JAMAICA brought out the broom at yesterday’s final session on the third and final day of the 48th Carifta Games in the Cayman Islands. They were perfect in both sets of 4x100m and 4x400m relays and the sprint hurdles, where they had a clean sweep in both disciplines. The Jamaicans also exerted their dominance over their Caribbean neighbours with a haul of 85 medals, comprising of 36 gold, 33 silver and 16 bronze, three medals more than last year’s tally.
Action on the track started in the 4x100m relays, and first to take the track were the Under-17 girls as the quartet of Crystal Shaw, Brianna Lyston, Glacian Loutin and Kay-Lagay Clarke set the tone for the remainder of the evening. The team won in 45.63 seconds as Trinidad and Tobago, 45.73, and Bermuda, 47.47, finished second and third.
Double sprint Under-20 champion Briana Williams gave the Jamaicans a flying start in the girl’s Under-20 event, and despite a poor exchange between herself and Joanne Reid on the first exchange, the lead was too big as Reid safely took the baton to sprint hurdler Ackera Nugent on the third leg and Kemba Nelson just went through the motions on anchor to give Jamaica an easy win in 44.23 seconds, getting the better of Trinidad and Tobago, second in 45.11, and Barbados, third in 45.52 seconds.
Despite an average start from lead-off runner Richard Nelson in the boy’s Under-17 event, the speed of Adrian Kerr, Christopher Scott and Nkrumie Bouwahgie was too good for their rivals as they sped to an easy win in 41.59 seconds. Bahamas, 42.18, and Trinidad and Tobago, 42.45 second occupied second and third, respectively.
With three out of three, it was left to the under-20 boys to close the show for the Jamaicans, and this they did, but anchor leg runner Ryiem Robertson, the 100m silver medallist, had to call on his best to hold off a fast-closing Bahamian athlete as Jamaica won in 39.46 seconds, just ahead of the Bahamas, 39.49 seconds, with Barbados third in 40.18 seconds. The Jamaica team was led off by 100m champion Oblique Seville, with Vashaun Vascianna on second leg handing over to 200m champion Xavier Nairne on third.
Spurred on by the magnificent showing in the relays, it was now the sprint hurdlers’ turn and they did not disappoint, winning all four with a quinella in three of these.
Fresh off her anchor leg on the winning 4x100m relay team, St Jago High School’s long-legged Kay-Lagay Clarke held off her teammate, Crystal Shaw, in a tight finish, to take the girls Under 17 100m hurdles in 13.68 seconds, as Shaw got second in 13.72 seconds, with third going to Anthaya Charlton of Bahamas in 13.83 seconds.
Excelsior High School’s Nugent, the fastest hurdler in the world this year in her age group, despite stepping up to the Under 20s, had no worries as she had an impressive personal best of 13.24 seconds in winning. Sarah Belle of Barbados, 13.55 seconds, and Gabrielle Gibson of Bahamas, 13.80 seconds, took second and third. There was bad luck for Jamaica’s Crystal Morrison, the 2018 Under 17 gold medallist and record holder. She hit the fourth barrier very hard, causing her to stop before jogging across the line.
Calabar High School’s Dishaun Lamb became the first Jamaican at the meet to be among the records as he took home the Boy’s Under 17 100m hurdles in 13.54 seconds to remove countryman Vashaun Vascianna’s one year old record of 13.60 seconds. Teammate, Neil-Matthew Sutherland took second in 13.61 seconds, with Matthew Sophia taking third in 13.64 seconds .
Rasheed Broadbell and Vascianna, who are teammates at St Jago, closed a quinella for Jamaica in the Boy’s Under 110m hurdles. Despite crashing hard in the fourth barrier and losing his momentum, Broadbell kept his cool to win in 13.26 seconds, ahead of Vascianna, second in 13.32 seconds.
In another track event, Calabar’s Kevroy Venson successfully defended his title in the Boy’s Under 20 5000m, after winning in 15:21 29 minutes, beating Gabriel Curtis of the Bahamas into second place, with a time of 15:23.15 minutes, and Fabian Campbell getting bronze for Jamaica with a third place finish of 16:00.03 minutes.
In field events action yesterday, Jamaica picked up two gold medals through Cobe Graham and Rajaun Ricketts. Graham copped the Boy’s Under 20 Shot Put with a winning heave of 18.62m as teammate, Kai Chang finished third for bronze with 17.57m. In the Boys Under 17 Triple Jump, it was a one-two for Jamaica as Ricketts won with 14.26m, ahead of Jaheim Cox, second with 14.01m. Earlier in the day, Apalos Edwards mined bronze in the Boys Under 20 Triple Jump after finishing third with 15.05m.
Jamaica’s Cedricka Williams also broke the Under 17 Girls Discus record with a throw of 47.94m, ahead of teammate Damali Williams, second with 40.87m and Dominica’s Treneese Hamilton, who took bronze with a mark of 39.29m.
Carifta 2019 final medal count