Raleigh Relays: NC State’s Alexis Perry wins 100-meter hurdles

CorrespondentMarch 29, 2014 

Alexis Perry wasn’t going to let a little rain bother her Saturday afternoon.

The N.C. State sophomore from Durham completed her double at the Raleigh Relays, running the 100-meter hurdles in a personal-best 13.39 seconds to add another win to her long jump that broke the Wolfpack school record Friday.

A graduate of Durham Jordan and former News & Observer prep female athlete of the year, Perry finished just ahead of West Virginia’s Chene Townsend (13.59) on Saturday. The next four hurdlers were all at 13.73 or faster.

Perry had finished best among all qualifiers with a 13.55 on Friday night, the same day she won the long jump with a leap of 21 feet, 2 inches. The jump bested Karimah Shepherd’s 21-11/4 mark set last year.

“I came out with a goal in mind, and that was to keep the first-place spot,” Perry said of her hurdle run. “I just knew if I pushed out and cranked up my speed at hurdle seven through the end that I would do what I came out here to do.

“The start is very, very important. When I don’t come out of the blocks, I usually have to play catch-up and that costs me a few seconds. You can always see the people who are right next to you out of the side of your eye. I was trying to watch out for that and make sure I couldn’t see anybody.”

Perry, who has been hurdling since seventh grade and was MVP at both 4A indoor and outdoor meets in 2012, said her personal breakfast of champions is French toast and Chick-fil-A Chick-n-Minis.

“And I try to take my time during warmups, so I’m not sitting around for an hour not doing anything,” she said.

Perry, who was a gold medalist in the hurdles at the Junior PanAm Games last year, said winning Saturday’s wet hurdle race was particularly sweet after what she had done Friday.

“The long jump record was great,” Perry said. “I hadn’t done it in a while. I was coming off an injury before ACCs, so I hadn’t long-jumped as often as I’d have liked to, so I was very, very surprised and happy yesterday.”

Wolfpack jump coach Chris Coleman said he is impressed with Perry’s athletic ability and her attention to detail on technique.

“She’s very talented,” Coleman said. “She can run and jump and can do a lot of events for us. She can do throws, she can do the long jump, high jump, hurdles and sprints.

“She’s a good hurdler and just learning how to sprint. She has naturally good technique, and technique is the biggest thing. Her sprinting and her running mechanics are getting better.”

N.C. State coach Rollie Geiger said Perry, who has been ACC All-Academic in both outdoor and indoor seasons, is a major asset to the team in general.

“Her double was huge,” Geiger said. “Alexis is one of our cornerstones. She was a high scorer for us indoors, and she’s carrying that level of competition outdoors. The marks she has are good enough to get into the regional championships in Jacksonville (Fla.) in May, and they take the top 12 to the national championships.

“We always kind of looked at her as a hurdler-long jumper-high jumper. That long jump mark may have been better than the hurdles, but they’re both great marks. She’s quite an athlete – a great athlete. And a terrific student and a terrific person.”

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service