COMMERCE – Melissa’s Bria Bullard and Kaylee Lewis are headed to the Class 4A state meet in Austin. Both sprinters picked up gold medals at Saturday’s Class 4A Region 2 Track and Field Championships at Texas A&M University-Commerce - Lewis in the 100-meter dash and Bullard in the 200.
Each turned in a state-qualifying time in another event as well.
Lewis’ 100-meter gold came with a time of 11.54 seconds and Bullard was nearby, clocking in at 11.68 for the bronze. Bullard’s effort, as the best third-place time in the four regions, qualified her for state as a “wild card” in the event.
In the 200, Bullard ran a gold-medal time of 23.95 seconds while Lewis took a state-qualifying silver with a time of 24.05 seconds.
This will be these Lady Cards’ second trip to the state meet in Austin. Bullard, a junior, was a state-qualifying sprinter last year for Class 5A Sherman. The sophomore Lewis made state last year in both the 100 and 200 meters, earning bronze in the 200 and narrowly missing bronze in the 100.
This year’s Class 4A state championships are slated for May 11 and will again be held at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the University of Texas campus.
“The wind was kind of coming at an angle … but other than that I was feeling pretty good,” Lewis said shortly after her turn in the 100 meters Saturday. Her goals now? “I just want to win state too.”
“I don’t want to sound arrogant,” head coach Clay McCarter said the next day by phone, “but we kind of expected that. … I was very and excited and pleased for them, but I wouldn’t necessarily say I was surprised. The only unknown was [2018 state-qualifier] Alexis Brown, the girl from Kennedale. This is the first year they’ve been in our region. … Bria and Kaylee, they’re super-talent kids and all they do is run track. They don’t play any other sports. They’ve kind of committed their whole lives to being fast.”
As a team at regionals, Melissa’s girls finished tied for sixth with Celina in the 30-team field.
Other Lady Cards who earned a spot at this meet and competed were Susan Blake in the shot put; Marisa Brunson, Lillian Rogers and Raegan Knight in pole vault; Payton Wallace, Jayden Bullard, Bria Bullard and Lewis in the 4X100 relay; and Jayden Bullard in the 400.
“We had two seniors compete and, unfortunately, they didn’t qualify for state – Marisa and Suzie,” McCarter said. “I’m proud of those seniors for sticking with it and being a part of it. I hate that it didn’t work out for them to go to Austin. But we’re in a super-competitive track region. I don’t feel like they have a thing to hang their head about.”