HUNTSVILLE – The weather was sunny on Saturday, yet it didn’t keep the Texas City girls track and field team from delivering a deluge of orange and black that overwhelmed the competition.
The Lady Stingarees dominated the Class 4A, Region III meet, winning the regional title in impressive fashion as all five members of coach Denise Callis’ squad will advance to the state finals in Austin on May 9-10.
“I’m on cloud nine,” Callis said. “I knew they had it in them, but it’s still a great feeling to accomplish what we set out to do.”
Junior Asa Garcia helped pave the way to Texas City’s title, as her victory in the long jump on Friday evening (18-6) served as a precursor to her effort on Saturday. Garcia captured the triple jump (39-5) and was part of the victorious 400-meter relay team (46.56) that also included Aerial Smith, Carmen White and Melicha Smith. She also finished second in the 200-meter dash (25.00) and was part of the 800-meter relay team (Lawren Crawford, White, Smith) that finished second with a time of 1:42.30.
Smith also earned an individual trip to Austin by finishing second in the 100-meter dash (11.68), ending just .01 behind champion Tramesha Hardy of Houston C.E. King.
“Our motto was ‘Right State of Mind,’” Callis said. “We knew that if we stayed focused on the task at hand, we would be able to contend.”
Texas City won the title with 72 total points, edging out District 24-4A rival Pearland Dawson, which finished with 66.
“It’s a very exciting feeling to know we’re all heading to Austin,” Crawfordsaid. “We just had to come together as a team and push on toward our dreams.”
Friendswood’s Garrett Cragin will also be heading to Austin, as he shocked the competition to capture the boys long jump title. Cragin, who just recently began to compete in the event, delivered a jump of 7-0, while fellow Mustang Maggie Roher will also advance to state after finishing third in the girls long jump (17-11)
Galveston Ball’s Drake Murphy placed third in the boys’ 400-meter dash with a time of 48.04, giving the Tors a representative in Austin.
State berths were also gained in Humble, site of the Class 3A and 5A regional meets, as Dickinson’s Lauryn Crawford earned a trip to Austin after finishing second in both the shot put (46-1) and discus (153-7).
Skyler Ruszkowski of Clear Falls advanced with a second-place finish in the girls high jump (5-4).
Clear Springs’ Thai Williams’ second-place mark in the 100-meter dash (11.96) was one of two events in which the Lady Chargers junior standout advanced to Austin.
Williams was also the anchor leg of the Springs 400-meter relay team, which included Naomi Taylor, Erika Rodriguez and Aundreya Tidwell that finished second with a time of 47.15.
La Marque’s Amyiel Fleming narrowly missed a bid to state, finishing fourth in the Class 3A boys’ shot put (43-8).
“Now is a moment to celebrate,” Callis said, words that best defined the feeling of those who advanced. “It’s back to the drawing board on Monday.”
TAPPS 2A Regional Track
Gracie Taves of O’Connell College Preparatory competed at the TAPPS 2A Regional meet in Hallettsville on Saturday.
Taves took second place in the triple jump with a jump of 34 3/4, beaten out by a jump of 34-5 by a competitor from one of the Austin schools.
Taves had a jump over 36 feet, but it was disallowed because she was an inch over the board.
Taves was to also compete in the 300-meter hurdles, but was unable to do so.
Taves will be ranked number two at the state track meet which will be held May 2-3 at the Baylor University track.