Collins dazzles the crowd in record breaking form
Melvin Jackson II
USA Track & Field
Knoxville, Tenn., - Ebony Collins clocked the fastest youth time ever by a female in the 400m hurdles to conclude the USA Youth Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Tom Black Track in Knoxville, Tennessee.
In a final tune up for the World Youth Championships in Morocco, Collins used the inside lane to her advantage clocking 57.87 to set a 400m hurdles record in the intermediate girls division bettering the 58.84 set in 2001 by Talia Stewart. "I like running on the inside lane because I can see everybody ahead of me," said Collins. "I figured if I ran close to April (Williams) the last 150 meters that I would have a good time." A 16-year-old, Collins' performance also betters the young women's division 400m hurdles record of 57.94 set in 2001 by Tiffany Ross of Miami, Fla. Later in the afternoon, Collins of Los Angeles, Calif., ran 11.82 to finish second in the 100m dash. "I was just tired. Other than that, I think it was a smooth race," Collins continued. Team USA member Bianca Knight of Mississippi won the intermediate girls 100m crown in 11.68 seconds. Knight's performance would have also won the 100m in the young women's division.
Collins' fellow world youth team member April Williams finished second in the 400m hurdles with a time of 1:01.29. Later in the afternoon, Williams of Dallas, Texas won the intermediate girls 100m hurdles in 13.96 seconds.
David Klech of San Ramon, Calif., clocked a personal best time in the 400m hurdles. The 17-year-old Klech ran 51.28 to win the young men's division in a close finish over runner-up Tarvaris Washington, (51.63) of Georgia. "I'm excited that I ran a new PR. I got out really hard and held my composure throughout the race," said Klech. He will attempt to better his PR in two weeks at the World Youth Championships. "I know I can go faster and I hope to do it in Morocco. I'm nervous, but excited to run against international competition for the first time," Klech continued.
World youth team member Brandi Cross of Houston, Texas, ran as fast as she could to get out of the rain. "It was raining and I don't like running in the rain," said Cross. "I was just trying to hurry up and finish the race as fast as I could to get out of the rain." The 17-year-old Cross ran 53.51 to win the 400m in the young women's division. "I'm anxious to compete in Morocco. The competition will be really tough there," Cross continued.
Cordera Jenkins of Dickinson, Texas kept his composure in the rain to win the young men's 110m hurdles in 13.81 seconds. "I got a good start and wanted to maintain my composure," said Jenkins. I kept tracking into the ground to make sure that I was not slipping on the wet track." World youth team member Theresa Lewis of Randallstown, Md., cruised to win the 100m hurdles young women's division in 13.94 seconds.
Scott Roth of Granite Bay, Calif., cleared the first three heights on his first attempt in the young men's pole vault competition. "I cleared all my heights on my first attempt except for the last one (height)," said Roth. "I thought I would PR because the wind (weather) was good." The 17-year-old Roth won with a clearance of 5.00m/16-4.75 to beat 2005 USA Juniors pole vault champion Michael Morrison, who also cleared the same height to finish second. Jordan Scott (4.85m/15-11) of Watkinsville, Ga., finished in third-place. "This was not my day," said Scott. "I could not get the standards right."
Roth, Morrison and Scott will compete in the pole vault competition for Team USA at the World Youth Championships. "I'm proud to represent the U.S. in Morocco," said Morrison. Jordan Scott always dreamed the day he would compete internationally. "This is something I dreamed of - competing worldwide," said Scott. "I never thought it would come true this early," Scott continued.
Khrystal Carter of San Jose, Calif., ran 11.72 seconds to win the young women's 100m crown. In a thrilling 100m final, David Chaplin of Georgia won the young men's title by a nose with a time of 10.77 followed by runner-up Evander Wells who finished in 10.78.
Nicole Jones' goal entering 1,500m final was to break the intermediate girls division record. "I was going for the record and was only off by two seconds," said Jones. "I'm excited because I tied my PR. I had more adrenaline." The Westfield, Texas native cruised to win the 1,500m final in 4:27.16. "It's an honor to make the (world youth) team. This will be my first time getting out of the U.S.," Jones continued.
Christopher Ward of the Florida Elite Track Club pulled ahead with 10 meters left to win the intermediate boys 400m final in 46.97 seconds. World youth team member Bryshon Nellum finished second in 47.73. In the young men's division, Bryan Webb of Knoxville, Tenn., won the 400m final followed by JT Scheuerman (47.19) of the Krypto Speed Track Club while world youth team member Zach Chandy of Laguna Beach, Calif., ran a personal best time of 47.67 to finish in third-place.
Adam Montague tossed 60.34m/197-11 to win the young men's javelin throw followed by world youth team member Daniel Haddock (55.24m/181-3) of Paradise Valley, Ariz., to finish in second-place.
Myer Krah of the Durham Striders Track Club ran 11.80 seconds barely missing the midget boys 80m hurdles record. The current midget boys 80m hurdles record is 11.74 set in 1997 by Kenny Lambe of Hilton Head S.C.
Robin Reynolds of Miami, Fla., continued her winning ways by adding the midget girls 400m crown to her medal collection after she ran 56.83.
David Strong of Knoxville, Tenn., won in a jump off over Travis Smith of the Sierra Lightning Track Club to claim the youth boys high jump title. Both Strong and Smith cleared 1.80m/5-10.75.
In women's relay action, Quicksilver Track Club ran a nail biting 4x400m relay race in 3:41.04 to win the young women's division. Track Houston TC finished in second-place with a time of 3:41.77. In the 4x100m relays, Quiet Fire Track Club held on to win the intermediate girls division in 46.13 against the Knoxville Track Club (46.97).
In men's relay action, Track Houston finished in 3:12.73 to win the 4x400m relay in the young men's division followed by the Titans Track Club (3:13.15) in second-place. The Titans Track Club finished in 4:01.96 winning by a nose in the 4x400m relay midget boys division against Track Phi Track Elite (4:01.98). In the 4x100m relays, the So Cal Running Cougars midget boys ran 49.76 to win in a photo finish against the Knoxville Track Club (49.85).
For more information on the 2005 USA Youth Outdoor Track & Field Championships, including results and complete coverage of this year's event, visit the USATF website at www.usatf.org.