In an eventful two days inside Javelina Stadium at Texas A&M Kingsville, a trio of Sealy Tigers in black and gold made their name known around the region with some punching their ticket to the next stage.
The Region IV Championships were held at the end of last week and featured 10 Tigers across various events, both on the track and in the field, and plenty of Sealy finishers near the top of the final standings.
As a team, the boys’ squad tied for sixth overall with Smithville with 30 total points although still behind the winning number from Stafford’s 86. Powering plenty of those points was the throwing ferocity of Luke Thielemann, who grabbed first place in the discus with a personal record while adding 14th overall in the shot put. His best toss of the discus traveled 166 feet, 9 inches to win the event by nearly four inches.
Although that was the only top spot on the podium, Ivan Bolden’s name was called twice to step up to the second position for his efforts in the sand pit. Bolden once again reaches the top competition in the state and this time it’s for two events.
In the long jump, he was flanked by a pair of Taylor Ducks and finished just four inches shy of the winning jump of 23 feet. For the triple jump, Bolden was a foot shorter than Smithville’s top jumper who broke his own personal record to take the top spot with a mark of 45 feet, 3 inches.
Joining them in their journey to Austin will be junior hurdler Raegan Newsome, who clinched second overall in the 100-meter version of the race with a time of 15.18, right on pace with her personal record. She also ran in the 300-meter hurdle race and although didn’t make it out of the preliminary stage achieved her goal of making it to state overall.
Her male counterparts in the hurdle races competed in the longer of the two as well with sophomore Draper Parker (42.48) and freshman Emmanuel Aguilar (44.46) finishing 11th and 15th overall to set the stage for their hopeful return next year.
In other sprinting events, senior Matthew Lord pulled double duties as well, grabbing fourth overall in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.06 and added seventh in the 200 in 23.04 to close out his year.
Similarly, but also completely contrary, Vladimir Hernandez raced in the two longest events in the 3,200- and 1,600-meter runs and secured a personal record in the longer of the two. His 11th-place finish in the 1,600 came in 4:51.88 and only improved as the race got extended. A personal record of 10:18.31 earned him a ninth overall finish for another sophomore who likely hasn’t been seen the last of soon.
The Lady Tigers had the rest of the representatives playing in the field with a trio of jumpers all looking to achieve a different goal.
Freshman pole-vaulting sensation Breanna Brandes registered sixth with a 10-foot, 6-inch jump; four inches shy of the school record she broke earlier. Sophomore Ally Dickens cleared 4 feet, 10 inches with her best high jump to secure a fifth-place finish at the end of the movie. Junior Zoee Jeffrey recorded a 32-foot triple jump and finished her penultimate campaign 15th overall in Region IV with the bar open for a return trip.
All athletes who qualified to compete at the state meet will converge on the Mike A. Myers Track Complex at the University of Texas at Austin, May 10-11.