• Centennial freshman Savoria Anderson, shown in action earlier this season, qualifed for the UIL Class 5A state track and field championships in the triple jump after finishing third Satruday at Class 5A Region II championships. COURTESY PHOTO/SHAW STUDIO

Centennial’s Anderson qualifies for state

Centennial’s Savoria Anderson made history Saturday becoming the first freshman in the girls track and field program’s history to qualify for the state meet.

Anderson’s effort of 38 feet, 7.75 inches in the triple jump was good enough for a third-place finish at the Class 5A Region II track and field championships at Texas-Arlington’s Maverick Stadium. The top two competitors at regionals are guaranteed a berth at state. Anderson’s distance was the best among all competitors at the four regional meets that didn’t finish first or second, giving her the wildcard slot at state.

“She just has God-given talent,” Centennial coach Sarah Eden said. “She works extremely hard but she’s still learning. She has some ways to go as far as technique goes. We knew coming up she was going to be really good.”

Anderson is the second Centennial track and field athlete to qualify for state. Kendall Rodriguez qualified in 2015 in the 300-meter hurdles and finished seventh in a time of 45.36 seconds.

The UIL Class 5A state meet will take place May 11 at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin. Anderson will jump at 2 p.m.

Centennial junior Randon Gray nearly joined Anderson at state. Gray cleared 15 feet Saturday in the pole vault to tie for second place with Mansfield Timberview junior Ethan Feliciano. Gray missed out on a trip to state after losing a last-height-cleared tiebreaker to Feliciano.

“Randon competed very hard on every pole vault attempt and was very close to moving on to state,” Centennial boys track and field coach Terry Strambler said.

Burleson sophomore Caleb Kirby cleared 13 feet to finish 12th in the competition.

“Caleb had a great season and Saturday was no different,” Burleson boys track and field coach Steve Goben said. “Last year, he would have let his nerves get the best of him in a meet like regionals. This year, he jumped out and cleared three heights before missing at 13-6. I know he will work hard in the offseason and come back even better next year.”

The Lady Spartans finished with 18 points to tie with Highland Park for eighth place at regionals. Mansfield Lake Ridge tallied 128 to take the regional title. McKinney North placed second (96 points) and Lancaster was third (71).

“I’m so excited about them all,” Eden said. “It was just a great, great performance. I was just hoping some of them could make it to the finals. I’m hoping how things turned out got them pumped up for next season. We are so young.”

The Spartans placed 19th with 12 points. Lancaster took the regional title with 98 points. Mansfield Legacy was second (69 points) and Mansfield Lake Ridge was third (47).

Centennial freshman Harli Woolsey finished fifth in both the 3,200 and 1,600-meter runs. Woolsey clocked a time of 11 minutes, 30.78 seconds in the 3,200 and a time of 5:10.60 in the 1,600. Junior Sarah Trammel was seventh in the 3,200 in a time of 11:30.81 and seventh in the 1,600 in a time of 5:16.61.

The Lady Spartans 1,600 relay team of Anderson, freshman Victoria Brown and juniors Toni Howard and Kertisa Amos reached Saturday’s finals finishing fifth in a time of 3:57.45. Junior Jaelyn Tucker was eighth in the finals of the 100 in a time of 12.33.

Amos finished eight in the high jump after clearing five feet. In the pole vault, sophomore Sydney Hays competed but didn’t clear a height. Brown placed 13th in the 300 hurdles prelims in a time of 48.83 and didn’t advance to the finals.

For the Spartans, junior Corey Price finished fifth in the finals of the 110 hurdles in a time of 14.93. In the 1,600, sophomore Nick Newby finished fourth in a time of 4:23.85.

“Nick was just amazing and had a personal best time by 11 seconds,” Eden said.

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