March 23, 2009
QUEENS, N.Y. - After just one weekend of outdoor competition, the St. John's track & field team is already set to compete in the postseason, as five athletes qualified for the BIG EAST, ECAC and NCAA-Regional Championships at the Coastal Carolina University Shamrock Invitational, hosted by CCU in Conway, S.C., over the weekend.
Sophomore Priscilla Frederick led the team with an individual win in the high jump with an NCAA-Regional qualifying height of 1.75 meters (5 feet, 8.75 inches). Frederick handily defeated the competition in the event. The NCAA-Regionals will be held in Greensboro, N.C., on May 29-30.
Frederick also competed in the shot put and long jump events. In the long jump, she finished fifth with a distance of 5.50 meters (18 feet, .50 inches). In the shot put, the sophomore placed 16th with a throw of 10.94 meters (35 feet, 10.75 inches).
Graduate-student transfer Arina Gerasimova's second place distance in the triple jump secured her a trip to Princeton, N.J., for the ECAC Championships on May 15-17. Gerasimova was just short of winner Jasmine Smith with a jump of 11.97 meters (39 feet, 3.25 inches). Gerasimova also competed in the long jump where she placed 14th with a distance of 5.21 meters (17 feet, 1.25 inches).
On the track, senior Phobay Kutu-Akoi made her mark as the runner-up in the 100-meter dash. The senior captain crossed the tape in 11.98 seconds in the preliminary heats, qualifying her for ECAC competition. In the finals, she finished at 12 seconds. Kutu-Akoi also ran in the 200-meter dash where she again placed second with an ECAC-qualifying time of 24.86 seconds. The senior has consistently marked ECAC times during the entire indoor season in both her sprinting events.
Classmate Paula Rennalls also qualified for the postseason in two events as she finished 14th in the 100-meter dash with a time of 12.30 seconds and 10th in the 200-meter dash with a time of 25.03 seconds. Both times qualified her for the BIG EAST Championships which take place at Villanova University on May 1-3.
Senior Venisa Clarke-Lee also qualified for the BIG EAST Championships in the 100-meter dash. Clarke-Lee finished ninth in the preliminary heat with a time of 12.16 seconds. In the finals, she placed seventh with a time of 12.20 seconds. Sophomore Bintou Dibba also competed in multiple events at the CCU Shamrock Invite. In the 200-meter dash, she placed 48th with a time of 27.83 seconds. In the long jump, Dibba finished seventh with a distance of 5.45 meters (17 feet, 10.75 inches). The sophomore also finished 14th in the triple jump with a distance of 10.34 meters (33 feet, 11.25 inches).
In the middle sprints, sophomore Kim Piard finished 18th in the 400-meter dash with a time of 59.58 seconds. Piard also finished 10th in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:19.05. Sophomore Sarah Sudbury was close at her heels with a 12th-place finish of 2:20.73. Senior Tyneka Greene also ran in the event. She came in 21st with a time of 2:26.47.
In the longer distances, Greene placed eighth in the 1,500-meter run with a time of 4:51.15.
Greene, Sudbury and Piard along with freshman Aryon Trujillo teamed up to finish fourth in the 4x400-meter relay. The squad crossed the tape at 9:26.08.
From the throwing pit, freshman Chanel King finished ninth in the shot put with a distance of 12.20 meters (40 feet, .50 inches). The rookie also finished 10th in the discus with a distance of 34.40 meters (112 feet, 10 inches) and 17th in the hammer with a throw of 37.40 meters (122 feet, 8 inches).
The Red Storm will be back in action on March 28 as the team will split up and travel to both University of Texas-Arlington and Monmouth University. Since the fall, St. John's has made changes to its schedule which includes a trip to the Last Chance Meet hosted at Icahn Stadium on May 8. Please check the schedule for updated meets.