5 Girls And 5 Boys District Championship Takeaways

Kevin Bellow (Katy Cinco Ranch) ran 10.30, 21.45, and 46.49 last week at his district championships

There was a lot that went on last week with many athletes and relay teams getting eliminated on the track and in the field events.

We are still unpacking some of what happened as we continue to gather some results from the district championships. However, we have a lot to go one before the upcoming Area Championships.

Here are five happenings we consider significant from the boys district results and five significant things to look for at Areas from the girls district championships.


Ernest Campbell (Refugio) 

With a NWI in the 100m, it takes a bit to pique interest in a Texas 100m race. However, a 10.24 from Campbell makes it justified.

That mark from this weekend shows he is in prime condition and ready to defend his championships.

Campbell could win his third consecutive UIL 2A 100m state title and a second straight 200m state title this year.

Kevin Bello (Katy Cinco Ranch)

Bello had a district championship meet that most athletes could only hope for. It was the kind an "old school" track fan could definitely appreciate.

He won the 100m (10.30) and 400m (46.49) district titles while adding a runner-up finish in the 200m (21.45). Bello is in a good position to advance to the Region 3-6A Championships with three individual opportunities to possibly qualify for the state meet.

Boys 400m

Surprisingly, the fastest 400m runner in Texas history and the UIL 6A reigning state champion didn't make it out of the district round.

It's my personal opinion that the boys 400m event has suffered since the 4x200 relay became a UIL state championship challenged event.

However, that didn't stop the event from shining bright last week, in the district championship rounds.

Not including the reigning 5A and 6A state champions from last year, there were three boys who ran district races in the 46s and eight who ran 47s.

We already mentioned Kevin Bello going 46.49, but furthermore, Elijah Ferguson (Katy Mayde Creek) went 46.62, and Lawson Jacobs (Klein Forest) went 46.76.

That is going to make Region 3-6A quite the meet if Landon Fontenot (Humble Atascocita) who went 47.72, Dionne Sims (C.E. King) wnt 47.72, and Jordan Parker (Humble Atascocita) who ran 47.91 last week advance to regionals.

The 400m also shows it's in good hands with two freshmen running in the 47s (Cooper Lutkenhaus (Justin Northwest) - 47.33 and Jordan Riggs (Fort Bend Marshall) - 47.94; and previously mentioned Sims is a sophomore.

Galena Park North Shore Joins The 39 Club

North Shore has long been one of the best overall track and field programs. There has been a bit of a lull over the last three years, but that looks to be coming to an end.

They've been looming all season long, but at the districts, they brought it all together.

North Shore ran 39.98 in the 400m relay and was ahead of record breaking Humble Atascocita until the final meters. They became the third team this year to run sub 40.0. One of their relay runners pulled-up in the 100m at district, but if all is good, look for them to keep pushing the pace and be in the mix at regionals.

Additionally, North Shore dropped 3:13.35 in the 4x400 relay. They take all three relays to the next round and if they get all three to the state meet, with a couple of strong individual event performers, they could enter the team championship conversation.

High Jump

In the high jump last week, 10 boys cleared 6-8 with three more clearing 6-10.

If this continues this week in the area round, there could be two really good high jump competitions at the regional meets.

Etoro Bassey (Katy Tompkins) and Kenneth Owen (Houston Stratford) were both over the 6-10 bar and could be two good representatives for the region at state.

However, Landon Freeman (Jersey Village) and Khamani Hudson (Galena Park North Shore) who both cleared 6-8 and 6-6 last week could have something to say about it.

The Region 2-6A high jump competition will be a battle as well. 

Julius Malone (Cypress Lakes) who also cleared 6-10 last week could be one of the top boys in Waco. Kelvin Ihekire from Mansfield Legacy, Jason Arreola Pierce (Mansfield Lake Ridge), and Chastin Clark (Cypress Ranch) all cleared 6-8. 

The two automatic qualifying positions will be hard pressed for, but the best third place finisher across the state.


Region 2-6A Girls Sprints

Last year, Region 2-6A advanced three qualifiers to the state meet; when they got there then swept the 100m podium.

This year will be just as difficult in Waco and the survivors could medal again. With defending state champ Celeste Robinson (Cypress Ranch) and bronze medalist Hannah Lowe (Garland Sachse) returning that will make things even more challenging.

There were no wind indicators last week, but Robinson ran 11.37, Royaltee Brown (Dallas Skyline) ran 11.48, Avia Jones (Klein Forest) and Sanyah Keeton (Duncanville) ran 11.57, and Aaliyah Gipson (Duncanville) went 11.60.

The 200m could be even more competitive based off district results. 

Robinson ran 23.39, Jones was at 23.80, Nasya Williams (DeSoto) ran 23.98, Sydnee Burr (Cypress Park) ran 24.05, and Kyaliah Davis (Klein Forest) ran 24.18.

Hailey Johnson and Grace Kowalski 

There are always a ton of top performances to analyze in the sprints in Texas and maybe even more in the distance events.

The 800m is an event that often mixes both disciplines. At least two runners in the state had very good runs in both last week.

Johnson (Montgomery Lake Creek) and Kowalski (Conroe Grand Oaks) were impressive with Johnson running 55.79 in the 400m and 2:09.88 in the 800m. Kowalski went 55.54 and 2:10.30.

Few have qualified for the state meet in both events and even less have medaled in both. So, it is unclear if both will continue to make a press through regionals in both.

One thing is for sure that if they do elect to choose one event (no matter which one), one event will enhance their performances in the other.

Girls 100-meter hurdles

There were four sub 14-second performances last weekend in the girls 100-meter hurdles. Only one of meets that produced them had an anemometer for wind readings and it was a +3.0, over the legal limit.

However, it does paint a picture of how good the hurdles are continuing to get this season. Kelly Frederick (Humble Summer Creek) went 13.78, Lillian Harden (Bridgeland) ran 13.80, Kaylah Braxton (Frisco Heritage) went 13.89, and Krystan Bright (Cedar Hill) ran 13.95.

Eight other girls ran under 14.30. One of them was Rylee Hampton (Cypress Ridge).

Hampton, the reigning defending UIL 6A state champion and the TX No. 3 all-time hurdler ran her first race of the season at district. It produced a 14.05 and it shows although it's a late start it just might be the right time.

Lancaster and Duncanville Impress at 400m 

The Lancaster and Duncanville girls are both well known sprint programs. Last week, they both showed that the 400m is currently a strong event in South Dallas.

As Lancaster preps for the UIL 5A state meet, some of their strength lies in the legs of sophomore Milan Lathan and junior Datavia Hunter.

Lathan qualified for the area championships with a 55.16 district win with teammate Hunter right behind her in 55.37. Their teammate sophomore Sarai James will join them heading to area with her 57.09 and fourth place finish at district.

Duncanville had a similar showing at their district meet as they prepare for the UIL 6A championship run to defend their state title.

Panther juniors De'Kayla Simpson and Ashley Lister went 1-2 at their districts by going 55.78 and 55.95.

Flower Mound Distance Girls

The Flower Mound distance girls have been one of the top distance programs in the country over the last four years. Flower Mound has the last four UIL 6A state cross country titles to prove their prowess.

What many other distance teams nationally have not been able to do is carry the track and field team to a state track title.The last two years have been historical in track and field for Flower Mound.

In 2022, they became the first UIL 6A team to win in both track and XC in the same season; last year, was almost a repeat feat, but they fell short.

This season, they could be on a path to the same trek.

They qualified two girls to the area championships in the 800m with senior Nicole Humphries (2:10.47) and freshman Adeline Bennett (2:13.05).

They also have three girls heading to the next round in the 1600m and the 3200m.

Samantha Humphries ran 4:44.31 in the 1600m , Nicole ran 4:48.67, and Alexandra Fox ran 4:48.79. In the 3200m, Samantha qualified in 10:35.11, Fox in 10:35.15, and junior Ava Cole in 10:57.16.

While it isn't the same full-court press as they put together in 2022 and 2023 when they earned gold and Bronze trophies in Austin, don't overlook the point earning potential of the Jags distance crew.