The Lady Bulldogs of Summer Creek are hitting a challenge head on and are optimistic they will prevail. With state experience and a wave of youth talent at the cusps of breaking through, the new 6A classification is a challenge they are up for. Head Coach Elton Ervin and a couple of his girls discussed their potential and the path they need to follow.
According to the coaches, the kids have been performing up to expectations, but like the boys, the girls have been hit by Mother Nature as well and saw meets and competitions get cancelled. They recently competed at the College Park meet near The Woodlands, TX. In the 4×1 Daron, Rideaux, Reed, and Henderson took 1st place with a time of 47.70. Angelica Jacobs was 3rd in the 800m run with a time of 2:21.03 good for 6 points. Justice Edwards was 4th in the 100m hurdles with a time of 15.36 good for 4 points and won the Long Jump measuring at 18-04.50. Kee-myah Henderson finished in the top 10 at the 100m-dash timing at 12.96. In the 4×2 Mayes, Davis, Reed, and Edwards received 12 points earning 3rd place with a time of 1:44.28. Bryanah Rideaux won the 400m-dash running 56.35 and picking up 10 points. In the 4×4 relay the girls (Jacobs, Bean, Adekunle, Rideaux) once again were victorious finishing 1st with a time of 3:54.25 getting 20 points. Jasmine Stallworth got 4 points on a 4th place finish in discus throw. Overall the girls received 92 points and were second overall.
Summer Creek won district last season and made it all the way to regionals. Now that they are in 6A up from 4A, they are trying to focus on adjusting to their new classification. “We had a very young team last year so we were just looking to get better,” Coach Elton Ervin said. He believes that his girls can compete at the new level, especially with the success they had at state. The JV girls have adjusted well; the varsity girls haven’t had much of an opportunity to test out their new class due to the weather conditions.
Bryanah Rideaux, Angelica Jacobs, Catherine Fisher, Janine Galloway, and Tiara Maze have been the senior leaders and stepped into their roles well. When asked how they’ve demonstrated their leadership, Coach Elton Ervin said: “By their actions.” Even with the good vocal leaders, the others lead by the way they carry themselves. Junior Alexandra Cooper thinks that if the girls keep positive and stay as a team they will have all the success in the world. Personally, she has already broken the record for triple jump with a distance of 36’ 7’’ and is going for more in her upcoming meets. “I like this team. I really like being a part of this,” Cooper said. Senior Bryanah Rideaux runs the 200m and 400m as well as the relay teams. Her main goal is to drop her 400m time. Her personal record in that is 55.5 and the goal is to be near 54. She has committed to Rice University and she wants to improve as much as possible before she runs for the Owls. Before she heads out, she sees the team qualifying for the state meet in many events. “We have lots of really good athletes and we’re coming together strong,” Rideaux said.
For the seniors that made it to the state meet last year, the coaching staff expects them to have their times where they need to be which is near the top in the state. The 4×1, 4×2, and 4×4 relay teams are expected to excel this season. The 4×4 team consists of Rideaux, Jacobs, Bean, and Adekunle. They are expected to compete at a very high level this season.
The youth in the JV program has been a positive spot for the Summer Creek girls track and field program. “Our [JV] team is really stout, the future looks very bright,” Coach Elton Ervin stated. The 4×1 and 4×2 relay teams are undefeated while the 4×4 group has only lost once. Based on the JV district ranking, the Lady Bulldogs lead in a number of the categories.
Elton Ervin ran the 400m and the 800m at Westbury High School in Houston, TX. After high school he attended the University of Texas in Austin, TX where he continued his track and field career.
Written by Mark M. Johnson