STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO
The Faith Academy of Marble Falls boys track-and-field team earned the best finish in program history at a state meet, finishing second at the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools Class 3A competition May 4 at Waco Midway High School stadium.
Sophomores Gus Henry, Grayson Poage, and Tyler Kwan and freshmen Brendan Thames and Case Coleman made up the state team.
“They’re talented guys, and they have very bright futures,” boys coach Jeremy Wentrcek said. “They’re very young and will return for the track team. They all play multiple sports, so we’re excited about that as well.”
Henry, who also plays basketball, led the way with three individual gold medals in the 110-meter high hurdles in 15.99 seconds, the long jump at a mark of 21 feet 3 inches, and a new school record in the high jump at 6 feet and 4 inches.
Head track and cross-country coach and lifetime sports coordinator Steven McCannon said Henry just missed being the boys high-point male athlete for the meet. That distinction goes to the athlete who scores the most individual points.
“He really defined what being clutch means,” McCannon said.
“It says a lot about his ability, his hard work, and desire,” Wentrcek said. “He’s very competitive in multiple sports. He came through big when we needed him to.”
Kwan was third in the high jump, clearing 6-2; fourth in the 300-meter hurdles in 42.31 seconds; and sixth in the long jump with a mark of 19-1.75.
Wentrcek said Kwan’s best trait, however, is his ability to listen and apply it in each event.
“Tyler is incredibly coachable,” he said. “He’s able to take the instruction you gave him and put it in practice. He’s very valuable in regard to his leadership ability and very focused.”
Wentrcek said coaches studied the times and distances of each athlete leading up to the state meet and calculated a projected point total. He wasn’t surprised by the results.
“We ran the points ahead of time,” he said. “We knew we had a shot to get in the top four. We had to have some other things happen. Not surprised – excited. We knew they’d do well if the kids did what expected them to do.”
Bad weather forced officials to have field events and running events on the same day instead of putting the field events a day earlier.
ON THE GIRLS SIDE
The Lady Flames finished 14th overall at the state meet. Sophomore Kenna Eubanks earned the silver medal in the pole vault with a leap 8-0, which was also a new personal record by more than a foot.
“She has worked hard all year to get better,” McCannon said. “This was only her first season in track.”
McCannon noted the Lady Flames had a small number at the state meet but received something very valuable: experience.
“The girls had a great season, and, even with a small team, they competed hard at every meet,” he said. “They will be even better next year”
FAITH ACADEMY RESULTS
800 – 5, Case Coleman, 2:06.70; 110 hurdles – 1, Gus Henry, 15.99; 300 hurdles – 4, Tyler Kwan, 42.31; 4×400 relay – 4, Faith Academy (Brendan Thames, Tyler Kwan, Gus Henry, Case Coleman), 3:43.53; high jump – 1, Gus Henry, 6-4 (new school record), 3, Tyler Kwan, 6-2; long jump – 1, Gus Henry, 21-3, 6, Tyler Kwan, 19-1.75; triple jump – 4, Tyler Kwan, 40-9, 5, Grayson Poage, 40-1
300 hurdles – 5, Valerie Coffey, 51.53; 4×400 relay – 7, Faith Academy (Valerie Coffey, Gavi Phillips, Zoe Stedman, Susanna Quinn), 4:34.94; pole vault – 2, Kenna Eubanks, 8-0, 5, Juliette McCannon, 7-0