By Kathi Bliss
After a season of trial and triumph, the Lockhart Lions and Lady Lions Track and Field teams tied up their season last week at New Braunfels Canyon High School, during the 2012 District Track and Field Meet.
Facing extremely tough competition from larger schools cost both the Lions and the Lady Lions in overall standings, with no team from Lockhart finishing higher than fourth overall, and with three of the four teams coming in seventh in the district.
However, the students all gave strong performances, according to Scott Hippensteel, and the overall rankings are not a true reflection of Lockhart’s athletes, several of whom were able to advance to Regional Qualifiers this week, and then the Regional Meet to be held on April 27.
As many may have expected, the Varsity Lions gave a strong performance across the board, putting up a fourth-place finish with 85 team points, and sending five qualifiers to Regionals in a variety of events.
Lion Jordan Huckaby, who has been shattering records all season in both the discus and the shot put, held true to history last week, earning District Championships in both events. Huckaby hit a mark of 52’10” in the shot, and 167’9.5” in the discus, and earned his bids to Regionals.
Lion Dettrick Reed will join Huckaby on the Regional field, having won a District Championship in the triple jump with a mark of 44’10”.
Runner Nate Moore, a local favorite to win it all at District, was edged in two events by Smithson Valley’s Dylan Willett, who won both his District Championships by only fractions of a second, leaving Moore holding silver medals, but advancing to Regionals in both the 1,600-meter run (4:25.29) and the 3,200 (9:28.70).
Robert Uhr also embraced the moment to shine at District, earning a District Championship in the 800-meter run with a 1:59.40 finish time, and also rounding out the top three in the 1,600 (4:27.8) to qualify for Regionals.
Nicholas Avey and Joseph Hefner earned points in the 3,200-meter and 800-meter runs respectively. Hefner also earned points with a sixth-place finish in the 400-meter dash.
Hurdler Joseph Bell was also not ready to end the season, and earned a second-place finish in the 110-meter hurdles with a finish time of 15.04.
The Varsity Lady Lions will also send four athletes to Regionals, despite a seventh-place team finish.
Olivia Smith qualified for Regionals with a third place finish in the 800-meter run, completing her final race in 2:23.27.
She will be joined by teammate Cassidy Schmidt, who placed third in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 49.38.
On the field, the Lady Lions delivered a two-three punch in the shot put, qualifying second and third place winners Leslie Jackson (32’11.5”) and Madison Roberts (32’10.25”).
Other Lady Lions contributing points for the team were: Lauren Schuelke – fifth place, 400-meter dash (1:02.01); Gabby Escobedo – fifth place, 1,600-meter run (5:42.44); Isis Johnson – third place (tie), 100-meter hurdles (16.16), and fifth place, high jump (4’08”); and Essence Thompson – fifth place, long jump (16’02.5”).
The JV Lions had a difficult time at the District meet, fielding a relatively small team against tough competitors from across the district. Overall, the JV Lions only earned 34 team points, ranking seventh. Schertz Clemens, with 172 points, won district.
Still, the JV Lions were able to bring home a few medals, largely in the distance events.
Colton Russell placed second in the district in the 800-meter run, completing his final race in 2:10.97. Teammate Randy Cornell finished that race fifth, in 2:21.70.
Lion Erik Moreno brought in a fourth-place finish in the 1,600-meter run, clocking a final time of 4:59.22. Meanwhile, Xavier Espinosa earned silver in the 3,200, finishing in 10:44.01.
Rhett Crawford earned bronze in the shot put, marking a throw of 41’-0.75”.
JV Lady Lions Amanda Hendricks and Katelyn Guenther were alone in bringing in medals for their team at the District Meet.
Hendricks placed second in the 100-meter hurldes, with a final time of 18.00, and Guenther hit a mark of 79’8.5” in the discus.