Relay team finishes year with third-place at national event; Guy to attend Northridge St.
The St. Mary’s boys’ relay team finished its season with a flourish last weekend, finishing third in the 4x200-meter relay with the fourth fastest time in the nation this year at the Adidas National Outdoor Championships in Raleigh, N.C.
The meet, which was delayed halfway through due to a tropical storm, brought together some of the top individuals and teams from around the country. The St. Mary’s team of Asokah Muhammed, Courtney Brown, Julian Keyes and Halihl Guy also finished fifth in the 4x100-meter relay despite the absence of Chris Dunbar, who has been hampered by a pulled hamstring for the past two months. The Panthers had the third-fastest time in the qualifying heats at 41.60 seconds, but had two botched handoffs in the final and limped home in 42.76 seconds.
Also complicating matters, Guy had run in the 400-meter hurdles race just eight minutes before the 4x100 final. Guy finished ninth in the hurdles race.
“I think Halihl might have ran out of gas for the final,” St. Mary’s head coach Jay Lawson said. “Combine that with two bad handoffs, and we just couldn’t stay with the other fastest teams.”
But the 4x200-meter relay, which the Panthers hadn’t run since the Oakland Athletic Invitational in early April, was a different story. With no qualifying heats for the event, the Panthers were fresh and ready to run. Lawson said the team set a goal of breaking the school record in the event, and they did just that, bettering the mark by more than two seconds with a blistering 1:26.0. They were beaten by Forest Brook and O.D. Wyatt, the top two finishers from the Texas state meet, in a reverse finish of the 4x100 final.
“Julian ran very well in Dunbar’s place, and we did as well as we could have,” Lawson said. “It’s a nice way to end the season.”
The Panthers planned to run the 4x400-meter relay on Saturday, but the storm pushed the event back to Sunday and the team left before the race. Only two teams stuck around long enough to compete in the race, with Camden (N.J.) winning in 3:09.91.
NOTES: St. Mary’s Guy, a senior, pulled a sudden switch in his college choice. As recently as a week ago, he was set on attending Washington State. But Cal State Northridge called and invited him to check out the campus and program, and Guy took a trip south before heading to North Carolina.
“I told him to go check it out, because he had nothing to losebut a day,” Lawson said. “He’s going to be a communications major, so being close to Los Angeles makes more sense. When they offered him a full ride (Washington State was only offering a partial scholarship), I think that sealed the deal.”
“They’re really trying to build up the men’s program down at Northridge, and Halihl can be part of that.”
Northridge also signed McClymonds sprinter Rashaad Allen this week.