SPRING SPORTS AWARDS: Valley's Wharton leads area honorees


A state record in the 100-meter dash was never important to Valley’s Garic Wharton.

But if it came while winning a Class 4A state title, the junior sprinter figured he’d take it.

Wharton, who made history with a 10.39-second 100 in the state meet May 22, has been named the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s 4A Boys Track Athlete of the Year.

“The record is something I’m grateful for, but it doesn’t mean much to me,” he said. “I race to win.”

In so doing, he posted one of the top 20 outdoor high school times in the nation this season, according to track Web site DyeStat.com.

Wharton was second at state in the 200 — an event he won last season — in 21.48. He also anchored the Vikings’ 400 relay team, which won the state title in 41.62.

“Going through his progression from ninth grade to now, it’s pretty amazing,” Valley coach Mark Salzman said. “A lot of it has to do with him being a great competitor.

“Each year, he’s gotten a little better at mastering the techniques of sprinting.”

Wharton won his second consecutive Sunrise Region title in the 100 in 10.66, but he remained driven to win a first state crown in the event after finishing second as a freshman and third as a sophomore.

“The regionals really don’t matter,” he said. “State is what matters. I know when the moment is on me, I’m going to perform my best.”

Also a star wide receiver for Valley, Wharton has given an oral commitment in football and track to Arizona.

Following is a list of the Review-Journal’s other spring Athletes of the Year:

BASEBALL

4A — Jeff Malm, Bishop Gorman. A senior first baseman/pitcher, Malm hit .564 with 17 home runs and 69 RBIs to lead the Gaels to their fourth straight state title. He also was 11-1 with a 1.50 ERA.

3A/2A/1A — Bobby Stahel, Needles (Calif.). A sophomore shortstop, Stahel hit .756 with five home runs and 56 RBIs in leading the Mustangs to a second straight 2A state title.

BOYS GOLF

4A — Ray Gillip, Las Vegas. A senior, Gillip won the 4A state title with a 2-under-par 142 in the 36-hole event at Red Hawk.

3A/2A — Yuki Kato, Faith Lutheran. A junior, Kato won the 3A state title at Spring Creek with a 3-under 139 total, which also helped the Crusaders claim the team crown.

SOFTBALL

4A — Shelbie Medrano, Foothill. A senior pitcher/shortstop, Medrano hit .523 with 56 RBIs to lead the Falcons to their second straight Sunrise Region title. She also was 18-9 with a 1.53 ERA and 266 strikeouts in 164 innings.

3A/2A/1A — Paxton Fleming, Boulder City. A junior catcher, Fleming hit .642 with 44 RBIs in leading the Eagles to a second-place finish in the 3A state tournament.

BOYS SWIMMING

4A — Robert Hommel, Green Valley. The sophomore captured a pair of individual titles at the state meet. Hommel was first in the 200-yard individual medley (1:53) and 500 freestyle (4:37.41).

GIRLS SWIMMING

4A — Mikayda Mills, Palo Verde. The junior had four first-place finishes at the state meet. Mills won the 50 freestyle (24.32) and 100 freestyle (52.38) and swam on the winning 200 medley relay and 200 freestyle relay teams.

BOYS TRACK

3A/2A/1A — John Cartier, Faith Lutheran. A junior sprinter, Cartier won 3A state titles in the 100 (11.37) and 400 (50.22), and he was second in the 200 (22.23). He led the Crusaders to the team title.

GIRLS TRACK

4A — Tierra Tyler, Western. A junior sprinter, Tyler led the Warriors to the team title with wins in the 100 (12.19) and 200 (25.0), and she was also on the winning 800 relay team (1:40.9).

3A/2A/1A — Joi Goynes, Faith Lutheran. A sophomore sprinter, Goynes won 3A state titles in the 100 (12.85) and 200 (26.13), leading the Crusaders to the team title.

BOYS VOLLEYBALL

4A — Eric Boman, Coronado. A senior outside hitter, Boman had 394 kills and 146 digs to lead the Cougars to their second straight Sunrise Region title.