By Larry Gage
Special to the PRESS
Port Isabel Lady Tarpon track and field athlete Madison Ramos was golden at the Albert Tijerina Relays last Friday, February 21, in Raymondville. She won first place in the high jump with a season-best leap of five feet even.
Her goal is to set a new personal record in the event. That would be the 5-02.00 height she achieved at the Raymondville meet last March. She would appear to be ahead of schedule to accomplish that goal, as the AT Relays was only the third meet of the season. Four meets remain to be run before the District 32-4A meet the first week in April.
“I’m really confident because I’m already hitting five feet this season,” Ramos said while taking a break at practice Tuesday, February 25, at Tarpon Stadium. “Last year it took me a lot longer to get to that height.”
Ramos was district champion in the high jump as a freshman last year.
Ramos has also run all three relay races and ran the first leg on the Lady Tarpons’ fifth-place effort in the 4 x 100-meters at Raymondville. She combined with Karina Aguilera, Emily Lagos, and Allyson Reyes in recording a time of 55.62. Harlingen South was the winner of the event in the time of 53.28 seconds.
“I also run the 4 x 200 and the 4 x 400. The 4 x 400 is my favorite of all of them. I haven’t run the 400 (meters) this year but I think she (Coach Breedlove) wants to put me in it, ‘cause I’m better at the 400’s.”
“We had a pretty good meet,” head girls’ track coach Julie Breedlove said Tuesday. “We were kinda’ slim – we didn’t have our hurdlers. They were at DECCA. I had two (runners) … their quads were a little sore, so we didn’t run a 4 x 200. And Marlyn (Cesenes, pole vaulter) didn’t go – she was on an Upward Bound trip.”
Other than Ramos the Lady Tarpons’ highest-finishing individual athlete was Danaka Camacho, who placed fifth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 28.94 seconds. Camacho is also rather good in the long jump but hasn’t competed in that event so far this season, as long jump coach, Kyle DeMoss, is also the girls head basketball coach and wasn’t available for field duty until last week.
Coming into this season Camacho’s personal best in the long jump is 16 feet 1 inch and, as a senior, she is more than confident of setting a new PR.
“He’s (DeMoss) an amazing coach and he knows what he’s doing, so I plan on beating that.”
Camacho also looks to improve her time in the 200-meters, as that is her best individual event outside of the long jump. As a freshman in 2017 she ran a 27.48 time at one meet and that remains her personal record. Camacho is also running a leg on the 4 x 200-meter relay. Two weeks ago she and three other Lady Tarpon speed burners got the silver medal in that race at the Tarpon Invitational.
Allyson Reyes was the only other Lady Tarpon athlete to place in an individual event at Raymondville. She finished in a tie for 8th in the high jump with a best-height of 4-02.00.
A dozen or so teams competed at Raymondville and Port Isabel was 8th in the final women’s team standings with only 16 points. But at this time of the year the emphasis, as usual, is on the process of putting together a complete team by the time of the district meet in April. Harlingen South was first in the final standings with 156 points.
“We’re plugging in, sticking this one here and that one there, looking here and looking there, to find that right combination.”
Head boys’ track coach, Joe Gonzales, is out of action for the time being after having knee replacement surgery. Breedlove explained that it is really a team effort for the coaching staff in getting the guys and the girls ready for upcoming meets.
“We’re just all handling stuff. Even though these are the girls’ coaches….boys head coach – we work with all the kids. It’s about all the kids.”