Fans did not want to blink at Desert Valley League Finals held at Palm Desert High School. This year’s finals had multiple photo finishes as athletes competed neck and neck all the way to the finish line.
The boys’ 200-meter dash was one of the most talked about events of the night as some of the valley’s top talent went head to head. Palm Springs’ Cole Cruz, Xavier Preps’ Jace MacConnell and Cathedral Citys’ James Green were the ones to watch. All three appeared to run through the finish line at the same time. After two photo finish looks, MacConnell came out on top winning by one one-thousandth of a second, 22.336.
“When I came out of the blocks, I knew I had it at that point,” MacConnell said. “Cole Cruz started hawking me and then once we came to the straight away, Cole and James started pulling away. “In my mind I was like ‘Oh I lost this’ but then I kept going and going and towards the end I got a little bit closer. I just finished at the end and I got it by .001.”
On the girls’ side, there was no doubt about who won the 300-meter hurdles. La Quinta’s Isabella Fakehany. The sophomore defended her title as she came in at 48.29 seconds to finish on top of the podium for the second straight year.
“I knew that there was a lot of pressure on tonight,” Fakehany said. “I was like ‘You just got to do it, you just got to run’ and I heard all the competitors behind me.”