State Sprint Champs Find Rhythm In Third Sport Of The Season

Last year, they set the state meet on fire with their sprint performances at their respective state meets. Both guys seemed to have come out of nowhere to make the entire nation and even their own state say where exactly did they come from.

This year, they are on the same course.

It took a while for their names to pop up in the results and at the top of the rankings but they are.

I am referring to the defending UIL 6A 100m state champ Kesean Carter from The Woodlands and the UIL 4A state champ in both the 100m and 200m Kalon Barnes from Silsbee.

The reason both athletes just pop up each season is because they aren't full time track guys.

Exactly like last season, Carter has put in his time on the football field for his Highlander squad as they were on a mission to defend their state title on the grid iron this past season. Things didn't quite turn out the same way they did in the 2016 season, but Carter did showcase why he was so highly regarded as a football recruit. He also ended all of the guessing early when he committed and signed to Texas Tech University to play football and run track.

The three star WR not only caught passes for touchdowns, but he also rushed for a couple of touchdowns in his career.

What Carter and his talent is to The Woodlands football team, Barnes is just that for Silsbee as he is a walking ball of speed. He was also a 3 star WR and every time he touched the ball was a possible touchdown. The Baylor signee was well known for his playmaking capabilities.

When football was over, both guys still took a detour before making their way to the track. When you're an all around athlete as these guys are, the next season isn't track and field, it's basketball season.

Carter was the guard for the Highlanders filling up the stat sheet by averaging 11 points, 3.7 assists, 4.6 rebounds, 2.1 steals, and 0.5 blocks per game.

The basketball court is where Barnes got his team title last year. However, his Silsbee squad wasn't satisfied, so they double backed and did it again this year winning the UIL 4A state title. Like Carter, he was just as menacing on the court utilizing his speed making it incredibly difficult to guard him, be guarded by him, and beat him down the court. 

In case you forgot this pic of Barnes throwing down an alley oop from one of his Silsbee teammates, here is a reminder...

However, track season is now here and perhaps the track and field coaches at The Woodlands and Silsbee didn't mind holding off a little while for their sprint stars.

When they came back, their guys had decent fitness, but the laser sharp speed they were known for needed some refinement. Their respective coaches definitely did that.

Carter's first 100m of the season was a 10.88 at the Victor Lopez Classic on March 23rd. He would soon follow that up with a finals race of 10.55.

Barnes' first 100m race was a 10.79 at TSU Relays on March 16th and he followed that up with a 10.77 in the finals.

Now that we are full steam ahead into the UIL championship season, both Carter and Barnes have regained their championships form. Both sprinters are at the top of the rankings in the 100m. Carter went on the win the Texas Relays 100m in 10.52 and followed that up this week with a 10.37 at his UIL 6A - District 12 meet, which is just off his 10.32 that he dropped to win the UIl 6A 100m title.

Barnes has also found his rhythm as he dropped two blazing times at his district met. He went 10.43 in the prelims and then 10.23 to take the UIL 4A - District 22 title. Just .01 off of the 10.22 (UIL 4A state meet record) he dropped to win the UIL 4A title last year, what can we see him get down to as he looks to regain his championship form that won him the adidas Boost Boston Games dream 100m over the top sprinters in the nation last year.

With football and basketball out of the way for now, Carter and Barnes are all dialed in on two things and that is repeating as state champions and being the best sprinter in the nation.