Every summer, athletes from all over the area take part in the track and field season under the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation umbrella.
After a series of circuit meets, all the membership teams convene for the Region 7 competition, which took place this past weekend at T.A. Cotton Field in Greenville.
The top qualifiers advance to the TAAF Games of Texas, which is scheduled for July 29-Aug. 1 in Corpus Christi.
Though not as high profile as national USATF and AAU competitions, TAAF has hosted some of the biggest stars in Texas track and field, including Olympians Marquise Goodwin, Michael Carter and D’Andra Carter.
One of the largest local teams is the Garland Track Club, which has not only coached athletes from Garland, Rowlett and Sachse, but also surrounding cities such as Mesquite.
The Garland Track Club has also been one of the most successful of the local organizations and its talent was again on display this weekend, bringing home a number of gold medals.
Jeremiah Evans took center stage in the boys 18-and-under division. He got started by winning the high jump by clearing 6-02.00. Over the course of the weekend, he then took gold in the 300 hurdles in 42.65, placed second in the 110 hurdles and joined Jaiden Davis, Jalen Okito and Jahmil Stewart on the 4x400 relay that won in a time of 3:43.58.
The 4x100 relay with Chigoziem Oledibe, Tosta Emory, Nkowi Emory and Jaiden Davis took first in 43.57 and Nkowi Emory was also second in the 100 with Tosta Emory third in the long jump. Breylon Harris was a dual medalist, earning gold in the 110 hurdles in 17.00 and taking second in the 300 hurdles. Isaiah Watkins did the same by clearing 21.02.25 to win the long jump and finishing third in the long jump, just behind teammate Baraka Shiramra, who claimed silver.
The girls 18-and-under featured the gold-medalist 4x100 relay of Deambernique Green, Kaylah Lockhart, Goodness Okoh and Audrey Uzoukwu, who won in a time of 53.74. Uzoukwu also earned two individual silver medals in the long jump and triple jump, with Okoh adding a bronze in the triple jump.
In the boys 16-and-under group, Emanual Evans won the high jump by clearing 6-00.00, took second in both the long jump and 110 hurdles. The 4x100 team of Kendrick Hanks, Oshea Johnson, Ayron Powellsally and Jonathan Whittle posted a time of 44.99 to win the gold, and Hanks, Johnson Powellsally and Cameron Harry won the 4x400 in 3:46.59. On top of that, Hanks added a third gold in the 200 in 23.59, Eric Gabriel posted 19-08.00 to win the long jump, Brian Ipina was the runner-up in the shot put, and Whittle crossed second in the 100 and third in the 200.
Mariah Whittle earned three medals in the girls 16-and-under division, placing second in the high jump and long jump and joining Camry Bryant, Simya Kelley and Jasmin Smith in the 4x400. Olivia Adams was also third in the high jump.
Kelcy Horace had a big weekend in the girls 14-and-under events, as she won the 100 hurdles (15.22) and 200 (26.56) and added a third gold in the 4x100 relay with Nyaire Culverson, Aryianna McGhee and Trinitee Richardson in 51.06. The 4x400 relay of Culverson, McGhee, Richardson and Jayla Thomas won in a time of 4:20.08. Eehleeya Speed won the 300 hurdles (51.38), Madelyn Moran took first in the high jump (4-10) with Mya Phillips in third, McGhee added a silver in the 400, as did Richardson in the 200 and Destyni Porter finished second in the shot put.
Over in the boys 14-and-under, the 4x100 relay of Teagan Duffie, Montre Jackson, Jalen Thomas and Chandler Wells took third, as did the 4x400 that included Braylon Bass, Israel Bodwin, Jackson and Thomas. Jackson and Orlando Routt added individual bronzes in the 100 and long jump.
Kenedy Card has a big weekend in the girls 12-and-under group, as she won gold in the 800 in 2:42.98, took third in the long jump, and joined Ayriel McGhee, Aliah Menyweather and Khila Royal on the winning 4x400 (4:32.15). Royal would add a second gold in the 80 hurdles in 14.71 and McGhee earned bronze in the 400.
Tristin Colbert claimed gold in the boys 12-and-under shot put with a throw of 34-02.00 and Julian Oliver was second in the high jump. The 4x400 relay with Silas Cortinas, Martrail Jackson, Malachi Landry and Xzavien Ware took second, Landry, Ware, Myson Paul and Qua’Mari Thomas were third in the 4x100 and Jackson added a silver in the 80 hurdles.
Janiyah Williams was victorious in the girls 10-and-under high jump by clearing 4-00.00. The 4x400 relay of Maleah Ferguson, Taylor Rawls, Amiliyana Speed and Adriana Willis won in a time of 5:27.07, while Ferguson, Zachery Zoey, Janiyah Anderson and Adriana Williams were second in the 4x100. Rawls was also third in the 800.
The boys 10-and-under 4x100 relay with Jackson Cole, Kelvin Lewis, Deon Smith and Kimani Williams took first place in 55.80, while Williams was also second in the 100, as was Cole in the 200. Andrew Ellis, Charles Ferguson, Nehemiah Homes and Zion Powellsally took third in the 4x400, Holmes and Major Pettway were second and third in the shot put and Jaxson Manning was the runner-up in the high jump.
The girls 8-and-under Peyton Oliver win the high jump by clearing 2-10, with Samiyah Hope, Isabella Bodwin and Kody Pettway tying for second. Marlaysia Noble was the runner-up in the 400 and Noble, Pettway, Isabella Vargas and McKenzie Colbert were third in the 4x100 relay. Cameryn Bratton won the boys 8-and-under long jump with a mark of 11-02.00, with Mitchell Walker placing third in the 400.
In the girls 6-and-under, McKenzie Colbert won the 50 meters in a time of 8.78 seconds, and over in boys 6-and-under, Bishop Crosby took second place in the 50 and third place in the 100.