New track highlights relays return


It was windy, a little cold, and even a little rainy at times, but no one seemed to notice Friday at the Granbury Middle School track.

The Johnny Perkins Relays were back, and running events were being held on a brand spankin’ new surface, both of which took precedence over the weather.

The meet, named after one of the greatest athletes to ever play at Granbury High, was not held last year because the track was being made over.

Perkins was an all-state football player and all-purpose athlete at GHS, who went on to All-American status at Abilene Christian University and an NFL career with the New York Giants from 1976-83.

“It definitely means a lot to me to have them back,” said senior Ashley Bonugli. “I didn’t get the privilege of running in them last year, and I really missed them. It’s definitely special to be able to do them my senior year.”

As for the new track, Bonugli, a hurdler, is a big fan.

“It’s really soft, softer than what we were used to. It’s refreshing,” she said. “If you go off that hurdle wrong and land wrong on a hard surface, you can really hurt yourself.”

The Pirates and Lady Pirates each finished second in their respective divisions behind Weatherford. The Granbury girls scored 126 points to the Lady Kangaroos’ 155, while the Pirates tallied 127.5 to the Kangaroos’ 137.5.

The boys captured the only two gold medals for Granbury, with Chris Richardson clocking a 49.59 in the 400-meter dash. He also ran a leg of the 400 relay, along with Kevin Hennard, Kwaun Shaw and Michael Milson, that posted a winning time of 43.18.

For Richardson, competing in the Perkins Relays was extra special. After coming close to state as a sophomore (fourth place at regionals), he missed all of last season with a pulled hamstring.

“It feels really great. Hard work, perseverance is paying off,” he said.

“I enjoy it (the relays) very much. Everybody gets to see their kids.”

He was also happy to return to a new track.

“It’s really bouncy. Very comfortable.”

Richardson set the school record in the 400 a week earlier at Mineral Wells, running a 48.96 in the preliminaries. It bested the record of 49.55 by Royce Jesko, which had stood since 1982.

While the Lady Pirates didn’t win any gold medals, they had athletes score points in almost every event – as did the boys.

Bonugli (100 hurdles), Shelby Cline (high jump) and Emma Thomas (3200) won silver medals for the Lady Pirates. Capturing silver for the Pirates were Nick Doughty (triple jump), Charles Wallace (110 hurdles) and the 800 relay (Hennard, Shaw, Milson, Brandon Fichter).

Cline, who moved to Granbury from Tolar last year, had never experienced the Perkins Relays.

“It’s a new experience for me. It means a lot. I haven’t had a home meet in two years, and I’m just glad to finally have a home meet.”

And weather, well, something out of sorts always comes along with the Perkins Relays.

“They said it’s supposed to be 70. What happened there?” said Fichter, who was also experiencing his first Perkins Relays after moving to Granbury from Grand Prairie this school year.

“It’s state-of-the-art, nice and soft,” he added of the new track. “I like it. It’s easy to run on, good on the legs, like Heaven.”

Lady Pirate coach Mike Pinkerton said of the new track, “I have battled shin splints with the girls team until this year. Some will say a harder track is faster, but it can also tear you up.”

Pirate coach Jodie Scott said the overall performances of the teams is “a very good way to go into spring break.

“They moved well on the new surface. It has a different feel.

“It’s good for coaches to walk on too.”

[email protected] | 817-573-7066, ext. 256

Seventh Johnny Perkins Relays

Varsity Boys

Team scores

Weatherford 137.5, Granbury 127.5, Cleburne 115.5, Springtown 115, Stephenville 83, Brewer 40.

Top Granbury individual results

Shot put – 4. Brandon Lane, 40-3.25; 5. Alex Brown, 39-10.5.

Discus – 6. Brown, 117-11.5.

High jump – 5. Dillon Graham, 5-9.75; 6. Brendan Crosslin, 5-8.

Long jump – 4. Kwaun Shaw, 19-5; 6. Nick Doughty, 19-3.

Triple jump – 2. Doughty, 41-11.75; 4. Brandon Fichter, 40-1.

Pole vault – 3. Michael Milson, 13-0; 5. Luke Sandelin, 12-6.

3200 – 3. Kristian Samaniego, 10:45.70.

400 relay – 1. (Kevin Hennard, Shaw, Chris Richardson, Milson), 43.18.

800 – 6. David Henney, 2:14.40.

110 hurdles – 2. Charles Wallace, 15.27; 3. Crosslin, 15.59.

100 – 6. Hennard, 11.05.

800 relay – 2. (Hennard, Shaw, Milson, Fichter), 1:33.02.

400 – 1. Richardson, 49.59.

300 hurdles – 3. Wallace, 44.02.

1600 – 5. Samaniego, 5:04.09.

1600 relay – 3. (Shaw, Aleck Blohowiak, Fichter, Richardson), 3:36.44.

Varsity Girls

Team scores

Weatherford 155, Granbury 126, Stephenville 115, Brewer 81, Cleburne 60, Springtown 26.

Top Granbury individual results

Shot put – 3. Addison Winn, 30-8.75; 5. Sydney Teeter, 30-2.

High jump – 2. Shelby Cline, 5-0; 4. Jettin Murphy, 4-10.25; 5. Sarah Sledge, 4-10.

3200 – 2. Emma Thomas, 13:02.20; 4. Alexandra Hammond, 13:26.23.

400 relay – 6. (Sledge, Jennifer Kreig, Whitney Matos, Caroline Forrest), 52.84.

800 – 3. Rachael Perriello, 2:36.74.

100 hurdles – 2. Ashley Bonugli, 17.56.

100 – 4. Forrest, 13.12; 5. Matos, 13.36.

800 relay – 4. (Sunnye Thompson, Forrest, Kreig, Baylee Nemecek), 1:53.35.

400 – 6. Perriello, 1:05.74.

300 hurdles – 3. Bonugli, 51.65.

200 – 3. Thompson, 28.17; 6. Matos, 28.43.

1600 – 3. Thomas, 6:05.09.

1600 relay – 3. (Cline, Thompson, Matos, Krieig), 4:26.56.