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Boyd finishes second in District 8-3A behind strong relays performance; Paradise boys and girls take fourth

By Reece Waddell | Published Thursday, April 5, 2018.
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Entering finals at the District 8-3A meet Thursday night, the Boyd Yellowjackets had a ton of ground to make up. Boyd managed only 26 points on Monday and trailed Bowie, Henrietta and Holliday in the standings.

But by night’s end, the Yellowjackets had earned a spot on the medal stand. Boyd finished second overall with 106 points due in large part to their performance in the relays. The Yellowjackets won the 4×100, 4×200 and got second in the 4×400. 

“Getting first and second in the relays [was big],” said Boyd coach John Basting. “We’re a little injured right now. We’re missing two of our fastest legs, but it’s just next guy up. And they competed. They really did. They have battled the whole time. You can’t ask for anything more.”

Boyd junior Connor Richardson did not run in the 800, as he was nursing a sore calf. Richardson still managed to win the 1,600 and defend his district crown, finishing in 4:42.44. Richardson said he did not expect his calf injury to linger into the area meet, which is Monday, April 16.

“I ran into some calf trouble the past two days,” Richardson said. “I don’t know what happened. I just woke up [Tuesday] after the two-mile and I was limping. It bugged me a little bit. It’s always a good feeling to win.”

Colton Lawson won the 400 with a 52.13, edging Trey Smith from City View by 0.06 seconds.

James Gaught played a huge role in the Yellowjackets winning gold in the 4×100 and 4×200. Gaught ran the home stretch in both races, narrowly beating out Wichita Falls City View and Nocona. 

Boyd clocked a 44.39 in the 4×100 while City View came in at 44.44. In the 4×200, the Yellowjackets finished in 1:33.79 while Nocona came in at 1:34.20.

“I just wanted to take that first place and move on to area,” said a winded Gaught. “I wanted to succeed for my team and help them out. I feel great. It means a lot having two seniors on the team, getting to move on to area.”

Paradise finishes fourth

Both the Paradise boys and girls teams finished fourth after strong showings in the finals. The Panthers came into the night in seventh place with just 10 points. They scored 53 points on Thursday to jump three places.

In his first season running track, junior Lane Stevens won the 100 with a blazing time of 11.34 to get the Panthers off on the right foot. Stevens went on to get fourth in the 200, clocking a 24.45.

“It’s exciting,” Stevens said. “I didn’t really expect it.”

Matthew Eisen claimed silver in the 1,600 for Paradise, pacing Richardson and clocking a 4:48.88. Eisen only trailed by a few strides for most of the race, but in the final lap, Richardson eventually pulled away. 

“He had a good three laps, and I thought he could stay with him the last lap, but Connor had a good last lap,” said Paradise coach Ken Thompson. “We’ll take a 4.48 and second any time.”

On the girl’s side, the Lady Panthers also had a deep hole to climb out of entering the finals. Paradise ended Monday with 16 points, putting them into a tie with Boyd for sixth going into Thursday.

Behind strong performances in the 4×100 and 4×400, the Lady Panthers started chipping away at the deficit. Paradise claimed bronze in the 4×100 with a finish of 54.96. The Lady Panthers won the mile relay, clocking a 4:18.35.

They ended the night in fourth place overall with 84 points.

“It was awesome,” said Paradise coach Johna Ford. “We cried after it was over. We did. I always tell them choose your attitude, and this was the perfect example. They chose the kind of attitude they were going to have at the beginning of the day and we had a good outcome from it.”

Individually, Hannah Beth Pearson placed second in the 1,600. She crossed the finish line in 5:42.04.

Maddie Mitschke won the 300 hurdles despite dealing with a strained muscle in her abdomen. She clocked a 46.45 to take home the gold. 

“It feels really awesome [to be district champion],” Mitschke said. “I ran really hard on that one. [My side] is still kind of sore, but it’s gotten a little better.”

Lady Jackets finish sixth

Boyd coach Cody Vanover said one of the Lady Jackets’ goals was to score more than 70 points total for the meet.

Although they came up a little short scoring 68, Vanover said he was still proud of Boyd’s effort throughout the meet.

“I think the attitude has been great and the work ethic has been outstanding,” Vanover said. “We sent a lot more to area this year than we did last year. I couldn’t be prouder of them.”

Logan Heard highlighted the Lady Jackets’ final day, claiming gold in the 100. She finished in 13.03.

Heard said she was fighting back tears as she crossed the finish line, as she had dedicated this season to her late father, who passed away in 2011.

“It’s something that I’ve wanted for years,” said Heard of winning the district title. “It just means I’ve tried hard this year. Whenever I crossed the finish line I smiled and just started crying, even though I couldn’t breathe.” 

Full results

Boys:

1) Bowie – 125

2) Boyd – 106

3) Henrietta – 94

4) Paradise – 63

5) Holliday – 62

6) Wichita Falls City View – 60

7) Nocona – 52

8) Jacksboro – 50

Girls:

1) Bowie – 112

2) Henrietta – 98

3) Holliday – 84

4) Paradise – 81

5) Nocona – 72

6) Boyd – 68

7) Wichita Falls City View – 57

8) Jacksboro – 40

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