Local track stars shine in summer meets
Berkeley track senior Marissa Pinckney turned in a blistering performance in the Florida heat, posting a 56.47 mark in the 400-meter run at the Golden South Track and Field Classic in Orlando on May 18 to qualify for the national meet later this summer.
Pinckney, who finished sixth in the state in the 400 meters for Berkeley this spring, posted the qualifying time during a preliminary heat. The goal, according to Peak Performance coach Twon Williams was to qualify for the New Balance Outdoor Nationals running this weekend in Greensboro, NC.
“She ran a 56.47 in the preliminary round to qualify for the seventh fastest time going into the finals,” Williams said. “She didn't run faster in the finals but we accomplished our goal.”
Before the meet Williams and Pinckney discussed her strategy for the meet and rather than enter all three sprint races, the 100-, 200-, and 400-meter runs, they opted to focus on qualifying in the 400 meters.
“We decided that she would just run the 400 and go for a 56 time in the race. The decision paid off. I couldn't be happier for her. Her time is also a personal and school record. This is the first time since the 2011 State meet that she has set a personal record.”
Lady Stags’ sprinters Ashlynn Smalls and Jonnay Anthony competed in the Prep division of the Orlando meet. Anthony placed fifth in the 300-meter hurdles and seventh in the 200-meter dash while Smalls placed sixth in the 200.
According to Williams, both runners set personal best times in the 200-meters.
Other area runners also performed well in the meet.
Davon Anderson of Summerville placed third in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 14.12 seconds. Christopher Gaddist placed third in the 400-meter hurdles with a 53.52 mark. The Peak Performance boys 4x100 relay team of Ezequel Sepulveda (Berkeley) Davon Anderson (Summerville) Kenneth Thomas (West Ashley) and Kenny Fenton Griffith (Fort Dorchester) placed third with a time of 41.43 seconds.