Medals aplenty for locals at first day of state meet
Life places third in 4A team standings; HHS’ Anderson repeats 3-gold performance
AUSTIN — Ellis County athletes harvested a total of nine medals — including three more gold medals for Midlothian Heritage star Leah Anderson — during the first day of competition at the University Interscholastic League state track and field championships on Thursday.
Life Waxahachie was boosted by two medals by its girls’ relay teams, which were worth double points. The Lady Mustangs finished third in the Class 4A team standings with 42.33 points, just behind second-place Stephenville. Canyon ran away with the 4A girls’ team title with 70 points.
Heritage placed fourth with 36 points, all because of another heroic repeat performance by Anderson.
The senior University of Georgia signee started off with a bronze medal in the long jump, clearing 18 feet, 5 inches and finishing behind second-place Chaniqua Tonge of Life. But Anderson followed by winning the triple jump at 40-3 ¾, then swept the hurdles, winning the 100-meter in 13.96 seconds and the 300-meter in 44.02, becoming a two-time state champion in all three events.
Ferris’ lone representative at state, freshman Arieanna Jefferson, took silver in the 4A girls’ triple jump, finishing at 39-5 3/4, behind Anderson. Jefferson becomes a favorite to win gold at state for the next three years.
The Life girls’ 4x100 relay team of Sanai Gort, Bre'anna Lacy, Tyuanna Simmons and Tonge came in second in 47.49 seconds, behind Texarkana Liberty-Eylau. The Lady Mustangs’ 4x200 relay squad of Gort, Tonge, Simmons and Lacy finished third in 1:41.72, behind Dallas Carter and Argyle.
Tonge, as mentioned, won a silver in the long jump, clearing 18-7 ¼; and Lacy won a bronze in the 200-meter dash, finishing in a time of 24.64 seconds.
Other competitors at state included Life senior Jasmine Pullins in the girls’ high jump; Heritage sophomore Stetson Sarratt in the boys’ triple jump; and Heritage freshman Evanna Jacobsen in the girls’ 800-meter run.
The state meet continued Friday with Class 5A competition. Midlothian’s Maddie Fey (discus and shot put), Gabe Songer (discus) and Jade Ferrell (high jump) were to compete for medals along with Ennis’ Heath Vernor (discus).
The meet wraps up on Saturday evening with the Class 6A and 1A championships. Senior Josh Harris of Waxahachie will compete in the 6A boys’ triple jump at 2:45 p.m., while sophomore Jake Ozymy of Avalon will run the 1A boys’ 800-meter at 5:20 p.m. and Braeden Woodward of Milford will run the 1A boys’ 110 hurdles at 5:45 p.m.
OCS excels at TAPPS
HEWITT — The Ovilla Christian School track and field team took home a boys’ and a girls’ gold medal and added five more medals at the TAPPS Class 2A state meet last weekend at Midway High School’s Panther Stadium.
Emma Rhodes won a state championship in the girls’ 3200-meter run and also placed fourth in the girls’ 1600; while Micah Fitch won the state championship in the boys’ 800-meter run.
The OCS boys’ relay teams won medals in all three races. In the 4x100, the squad of Parker Navarro, Tucker Navarro, Noah Fitch and Estaban de Leon was second, and the 4x200 team of de Leon, Tucker Navarro, Micah Fitch and Parker Navarro also won silver. The 4x400 team of Micah Fitch, Tucker Navarro, Carlos Alvarado and Noah Fitch won the bronze.
Noah Fitch also bronzed in the 400 and placed sixth in the triple jump, and Parker Navarro bronzed in the 200.