Comeback victory for Baptiste

While many of their compatriots were enjoying the build-up to Carnival 2015, last weekend, Trinidad and Tobago track stars Deon Lendore and Michelle-Lee Ahye were busy producing world-class performances at indoor meets in the United States.

In New York, on Saturday, Ahye clocked a fast 7.11 seconds—just one-hundredth of a second slower than her 7.10 national record--to finish second in the Millrose Games women’s 60 metres dash. Ivory Coast sprinter Murielle Ahoure won in a world-leading 7.05.

Ahye is third on the 2015 world indoor list with her 7.11 run, one spot behind Dafne Schippers (7.09) of the Netherlands.

In Arkansas, on Friday, Lendore topped the Tyson Invitational men’s 400m field. The Texas A&M University senior stopped the clock at 45.38 seconds to move into second spot on the 2015 world indoor list, behind American Najee Glass (45.34).

Pennsylvania State University student Steve Waithe finished seventh in the men’s triple jump with a 15.73 metres effort. University of Arkansas senior Sparkle McKnight was 17th overall in the women’s 400m in 53.76 seconds, while South Plains College student Domonique Williams (53.82) was 18th.

Another T&T/South Plains athlete, Aaliyah Telesford clocked 7.50 seconds for 19th spot in the women’s 60m. In the women’s 200m, Telesford (24.23) and McKnight (24.41) were 39th and 47th, respectively. And in the women’s 60m hurdles, Baylor University’s Dannielle Davis was 40th in 8.68 seconds.

Competing for the first time since her ban for using steroids was lifted last month, Kelly-Ann Baptiste was in winners’ row at the LSU High Performance Meet, in Louisiana. Baptiste clocked 7.24 seconds to lead all qualifiers into the women’s 60m final. And in the championship race, the 2011 World Championship 100m bronze medallist got home first in 7.28.

At the David Hemery Valentine Invitational, in Boston, double Olympic bronze medallist Lalonde Gordon finished first in section one and second overall in the men’s 200m in 20.71 seconds--good enough for seventh spot on the 2015 world indoor list.

Temple University’s Kiersten LaRoche finished fifth in the women’s long jump with a 5.69m leap, 14th in the high jump (1.65m), and 35th in the shot put (10.69m).

In New Mexico, Jarrin Solomon was the class of the Don Kirby Elite and Open men’s 400m field, the T&T athlete winning in 47.06 seconds.

Central Arizona College student, Ruebin Walters clocked a personal best 7.88 seconds to secure silver in the men’s 60m hurdles. Walters also competed in the men’s 200m event, finishing 21st overall in 21.82.

Western Texas College sprinter, John Mark Constantine bagged men’s 60m bronze with a personal best clocking of 6.74 seconds. Central Arizona College field athlete, Hezekiel Romeo threw 17.33m to finish ninth in the men’s shot put. Constantine’s Western Texas teammate, Marissa Gale finished 10th overall in the women’s 400m in 56.85 seconds. New Mexico Junior College sprinter, Kayelle Clarke was 11th in the women’s 60m dash in 7.75 and 21st in the 200m in 24.45. And in the women’s 60m hurdles, University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) student, Aeisha McDavid clocked 8.85 seconds for 24th spot.

In Maryland, Deandra Daniel retained her Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Indoor Track and Field Championship women’s high jump title when she cleared the bar at 1.85m--a meet record and new personal best. In the women’s long jump, the Coppin State University junior produced a 5.63m leap to finish fourth.

Coppin State’s Mark London returned a time of one minute, 56.75 seconds for 15th spot overall in the men’s 800m. And Coppin State sprinter Haysean Cowie-Clarke was 25th in the men’s 60m in 7.04 seconds.

At the Adams State University (ASU) NCAA Qualifier, in Colorado, Adams State freshman Micah Ballantyne finished second in the men’s 200m in 22.46 seconds.

In Alabama, Western Kentucky University sprinter Peli Alzola was eighth in the Samford Invitational women’s 200m in 24.97 seconds.

At the Fred Wilt Invitational, in Indiana, Missouri State University freshman Kadisha Francois got to the line in 25.58 seconds for 11th spot in the women’s 200m.

Osei Alleyne-Forte finished 20th overall in the men’s 400m, at the Southland Conference Indoor Championships, in Alabama. The Abilene Christian University (ACU) student got home in 50.01 seconds. Another T&T/ACU athlete, Jessica James clocked 55.95 to qualify second fastest for the women’s 400m finals. However, she was disqualified in the championship race for a false start.

At the Battle of the Regions outdoor meet, in California, Ayodele Taffe topped the men’s 200m field in 21.52 seconds, beating his College of the Sequoias teammate and fellow T&T sprinter, Holland Cabara (21.57) into second spot. Another T&T/Sequoias athlete, Ohdel James clocked 48.89 seconds to win the men’s 400m.