PHARR — The Edinburg Vela boys and Edinburg Economedes girls dominated the District 31-6A track meet Wednesday afternoon at PSJA Stadium in Pharr, with the SaberCats and Jaguars cruising to team district championships.
The Vela boys tallied 197 points as a team, nearly twice the total of second-place Mission High, while the Econ girls recorded 175 team points to pull ahead of a hard-charging Vela girls team late in the afternoon.
The SaberCats cleaned up in the boys relay races, capturing first place in the 4×100 and 4×400 while taking second in the 4×200. Vela’s Delvid Cupa posted a personal record of 21 feet, 9.5 inches in the long jump to take first place while Ivan Mendoza won the 200-meter dash in one of the most exciting finishes of the day.
Mendoza clocked a personal record in the 200 and edged PSJA High’s Jaime Lopez by three hundredths of a second.
Briana Mitchell and Dianett Garcia were two of the biggest contributors for the Economedes girls.
Mitchell dominated in each of her events, leading the Jaguars to first-place finishes in the 4×200 relay and the 200, where she set a personal record in 26.36 seconds.
Garcia, who advanced to the Class 6A cross country state championship during the fall, took first place in the 400 and high jump, where she set a PR with a jump of 5 feet, 4 inches.
Among the most impressive individual performances of the meet, though, were Mission sprinter Tajh Jones and distance runner Rogelio Aguirre.
Jones, one of 31-6A’s leading receivers on the football field, took first in a closely-contested 100-meter dash in an 11.25-second sprint and captured the district title in the triple jump. He posted a leap of 41 feet, 9 inches, beating every other competitor by nearly 2 feet.
“It feels good because of the hard work that I’ve been putting in but knowing there’s a long way to go to get better,” Jones said. “I believe I performed my best in the long jump because of the consistency in all six jumps. Even though I took second, there is still a big jump in me waiting to come out. So now within these next couple of weeks before the area (meet), I have to work harder in practice to achieve that big jump.”
Aguirre, meanwhile, pieced together the most dominant performance of any distance runner at the meet.
He took first in all three of his events, winning the 800, 1,600 and 3,200. In his final race, Aguirre left his competition in the dust and won the 3,200 by nearly 40 seconds and set the best mark of any runner throughout the Valley this season with a 9:29.19.
“It’s a great feeling watching Roy sweep the distance events and earn 30 points by himself for the team,” Jones said of Aguirre’s performance. “I’m honored to be his teammate.”
A pair of throwers — PSJA North’s Jaylah Martinez and PSJA High’s Kaylah Hernandez — also set themselves apart with their showings during the district meet.
Martinez won first place in both shot put and discus. The Raiders’ star thrower dominated in discus, out-throwing the rest of her competition by 8 feet, and won the shot put by more than a foot to make her a heavy favorite heading into the area meet.
Hernandez took fourth in discus and second in shot put, nearly unseating Martinez with a new personal record toss of 35 feet, 8 inches.
“It felt great honestly,” Hernandez said. “I’m pretty excited and a bit nervous to be able to move onto the area meet. I feel a lot more confident than I did my freshman year, which was my first year ever throwing, but now that I have more of the technique down I feel good.”