No matter how hard the Argyle girls 4X400 meter relay team tried, year after year, they came up just short at the state meet—until this season.
The team of Brooke Robertson, Cassi Hargroves, Taylor Mueller and Laine Lowry brought a state championship trophy to Argyle High School, edging out Gatesville for the top spot in the 3A division.
Robertson, Mueller and Lowry are all seniors at AHS, and coach Kathi Olson said seeing the three of them win together means a lot to her.
“It was incredible watching them run and seeing what we did,” Olson said. “We worked really hard this season at making sure that we were prepared not only to get to state, but then to get up on the podium. That was our goal this year. I told them that we can’t just be content with getting to state. We have to up our game and get up on the podium.
“They accepted the challenge and did everything that I asked, even the really, really, really hard workouts they didn’t want to do. It’s just one of those seasons where everything came together perfectly at the right time when it was supposed to, and they all did what needed to be done at state.”
The team with Robertson, Mueller and Lowry earned a Silver medal at state in 2012.
“Earlier in the year, we had one of our best times with 3:59, and Big Spring was right there with us,” Olson said. “We did OK at district, and then when we got to area, Celina had gotten one of their girls back who had been out all season with an injury. My girls did a good job of holding them off, because they were right there on our tail the whole time. When we finished, we saw that we had just run the fastest time in school history with a 3:56.54.
“To that, it was like it had all come together. We saw Big Spring had landed a 3:57 as well, so we knew that we had one of the two times in the state. We did a great job at region…so we knew it would be a close race for the top spot.”
The 4X400 team has been to state each of the last four years.
Mueller, who is headed to the University of Texas in the fall, had already been accepted to the cheer squad for the Longhorns, and found out at the state meet that she was being offered a spot on the track team, as well.
“She well be on the cheer squad in the fall and run track in the spring,” Olson said. “And then on the next Tuesday after the meet, Laine, who has been accepted to TCU, gets a phone call from the coach there offering her a spot on the track team.”
Both girls received partial scholarships.
Robertson is headed to Angelo State University to play volleyball, where she will also be running track.
The Argyle senior said to be a part of a state championship team her senior year is very special for her.
“I can’t really find any words to describe it,” Robertson said. “It is something we have wanted all four years and something we worked hard for every day. It’s a relief to know that all of our hard work paid off.”
Cassie, the lone junior among the runners, said she has already got her eye on who might be her new teammates for next year, but added that this group is going to be hard to replicate.
“We’ve worked really hard for the past three years,” Hargroves said. “I’m not sure if we can repeat a state championship, but we definitely have a goal of getting to state, and there are people in line for places on the team next year.”
Mueller said it is still kind of surreal for her that she and her teammates won the state meet.
“I still can’t believe it,” Mueller said. “I could not be happier with the results, but I still can’t wrap my mind around what actually happened. It’s really special to win it with my teammates. We are all best friends on and off the track, and that is what has made it so much fun.”
For Lowry, the fact that she won with Robertson, Hargroves and Mueller was most important.
“It would always be a great memory, but because it happened with three of my best friends, it is so much more special and exciting for me,” Lowry said. “It was very unique for us to win it that way.”
Olson said she hopes her runners take away a sense of camaraderie from this season and love for their team and for the sport.
“They have worked so hard for this for four years,” Olson said. “For them to top it off their senior year by winning state is just a perfect end to their high school careers.”