While the team totals of the Bossier Bearkat Relays were not official late Thursday night, what was certain after the meet at Airline High School was completed is that the Haughton boys’ and Parkway girls’ track teams have been dominant through the first three weeks of the outdoor track season.
The two teams, both coming off victories in the Airline Viking Relays a week ago, are doing it different ways. Haughton, led by one of the fastest sprinters in the nation — Josh Lister — have separated themselves locally in the sprints and relays.
For coach Kent Falting and his Lady Panthers, it has been the distance events.
Parkway senior Lindsey Hutchinson paced the Parkway distance group by winning the 1,600 (12:55) and 3,200 meter (5:49) races. Right behind Hutchinson was freshmen teammate Jazz Rasouliyan, who finished second in both events, with a 5:50 and 13:02, respectively.
Lister won the 100 meters again with a hand time of 10.4 and also ran on the winning sprint relay teams for the Bucs. Kynan Hayes helped Haughton with quality points in both 100 and 200 meters as well.
Head coach Kyle Wilkerson plans expanding Lister’s workload by adding the 200 meters next week.
“He has had some injury problems last year and some this year in football,” Wilkerson said. “We are trying to bring him along so he can be healthy at the end of the season.”
The Lady Panthers, despite scoring 36 points in the two longest individual races for the second week in a row, were not at full strength Thursday. Adrianna Wilder and Carly Hanson will be running Saturday at South Lake Carroll in Dallas.
Pushing the Panthers on the track were the Airline Lady Vikings led by junior Brittany Roberson. Roberson won the 200 meters, 400 meters, and passed Hutchinson on the anchor leg of the 1,600 meter relay to help her team win that event as well.
North DeSoto boys discus throwers continued their dominance, finishing 1-2 for the third straight week of the season. The Griffins are led by Hunter Bates and freshman Johnny Mitchell. The Griffins also picked up 20 points from Chase Walker, who won the high jump (6’4) and the long jump (20’3).
Loyola’s Lucas Jackson won the boys javelin for the third straight week. The sophomore, who opened the season with personal best of 200’9 inches in the North DeSoto meet , had a best of 189’0 at Bossier.
The Haughton boys team has won the District 1-5A for the last three years. The Bucs also were the region champs in 2014. After finishing third at the state track meet last year to two private schools, Wilkerson is looking to shore up other event areas to help Haughton be a more complete team.
“We are always strong in the sprints and we are getting quality points in the pole vault and high jump,” Wilkerson said. “We need to be a little more consistent in the distance events.”
Falting attributes much of the Lady Panther success to the work that the distance runners put in over the summer and during cross country.
“We have adopted a philosophy that every day we are going to get better,” Falting said. “If it rains, we don’t call off practice. Even when I want to call off practice, they give me a hard time and won’t let me.”