HARKER HEIGHTS — The Harker Heights girls 4x100-meter relay team has had its fair share of accolades this season.
It won district convincingly en route to a team district title, the Lady Knights’ second consecutive as a team.
But that doesn’t compare to this — not to having a shot at a state title.
“It feels like next-level stuff,” senior JoVanna Jones said.
This weekend in Austin, the team of Jones, Naomi Offenhaeuser, Tadrian Rose and Vivian Walters will have its chance to win state gold entering as a wild card and the sixth seed.
But the Lady Knights have already proven that they can compete with the best after running the No. 3 time in the state in the Region I-5A preliminaries.
Because of that, Heights — happy as it is to be in the state meet — is holding itself to the highest standard in Austin this weekend.
“Oh, absolutely,” head coach Michelle Womack said. “We want to medal. That’s our goal is to be on the medal stand because we know we’re fast enough to do that.”
Womack said handoffs and focus will be key, which works to the Lady Knights’ advantage as Jones said the strength of the team lies in its chemistry.
What also helps Heights is that it is running its best times of the year late in the season.
“We’ve run under 47 the last two times we’ve raced, broke the school record, so we’re where we need to be at this time in the season,” Womack said.
“We’re getting to our fastest time. So I think we’ll do that at the state track meet.”
What else fuels the Lady Knights is the chance to represent Killeen ISD.
Heights has already done it well against District 8-5A and against grueling Region I-5A.
Now, Heights is excited to do it against the best competition in the state.
“It feels good to put Killeen on the map,” Walters said.
But after racing against great competition at its last two meets, Heights isn’t just content with what it has accomplished in making it to state — the Lady Knights want to win it.
“You’ve got DeSoto that’s sitting there with a 46:14 coming in, and that’s out of our region,” Womack said. “So we’ve run against them. We know we can compete with them.”