Waxahachie to host annual track and field meet Friday

Despite several rainy days this week, Waxahachie will play host to the annual Big Green Relay Track Meet on Friday at Lumpkins Stadium.

Well into its third decade, the track and field meet is one of the largest meets in North Texas. Those recent rains have forced officials to cancel the field portion of the meet this year, but with eight of the best high schools participating, the running events will be fast-paced.

WHS athletic director Greg Reed said the Big Green Relay meet has a long legacy of excellence.

“The Big Green Relay has a reputation as one of the best meets in the area,” said Reed. “Coach McLemore established the tradition long ago and we work to continue to provide a first class experience for athletes, coaches and fans. Rain or shine.”

WHS track coach Willie Rash said canceling the field events will have little impact on the Indians as they point to the upcoming district track meet.

“Not having the field events this will hurt our kids a little, but we’ll make due,” said Rash. “Every chance to compete is a chance to improve. We took first place in a tough Garland meet earlier in the season, so I think we’ll compete Friday. We’ve got a great group of kids.”

WHS cross country runner Derek Espinosa has been relentless during the past three track meets the Indians have competed in this year. Running the 3,200-meter distance race, he’s improved his times in every meet.

“Derek is a very hard worker. He pushes himself everyday to be great,” said Rash. “We’ve run in three meets so far this year, and Derek has broken his own school record in all three meets. He should be the man to beat in our meet and the district meet. Mansfield Summit has a distance runner that is just a step behind Derek, so it will be a great race at both meets.”

The district track and field meet is slated to take place on April 13 and 14 in Lancaster.

Junior Kenedy Snell, known for his blistering running on the football field, is also a long jumper and sprinter for the track team. Snell garnered a second place finish in the long jump, and a second place finish in the 100-meter dash last week at the Cedar Hill meet. Snell is also a baseball player for the WHS Indians varsity.

“Kenedy is definitely a blessed athlete,” said Rash. “We encourage all of our athletes to play multiple sports. He runs summer track and was on the Junior Olympic gold medal 4 x 400 relay this past summer. We have several other athletes that play multiple sports that would be in the same conversation. But he is definitely a special athlete.”

To put on a meet the size of the Big Green Relay takes a massive amount of coordination and planning.

“It takes the whole coaching staff to put on a track meet of this size,” said Rash. “All sports, high school and junior high coaches all help out along with athletes who are not in track. There are many volunteers from outside the school that help out also. The Waxahachie coaches do a great job making everything run off smooth.”

Reed echoed that effort, and noted that it also takes a host of volunteers from the community to make the meet a success.

“Although timing systems and technology has changed how track meets operate, we are grateful for people like Steve Wallace who give their time and energy,” said Reed. “Steve has been our starter for numerous Big Green track meets and does a great job.”

The Big Green Relay running events will kick off at 2:15 p.m. Friday with the 3,200-meter run at Lumpkins Stadium. Sprint, relay and hurdle events will follow in this order:

• 400 M Relay

• 800 M Run

• 100 M Hurdles

• 110 M Hurdles

• 100 M Dash

• 800 M Relay

• 400 M Dash

• 300 M Hurdles

• 200 M Dash

• 1600 M Run

• 1600 M Relay