AUSTIN — Jacob Perry’s feet followed his emotions Saturday morning as he sailed around the Mike Myers Stadium track and into the early lead of the Class 3A 3,200-meter run.
“That was just adrenaline,” said the Sanger junior. “I felt fine, took off and tried to stay up front.”
Perry stayed with the lead pack throughout the eight laps to bring home the bronze medal and finished in a personal best time of 9:23.
Lytle’s Cesar Gonzalez won the gold medal in 9:19.78, finishing a step ahead of Kaufman’s Edwin Munoz.
“[The medal] feels great and I'll have another year to run,” Perry said. “I’m more excited about the time than the place.”
Perry did not intend to jump into the early lead, running a 67-second opening lap.
“I just took off,” he said.
His coach Clint Davidson said Perry wanted to get out front and push the tempo.
“The first lap might have been a little fast, but he wanted to control the pace from the start and not sit back,” Davidson said.
By the end of the first lap Gonzalez and Munoz caught up with him. Perry stayed within a few strides behind the duo.
“That second lap I thought of previous races and how the person that goes out fast gets swallowed up by the other runners,” Perry explained.
“I told myself I was going to stay with them.”
Perry stayed in a pack of five with Gonzalez, Munoz, Coldspring-Oakhurst’s Christopher Speaks and Decatur’s Taylor Clayton through the 2,400 meters.
Munoz and Gonzalez quickened the pace at the start of the seventh lap, dropping Speaks and Clayton from the lead pack. Perry held in with them only two seconds back.
“I had to go with them,” Perry said. “I knew if I stayed with them I could guarantee myself third. It paid off. I ened up running by PR by 20 seconds.
“Unfortunately that last lap my legs were totally dead. It was definitely the hardest race I have ever ran.”
Sanger’s Bryce Perry finishes fourth
Royal’s Diana Moreno held off Sanger's Bryce Perry by .12 of a second Saturday morning in the Class 3A 3,200 final for the bronze medal.
Morena finished in 11:17.81, a step ahead of the Sanger senior in 11:17.93.
“Bryce ran a really good race,” said Davidson. “She ran an even pace, the race she wanted to run. I know she’s disappointed being a senior.”
Wilson finishes seventh in discus
Sanger’s Madison Wilson pulled off her best toss on her final effort Saturday in the Class 3A discus final.
Wilson landed a throw of 120 feet, 11 inches to finish seventh. Her sixth throw landed more than five feet past her previous best effort of 115-10.
Yoakum’s Celine Markert won the gold medal with a throw of 136-02. Mineral Wells’ Sydney Shelstead, who previously attended Aubrey High School, finished second at 131-05.
Argyle vaulter seventh
Argyle’s Jon Pucciarello cleared 13-6 on his second attempt to finish seventh in the Class 3A pole vault finals.
China Spring's Hunter Webb won the event with a vault of 15-6. He edged Springtown’s Benji Brokenshire, who also cleared the height, by making it on his second attempt.
Pilot Point relay takes sixth
The Pilot Point 4x100 squad of Jason Juarez, DaCoven Bailey, Austin Trinklein and Ian Dietz finished sixth in 42.76 in the Class 2A final.
Newton won race in 41.70.
The same Pilot Point quartet took eighth in the 4x200, running 1:30.74. Karnes City won in 1:27.02.
“They ran their best times of the year,” said Pilot Point coach Brian Kozma. “When you get to state, everyone gets better. Their goal was to get to state and be competitive. They did that.”
Dietz closed a busy day, taking eighth in 200 in 22.51. Karnes City’s Dontrell Lyons took the gold medal in 21.14.
“Those are the nine fastest people in the state in 2A and I got to run with them,” Dietz said. “I’m proud of the year and to get here. We worked hard and earned everything we got.”
Pole vault record falls twice
On Friday, Boswell High School’s Lakan Taylor set a new record for all classes when she cleared 13-feet, 8 inches. On Saturday, her friendly rival and backyard training partner Desiree Freier of Justin Northwest, topped that mark by 1 inch at 13-9 to steal it.
“I knew I had to do it,” Freier said. “That’s what I came out here to do.”
Taylor came to the track at the University of Texas to cheer on her friend and the event came down to a duel between Freier and Waco Midway’s Annie Rhodes.
Both attempted 13-9 but Rhodes missed all three tries and Freier cleared it on her second attempt. Freier pushed the bar to 14-0 1/2 but hit it before calling it quits. The national record is 14-2 3/4.
Freier and Taylor go to different schools but Freier called Taylor her “teammate” because of their training together.
“We’re like sisters, so it’s kind of a love-hate thing,” Freier said.
Bryce Perry 8th in 1,600
Sanger’s Bryce Perry finished her day at the state track meet with an eighth-place finish in the 1,600.
Perry clocked in at 5:22.94, which was off her qualifying time of 5:20.89 at the Region II meet. She started the race at the back and was in fourth place after the first lap but a fast pace by champion Kelsie Warren of College Station at 5:06.87 and runner-up Miranda Prado of Lorena in 5:12.88 saw Perry fall back before a late burst near the line to get eighth ahead of Anna’s Courtnie Hughes.
Sanger’s Morgan ninth
Justus Morgan finished ninth in the Class 3A 110 hurdles with a time of 14.91 seconds.
Running in the far inside line, Morgan was unable to keep up with a pack that was led by champion William Gibbs of Houston Washington in a time of 14.17 seconds. Abilene Wylie’s Kyle Dodd earned the silver at 14.20 seconds and Sinton’s Derek Shedd took the bronze in 14.50 seconds.
Morgan’s effort was a shade faster than the 14.98 seconds he ran as the Region II runner-up to qualify for state.
Argyle girls relay
The Argyle girls 1,600 relay of Brooke Robertson, Laine Lowry, Cassi Hargroves and Taylor Mueller placed sixth with a time of 3:59.44 in the final race on Saturday night.
Argyle was less than a second from jumping into the top five and just under six seconds from the podium. Waco La Vega won in a conference-record time of 3:49.75.
Guyer’s Hunter top Friday finisher
Guyer’s Jalen Hunter, a qualifier in three events, had the top finish of any Denton-area qualifiers on Friday when he took fourth place in the Class 4A 300-meter hurdles and was fifth in the 110-meter high hurdles.
In the 300 hurdles, Hunter turned in a time of 38.14 for fourth. Darien Tennon of Fort Worth Trimble Tech won the event with a time of 37.45.
In the 110 hurdles, Tony Brown of Beaumont Ozen claimed the gold with a 13.40 time. Hunter settled for fifth with a 14.17 time.
Hunter was also part of the Guyer 4x200 relay unit that finished seventh with a time of 1:27.62.
Amadi sixth in triple
Denton High’s Victoria Amadi finished sixth in a tight girl’s triple jump field.
The competition in the girl’s triple jump was close from top tobottom as only five feet separated first place from ninth in the event. Mylana Hearn for Fort Bend Marshall won the event with a leap of 40-81/2 while Amadi nabbed sixth with a best of 38-01.00.