On Saturday, March 23rd, Jesuit hosted the 49th annual Sheaner Relays, one of the most prestigious track meets in the state of Texas, that sees some of the nation’s best athletes every year. After a long day of throwing, jumping and running, Jesuit finished with an impressive 5th place out of 29 of the best track programs in Texas. Jesuit is not known for winning this meet, but over the years, Jesuit has risen to the challenge of battling some of these “giants” such as Desoto and Southlake, ultimately holding its own in the meet.
In the throwing arena, Jesuit’s Trey Elliot ’14 and Paden Gatlin ’13 performed outstandingly, with Elliot taking 5th in shot (throwing 46’ 11”) and 4th in discus (throwing 144’ 8”). Elliot explained, “I was pleased with how I threw, considering the huge competition at the meet.” Gatlin also had a good day, taking 2nd in the discus, only trailing the winner by an insignificant 2 feet. “I wish I could’ve gotten that extra couple of feet and won, but I’m happy I compete with those guys,” commented Gatlin. Throwing coach, Charles Hinton III, was “pretty happy about Paden’s day, and [he] thought Trey probably could’ve pulled off a better distance in the shot.”
In one of the most competitive races of the meet, the lengthy 3200m, Dillon Smith ’14 snagged 4th place running a personal best of 9:54, which to any human is an incredible time. His long distance teammate, Andrew Pott ’14 ran a personal best 1:58 in the 800 meter race. “Obviously these guys want to win, but at the end of the day it’s about competing with yourself and pushing yourself to excel” expressed head track coach, Bob Molyet.
On to the “speed demons” of the meet, Jesuit did not have the best of days, but managed to remain in the middle of the pack, trailing only powerhouses like Desoto and Garland. In the 4x100m relay, Jesuit finished 12th overall, and even though it did not qualify to run in the finals, the team won its heat with a respectable time of 43.46. Moving to the 4x200m, Jesuit pulled off a 9th place finish, and the team of Corey Johnson ’13, Dennis Kamara ’13, Marshall Huggins ’13, and Orion Salters ’14 ran a 1:31 time. “I felt like the hand-offs in the exchanges could’ve been better, which would’ve probably made us finish a place or two higher,” explained sprinters coach Charles “Squeaky” Hinton.
Finishing the day with arguably the most exciting event, the 4x400m relay, Jesuit once again finished in the middle of the pack at 11th place. Colleyville Heritage won the 4×4 this year, which historically has been the greatest show of talent of all the events at the meet. Last year, Mansfield Timberview’s team, armed with their Olympic qualifying runner, won the race in a photo finish with Desoto’s stacked lineup. For the second year in a row, a tight finish took place as Heritage squeaked out a victory over Arlington Martin by just one second (a very close margin for a race of this length).
When the sweat dripping athletes finished their final events, the points were tallied up to crown this year’s overall victor of the Sheaner relays, which was Desoto tallying up 80 points, and beating the next school (Southlake Carroll) by 24 points. “This was a great way for our guys to gear up for District in a few weeks, and now they’ve got to focus on qualifying for regionals, which is the next step,” said Molyet. As for next year’s half-century celebration of the Sheaner relays, Jesuit could very well sneak up and steal the win in an epic victory that would never be forgotten.