Lady Mustangs steal the show at state meet

The ladies of the Parkland 4x200 meter relay team, Alexis Patterson, Ija Mumford, Del-Nique Penn and Diamond Lyerly, broke the 3-A state record at the indoor state championships.

Lady Mustangs steal the show at state meet
March 07
08:58 2019

The ladies from the Parkland track and field team finished second in the state indoor meet. Finishing second is a great feat, but the ladies also set several state records along the way.

Senior sprinter/hurdler, Alexis Patterson, may have had her best meet as a high school athlete at the indoor state championships. Patterson set a school record in the 55-meter dash with a blazing time of 7.02, finished first, and set 3-A state record in the 55-meter hurdles (8.03), was member of 4×200 meter relay team that set a new 3-A state record (1:41.95), and was named 3-A state meet MVP.

Patterson was hoping for a successful indoor season and says everything came together at the right time for the state indoor championships. She was so locked in during the championships, she was unaware of her state record until her interview with The Chronicle.

“Wow, I didn’t even know I had done that,” she said about breaking the state record, surprisingly. “At Parkland everyone says that your second year is the best and this was my second year, so I knew it was going to be great.”

Heading into arguably her best race, the 55-meter hurdles, Patterson’s only thought was to “just run,” she said. She ran the second leg on the 4×200 meter relay. According to Patterson, they dominated the race from start to finish.  

Patterson is heading to North Carolina State University in the fall. She feels this indoor season was a great way to set up her outdoor season.

 “My plan for the outdoor season is to set personal records in all of my races or at least drop all of my times,” she said.  

Head coach Antwan Hughes said he predicted Patterson to have a very successful indoor season based on how she finished last year.

 “She worked really hard and her performances really speak for themselves,” he said. “To break the state record, break the school record, and be the state MVP, she deserves all the recognition she gets.

“She has put in a lot of work in the short time she has been here. To do what she has done here is huge, in my opinion.”

Ija Mumford was sort of an unknown coming into this season, because she was a freshman. Hughes said he didn’t know what to expect, but knew she would be a force in both the long and triple jump events.

Mumford had an unbelievable day at the state championships as well. She set the 3-A state record in the long jump. She also set the school record in the triple jump at 38 feet 3 inches that ranked her as the number one freshman in the nation in the event. She was also on the record-setting 4×200 meter relay team with Patterson.

Mumford has been running track for several years, so her performance at the state championships was not a total surprise for her.

 “I knew that I would come in and perform pretty well,” she said. “When I came in, I wasn’t as strong, so the coaches have taught me to drive more and get out harder. I would say that I have progressed a lot since I have been here.”

To break the state record as a freshman did come as a surprise to her. She said she was proud of herself for accomplishing such a feat so early in her high school career. Mumford also has great potential in the sprints as she finished 10th overall in the 55-meter dash.

Joining Patterson and Mumford on the 4×200 meter relay were Del-Nique Penn and Diamond Lyerly. The team is ranked number nine in the nation. Hughes feels his team can run with the best the country has to offer.

“We call the 4×2 our signature event, because we always try to have a dominant team in that event,” said Hughes. “In years past, the girls that were here had started something and we have to try and continue the legacy.

“I predicted us to win the 4×200 at the beginning of the year, but I didn’t know they would run as fast as they did.”

As head coach of the Mustangs, Hughes has routinely produced a very competitive team, while also developing his athletes to compete on the collegiate level. He credits the Parkland administrative staff for giving him and his athletes the opportunity to compete on a high level.

Hughes also gave a lot of credit to his coaching staff for the hard work they put in on a daily basis.

“I am blessed to have some great coaches around me, because I couldn’t do it all by myself,” he said. “I can’t take credit for everything this team has done.”

The Parkland girls have finished second in the two previous state championship meets (2018 outdoor and 2019 indoor). Hughes says they will go back to the drawing board to see if they can finally bring home that state title.

About Author

Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

Related Articles


Featured Sponsor

Receive Chronicle Updates

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.



More Sponsors