Photos courtesy YISD

Ysleta ISD celebrates victories of their El Paso Marathon team

Despite the crazy weather for this year’s El Paso Marathon, one returning team continued their stretch of successful outings: Team Ysleta ISD.

For the past four years, the Ysleta Independent School District has participated in the El  Paso Marathon, clinching several accolades along the way. Although a winter storm froze the Sun City that weekend, ‘The District’ athletes were ready for competition.

“Our district’s participation in the EP marathon is a testament to the strong collegial relationships and inclusive culture we’ve created over the past several years…our people, without exception, are why we are, THEDISTRICT!” Superintendent, Dr. Xavier De La Torre shared.

Although 2021 was a challenge, runners and walkers were given the option of participating virtually, and YISD did not falter with 291 athletes taking part in this year’s race.  This year’s race was split into three evenings to ensure the safety of participants.

Several team members showed up for the 5K and half marathon races, and four team members weathered piercing conditions to run 26.2 miles. Mickey Agness who took first in her age division, Kathleen Wheelen, and Brian Soto all ran the full marathon fighting the treacherous wind and snow.

Gonzalo Espinoza, a member of the YISD Grounds Department, obtained the fastest time in his age group running the marathon in 3 hours and 22 minutes, securing the 1st place spot in his division and 2nd place overall,

“Last year was my first marathon ever and since then I trained so hard to get to this point.  Yes, it was hard to run in the weather, there were times I couldn’t see, and the ice was bad, but luckily, I pushed through.  I hope one day I can finish it 1st overall.  I was close this year, but I hope I can represent the district by winning it 1st,” Espinoza stated.

The  first team was created in 2018 in an attempt to promote wellness and encourage employees to pursue a healthy lifestyle by participating in the 5K race, half or full marathon.

Each year, more and more employees and their family members participate.  The team began with 177 members and has grown to over 360, allowing YISD to take the title of “Largest Team” four years running.

All participants receive a team shirt, exercise equipment, along with many other wellness items through donations from the community.

Accolades Ysleta ISD has achieved since they joined the annual race are:


Largest Team and Best Dressed Team


Largest Team, Fastest 5K Team, Fastest Half Marathon Team, and 3rd Place Marathon Team


Largest Team, Most Motivated Team, and Fastest 5K Team


Largest Team, Fastest 5K Team, and Fastest Half Marathon Team