The first question to ask Kyna Robinson normally would have been how she managed to run her blazing 400 meters time considering the cold and windy conditions at the Wake County Track and Field Championships.
But what the Southeast Raleigh freshman accomplished Saturday at the Trojan Stadium went beyond normal. She won with her career best mark of 56.11 seconds. How did she do it?
“I don’t know,” Robinson said with a laugh. “I just listened to my coaches. I got out on the first curve, I strided it out and going into the last curve I gave it all I got.”
She was one of the few athletes performing a season or career best with the temperature hovering around 50 degrees and a bitter wind blowing across the stadium. Fans and athletes were bundled up like a late-season football game. The first victim of the 15-plus mph winds was the officials’ tent. The metal pipes forming the frame were a jangled mess – or New Age art, depending on your perspective – while set to the side of the scoring table.
Robinson, who has been running club track since she was 6 years old, led Southeast Raleigh’s girls to the team title with 255.5 points to Green Hope’s 165. She also ran legs on the winning 4x200 relay team (1:39.70) and the 4x400 team (3:54.1) that included Sierra Fletcher, Asya Macon and Saidah Hardwick.
“I’m really having fun running high school track, especially with this team,” Robinson said. “The team camaraderie is special here.”
Other Southeast Raleigh girls winners were Kaila Lewis with a double in the 100 (12.34) and 200 (25.07); Hardwick in the high jump, 5-0; Chardonei Sutton, triple jump, 35-1; and Candice Whitley, shot put, 36-9; and the 4x100 team.
Southeast Raleigh’s boys team made it a sweep for the school, winning with 263.5 points to Green Hope’s 175. Leading the Bulldogs was Dominic Foy in the 300-intermediate hurdles (40.94) and Travon Miller in the triple jump (43-2 1/2).
One of the stronger finishes of the day was recorded by Green Hope senior Jayquan Williams in the 400. He made up 15 meters in the final 100. Williams leads the state in the 800 at 1:54.20, but he competed in the 400, winning in 50.41. He also anchored the winning 4x400 relay team (3:23.71) that included Ian Delgado, Henry Pehr and William Hoffman.
Pehr, who has been challenging Williams in the 800, won the event in 1:55.20. Another Green Hope gold medalist was Finn McBride in the 1,600 (4:27.11).
Two boys that doubled were Holly Springs’ Jordan Brown in the high jump (6-2) and long jump (20-3 1/4) and Middle Creek’s Terrell Adams in the shot put (60-4 1/2 and discus (181-0)
Other boys winners were Wake Forest’s Tyri Beard in the 100, 10.98; Panther Creek’s Jimmy Jones, 200, 22.94; Broughton’s Lanier Derbyshire, 3,200, 9:31.35; Millbrook’s Thomas Nulty, 110 high hurdles, 15.58; and Millbrook’s Elijah Cole, pole vault (14-6).
Wakefield senior Breana Bygrave, the state leader in the 100 hurdles in 13.94, settled for winning her specialty in 14.41 and the 300 hurdles in 44.14.
“You were just trying to score points for your team,” Bygrave said. “The wind was especially hard for hurdlers to get your steps between hurdles. I just tried to stay low and power through.”
Other girls winners were Green Hope’s Alessandra Rodriguez in the 800, 2:21.62; Enloe’s Cierra DellaRova, 1,600, 5:13.15; Panther Creek’s Bridgette Sullivan, 3,200, 11:20.00; East Wake’s Mikieja Covington, long jump, 16-7 1/2; Apex’s Zoe Early, pole vault, 10-6; and Wakefield’s Veronica Fraley, discus, 137-6.