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(Thu) October 28, 2010

HHSAA CROSS COUNTRY: Leilehua’s Martinez, Kamehameha boys capture second-straight titles

By Edward Jackson

Margarito Martinez of Leilehua dug deep within his heart to seek out determination. His efforts paid off this Thursday, October 28th as he win his second consecutive state title in boys individual cross country at the Honolulu Marathon/HHSAA Cross Country State Championships held at Central Oahu Regional Park in Waipahu, Oahu.

The senior withstood the challenge of a potent field to secure the victory in 15:56.65. This win marks the fifth straight time that a Leilehua runner has captured the boys individual title.

“This was a course that I studied many, many times,” Martinez said after the race. I knew the different angles of this course so well that I could have run this race in my sleep.”

At the start of the race, Martinez joined a pack of lead runners then slowly moved ahead, but was joined by Kamehameha-Kapalama’s Jordan Thibodeau (second place in 16:09.55) and Island School’s Pierce Murphy (third place in 16:17.75).

Throughout the middle portions of the race Thibodeau and Murphy took turns battling Martinez in an attempt to wear him down.

“They really came after me today. I knew at the midway point that I had to stay focus if I wanted to win,” Martinez said.

Down the stretch, Martinez was able to establish a slight margin between himself and Thibodeau.

 Martinez said that margin give me the motivation to run hard at the end.

 “At the end I had just enough energy to win. I knew that the two other runners were right behind me. So I knew I had to continue running hard and I give everything I had,” Martinez said.