Crespi Carmellite Track


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Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sat Aug 09, 2003 1:34 pm

In another thread talking about high school tracksters No One wrote:
"School my older bros went to had Steve Caminiti and the next year they had a 9.5 guy, who ran 9.6 in league champ and got 2nd. They (Crespi) had a pretty good 'run' there for 10 yrs or so, in numerous events. Caminiti ran a 13.7 and 18.1 and was smoked (by a .10th in HH snd some more in LH) by Earl McCollough in CIF finals - a much anticipated showdown. Both were natl record holders with identical HH and LH times, with McCollough recording those times in bigger meets. McCollough was one of my favorite (and a marque -sp) runners - silky smooth and big white socks - pretty impressive on a warm night in late May early June. Lots of natl caliber guys in those days - fun stuff".

Reply: Caminiti's coach at Crespi, Bill Leeds, was also my coach in the late 50's at Notre Dame H.S., Sherman Oaks. He helped make Steve and others good tracksters and was good to me. Prior to that Bill coached at Loyola, LA. and prior to that at St.Ignatius in Chicago. Everywhere Bill went school records were shattered in the first year or two. In addition to Caminitti, if my memory serves me right, he also had the vaulting Curran brothers, a national record setting 4X1 Mile relay team, national ranked shot man Randy Cross of SF 49er fame, amount many others. Bill was a great coach. The only minor criticism I ever heard about him was that some of his guys peaked too early and he sometimes had a "fast" stopwatch. Possibly why Caminiti peaked early and didn't match his earlier times in the SS and State Meets. Incidentally I heard from a cousin of Caminiti's they had another cousin from San Bruno who was a pretty good sprinter named Chuck Bomarito. I think Bomarito won a state championship in the 70's in the 220yd.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sat Aug 09, 2003 9:58 pm

<a national record setting 4X1 Mile relay team>

Sorry, but they never held the national record in the mile relay unless it was sometime earlier than the mid-1950's. Memories can get scrambled over time.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sun Aug 10, 2003 9:17 pm

Sorry, A. Ferrara, but Crespi set a NR of 17:41.2 (Bowler 4:28.4, Romaine 4:30.9, Kearns 4:20.9, Saykally 4:21.0) in the 4x1 Mile Relay (the event jwetter noted) in a special race at the NCAA College Division championships at Long Beach, CA on 12 June 1965. The record was pulverized the next year by Marty Liquori's Essex Catholic team, but on this point (as well as on The Pearl's white socks), jwetter's memory is at least as unscrambled as mine.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 11, 2003 6:57 am

Ah, little things like a 4x1 before mile relay can change so much. In a way I got it half right; they never had the mile relay record :-)
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 11, 2003 10:11 am

TomCasacky wrote:
Sorry, A. Ferrara, but Crespi set a NR of 17:41.2 (Bowler 4:28.4, Romaine 4:30.9, Kearns 4:20.9, Saykally 4:21.0) in the 4x1 Mile Relay (the event jwetter noted) in a special race at the NCAA College Division championships at Long Beach, CA on 12 June 1965. The record was pulverized the next year by Marty Liquori's Essex Catholic team, but on this point (as well as on The Pearl's white socks), jwetter's memory is at least as unscrambled as mine.

Tom: Thanks for backing me up. I was beginning to doubt myself. Particularly since I went through every issue of T&F News from '66 trhough '79 and couldn't find it. Looks like I gave up one year too early. Allthough something I observed was the annual prep lists did not always list all the relays, particularly those above the 4X440yd. I seem to remember that Crespi had some of their distance men place in the 880yd and Mile races in one of the Cal HS State meets around the same time. Was 1965 the year and were any of these guys the ones?
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Tue Aug 12, 2003 11:21 am

... Crespi and Cal HS ... I know Crespi's Mike Kearns took 3rd in the first yr ('65) of competing the 2 mile (in Cal) @ Bakersfield. Kim Ellison took second and a maniacal Ralph Gamez blitzed to the lead and won going away. No one took him that seriously as he wore black socks - go figure. Kearns (CIF-SS champ) and Ellison (LA City champ) were 'cross town' rivals but were 'LA City' and 'CIF SS' sections - an ongoing debate about superiority. Crespi and the Birmingham (Pat Connelly group) often trained at the same park (and even at the same time) - Balboa. Leeds did not like those guys - and made no secret of it.

They did run a showdown meet at Taft HS in a City - CIF 'SF Valley' affair - I think after the state meet. Ellison blitzed Kearns with a vicious last lap in about 7:17.x. To my knowledge they had no other state meet contenders until (again - I think) a two miler Arboghast somewhat later. They did have hurdlers and field event guys but I believe the distance corps were never quite equal to the depth of the '65 group.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Tue Aug 12, 2003 11:28 am

jwetter - The only minor criticism I ever heard about him was that some of his guys peaked too early and he sometimes had a "fast" stopwatch.

mmmm
1. Leeds was an imposing personality and impose he did, from time to time
2. peaking - definitely
3. "fast" - see 1

All three were the subject of numerous media debates and btw Crespi and ND were quite the rivals - I think ND won in duel in 64 or 65 - big upset - or maybe not. That was when duel meets meant something.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Tue Aug 12, 2003 3:20 pm

No One: Sounds like you may have been "imposed on" by Bill. I don't deny he could be "imposing" particularly if he thought he was right. I missed much of his time at Crespi as I moved around the country in my work and only caught Crespi news through T&F News prep pages. You seem to have quite a bit of knowledge of Crespi. How long did Bill Leeds coach there?

If you want to respond direct without coming through the message board just click on my name. I'd like to continue this conversation but not necessarily for everyone else to share.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Thu Aug 14, 2003 6:43 am

jwetter. You get my email?
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Thu Aug 14, 2003 10:21 pm

No One: Got your e-mail. I just got in from two days of meetings. I'll respond tomorrow as it's late and I need my beauty sleep. Interesting part of today's meeting were 2 81' Crespi grads were there and both remember Leeds well as they played football there and threw the shot for Bill. Details to follow tomorrow direct.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 7:31 am

I knew Bill Leeds during my prep running days and my first few years of coaching at St. Bernard's. Bernard's was in the Camino Real League with Crespi at the time.

At clinics I mention Coach Leeds as an early influence on my own coaching. Bill was vice-principal, athletic director, track and cross country coach at Crespi. It was always a clinic watching his teams perform. Bill was an intense competitor and respected opponents who could rise to his standards.

One memory: the unique goose-stepping style of the Leed's coached sprinters. It seemed to work!

He was also a generous mentor, going way out of his way to help this neophyte coach. I haven't seen a high school program as fine as those run by Bill Leeds in the 50's and 60's.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 7:52 am

flash back! St Bernards - had an amazingly odd shaped track (as I recall) when I ran there (1 race as a wide eyed frosh in mid 60s) ... seemed it was 350yds or so and one straightaway was much longer than the other. Had a decent (maybe beter than) distance guy - Carl Merbach sp?) One of my college team-mates and buddies was a St Bernard's standout.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 10:52 am

Bernard's track was and is 352 yards, 1/5 of a mile. Great fun chalking the track, especially for the 660, 1320, and 880 relay. End zone corners spilled over onto the track.

Carl Mehrbach ran 9:15 at the Southern Section finals at Mt. SAC in '67. Leading with a lap to go, ran a 61 and was passed by 6 guys. Teaches high school chemistry and is an accomplished artist back in New Hampshire.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 2:23 pm

Just for the sake of reality, these are the actual results of that 1967 Southern Section 2 Mile at Mt SAC: 1. Dyer (Lakewood) 9:05.8 (sectional record); 2. Marsee (South Torrance) 9:06.0; 3. McDonald (Hoover Glendale) 9:08.6; 4. Sybert (Westminster) 9:12.9 (Burch, San Clemente, finished 4th but was DQ); 5. Swift (Sierra, Whittier) 9:18.0; 6. Mehrbach 9:18.8; 7. Ramirez (Channel Islands Oxnard) 9:22.7. If Mehrbach was "leading with a lap to go and ran a 61," those first four (or five) finishers produced the fastest finishing laps in HS distance history. I wonder if El Guerrouj could finish in 47.8 off an 8:18 pace?
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 2:50 pm

Boy, can't fudge facts on this board. Everything I put down was from an obviously faulty memory of an event 36 years ago. Pretty sure Carl ran a fast last lap and was passed by numerous people. For some reason my foggy memory had McDonald winning in 9:10 with a last 400 of 57. Oh well--thanks for the correction.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 4:37 pm

Dug up a photo of what I've always thought was taken on the last lap of the race and posted it at:

http://jesuittrack.org/67tfss2mi.html

It's the 5th photo I have of the race, each taken on different laps. Could only i.d. 5 of the 13 runners in the photo.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 6:00 pm

This photo is not from the Southern Section finals, because the venue is certainly not Mt SAC (not with those trees, power poles and what appears to be an apartment building in close proximity), and there are many more than the 9 runners who ran in the finals race. Also, the 2 Mile was run at 8 p.m. on May 26; it would be somewhat darker than this. Your photos may be from the semi-final on the old Cerritos track, where McDonald won in 9:11.2 (a one-week record).
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 7:02 pm

I believe you are correct on all counts. Your comments clear up my confused recollection. I have the photos but no other info and am going from ever-weakening memory. Mehrbach's 9:15 etc. must have been from the semi's at Cerritos as in the pic. I have a photo of the race start and about 20 guys are toeing the line. I'll amend the caption at the website--do you have complete results?
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sat Aug 16, 2003 11:16 am

There was only one semi-final meet in 1967 (for the first time), held May 19 at Cerritos. The 2 Mile results: 1. McDonald 9:11.2; 2. Burch 9:14.2; 3. Sybert 9:14.2; 4. Dyer 9:15.0; 5. Marsee nt; 6. Belasco (Buena, Ventura) nt; 7. Mehrbach nt; 8. Swift nt; 9. Ramirez nt. Because of an unexplained glitch, officials did not time past fourth place. Only the coaches know for sure...
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sat Aug 16, 2003 3:35 pm

wlange ... can you post those other pics?
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sat Aug 16, 2003 3:48 pm

Re posting pics: glad someone's interested! Give me a day or two.
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Re: Crespi Carmellite Track

Postby Guest » Sat Aug 16, 2003 4:59 pm

Did it. It all starts at:

http://jesuittrack.org/67tfss2mi.1.html

I welcome any info that would make good captions.
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