Rivera claims fourth district title in 800; Senior wins three gold medals at district meet

By Richard Greene | Published Saturday, April 12, 2014

Share this page...

Brandon Rivera made it a perfect 4-for-4 Thursday night, claiming his fourth district crown in the 800 meters.

Fighting against a strong south wind, the Decatur senior crossed the finish line at Sanger’s Indian Stadium in 2:00.13.

“It’s a big accomplishment,” Rivera said about his fourth district title.

Perfect Finish

PERFECT FINISH – Decatur senior Brandon Rivera holds up four fingers for his fourth straight district title in the 800 as he crossed the finish line Thursday. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

The senior, who finished fourth in Class 3A at state last year, remained unbeaten this season although the wind kept his time above two minutes for the only time this year.

“Without the wind, it’s easily a 1:57,” he said. “It’s not bad being able to jog a two-flat.”

Despite the wind, he ran a 56-second first lap to build a five-second lead.

“It was a good split,” he said.

He won by six seconds over Sanger’s Alfonso Fascio. Decatur’s Payton McAlister was third in 2:07.26.

Rivera followed his 800 win with a victory in the 400. He came from off the pace in the final 100 meters to charge past Gainesville’s Devyn Janzen and win in 52.32.

“I just wanted to stride it out until the last 100,” Rivera said.

After he passed Janzen, Rivera gave a quick glance back.

“I wanted to give a check to see if he was going to finish with a kick. I gassed him in the first 300,” Rivera said.


After being unable to keep up with his future Texas A&M teammate Jacob Perry in the final 100 meters of the 3200 on Wednesday, Decatur’s Taylor Clayton stayed with him long enough to edge in front at the finish of Thursday’s 1600.

Clayton leaned across in front of Sanger’s top runner to win in 4:32.02. Perry was second in 4:32.3.

“In practice we’ve worked on the last 20 meters and edging people out,” Clayton said.

It was the Class 3A state cross country champion’s first district title on the track.

Perry and Clayton traded the lead and breaking the wind over the first two laps. Their 800 split was 2:19.

Clayton led with 200 meters to go before Perry made his final kick. Clayton stayed close and moved past him in the final steps.

Perry beat Clayton in the 3200 Wednesday, running 9:48.02. Clayton finished in 9:53.51.

Fight to Finish

FIGHT TO FINISH – Decatur’s Yanira Rivas edges out the competition to claim the 9-3A title in the 100 Thursday. Rivas finished in 12.39. Messenger photo by Joe Duty


Decatur runners claimed the titles of 9-3A’s fastest man and woman.

Senior Yanira Rivas won the 100 girls race in 12.39.

“I was really nervous in the prelims and psyched myself out,” Rivas said. “I came out of the blocks good and wind pushed me.

“It feels good to win. It’s gotten harder each year.”

Sophomore Gunnar Parker took the boys 100 in 10.47.

“It was a perfect start,” Parker said. “This feels great. There’s nothing better than winning.”


Decatur senior Haley Dennard repeated as the 9-3A 800 champion Thursday.

Dennard, who took off a year from track before returning as a junior to finish seventh at state, ran a 2:27.25 to win her second district gold medal.

“It’s amazing. I can’t believe it,” Dennard said. “Last year I came back and didn’t know what to expect.”

Battling a strong south wind into the finish, Dennard said her time was a little off.

“It was tough,” she said about the wind. “I just told myself you have to go as bad as it hurts.

“My time is not where I want it to be. But when you get to this point, it’s all about placing.”


Fighting against the wind, Decatur senior Grayson Muehlstein labored toward the finish line in the 4×400.

Muehlstein crossed the finish line in 3:34.07, holding off Gainesville’s anchor runner, who finished in 3:34.72.

“I got tired in the wind,” he said. “Other than that, we did good. It’s not our best time, but we got the win.”

Jacob Kevetter gave the Eagles a strong start, running a 51. Brandon Rivera followed with a 53-second quarter, and Justin Myers circled in 54 seconds.

“We ran good. We’re happy to advance to area,” Myers said. “We’re looking to get past area and regionals to state.”


Decatur junior Bailey Berry brought home the gold medal in the 9-3A girls high jump.

Berry cleared 4-10 to win the event.

“I honestly didn’t think I’d get first,” Berry explained. “That’s why you have to do your best every time.”

The 4-10 was her best this season.

“I jumped really good. I’ve been wanting 4-10 all year,” she said.

Raby earns win in triple jump

Tyler Raby claimed the Bridgeport Bulls’ lone gold medal, winning the triple jump with an effort of 41-0.5.

“I felt good about it,” Raby said. “I was a little inconsistent. On my best jump, I was behind the board.”

He landed the winning effort on his second jump in prelims. He took only two of his jumps in the finals.


Decatur’s Chad Layton cleared 10-6 to earn the 9-3A gold medal in the pole vault and move on to next week’s area meet.

“I did all right. I could’ve done better. It was just enough to get to area,” Layton said.

Layton said the wind made it tough to vault and kept him from getting 11 feet or more.

He got nine feet on his second try and 10-6 on his second attempt.



Team: 1. Sanger 193, 2. Decatur 191, 3. Krum 130, 4. Gainesville 62, 5. Bridgeport 31

Discus: 1. Madi Wilson, Sanger, 118-0.25; 3. Lily Doubrava, Decatur, 100-9.75; 6. Natalie Smith, Bridgeport, 85-10.75

High jump: 1. Bailey Berry, Decatur, 4-10; 3. Nicole Neighbors, Decatur, 4-6

Long jump: 1. Jaylen Pegues, Sanger, 16-3; 3. Kelsie Worley, Decatur, 15-9.5; 6. Nicole Neighbors, Decatur, 15-5

Shot put: 1. Ariannah Kemp, Gainesville, 34-4.5; 3. Lisa Fuller, Bridgeport, 31-2; 5. Darci Billmire, Decatur, 30-10

Triple jump: 1. Savannah Brinkley, Krum, 33-7.5; 5. Makayla Mayfield, Decatur, 32-6

Pole vault: 1. Grace Muir, Sanger, 8-0; 2. Jessie Kyle, Decatur, 8-0; 3. Darci Billmire, Decatur, 7-0

3200: 1. Brandi Stalder, Sanger, 12:49.31; 3. Georgina Palomo, Decatur, 12:59.41; 5. Paola Palomo, Decatur, 13:29.72; 6. Lulvia Ramos, Decatur, 13:43.98

4×100: 1. Sanger 51.46; 3. Decatur 53.01: Bailey Berry, Abbie Heiens, Jaclyne Hicks, Yanira Rivas; 4. Bridgeport: Sadie White, Alli Raby, Bradi Anderson, Diana Garcia, 53.97

800: 1. Haley Dennard, Decatur, 2:27.25; 2. Jessie Kyle, Decatur, 2:28.17; 4. Kaylee Rhine, Decatur, 2:33.69

100 hurdles: 1. Nicole Neighbors, Decatur, 15.36; 2. Macen Stripling, Decatur, 15.89; 5. Shayley Smith, Decatur, 18.09

100: 1. Yanira Rivas, Decatur, 12.39; 6. Presley Dailey, Decatur, 13.38

4×200: 1. Sanger 1:49.55; 4. Decatur: Macen Stripling, Bailey Berry, Keauna Smith, Marissa Muehlstein, 1:52.45; 5. Bridgeport: Alli Raby, Allie Mindieta, Bradi Anderson, Diana Garcia, 1:53.28

400: 1. Bre Henderson, Sanger, 59.14; 2. Haley Dennard, Decatur, 1:01.64; 5. Landrie Walsh, Bridgeport, 1:05.84

300 hurdles: 1. Nicole Neighbors, Decatur, 49.1; 3. Macen Stripling, Decatur, 52.77; 6. Keauna Smith, Decatur, 53.74

200: 1. Bre Henderson, Sanger, 26.49; 2. Yanira Rivas, Decatur, 26.73; 5. Allison Raby, Bridgeport, 27.43

1600: 1. Audrey Springer, Sanger, 5:38.94; 2. Jessie Kyle, Decatur, 5:47.32; 6.Georgina Palomo, Decatur, 5:59.22

4×400: 1. Decatur: Bailey Berry, Haley Dennard, Keauna Smith, Nicole Neighbors, 4:15.24; 2. Sanger 4:15.42; 4. Bridgeport: Landie Walsh, Allie Mindieta, Sadie White, Bradi Anderson, 4:35.15


Team: 1. Sanger 237; 2. Decatur 183; 3. Gainesville 76; 4. Bridgeport 54; 5. Krum 53

Discus: 1. Brance Watts, Sanger, 136-5.5; 5. Cole Stallard, Decatur, 111-11.75

High jump: 1. Cade Well, Krum, 6-2; 4. Paul Walker, Decatur, 6-0; 5. Jacob Kevetter, Decatur, 5-10; 6. Cain Lowe, Decatur, 5-8

Long jump: 1. Jacob Royal, Gainesville, 21-2.5; 2. Jacob Kevetter, Decatur, 21-1.75

Shot put: 1. Brance Watts, Sanger, 50-2.5; 5. Brock Reeves, Decatur, 41-8

Triple jump: 1. Tyler Raby, Bridgeport, 41-0.5; 3. Tyler Wier, Decatur, N/A; 6. Chase Williams, Bridgeport, N/A

Pole vault: 1. Chad Layton, Decatur, 10-6

3200: 1. Jacob Perry, Sanger, 9:48.02; 2. Taylor Clayton, Decatur, 9:53.51; 5. Parker Cullop, Decatur, 11:51.87; 6. Rosendo Cardenas, Bridgeport, 12:54.84

4×100: 1. Sanger 42.99; 2. Decatur: Justin Myers, Grayson Muehlstein, Gunnar Parker, Ryan Durdon, 43.39; 3. Bridgeport: Jaz Hickson, Efrain DeLuna, Hunter Gantt, Evan Younger, 44.66

800: 1. Brandon Rivera, Decatur, 2:00.13; 3. Payton McAlister, Decatur, 2:07.26; 5. Bryan Hutchinson, Bridgeport, 2:10.68

110 hurdles: 1. Jacob Kevetter, Decatur, 14.58; 5. Tyler Raby, Bridgeport, 17.23

100: 1. Gunnar Parker, Decatur, 10.47; 5. Ryan Durdon, Decatur, 11.28; 6. Chase Wilson, Decatur, 11.67

4×200: 1. Sanger 1:33.41; 3. Decatur: Justin Myers, Cain Lowe, Addison Nation, Ryan Durdon, 1:34.61; 4. Bridgeport: Jaz Hickson, Jordan Polk, Hunter Gantt, Evan Younger, 1:35

400: 1. Brandon Rivera, Decatur, 52.32; 3. Brandon Boswell, Decatur, 53.59; 5. Rogelio Galacia, Bridgeport, 55.26

300 hurdles: 1. Jacob Kevetter, Decatur, 40.14; 3. Tyler Raby, Bridgeport, 43.07; 5. Jordan Polk, Bridgeport, 43.39

200: 1. Wyatt Broxson, Sanger, 22.19; 2. Grayson Muehlstein, Decatur, 22.25; 3. Gunnar Parker, Decatur, 22.32

1600: 1. Taylor Clayton, Decatur, 4:32.02; 2. Jacob Perry, Sanger, 4:32.3; 6. Parker Cullop, Decatur, 5:15.38

4×400: 1. Decatur: Justin Myers, Jacob Kevetter, Brandon Rivera, Grayson Muehlstein, 3:34.07; 4. Bridgeport: Rogelio Galicia, Jaz Hickson, Matrix Lopez, Hunter Gantt, 3:48.91

Leave a Reply. Note: As of March 24, 2011, all posted comments will include the users full name. News and Blog Comment Guidelines

You must be logged in to post a comment.