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Saturday Night Lights track meets for ages 6 to senior citizen

Kason O'Riley on the high jump

Faith Academy of Marble Falls is the site of three Saturday Night Lights track-and-field meets for ages 6 to 80-plus. Marble Falls High School senior Kason O’Riley will compete in the high jump. The first event is 4:30-8:30 p.m. Saturday, August 1. The other dates are August 15 and 29. Spectator admission is $5 for ages 19 and older and free for ages 18 and younger. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro

When the Saturday Night Lights track-and-field meets come to Faith Academy of Marble Falls, three local athletes will definitely grab the spotlight.

The three meets, for ages 6 to 80-plus, are 4:30-8:30 p.m. August 1, 15, and 29 at the private Christian school, 3151 RR 1431 East. Admission is $5 for spectators 19 and older and free for ages 18 and younger.

COVID-19 health and safety protocols will be followed.

The event is hosted by Faith Academy and part of the Track for Life series. 

The August 1 meet will feature a trio of local high school standouts: runner Bailey Goggans and high jumper Kason O’Riley, both of Marble Falls High School, and decathlete Gus Henry of Faith Academy. 

During the Track is Back meet July 7 at Faith Academy, Goggans clocked the fastest 800 meters — 2 minutes 4.93 seconds — by a high school girl in Texas, according to the Texas Track and Field Coaches Association. It’s the third-fastest time by a Texas high school girl on any track; two faster times were set by Texans outside of the state.

At the same meet, O’Riley cleared 6 feet 8 inches and was close to clearing 6-11. 

Meet organizer and Faith head track coach Steve McCannon said Henry performed well in various events at the July 7 meet, particularly the high jump, clearing a personal best of 6-4. 

Athletes from 6 years up will compete in age groups. The meets are open to all; you don’t have to be affiliated with a team or club. Events include long jump, high jump, pole vault, 100 meters, 1,500 meters, 3,000 meters, 300-meter hurdles, and 400-meter hurdles. 

While he couldn’t say for sure if other top athletes will compete, McCannon did say meets earlier in the summer drew athletes from across the country.

“People from Arkansas came to the last meet,” he said. “People are traveling to get times or marks. It gives the opportunity to get marks and stay in shape. We’re providing a safe environment so kids from all over can come. They’re trying to put a different mark on the board as they’re trying to get to the next level.”

McCannon noted the meets will follow safety protocols for COVID-19: Everyone must wear a mask, including athletes when they’re not warming up or competing; submit to temperature checks; and maintain social distancing of 6 feet.