Displaying the turnover speed and form that have some ticketing him as the next great sprinter in Florida, North Broward freshman Jerimy Strainge swept the 100 meters and 200 in Florida top-five times at the Westminster Academy Invitational on Friday.
Strainge won the 100 in 10.62, which eclipses Deerfield Beach’s Cassius McDowell’s 10.67 for Broward’s top time this season and vaults Strainge to No. 5 in Florida according to flrunners.com.
In the 200 Strainge didn’t get his best start coming out of the blocks but ran a great curve and cruised to victory in 21.72.
“Jerimy is a special kind of kid,’’ North Broward Prep coach Corey Hicks said. “He is a junior Olympic champion in the 100. He has done a lot of great things. Hopefully within the next three to four years, I think he can go under 10 seconds in the 100.”
Florida’s top time in the 100 this season is held by Leesburg’s Andre Waters who clocked 10.40 on March 19.
Strainge’s 10.62 broke his teammate Ethan Grant’s school record and barely missed the All-American qualify time of 10.60.
Had Grant and Chaminade’s Demitri Beal not scratched out of the 100, which left fans disappointed they wouldn’t see a showdown between the three top sprinters, there is little doubt Strainge would have been pushed to the All-American standard.
“A lot of people don’t know me,’’ Strainge said. “Maybe I opened up some eyes. I still have a lot of work to do. I want to run a 10.5 in the 100 and a 20 point something in the 200 by time I get to states.”
Symone Bullard won the 100 (12.20) and 200 (25.38) to give North Broward a sweep of the sprints.
Earlier in the day, Archbishop McCarthy’s Anthony Amodio set a personal-best 15-0 to win the pole vault. It was a new stadium record and bettered the 14-7 Amodio jumped at the Region 4-2A championship last year. Amodio, the reigning Class 2A state champion, moves up to No. 3 in Florida, behind Olympia’s Kendall Schafer (15-4) and St. Thomas Aquinas’ David Shepherd (15-1).
Pine Crest freshman Savanna Gornisiewicz helped the Panthers win its first Westminster team title by finishing second to Nicole Carpio in the 1,600 meters. University School’s Sydney Schneider placed third and won the 3,200 in 11:55.84.
If not for Strainge making the Westminster Academy his coming-out-party, Upperroom Christian’s David Gordon would have been the talk of the meet. Before finishing second to Strainge in the 200, Gordon won the long jump (22-1) and then took the 400 in 50.85.
Even that was not enough from stopping Miami Pace from winning the boys team title with a whopping 105 points. Archbishop McCarthy finished second with 88 points, Key West third and Upperroom Christian fourth.
In a thrilling 100 girls hurdles, Westminster Academy’s Kayla Gardner appeared well on her way to victory after the sixth hurdle only to mis-step and finish seventh. Pine Crest’s Chelsea Lunn took advantage of Gardner’s miscue and cruised to victory in 15.89.
Coral Springs Christians’ Tara Fallin (16.98) and Miami La Salle’s Katryna Cruz (17.20 crossed the finish line after Lunn.
Gardner finished seventh but bounced back to win the 300 hurdles in 47.96 although it took more drama than she expected. Gardner fell on the track after clipping the last hurdle but had enough of a lead to regain her footing and ward off a hard-charging Lunn who finished in 48.60.
“I am so proud of myself that I came back after the 100 and ran a 47.96,’’ Gardner said.. “All I know is I had all the adrenaline rushing through me. I had to come back stronger and better for the 300 hurdles. Lunn is a very good athlete. I love running against her. It is good competition.”
Archbishop’s Marsha Ariol won the girls 400 and was followed by Northwest Christian’s Monica Sapp and Westminster Academy’s Karmen Bosket.
The courage award went to Upperroom Christian’s Bryce Hill, who fought through the flu and migraine headache to steal a victory from Archbishop McCarthy’s Daniel Salgado in the 110 high hurdles. Hill bid for a hurdles sweep ended when he tripped midway through the 300 hurdles and landed on his head. Hill lay on the track clutching his head in pain for 10 minutes before being helped to his feet and receiving a rousing ovation.
In the 100 hurdles, Salgado led with two hurdles to go when Hill, running in lane eight, clipped the last hurdle but had enough momentum to out-lean Salgado for the victory. Hill finished in 14.91, with Salgado crossing in 14.92 and Calvary Christian’s Dominick Pierre in 15.59.
“I thought Salgado won it,’’ Hill said. “I’m glad I kept pushing. My coach [Jimmie Butler] said my finish is weak, that I never run through so I had to run through tonight.”
Salgado returned to finish second to Key West’s Phillip Young in the 300 hurdles.
The boys 1,600 meters saw Hill’s teammate Emmanual Kent lead through the first lap then get replaced by North Broward’s Tim Hendricks on the second lap before Ransom Everglades’ Bert Irigoyen settled matters with a burst in the last 300 meters to win in 4:24.17. Archbishop took second and third with Tyler Amato finishing in 4:29.86 and William Wiesler in 4:33.16.