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COURTESY DAN JOHNSON
Huntington Beach's Cassie Durgy took the state lead in the 800 after winning the Invitational heat in 2:09.35 at Azusa Pacific University on Saturday.

Huntington Beach's Durgy regains form

CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Huntington Beach’s Cassie Durgy has been on the radar of many for her mid-distance prowess for several years.

The CIF-SS Division 1 champion in the 800 meters was back at the top of her game in the Azusa Distance Meet of Champions on March 26, winning the event with a state-leading time of 2:09.35.

The senior met her goal of 63 seconds on the first lap, something she knew she needed to run a sub-2:10 time.

"I’m trying to be more confident in my race plan and my race moves,” Durgy said. "(I’m focused on) being able to go out and run the race that I want to run instead of letting them determine the pace."

The UCLA signee held off the advances of Bianca Alonzo (Marlborough of Los Angeles) and Destiny Collins (Great Oak of Temecula).

During the offseason, the Oilers’ star had to deal with another challenge.

Durgy faced the mental hurdle of having her junior season end in unexpected and disappointing fashion. A false start eliminated her chance to compete in the CIF State Finals last June.

“It was so unexpected,” she said. “I could have never imagined that would have happened. I don’t think that I was ever prepared that that was like an option. It was so bizarre.

“It’s definitely a learning experience, and it made me stronger. I think that if I looked at it in a different way, it could definitely destroy someone.”

With a lifetime best of 2:08.85, Durgy knows that she has what it takes to bounce back. The next stop for Durgy will be the UCLA Legends Meet before she partakes in the prestigious Arcadia Invitational.


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