By ZACH CAVANAGH
LOS ALAMITOS – It was a whirlwind that lasted just over an hour for Jose Rubio.
The Los Alamitos senior had to compete in three events in that relatively short time slot at the Arcadia Invitational on April 8. And he had to be at his best for each event, as he was competing against some of the nation’s best high school track and field athletes.
“Everything was just chaos,” Rubio said, “but I still did really well.”
The chaos, which included him warming up for long jump and hurdles, running the 110-meter hurdles, running to take his turn in long jump, debating whether to do an extra jump or warm up for the 300 hurdles, and nearly being scratched from the 300 hurdles, didn’t stop Rubio from setting school records in each of the hurdles events.
“It was just a whole mess,” Rubio said. “It was really hard to go through all that. You just end up so tired at the end.”
Rubio was so beat up from the experience that he skipped a dual meet and the Mt. SAC Relays last week to get the necessary rest to prepare for the Orange County Championships on Saturday at Mission Viejo High. (The events begin at 8:30 a.m.)
“He was pretty beat up after Arcadia,” Los Alamitos hurdles coach Armond Goodin said. “I think that was the hardest race he’s had since Redondo (Nike Track Festival) and one against Fountain Valley. This week, we’re slowly getting him back into it, because I don’t want to burn him out before we get to CIF Finals.”
The races at Arcadia were significant to Rubio who is determined to reach the CIF State championships in June. He was just one spot and 0.11 seconds away from qualifying for state in the 110 hurdles last season.
“I knew what I’m capable of doing with those top-notch guys,” Rubio said. “I can keep up with these guys. I can actually compete with them. I can do this.”
Rubio picked up a fifth-place finish in the 110 hurdles (14.03 seconds) and fourth place in the 300 hurdles (37.03), both personal records, at Arcadia.
The marks kept Rubio at the top of the county’s times this season. He also holds the county’s top mark in long lump with a 23-foot, 5.5-inch mark at the Los Alamitos Relays on March 3.
Rubio figures to be the favorite in all three events on Saturday, with a much more amenable time schedule for multievent athletes like him and Woodbridge’s Emily Garner. Rubio’s willingness to take on all…