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"Girl tracksters second at Westling Invite, boys fourth"

"Braden Giswold hands off to Brett Perkins in the 4x400. Perkins held the team's lead through the final lap and won the race at the line.Matt Johnson / staff photoPowered by victories in two sprint relays and three event wins by senior jumper Andrea McGillen, the South Whidbey girls track team placed second at Saturday's Westling Invitational track meet.Matched against some of the best 2A, 3A, and 4A teams in Western Washington, the lady Falcons turned in scoring results in every event on their way to picking up six wins. McGillen had three of those wins, leaping to the top of the heap in the pole vault, triple jump, and long jump. In the pole vault, McGillen smashed her own meet record, soaring two feet higher than her previous mark to take the event with a 9-6 effort.She was also one-quarter of a victorious effort in the 4x100. McGillen and teammates Dail Bates, Melissa Poolman, and Lindsey Binford scorched the competition with a 51.56 effort - one of the team's best this year. Bates had individual success of her own. The senior won the 100-meter dash and placed second in the 200 to cap the finest day of running in her four-year high school career. In the distance events, junior Karen Schwager and senior Sara DeGraaf carried the day for the Falcons. Schwager took third in a hotly contested 1,600 won by Marysville-Pilchuck's Camille Connelly, and placed fifth in the 800. DeGraaf placed fourth in the 3,200 in 12:13, 11 seconds ahead of her fifth-place teammate Julie Gabelein. Boys rule the relaysThe Falcon boys held up their end of the deal Saturday, placing fourth as a team. In relay races, they were almost unbeatable. In the first event of the day, the 4x800, seniors Brett Perkins and Braden Giswold teamed with sophomore Brandon Bilyeu and junior Joe Candelario to cruise away from the competition on their way to a 15-plus second win. Moving to a shorter distance, Candelario ran with Nick Plastino, Andy Wills, and Tim Gathings on the second-place 4x100 team, which finished two seconds behind a blazing fast Clover Park squad. To complete his relay Ironman, Candelario ran in the meet's final event, the 4x100, with Giswold, Perkins, and Wills. Perkins won a straightaway duel with an Oak Harbor runner in the race's anchor leg to give the Falcons their second relay win of the day.Giswold was the only Falcon to win an individual event. He took the 3,200 by running in first place from beginning to end. Other distance runners scoring successes included Bruce Hymas, who was fourth in the 3,200, and Brett Perkins, who took second in the 800.In the sprints, Wills took third in the 200 and fourth in the 100, while Candelario was third in the 400 with a personal best of 51.36. In the field, Tim Gathings was the most consistent Falcon, taking seventh in both the long and triple jumps. Bruce Hymas placed seventh in the pole vault.The Falcons compete again next Saturday. The girls team will travel to the Lake Washington Invitational, while the boys will travel to the Shoreline Invitational. "

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