The Stafford High boys track and field team has been knocking on the door for quite a while.
The Spartans have finished second at state three times over the past decade. Now, Stafford has a chance to win its first-ever boys track state championship on Saturday, May 14, at the UIL Class 4A State Meet at Mike Myers Stadium in Austin.
The chance to win state has taken on additional meaning for the Spartans. Longtime SHS head track and field coach Sergio Hinojosa, a Stafford High graduate, was a friend and mentor of SHS head baseball coach Michael Mesa, a fellow Stafford native who passed away unexpectedly at age 26 on April 30.
Hinojosa said the track team is dedicating the remainder of its season to Mesa’s memory.
Leading the charge for a state title is senior Caleb Parker, who qualified in the 110-meter hurdles, the 300-meter hurdles and the high jump.
Parker is a returning state qualifier after finishing seventh at state in the 110-meter hurdles last year.
Parker, who played wide receiver on Stafford’s 11-1 football team last fall, has the fastest time in the 300 hurdles (38.72) entering the state meet and the top effort in the high jump (6-feet-9-inches). He is tied for the fastest time entering the 110 hurdles (14.53).
“I want to win all three,” Parker said. “I need to have some more intense workouts this week.”
Parker was selected as this week’s -KPRC Channel 2 Star Furniture Athlete of the Week and plans on competing in NCAA Division I Track next year.
He said he enjoys being on a team with a great deal of talent.
“Most schools have one or two great athletes – we’re fortunate to have an ample amount,” Parker said.
Fellow senior Cam Montgomery enters the state meet with the fastest time in the 100-meter (10.58). Montgomery was honored as the Houston Chronicle Athlete of the Week last month. He won the 100 at the prestigious Texas Relays earlier this season.
Montgomery is running the anchor on Stafford’s 4×100-meter relay team that enters the state meet with the third fastest time in 4A (42.32). Christopher Brantley, James Brown and Edwin Godfrey join Montgomery on the relay.
The 4×200-meter relay team of Brantley, Brown, David Allison and Montgomery also enters as the third fastest in 4A with a time of 1:28.25.
Stafford senior Lynette Amaram is the Spartans’ lone girls track and field state qualifier. Amaram, who currently ranks second in her class at Stafford High, is the defending 4A state champion in the 800-meter. She will look to defend her state title in the 800, and to win the 1600.
Amaram enters the 800 meter with the top time (2:15.39) by nearly four seconds and enters the 1600 meter with the second-fastest time in 4A (5:12.97).