lead. The two finished with only a second between them.

“He took second last week to Hudson (in Northern Nevada 4A zone championships),” said his dad, STHS track coach Dan Wilvers. “(Hudson) was runner-up last year and again this year, but this was a great field. If it hadn’t been so windy, I think he would have taken the school record down, but it was blowing too hard.”

However, Wilvers went on to place third in the 800 with a school-record time of 1:55.54, with Alan Thomas of Hug winning the event in state meet record of 1:51.46. Tony Williams of Desert Pines was second at 1:53.

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Wilvers, who has committed to attend Long Beach State University to run track, eclipsed the school record he set earlier this season in the 800.

“His times in the 800 and 1,600 would have won any state meets over the last 12 years,” coach Wilvers said. “His 800 was just a shock how fast he ran.”

South Tahoe also brought two relay teams to the meet.

The girls’ 4×400 relay team of Heather Neuman, Jackie Marshall, Ellen Gallanty and Karen Dalmacio missed qualifying for the final heat by a .09 of a second and the boys’ 4×100 team of Grant Swinney, Kevin Cappelino, Jason Todd and Mikey Van Gorden finished fifth in their heat and 10th overall in qualifications. The top eight teams advance to the finals.

“That’s OK. (The boys) are all coming back next year,” Wilvers said.