By RENALDO DORSETT
THE streak begins once again for St Augustine’s College Big Red Machine as they regained Bahamas Association of Independent Secondary Schools’ Track and Field Championship title.
After trailing on day one, SAC eventually won the meet in come-from-behind fashion and claimed the 27th meet title in the school’s history.
The Big Red Machine finished the three-day event at the Thomas A Robinson National Stadium with a total of 1,427 points.
The two-time defending champions Queen’s College Comets finished second with 1,338.50 points. The St Anne’s Blue Waves were a distant third with 542, the St John’s Giants were fourth with 390.50 points and the Nassau Christian Crusaders rounded out the top five with 315 points.
SAC claimed six of the eight contested categories including the Under-16, U-18 and U-20 girls along with the U-14, U-18 and U-20 boys.
The Comets took the U-14 girls and U-16 boys.
The Big Red Machine’s Otto Laing was the most outstanding male (U-14) at the meet while the top female honour went to the Comets’ Daejha Moss (U-18).
Several new meet records were set on the final day of competition.
Both the U-16 boys and girls long jump produced new record holders.
SACs Anthaya Charlton continued her domination of the meet and tied the mark of 5.40m set by Danielle Gibson in 2010 to have a share of the mark while Nathan Moss of QC leapt 6.23m in the boys’ events.
The Big Red Machine’s Taylor Walters bested her mark set last year in the U-18 girls javelin with a throw of 37.47m and Stephen Farquharson set a new record in the U-14 boys event at 34.30m.
SAC would go on to win all of the seven throwing events on day three.
The Comets had the advantage in the jumps with Nathan Moss, Daejha Moss winning the U20 girls triple jump (11.42m) and Reese Butler winning the U2- boys triple jump (12.63m).
Amina Forbes of the St. Andrew’s Hurricanes broke up the sweep of the field between the two schools with her win in the U14 girls long jump at a height of 1.50m.
The Blue Waves had several standout performances on the track, led by CARIFTA hopeful Devine Parker.
Parker took the U18 girls 200m in 23.45 secs (+2.5), while Jasmine Knowles took the U18 girls 800m in 2:24.79 secs and Danielle Rodgers took the U18 girls 400mH in 1:05.73 secs.
In the U16 boys 800m, Kendrick Major of Queen’s College set a new meet record in 2:03.79 secs.
A windy afternoon for the 200m prevented all but one division from running a non wind aided time.
Adrian Curry of the Big Red Machine took full advantage in the U20 boys event and set a new meet record in 21.55 secs. Second place finisher Godfrey Arthur of St. Anne’s also tied the previous record of 21.66 secs.
In the U14 girls half lap, Reshae Dean took first place in 25.91 (+2.1) secs ahead of 100m winner and new record holder D’Arjah Davis of St Andrews (26.40 secs).
Meagan Moss of the Big Red Machine took the U16 girls event in 24.27 secs (+2.3).
SAC took three of the four girls 4x100m.
In the U14 event, the team of Apryl Adderley, Dean, Sanai Forbes and Danielle Saunders set a new meet record in 51.12 secs.
The U16 team of Karolyn Baptiste, Megan Moss, Charlton and Jaida Knowles also set a new record in 47.91 secs.
In the U14 boys 4x100m, the Big Red Machine’s team of Kai Wilson, Laing, Shimar Bain and Zachary Evans took first place in a new record time of 48.64 secs.
Their U16 team of Davonte Brown, Deshaughn Forbes, Lowell Bethell and Raymond Oriaki set a new record time of 44.40 secs.
The Comets ended the afternoon with a series of dominating performances in the 4x400m, winning five of the eight divisions.
The Comets won the U14 and U18 divisions while SAC took the U16 and U20 races.
The Comets won the U14, U16 and U18 events and nearly swept all four divisions before a late charge on the final leg from SAC’s Glen Knowles gave his team the win at the line in a thrilling conclusion to the meet.
Last year, the Comets tallied 1,477 points to defeat the Big Red Machine by a margin of 112 points.
St. Augustine’s College Big Red Machine head coach William Johnson thanked the effort of his student athletes and a dedicated coaching staff which includes Dianne Woodside, Jason Edwards and Tito Moss.
“We knew coming into this meet we had a strong team but the kids really worked and they knew there was areas we could work at. The sprints we improved tremendously and students who were there for years took it upon themselves to work hard and dedicate themselves to our outgoing seniors and they really performed above and beyond what we expected,” he said.
The Comets led by 53 points after day one, but an 87.5 point turnaround on day two saw the Big Red Machine surge ahead for good.
“I thank God that it went well because we knew it would be a fight from day one to the finish. We got behind by over 50 points but we were not discouraged because we knew what we had coming on day two and day three,” Johnson said, “We just told them we could get back in this thing. We knew the events coming up, we knew the people we had and we told them we have to approach it one race at a time, one throw at a time one jump at a time and chip away at that lead and that’s what we went out and did. We knew we had to be strong with our leaded headed into the relays to give ourselves a chance because QC, they are always good in relays. We worked and the worked paid off and it showed.”
The attention now shifts to the Nationals.
“This meet showed that St. Anne’s, St. John’s, Temple Christian has a number of amazing athletes and we know that for nationals the family island schools will present a challenge,” Johnson said, “It will be three tough days but we have to get ready for it.”
Full event results can be found at www.tekresults.net
SAC Big Red Machine - 1427
QC Comets - 1338.50
St Anne’s Blue Waves 542
St. John’s Giants 390.50
NCA Crusaders – 315.50
TC Suns – 175.50
JPW Falcons - 171.50
Kingsway Saints – 162.50
Aquinas Aces - 107
St Andrew’s Hurricanes - 82
Westminster Diplomats - 63
CW Saunders Cougars - 40