For the third time in four seasons, the Stafford High boys track & field team finished in the top two at the UIL Class 4A track and field meet at the University of Texas in Austin.
The Spartans entered the final event (4×400 relay) of the meet with a chance to win their second track championship. Seniors Kenneth Bodwin and Jaylon Hill, junior Tu’Shawn Wilson and sophomore Sterling Riles set a personal record, taking six seconds off their 4×400 time from the regional meet and finishing in third place (3:18.62). It breaks a school record that was set in 2001.
The Spartans finished second at the meet with 52 points, to Dallas Carter’s 58. After finishing second in 2015, the Spartans won the 2016 4A state championship.
“We couldn’t have asked for more than that from our kids,” coach Sergio Hinojosa said. “We stepped up whenever it was a big meet. I am proud of the way our kids competed when it counted.”
Bodwin was the star of the meet, winning gold medals in the high jump (a personal record 6 feet, 6 inches) and the 300-meter hurdles (37.12). He earned a bronze medal on the 4×400 relay.
Bodwin is headed to Texas A&M-Kingsville on a track scholarship where his college coach expects him to compete nationally as a decathlete.
Junior Ryan Martin placed second in the 100 meters, setting a new school record with 10.41 seconds. He finished second to a Kalon Barnes, a senior from Silsbee, who set a new national record. Martin will enter the 2019 season with the fastest time of any returning athlete. Martin, who finished fifth in the 100 in 2017, tried the 200 this year and finished eighth (21.70).
Sophomore Sterling Riles set a personal best with a fourth place, 48.87 second in the 400. Riles will enter 2019 with the fastest time in the 400, an event that was filled with seniors this year.
The 4×100 relay team of Wilson, Bodwin, Hill and Martin finished fourth (41.65), setting a personal record and coming within .21 of earning a medal.
The Spartans won the regional, area and district championships this spring.