YPSILANTI, Mich. - Raevyn Rogers and Daesha Rogers smash national records in the 800 meters to highlight the 2009 USA Youth Championship at Rynearson Stadium on the campus of Eastern Michigan University as day five reaches completion on Saturday.
800 meter finals
Fans have been waiting all week to see a record get broken and today it happened. Daesha Rogers (Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Dept.) was the first to put on a show in the Bantam Girls' 800 meter as she snuck her way in under the old record of 2 minutes 23.86 seconds with a time of 2:22.78.
A few heats later, Raevyn Rogers (The Wings Track Club) put on an even bigger show and smashed the Youth Girls' national record of 2:09 flat, by clocking a time of 2:06.90. Raevyn smiled and said, "I feel happy, and I actually accomplished my goal. I wanted to beat Chimere Ezumah and I did." But the funny thing is she never saw Chimere in the race and that is because of the way that she attacks the beginning of the race. "I really get out hard that first 100 meters to get into first and then I try and stay there." Raevyn had no trouble doing that today. Raevyn said that most of the time it is "race against the clock" for her.
As I continued to talk to Raevyn and asked her even though she is only 12 years old, if she has considered a future in running, "Yes, I want to keep running," she said, "God gave me this talent and I am not going to waste it." Raevyn continues to get better by pushing herself in practice and being okay with having to hit faster times than her teammates. She said, "It's what makes me better."Raevyn is enjoying her first time competing at the USA Youth Championships and is ready to run hard again tomorrow.
Other standout performances in the 800m include Sadiki White (unattached) winning the Young Men's division with a time of 1:52.92 and Ryan Silva (Tucson Elite) capturing the title in the Youth Boys' with a time of 1:59.36.
3000 meter finals
Eliza Dekker (Durham Striders) was not messing around in the Midget Girls' 3000 meter run. From the gun she sprinted out to the lead, taking only one runner with her for less than a lap before she was left to run alone. She said "It wasn't hard by myself, I felt really good." Dekker remained confident and comfortable as she continued to pull away from the rest of the racers and won in 10 minutes 22.43 seconds. On the final lap, Dekker said she was thinking "Go fast, Go Home."
In the Midget Boys', Trevor Capestany (Southern California Roadrunners) handily took the win. He said, "My race was good, a little hot and I tried to steal the wind during it and it worked." Capestany finished in 9:48.84 minutes, and second place was captured by Justin Liedka (Cornhusker Flyers) in 9:55.79.
After finishing the 1,500m prelim with the fastest qualifying time in the Youth Girls' yesterday, Jacqueline Adams (Equalizers) came out today to run a stellar performance in the 3,000m. The race went out fast and Adams settled back in the pack but kept her eyes on the leader. She made her move with just over 600m left in the race to win in 10:06.39, only seconds off her PR. Adams said, "I was in a pack of five, but I just reeled her in. I kind of knew that I would get to her."
The Equalizers also took the win on the Youth Boys' side in the 3000m. Miguel Bautista clocked 9:25.78 for the title and will also be competing tomorrow in the 1,500m.
200 meter finals
Victoria Powell (Jaguar Track Club) captured the title in a tight race in the Midget Girls' 200m. She ran a blazing time of 25.29 seconds. She said, "I was nervous at the start, but now I'm happy because it's an all-time PR." On the Youth Boys' side Jordan Madison (Running Panthers) clocked a time of 25.33 to steal the win.
Kendall Baisden is very rigid about her warm-up routine but it works for her. "I stretch in a specific order, run at a certain time and jump a lot at the starting line to get my legs warmed up," she said. Kendall seized the Youth Girls' 200 with a time of 24.07.
Robin Reynolds is now a double winner after zipping her way to first place in the Intermediate Girls' 200m. Reynolds was able to dip under 24 seconds with a time of 23.83. "The beginning of the race I was out slow, so I said to myself, you have to go, GO (she repeated in her head), when I hit the last 100 meters."
It was a tight race in the Intermediate Boys' final, Jadarious West (Running Panthers) cruised his way to first with a time of 22.31 seconds and edged out second place by one tenth of a second. Look for West again tomorrow on the track as he competes in the 100m finals.
Courtland Walls' (The Heat Track Club) time of 21.88 was just enough to snag the Young Men's title from Matthew Terrell (Indiana Storm) who ran 21.95. Walls commented on the race, "I was out of the blocks slow, and I am not use to lane one so I had to make up ground around the turn and then I had to lean about five steps out from the finish because it was so close."
Stepping off the track for a bit, some exciting action took place in the Midget Boys' high jump. As Joseph Toye (University of Chicago Track Club) cleared 1.65m/5 feet 5 inches on his third and final attempt, he was crowned champion in the high jump. The bar moved up another inch and he took one attempt at it before he decided to call it quits. Toye said, "I gave it everything I had, but my legs were tired at the end so I stopped."
Catherine Dager knows how only inches can make the difference when long jumping. Dager had a huge PR in the Bantam Girls' long jump to clinch her first victory of the championships. Dager said, "It was my best jump ever by a foot and I was able to hit the board right on." Dager jumped 3.98m/13-.75 to edge out second by only half an inch.
Montrell Morrow (Durham Striders) bounced back from a performance that he was not happy with yesterday in the shot put to capture a second place finish in the Young Men's discus. His throw was 53.36m/175-1. Morrow said, "I like coming out and competing against better athletes."
4x100 meter relays to close out the day
Maximum Output Track Club ran a stellar race to win the Youth Boys' 4x1 as they clocked a time of 44.67. The Young Women closed out the day with a very close race. Track Houston Youth Track Club ran 46.97 to come out on top by one hundredth of a second.
For more information and complete results on the 2009 USA Youth Outdoor Track & Field Championships, visit: http://www.usatf.org/events/2009/USAYouthOutdoorTFChampionships/