Edwin Allen set sail for home

Open 20-point lead on final day of Champs 2017

BY PAUL A REID Observer writer reidp@jamaicaobserver.com

Saturday, April 01, 2017

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Edwin Allen High are leaders in the girls’ section of the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys’ and Girls’ Athletics Championships at the National Stadium, ahead of former champions Holmwood Technical.

Edwin Allen, who are chasing a fourth-straight title, were expected to be well ahead of the field going into today’s final day of the five-day extravaganza, but hold only a 20-point advantage.


Edwin Allen High are on 130 points after 20 finals last night, just ahead of a surprising Holmwood Technical with 110, followed by St Jago High on 104 points, Hydel High on 89, and Excelsior High on 65 rounding out the top five.


The defending champs came into the day leading with 40 points, seven more than Hydel High on 33, Excelsior on 30, St Jago with 27 and Holmwood Technical a point further back.


On the track yesterday, Edwin Allen were denied any wins in the 100m as Holmwood Technical and St Jago shared them with two wins apiece.


Aneka Brissett of St Jago won the Class One gold in 11.41 seconds (-1.1), holding off defending champion Patrice Moody with 11.67 seconds, while Excelsior High’s Rene Shaw took the bronze with 11.72 seconds.


Holmwood Technical’s Michae Harriott won a close Class Two 100m race, running 11.63 seconds (-1.2m/s) to edge Mt Alvernia High’s Kemba Nelson (11.72 seconds), with defending champion and record holder (11.40 seconds) Kimone Shaw fading to third in 11.74 seconds.


There was a huge disappointment in the Class Three 100m final where Edwin Allen’s Kevona Davis, who was expected not just to win but to smash the record of 11.50 seconds, was disqualified after she false started.


Sashieka Steele of Holmwood, who was expected to be her main rival, danced away with the title, equalling the record set in 2012 by Shauna Helps of Wolmer’s High School For Girls.


Gabriele Mathews of Hydel was second in 11.73 seconds (0.4m/s), while Campion College’s Krysal Sloley took third in 11.86 seconds.


St Jago High’s Brianna Lyston duly obliged in the Class Four 100m, establishing a big lead then easing through the tape in 11.86 seconds (-0.7m/s) ahead of her teammate Danae Nembhard in 12:08 seconds.


The battle for the sprint hurdles medals will be intense and the stage has been set for some outstanding hurdling after records were set in three of the four events yesterday.


Two athletes, Edwin Allen’s Gabrielle McDonald and Wolmer’s High School For Girls’ Janeek Brown, both finalists last year, yesterday ran their semi-finals under the previous record 13.56 seconds set by Peta-Gay Williams in 2015.


McDonald, who just missed a medal when she was fourth last year, clocked 13.52 seconds (0.4m/s) to win the third semi-final of Class One, minutes after Brown had lowered the mark to 13.53 seconds (-0.4m/s).


Amoi Brown and Nicolee Foster, who was also in the final a year ago, should contend for medals.


For pure drama, the Class Two event has produced its fair share even before today’s showdown which promises to be epic between Vere Technical’s Brittany Anderson and Shanette Allison of Holmwood Technical, both of whom have alternated breaking the record this week.


Allison, the bronze medallist last year, had run 13.30 (0.3m/s) on Tuesday to break the 13.38 seconds set in 2013 by Peta-Gaye Williams, then of Camperdown High, minutes after Anderson, the favourite to win the gold medal, also went under the old record after she won the first heat in 13.37 seconds (0.0m/s).


Yesterday, Anderson went even faster in the semi-finals, clocking a mouth-watering 13.04 (0.4m/s) to win her heat, destroying the field.


Allison showed a lot of guts and determination when she hit the second hurdle in her race, and stumbled, but recovered nicely to finish third in 13.69 seconds and qualify for the final.


Meanwhile, defending champion Daszay Freeman of Manchester High sent a reminder that she will not be giving up her title without a fight after she won her semi-final heat in 13.37 seconds.


Crystal Morrison of St Jago High set herself apart from the field in the Class Three 80m hurdles after she ran 10.98 seconds (0.0m/s) to break the record 11.10 seconds, set last year by Anderson in winning her semi-final heat.


Holmwood Technical’s Dyandra Gray was next best with 11.35 seconds (1.1m/s), with Excelsior’s Ackera Nugent running 11.20 seconds (0.0m/s).


St Jago High’s Danae Nembhard leads the qualifiers in the Class Four 70m hurdles after clocking 10.54 seconds (0.1m/s) to win the second semi-final yesterday.


Shanoya Pottinger of Hydel was next best with 10.79 seconds (0.6m/s), followed by Chrystal Shaw of The Queen’s School in 10.71 seconds, and St Elizabeth Technical’s Shackelia Green in 10.92 seconds.


After exploits in the morning session, McDonald returned in the evening to outrun Holmwood’s Foster over the last 10 metres and win the gold in the 400m hurdles open in 56.53 seconds.


Foster, who was third last year and the pre-championships favourite, hit the final barrier and stumbled, allowing her former teammate a few precious strides, and ended up second in 56.65 seconds, with Sanique Walker of Vere Technical third in 57.27 seconds.


Edwin Allen won two of the three 1500m races but it was Hydel High’s Monifa Green who won in Class One, racing away from the field to clock four minutes 41.67 seconds.


Holmwood Technical’s Chrissani May was second in 4:43.18 minutes, with Vere Technical’s Britnie Dixon third in 4:43.93 minutes.


It was the same trio who shared the medals in Class Two last year, but then Dixon had won ahead of Green and May was third.


Cemore Donald of Edwin Allen obliged as favourite in the Class Two event, leading from the start to win in 4:37.96 minutes, ahead of Petersfield High’s Shaquena Foote (4:41.49 minutes) and Holmwood Technical’s Brittney Campbell (4:42.18 minutes).


Rushana Dwyer of Edwin Allen won the Class Three 1500m after kicking away from the pack with about 150 metres to go, and crossed the line at four minutes 47.65 seconds.


Aneisha Lawerence of Bellefield won the silver in 4:49.20 minutes, while Mavis Bank High’s Shantay Chamberlain, who was second last year, dismissed two athletes in the home stretch to snatch the bronze in 4:49.76 minutes.


St Jago High’s Tissanna Hickling retained her triple jump open title, scoring a wind-aided 13.39m (2.1m/s) to beat Rusea’s High’s Western Champs record holder Myesha Nott, who improved from sixth place last year with 13.05m (3.7m/s) for the silver medal. Keneva Headley was just edged into third place as she also jumped 13.05m (5.9m/s), but Nott had the better series.


Hydel High’s Shiann Salmon won the Class One high jump with 1.73m, beating St Andrew High’s Lorean Murray (1.70m) and Athaliah Boyd of St Jago (1.65m).


Marie Forbes of Vere Technical, last year’s Class Three champion, took the Class Two discus throw title with a best mark of 41.74m, comfortably ahead of Shaday Hudson of Holmwood Technical (40.51m) with Rusea’s High’s Shamella Donaldson, who was seventh last year, taking the bronze with 40.41m.


Excelsior High’s Ashanti Wright upgraded her bronze from last year in the Class Three discuss throw to gold yesterday, winning with a best throw of 34.13m to beat Edwin Allen’s Kadine Brown, who was fourth last year and threw 33.61m in yesterday’s final.


Raphae Guthrie won the bronze with 31.96m.


Holmwood Technical’s Georgette Samuels won the javelin open, that started at 8:35 am, with a throw of 46.64m to beat St Jago High’s Sah-jay Stevens (46.05m) and Petersfield High’s Kimoy Phillips, who took the bronze with 43.08m.


Annishka McDonald of Vere Technical won the Class Four high jump with 1.64m, just missing the record 1.67m set in 2012 by Shiann Salmon of Hydel High.


Malaika Cunningham of Wolmer’s High School For Girls was second with 1.61m, and Sashanti Hinds if Hydel took third with 1.55m.


Aaliyah Lindsay of Convent of Mercy Alpha Academy was the best qualifier in the Class Three long jump with a wind-aided 5.70m (2.5m/s), with Holmwood Techncial’s Samantha Jibbson just behind with 5.69m (1.7m/s) and Edwin Allen’s Ackelia Smith a wind-aided 5.60m (5.8m/s) and Suzette Palmer of Holmwood Technical 5.60m (5.5mm/s).


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