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Strong finish for Akela

Sherrylyn A. Toppin

Strong finish for Akela

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FORT de FRANCE – Akela Jones wanted to leave a legacy in her final year at the CARIFTA Games.
Yesterday during the 43rd edition at the Stade Municipal Pierre Aliker, she won two more gold medals, her third overall, while Shamar Rock also won one late Sunday night as the Barbados tally reached 14 – five gold, four silver and five bronze – up to Press time.
It was a double birthday celebration for Jones and Rock. He was 19 yesterday and she will mark the milestone today, but their gifts came right on time.
After winning the Under-20 girls’ high jump with 1.84 metres, only ten barriers stood in Jones’ way in the Under-20 girls’ 100 metres hurdles. Running from lane two, she held off a fast-finishing Peta-Gaye Williams (13.57) and
Chrystie Lange (13.59) of Guadeloupe to take gold in 13.55 seconds. It was only her second race outdoors; the first was a wind-aided 13.45.
Jones was very pleased with her performance and gave credit to God for all that she had accomplished. She also won the long jump (6.32 – her opening mark this season) on Saturday night.
Rock ignored the pouring rain in the Under-20 boys’ long jump. With a leap of 7.56 metres, he also qualified for the Central American and Caribbean Juniors and World Juniors. Second place went to Kevin Philbert of Curacao with 7.36 and Jamaica’s Jevaughn Fowler third with 7.19 metres.
The two silver medals came from Hayley Matthews and Sada Williams in the Under-18 girls’ javelin and 200 metres, respectively.
Williams recorded another personal best 23.43 seconds in the half-lap, splitting Jamaicans Natalliah White (23.36) and Shellece Clarke 23.61.
‘Throw it like you trying to run out somebody from the boundary’ was the instruction throws coach Ramon Armstrong gave cricketer/javelin thrower Matthews, who responded with 43.17 metres after a first-round foul.
Bronze went to Daneliz Thomas of Cayman Islands with 39.59 and Dominica’s Shanee Angol set the new record of 49.66 metres.
The bronze medallists came from final year man Romario Antoine (16.42 metres) in the Under-20 boys’ shot put; Michael Nicholls (13.79) in the Under-18 boys’ 110 metres hurdles; Romario Marshall with 1 minute 58.91 seconds in the Under-18 boys 800 metres – his second bronze medal – and Levi Cadogan with 20.67, also a new personal best, in the Under-20 boys’ 200 metres.
Marshall benefited from the disqualification of Bahamian Justin Pinder, who pushed him off on the backstretch, while his brother Akeem, who had been leading, fell and lost his chance to get a medal.
Until Rock won the gold medal, Barbados found it very difficult to add to the medal tally. High jumper Hakeem Clarke (2.00 metres) was fourth in the Under-18 boys’ event and Josiah Beckles was seventh at 1.90. The winner was Jamaican Lusahane Wilson with 2.03 metres.
Despite a personal best 5.85 metres in the Under-18 girls’ long jump, Tristan Evelyn was fourth again, while Shonita Brome was eighth with 5.58 metres. Danielle Scantlebury was sixth in the girls’ heptathlon with 3 896 points; Akeim David finished fifth in the octathlon with 5 027 points and 13.81 metres placed Triston Gibbons tenth in the Under-18 boys’ shot put.
Both of the Under-18 relay teams finished in fourth position. The girls’ team clocked 46.33 seconds and the boys 42.45.