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HOUSTON – Texas Relays could be considered the official kickoff to the track & field season as from here it is just weeks from district, regional and just over a month from the UIL State Track & Field State Championships.
Athletes from public and private schools across Texas descend upon Mike A. Meyers Stadium in Austin for the annual Texas Relays, which took place this past weekend. Here are some of the top performers.
Simone Ballard, Mayde Creek
Ballard broke the internet this past weekend. The Mayde Creek senior ran the 300-meter hurdles and won the race with a time of 40.68. That mark is the fastest ever ran at Mike A. Meyers Stadium and in Texas Relays history. It is the top time in Texas now by nearly three seconds. The video of Ballard's record-setting run has been viewed more than 26,000 times on Twitter. Ballard also competed in the 100-meter hurdles (33”) and won the prelim and the finals. She ran a personal-best of 13.28 in the finals to win the race. This is a big start to her senior season. Ballard has won now five of the six 100-meter races she has entered this season. Her personal-best has gotten faster and faster, dropping from a 13.84 to now a 13.28. Ballard is committed to Baylor.
Your New State Record Holder in the 300mh with a time of 40.68. It is all in gods plan ! 🙏🏾🏾 pic.twitter.com/mF306zIEVZ— Simone Ballard (@simoneballard_) March 26, 2022
Emmanuel Sgouros, St. John’sThe St. John’s senior has had a massive year. It started in the fall at the SPC Championships winning the cross-country title with a time of 15:06.80. He went on to take 10th overall at the Eastbay Cross Country Championships as well. In the indoor season, he PRd at the New Balance Nationals Indoor in the 1500-meter run and took 22nd overall. Prior to Texas Relays, Sgouros, who is committed to Texas, took first at the Texas Distance Festival in the 3200-meter run. At Texas Relays, he took second in the 3200-meter run with yet another personal best of 9:02.05, running against public school racers.
Sarah Akpan, Stratford
Akpan finished second overall in the 100-meter dash in High School Division II. Akpan, who is signed to University of Virginia, ran a 11.44, which is a personal record and broke the Stratford school record.
Micah Bell, Kinkaid
Bell is the younger brother of national recruit Dillon Bell, who signed with the University of Georgia this past February. Micah is the next big Bell. At the Texas Relays he PR’d in the 100-meter dash in High School Division I with a time of 10.41, taking second place in the finals.
Emanuel Galdino, StratfordThe big year for the Iowa State-signee Emanuel Galdino continued this past weekend. Galdino clocked a time of 4:08.10 in the 1600-meter race, which is a new personal record for him. He took second place overall with that time. It is a new school record as well and he holds the No. 2 time in Texas and No. 5 time in the United States after that race.
Matthew Rueff, Seven Lakes - Rueff won the shot-put final with a throw of 19.07 meters (62-feet-6 3/4 inches). He then took fourth in the discus with a toss of 54.16 meter. He is signed with Auburn University.
Matthew Rueff wins Texas Relays today 62’ 6 3/4” Way to go Rueff! @SpartanTrack_XC @AuburnThrows pic.twitter.com/VHBHUHT9wu— Seven Lakes XC/TF (@SpartanTrack_XC) March 26, 2022
Aaron Davis, Summer Creek - Davis launched himself 7.32 meters to win the long jump final.
Lauren Schmitt, Seven Lakes - Schmitt cleared 3.90 meters in the pole vault event for High School Section B.
Jade Johnson, Summer Creek - Johnson reached 12.89 meters on the triple jump, which is a personal record, to win the event.
Quinn Calhoun, Cypress Woods - Calhoun finished tied for fourth in the High School Section A pole vault event. She cleared 13-feet-7.25 inches, which is a personal ecord, broke the schools record and set a new Cy-Fair ISD record in the event.
At Texas Relays @QuinncalhounP PR’d, breaks the SCHOOL RECORD and sets a new CFISD RECORD with a vault of 13’ 7.25”! 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾🎊🎊🎊@CyWood_Boosters @CW_Athletics @CyWoods212 pic.twitter.com/nhZl4408J3— Cy Woods Girls Track & Field (@cwhsgirlstrack) March 26, 2022
Relay Standouts- Seven Lakes women took first in the 4x100-meter relay in High School Division II. They clocked a time of 45.78. It was a combo of Brooke Jackson, Alyssa Tate, Avary Catchings and Haley Tate. They won the prelims as well, beating out DeSoto. Then, they took gold in the 4x200-meter relay as well, beating out Shadow Creek and DeSoto with a time of 1:35.81.
- Kinkaid men in the 4x100-meter relay beat out Bellville for the High School Division I title with a time of 42.14. It was Dillon and Michah Bell, Cameron Henry and Tobe Nwabudike on the relay.
- Fort Bend Christian Academy women took first in the 4x200-meter relay with a time of 1:41.79, defeating Dallas Carter and Life Waxahachie for the title. In the relay it was Brooke Coleman, Angel Nwodu, Gabrielle Washington, and Bayleigh Minor. They also took 3rd in the 4x100-meter relay (48.04 - school record) and second in the 4x400-meter relay. Their prelim marks of 1:41.09 in the 4x200 and 3:53.40 in the 4x400 were also school records.
6 races in 2 days…NO PROBLEM for these girls + 3 NEW SCHOOL RECORDS at the Texas Relays.1st place- 4x200 🥇 (1:41.09) prelims2nd place- 4x400 🥈 (3:53.40) prelims3rd place- 4x100 🥉 (48.04) @FBCAathletics @vypehouston @TTFCA @TXMileSplit @TXPSPodcast pic.twitter.com/yOKmIXpLrQ— FBCA Track and Field (@FBTrackField) March 27, 2022
- Shadow Creek men took second in the 4x200-meter relay with a time of 1:24.68, finishing just behind Duncanville. The Sharks team was made up of Tyriq Brunn, Chase Roberts, Michael Strange and Isaac Henderson
- The defending Class 6A State Champions Summer Creek Bulldogs are back again. In the 4x400-meter relay, Summer Creek took first with a time of 3:09.92. It is a senior group of Malcolm Washington, Dylan Jacobs, Blake Gibson and Darius Rainey that ran the time to win.