AUSTIN — Spring Hill senior sprinter Alyiah Davis padded an already impressive track record built in two previous appearances at the state track and field meet.
Davis made it look as simple as one, two, three, winning gold in the 100-meter dash, grabbing silver in the 200 and running a leg on Spring Hill’s bronze-medalist 800 relay on Saturday in front of 15,362 spectators during the first session, which featured 1A and 3A track events at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
The senior sprinter, headed to run for national powerhouse LSU, topped all area qualifiers with her three-medal effort on the track.
Hawkins junior Hunter Fair pocketed bronze in the 1600, and Rusk sprinter Derrick McDuff Jr. matched his finish with third in the 400, as did the Grapeland girls’ 400 relay during the first session.
Longview’s duo of Eric Hawkins (second, 200) and Nick Young (third, 200) earned medals also as a total of 14,217 watched the 5A-only evening competition.
Davis ended a stellar career with seven medals: four individuals (one gold, two silver, bronze) and three in the relays (one silver, two bronze).
In the 100, Davis sped down the straightaway in 11.77 seconds. Davis beat out West Oso’s Akeyla Mitchell (11.83). The appearance in the 100 marked the first at state for Davis.
“I wasn’t happy with my time, but I’m glad I got first,” Davis said. “It’s my senior year and first time making it to state in the 100.”
In between her two solo events, Davis positioned Spring Hill for a medal in the 4x200 with a strong third leg. The rest of the relay consisted of Mikai Brown, Courtney Dozier and T’Asia Black.
“I’m glad I ran a strong race,” Davis said of the relay. “We placed and got on the award’s stand.”
Davis left with silver in the 200 for the second straight year, trailing only Mitchell like she did in 2011. Mitchell posted a 23.84, with Davis a whisker behind with a personal-record of 23.89 after entering the homestretch tit-for-tat with her nemesis.
“If I would’ve had a little more, I would’ve won it,” said Davis, who stands 5-11. “The goal was to get three medals. I’m thankful I at least got a medal in each event and broke my PR in the 200. It’s been good.”
Fair stayed steady throughout the race to continue his stellar year.
He ended the first two laps fourth. With 100 meters left on the third lap, Fair forged into third, and held off Matt Fries of Port Aransas for the gold.
The race pitted two earlier gold medalists. Sanderson’s Williams Roberts backed up a win in the 800, getting first in 4:27.98 ahead of Candadian’s Elliot Webb (4:32.66).
“I got a PR and that’s about all you can ask for,” said Fair, who placed third in cross country in the fall, and has also qualified for state in tennis and band this year. “All the hard work paid off.”
Longview enjoyed the view from above on two different occasions, with Hawkins and Young both going up the stairs to receive medals.
Hawkins placed second in the 200 for the second straight year, running a 20.80 in a star-studded event. He finished behind South Grand Prairie’s Abraham Hall, who ran a national-leading 20.58.
Hawkins, an Arkansas signee, edged out defending champion Jermaine Authorlee of Galena Park North Shore, who took third at 20.86.
Hawkins also ran a leg on Longview’s fifth-place 400 relay.
Young bagged bronze in the 300 hurdles with a time of 37.74.
Grapeland’s 4x100 raced to third in 49.84 seconds behind Dallas Gateway (48.90) and Snook (49.03).
The Grapeland relay featured Jayde Westbrook, Kala Smith, Shaterrika Campbell and Paige Scott.
Westbrook also competed in the 100 hurdles, placing ninth.
As for McDuff, he represented a school believed to have gone two decades between state track berths.
McDuff challenged for the silver before settling for third at 47.68. He trailed Zack Bilderback of Celina (47.27) and Deon Hickey of Giddings (47.62).
“The guy from Celina was kicking hard and it made me kick harder,” said McDuff, who hopes to play football and run track at the next level. “My muscles got tight and I tried to push myself a little harder to finish the race. I came in the race sitting fourth. I’m pleased.”
UIL State Track and Field Championships
At Myers Stadium, Austin
Name School Class Event Mark Place
Brittany Arnold Canton 3A girls 400 58.36 6th
Chapel Hill Relay 3A boys 4x100 42.33 8th
Alyiah Davis Spring Hill 3A girls 100, 200 11.77, 23.89 1st, 2nd
Hunter Fair Hawkins 1A boys 1600 4:33.67 3rd
Grapeland Relay 1A girls 4x100 49.84 3rd
Chris Harris Overton 1A boys 400 49.55 5th
Eric Hawkins Longview 5A boys 200 20.80 2nd
Longview Relay 5A boys 4x100 41.25 5th
Derrick McDuff Rusk 3A boys 400 47.68 3rd
Spring Hill Relay 3A girls 4x200 141.28 3rd
Jayde Westbrook Grapeland 1A girls 100H 16.93 9th
Nick Young Longview 5A boys 300H 37.74 3rd