April 3, 2009
University/College Women's High Jump Champion
Destinee Hooker, Texas
On what she was trying to accomplish today: I was trying to break the record today. That was my main focus, but I got mentally sidetracked a bit listening to the crowd cheer me on. I should have focused on my rhythm and the things coach wanted me to do.
On if her expectations were higher today since she broke the indoor record: Yes, definitely. I knew that I was able to jump that height. People had expectations for me to clear that since I did it before, so they expect me to do it again. I'm still satisfied and blessed with that height.
On having participated in the Texas Relays since high school: It's definitely a good feeling to be close to home. I have my family and boyfriend in the stands here today, and it's a good feeling to be able to perform in front of them after practicing so hard for so many years in this event.
University/College Men's Long Jump Champion
Reindell Cole, Cal State Northridge
On what it means to win at the Texas Relays: It definitely feels good, because I am just coming off of surgery. I had surgery back in January, so I haven't had much time to practice. It just feels good to come back and be able to win this event, especially with all of the competitors meeting here from the east and west coasts.
University/College Women's Long Jump Champion
Jeomi Maduka, Cornell
On winning at such a big event: Oh, it's really cool. I came here in high school, because I lived in Arlington. But ever since I went off to college, I've wanted to come back. It feels great, because it feels like I'm back at home.
High School Boys Pole Vault Champion
On how long he has been pole vaulting:
Jack Whitt, Norman North
On his winning vault: The jump didn't feel as good as I wanted it to, and I honestly didn't think I was going to make it. But, whenever I went over it, I realized that I had cleared the bar. I had no idea I was going to make the bar on that jump, but I did, and it was just an amazing feeling.
I've been vaulting since the seventh grade, but I honestly wasn't very good until the end of my sophomore year in high school. I finally got serious about it last year.
On his future goals: I'd like to one day get the national and world records. I've already met my goal, because I wanted to jump 18 feet by my 19th birthday. So, whatever happens now, I will be completely happy with.
High School Girls 4x800 Meter Relay Champions
Tia Leake, Long Beach Poly
On the race and what worked for the team: I ran the first leg, so my job was to get out there and try my best to get my team out in front. I did that, and my teammates did the rest of the work. They are wonderful and I'm happy that we won.
High School Boys 4x800 Meter Relay Champions
Drew Butler, The Woodlands
On winning at the Texas Relays: It's a really good feeling. It's good to get out there in front of this crowd and run as fast as we did. It was pretty nerve-racking, but it definitely was a lot of fun.
High School Boys High Jump Champion
Toddrick Allen, Plano East
On capturing the high jump in front of a large crowd: It feels really good to win. The Texas Relays is one of the biggest meets in the state, so it was amazing to be able to come out here in front of all these people and win this event.
University/College Women's Discus Champion
D'Andra Carter, Texas Tech
On her throwing today: I was happy with the outcome. I wish I had thrown it a little farther there, but I've had some setbacks, so I'm just getting back into the groove. But, it definitely feels good to win.
High School Girls Pole Vault Champion
Rachel Fisher, Unattached
On winning the event and coming close to getting the Relays record: It feels fantastic. My goal today was to just come out here and jump and have fun. I had some problems earlier this season with vaulting and the competition, but I forged through that and now I love it. It feels great to be first and on top. It doesn't happen everyday, but when it does, it feels fantastic.
On the Texas Relays: It's a great meet. I wanted to be in it last year, but I wasn't able to jump the qualifying height back then, because I had just started vaulting last February.
High School Girls 3,200-Meter Champion
Chelsey Sveinsson, Dallas Greenhill
On her strategy for the race: How the race went was exactly how I imagined it. I was going to stick with the leader. I knew Sarah [Andrews, The Woodlands] was going to be up there, so I was just going to stick with her and then just do my thing on the last two, three laps, take control and drive it home.
University/College Men's Discus Champion
Hickel Woolery, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
On winning the event: It feels good. My coach has somebody who has won here before so it is good. I'm feeling really good about this today. This is the best I've thrown so far this season.
High School Girls High Jump Champion
Nikki McNorton, Channelview
On winning at the Texas Relays: It's definitely special. I just try to come out here and do my best and work hard. I'm glad all of the hard work I've put in paid off today with this victory.
High School Boys 3,200-Meter Champion
Craig Lutz, Flower Mound Marcus
On successfully defending his crown at the Texas Relays: It feels amazing, because this year was more stacked than the previous one. The district race wasn't in the middle of this meet, so there were better runners here. It feels good to be able to win twice, because it's such a hard race.
High School Boys Discus Champion
Hayden Baillio, Whitesboro
On his final winning throw: It felt good. I was throwing well all day. On the last throw, I just managed to get it right and hit it. I'm more of a muscle thrower, so it's more about how hard I yell and hit it to get it right. I'm excited to win this event, especially with all of the strong competitors that were here today.
High School Girls Sprint Medley Relay
Akawkaw Ndipagbor, Long Beach Poly
On what it means to win at the Relays: It feels really good, because we haven't been here in 12 years, but our school holds the record in this event. We just went out there by God's glory and we did what we could do. We feel really blessed to have won this event and the 4x800 meter relay earlier in the day. We have a lot of pride, but we also stay humble, because that's the only way to approach running.
High School Boys Sprint Medley Relay
Howard Shepard, Lancaster
On what it means to him to win at the Texas Relays: It feels good. I think I started off in third, so I just tried to ride him and then kick it in as much as I could in the end. My strategy paid off, and it feels really good to win here tonight.
High School Girls Long Jump Champion
Jessica Edwards, Fort Bend Austin
On her performance on Friday: I jumped really, really well in my practice runs. All day I was feeling confident. I just came out, attacked the board and everything fell in place. I did really well today. The wind was good, the track was good and it was a good day.
High School Boys Long Jump Champion
Marquise Goodwin, Rowlett
On his performance on Friday: It was all right. I came out and worked hard through my injury. My groin has been injured these past couple of weeks. I rested and did treatment and all that good stuff, and just came out here to perform like I knew I should do.
University/College Women Distance Medley Relay Champion
LaTavia Thomas, LSU
On the way her team ran today: It went as planned. We wanted the two 200 runners to go out and get the lead early, so it was a perfect race. It accomplished the goal. We just wanted to come out here and win and have fun.
College Men Sprint Medley Relay Champions
Pablo Solares, Tec de Monterrey
On winning a heat at the Texas Relays: It's a good feeling. I ran this meet before and it's a good race. This is the first time we've had a Sprint Medley Relay at the Texas Relays and I think everyone was super excited about it. We had a shot to win and we did it so I'm sure everyone's happy.
University Men Sprint Medley Relay Heat 2 Champions
Trey Harts, Baylor
On winning a heat at the Texas Relays: It feels great. Two years ago, we lost the sprint medley to UTEP. They edged us out by a couple hundredths of a second, but it's nice coming back and getting the win this time.
On the competition: This is just about the best of the best. You really can't ask for better competition here. Everyone showed up and we just performed a little bit better.
Quentin Summers, Baylor
On winning a heat at the Texas Relays: We love running. Texas Relays are really my favorite meet of the year. We wanted the wind to be a little less but we can't complain, it wasn't cold or anything. We had fun and won one.
Chris Gowell, Baylor
On winning a heat at the Texas Relays: It was awesome. We really wanted to get the national record today but it was just so tough out there with the wind. It's an amazing atmosphere and it's also great running with these guys. They're famous. It's great to be a part of the team.
On the competition: This is big competition, an amazing standard. I've only heard about what this is like but to actually win here is awesome. It's an amazing place to run.
University/College Women 3000-Meter Steeplechase Champion
Becky Wade, Rice
On winning the final: I ran here as a high schooler. I got second in steeple last year but I pretty much got dominated. It feels good. It was nice to have my teammate to run with.
On the meaning of competing in the Texas Relays: I have a twin brother and an older brother and sister that go here (UT), so they're all here with their friends and roommates and my parents. It's kind of like home away from Rice.
High School Boys 2,000 Meter Steeplechase Champion
Zachary Ornelas, Cedar Park Vista Ridge
On having the opportunity to run at the Texas Relays: It's everyone's dream in high school to make it here. To some people, this is their state meet. You've got to here some of these guys talk, it's 'We're going to Austin!' I'd just really like to thank the Texas Relays for giving me the chance to run the steeplechase. This is the only meet in all of Texas that has steeplechase. This is awesome.
On how he ran tonight: I was one second off the meet record. I went into it in massive amounts of pain. I found out yesterday that my left hip is about an inch higher than my right hip. I was thinking maybe of pulling out of the race to preserve my career but I pushed through it. It was a good time for me. I can't complain. I'm very happy.
University Men 3,000 Meter Steeplechase Champion
J.J. Hernandez, UT-Pan American
On winning in his final Texas Relays: It feels awesome. I thank God. I ran strong today. It was a very tough race. I'm thankful to win at the Texas Relays as a senior, to get to go out on top. I'm going to take this home today and look forward to the next meet.
University Men 4x1500 Meter Relay Champion
Michael Chinchar, Arkansas
On the race: We were coming in planning on winning the whole time because we've won this race 10 years in a row, 11 now. Even with the fall, I went over and talked to Alex (McClary), he was the third leg, and he just said, "We've got to run with pride. We're the Razorbacks." I said we were going to run by 60 meters anyways, we were 60 meters behind. It was just going to be a race now. It was a great race. Everybody ran well on our team. We showed our worth at the beginning of the year, I think.
On the near disqualification Arkansas suffered during the race: That stuff happens in relays. I dropped the baton here last year, luckily they called the race back. With a relay, 30 people on a track, anything can happen so you've just got to be ready for anything.