As in most of his athletic endeavors, Lampasas’ Ace Whitehead made a difference Thursday in the inaugural Johnny “Lam” Jones Relays.
The Badgers’ star all-around athlete didn’t participate a week earlier when Lampasas finished a distant second to the host team at the Salado Invitational. But with Whitehead back in the fold, the Badgers avenged a loss in the 4x400-meter relay and easily outdistanced the Eagles in the team standings, finishing runner-up with 117.5 points.
Elgin won the meet with 134 points. Cleburne (91.33), Jarrell (66.5) and Salado (65) rounded out the top five in the 10-team field.
Salado set a school record in the 4x400 on March 5, beating the Badgers by more than 5 seconds with a time of 3:26.14. The Eagles’ Wrook Brown, Reid Vincent, Noah Mescher and LaTrelle Jenkins crushed that mark in Lampasas, clocking a 3:22.19.
It still wasn’t enough to beat the Badgers this time.
Cade White, Jaylon Porter, Whitehead and Cameron Everts finished in 3:21.61 to win the event.
With Whitehead, the Badgers also improved by nearly 2 seconds in winning the 4x200 again. White, Porter and Everts ran with Whitehead and finished in 1:29.35, more than 4 seconds ahead of Elgin.
Reigning 4A 300 hurdles state champ Everts won that event while Whitehead, who was fifth at state, finished third.
Everts finished second in the triple jump with a personal-best distance of 41 feet. Michael Murray Jr. was third with a personal-best 39-11 3/4.
Salado swept the sprints. Vincent set a personal record by winning the 100 in 11.31 seconds. Brown took the 200 in 22.65.
Koby Allen and Lane Haviland produced a 1-2 finish for the Badgers in the discus. Allen’s top throw was 138-8. Havilland’s 131-7 was a personal best.
Lampasas Case Brister cleared 13 feet to easily win the pole vault. Teammate Peyton Underwood (11-6) was second.
Lampasas renamed its Badger Relays to honor the former LHS sports legend who died last March at age 60 after a long battle with cancer.
Brownwood won the girls division with 130 points. Taylor (109), Cleburne (101), Lampasas (67) and San Angelo Lake View (61) rounded out the top five. Salado was eighth with 37.
The Lady Badgers didn’t win any events but scored big points in the 1,600 with a 2-3-4 showing from Leilany Alvarez, Abby Valdez and Annabelle Brack.
Lampasas also got second-place finishes from Victoria Renteria (100 hurdles) and Emma Cornish (pole vault) Cobie Chandler was third in the pole vault.
Salado’s Anna Lesley won the 3,200 by more than 55 seconds, finishing in 13:14.10.
The Lady Eagles’ Janiah Del Rio was second in the 100 and third in the 200.