By CLINT FOSTER
AUSTIN – Gordon's track and field team may not have brought home any hardware from the UIL Track and Field State Meet in Austin over the weekend, but don't think for a second that means their trip south wasn't a tremendous success.
All six of Gordon's athletes who participated at the University of Texas' Mike A. Myers Stadium showed just how far they've come over the course of this year and either broke, or came close to breaking, school and personal records across the board.
Gordon Athletics Director Joe Kostiha said his athletes' collective performance at state is a testament to their work ethic and year-round dedication.
"It's a tribute to how hard our kids work," he said. "Our kids got out their and worked their tails off and they reaped the benefits.
"[How we did at state] shows the progress that our athletes have made. With how our kids looked at the beginning of the year, it's a dramatic difference. The difference is our offseason and the way we lift weights. I think we were a lot stronger at the end of the year than a lot of other people just because of our weight training. I think, too, that our kids' mentality has changed and we built on some of the success we had last year."
"They didn't just go to the state track meet, they competed."
The group that shined the brightest was the Longhorns' 4x400-meter relay team that crossed the finish line in a school-record 3:31 minutes for a team-best fourth place.
Kostiha said the group of Xavier Castaneda, Garrett Collins, Seth Wheeler and Caleb Johnston shaved a total of 18 seconds off of their final time from the beginning of the season to their last race at state.