By LARRY GAGE
Special to the PRESS
The Port Isabel High School Lady Tarpons struck gold on the first day of the District 32-4A track and field meet at La Feria on Tuesday and carried the team points lead into Thursday’s finals.
Daniela Murchison won first place in the shot put and discus events and Gabby Torres captured gold in the high jump and long jump. There were no new personal bests for either athlete, but their efforts were more than good enough for gold in each event.
Port Isabel took a 15-point lead over host team La Feria in the team standings into Thursday’s finals. The Lady Tarpons totaled 87 points at the close of events on Tuesday and La Feria had 72 points. Raymondville was a very distant third with 21 points, followed by RGC Grulla with 11 points, Rio Hondo (8), Hidalgo Early College (7), Progreso (6), and Zapata (4).
Also taking gold for the Lady Tarpons were pole vaulter Alex Martinez and triple-jumper Simone Harry. Harry also had the fastest prelim time (1:02.30) in the 400-meter dash and ran for gold in that race on Thursday, and Ava Gomez was fastest in prelims for the 300-meter hurdles with a clocking of 50.84. Martinez’s best vault was 9 feet even and Harry got out to 34-03.00 in the triple jump.
The top eight finishers in the prelims of all running events on Tuesday qualified for Thursday’s finals. The final of the 3,200-meter run was held on Tuesday as it is the only individual running event not to have prelims. No Lady Tarpon runners competed in the 3,200-meters. All relay race finals, also without prelims, also took place Thursday. All field event finals took place on Tuesday.
Torres’ best effort in the high jump was five feet even and she did 17 feet nine inches in the long jump. She was seven inches below her personal best high jump which she got at the Meet of Champs last month but was two inches better than the two second-place finishers.
“That wasn’t what she normally does but right now we’re trying to save our legs,” head P.I. track coach Julie Breedlove said at Wednesday’s practice. “We don’t want to wear the kids out.”
Torres also had the fastest time, 16.17 seconds, in prelims for the 100-meter hurdles to qualify for Thursday’s final in the event.
Murchison hit 45 feet 3.5 inches in the shot put and got 126-03 in the discus. Her distance in the shot put was a little more than 11 feet better than the second-place throw.
Following are the results for all other Lady Tarpon finishers in Tuesday’s preliminary events: 100-meter dash: J’yah Cook, fifth -13.49 seconds; (first, Milytza Galvan, La Feria, 12.82); Jasmine Saldivar, 14th-14.01; Victoria Macias, 18th-14.61; 200-meter dash: Amaya Lampkin, 4th-27.58; V. Macias, 13th-29.95; Jasmine Saldivar, 15th-29.98; 400-meter dash: Natalie Garza, 3rd-1:03.31; discus – Final: Tiffany Ochoa, 4th, 101-10; high jump – Final: Madison Bickerton, T-2nd, 4-10; The top four finishers in all finals events at the district meet will move on to the area meet, to be held in Kingsville next Thursday.
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