Roach sets national indoor pentathlon record

BY PAUL BURROWES Observer writer

Tuesday, February 02, 2010    

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HIGH Jumper- turned-multi-eventer Peaches Roach established a new national indoor pentathlon record as Ryan Shield, Allodin Fothergill and Maurice Smith posted leading performances for Jamaicans competing over the weekend.

Twenty-five-year-old Roach, an Alpha Academy past student who attended the University of Iowa, accumulated 4,131 points for third place at the Penn State Invitational at University Park, Pennsylvania.

Roach broke Trecia Smith's old mark of 4,080 set in Boston, Massachusetts on February 28, 1999.

Representing the Hawkeye Track Club, made up of past students of the University of Iowa, Roach ran 8.34s for second in the 60m hurdles, won the high jump with 1.81m, threw 10.60m for fifth in the shot put, placed sixth in the long jump with 5.59m, and won the 800m in 2:22.28.

Americans Hyleas Fountain and Lela Nelson were one-two with 4,731 and 4,256 points, respectively.

Roach still holds the national junior record of 1.87m in the high jump. He placed third at the Central American and Caribbean Junior Championships in 2002, and sixth at the World Junior Championships in the same year, both in the high jump.

She placed ninth at the Pan American Games in 2003 and 2007, also in the high jump, before specialising in the heptathlon/pentathlon.

With a personal best 5,586 points in the heptathlon, Roach will have to score at least 6,000 points to qualify for the World Championships in South Korea next year.

Meanwhile, 22-year-old Fothergill, also competing at the Penn State Invitational, has continued his dominance this season, winning the indoor 400m in a personal best and meet record 46.52 seconds to become the fourth fastest one-lapper for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Indoor Championships.

Fothergill, who represents the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore (UMES), ran an indoor personal best 1:01.74 two weeks ago for which he was named UMES athlete of the week.

He was so named after breaking the 500m indoor school record for the second week in a row.

Fothergill picked up a three-month ban last year after taking a medicine containing illegal substances following drug-testing at the National Championships last June.

Elsewhere, little known Jamaican Ryan Shields, a 26-year-old of the OFF Track Club, clocked a personal best and world-leading 6.58 seconds to win the indoor 60m at the Indiana Relays in Bloomington.

He defeated Camperdown High past student Kimour Bruce, now at the University of Lincoln, who placed second in 6.75 seconds.

However, the second best Jamaican in the 60m this season is Lerone Clarke, the 28-year-old winning the event at the BW-Bank Meeting in Karlsruhe, Germany, in 6.64 seconds.

Twenty-nine-year-old Smith, World Championship silver medallist, opened his season at the Harvard Multi-Meet in Cambridge, Massachusetts, winning the heptathlon with 5,851 points, with Olympic champion Bryan Clay finishing fourth with 5,070 points.

Smith won the pole vault and shot put, and finished second in the 1,000m and long jump.




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