Jamaica’s Tonyan Beckford will be attending the University of Kentucky next fall.

The talented Edwin Allen and Jamaica 400m hurdler, who boasts personal bests of 57.14 in the 400m hurdles and 52.88 over 400m, has signed a letter of intent to join the programme that already has former Hydel High star athlete Oneika McAnuff on its roster.

The NCAA Division 1 track and field powerhouse announced the signing on their Instagram account on Thursday.

Already a national representative at the junior level, Beckford is a 2023 Carifta Games 400m hurdles silver medalist and was also a member of Jamaica’s 4x400m relay team that won the silver medal at the U20 Pan Am Games in August.

The University of Kentucky has produced some of the world’s best athletes including two-time World Championship gold medalist Abby Steiner of the United States and Olympic and world champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn of Puerto Rico.

 

 

 

2022 Ben Francis Cup Knockout champions Edwin Allen High started their 2023 DaCosta Cup campaign with a 7-1 win over Claude McKay on Monday.

Edwin Allen, who were quarterfinalists in last year’s DaCosta Cup, are now leaders of Zone H after the first round of matches. Elsewhere in the zone, Kellits High secured a 1-0 win over Thompson Town. Zone H play kicked off on Saturday when defending champions Clarendon College beat Lennon High 5-0.

In Zone I, Wycliffe Martin High secured a 1-0 win over St. Mary High.

Hydel High will enter Saturday’s High School Girls Championship of America 4x100m as clear favourites after advancing fastest from Friday’s heats at the Penn Relays at Franklin Field.

Hydel produced a sizzling 44.96 to win heat 14 and advance fastest ahead of heat 17 winners Bullis School (46.05) and heat six winners, Edwin Allen (46.64).

Nassau’s St. Augustine’s finished second in heat 17 in 46.80 to advance while St. Jago ran the same time to win heat five. Wolmer’s Girls advanced eighth fastest with 47.35 to finish second in heat 15, won by McDonough School (46.95).

The field is completed by Heritage (47.23) and South County (47.37).

The race is set for Saturday.

The qualifiers for the High School Girls International final, also set for Saturday, are Jamaica’s St. Catherine High (47.53), Holmwood Technical (47.61), St. Mary High (47.78), Manchester High (47.82), Excelsior High (48.00), Mount Alvernia (48.83) and Holy Childhood (49.00) as well as the Bahamas’ Queens College (48.32) and Puerto Rico’s Academia Interamericana (48.76).

Edwin Allen will be the Caribbean’s lone representative in the High School Girls Championship of America 4x800m final after running 9:17.28 to win their heat.

In the field, Jamaica secured the top three spots in the High School Girls discus. Holmwood’s Cedricka Williams took first with 57.32m ahead of St. Jago’s Abigail Martin (54.54m) and Camperdown’s Britannie Johnson (47.33).

Camperdown’s Britannia Johnson, twin sister of Britannie, took the shot put in 14.04m. Livingston’s Jessica Oji was second with 13.86m while Edwin Allen’s Rochele Solomon was third with 13.57m.

Mount Alvernia’s Aaliyah Foster jumped 5.78m for third in the long jump behind James River’s Lilly Ver Beek (5.92m) and Friend’s Central’s Avery Lewis (6.21m).

St. Jago’s Jade-Ann Dawkins produced 13.02m for victory in the triple jump ahead of Ocean City’s Sophia Curtis (12.45m) and Western Branch’s Llyric Driscoll (12.38m).

Three girls cleared 1.70m in the high jump with Howell’s Samantha Strydesky winning ahead of Shanniqua Williams of Wolmer’s Girls and Edwin Allen’s Deijanae Bruce.

 

Edwin Allen standout sprinter Serena Cole has signed a professional contract with Nike, well-placed sources have confirmed to Sportsmax.TV.  According to other sources, she will train under the guidance of world-renowned coach Stephen Francis at the MVP Track Club in Kingston.

A talented long jumper, Cole, who turns 19 in June, is the latest Jamaican female sprinter to join the professional ranks straight out of high school following on the heels of World U20 100m champion Tina Clayton, her twin sister Tia and Kerrica Hill, the World U20 100m hurdles champion.

Several calls to Edwin Allen Head Coach Michael Dyke and a call to MVP President Bruce James went unanswered on Thursday.

The two-time World U20 champion was a member of Jamaica’s 4x100m team that set three World U20 records in the Women U20 4x100m relay. She was the lead-off runner when the team ran 42.94 at the World U20 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya in 2021.

Cole was also the lead-off runner in April 2022 on a team that also included the Clayton twins and Brianna Lyston that established a new record of 42.58 at the 49th edition of the Carifta Games in Kingston, Jamaica. Unfortunately, that record was not ratified by World Athletics because one member of the team, Tina Clayton, was not drug tested.

However, at the World U20 Championships in Cali, Colombia in August last year, Cole, the Claytons, and Kerrica Hill ran 42.59, which was later ratified as the new world record.

With personal best in the 100m of 11.13, Cole was heading towards an epic showdown with Hydel High School’s Alana Reid at the 2023 ISSA GraceKennedy Boys and Girls Championships in March but suffered a hamstring injury while cruising to victory in her semi-final heat in 11.17.

Reid won would go to win the final in a new ‘Champs’ record of 10.92, becoming the first Jamaican high school girl to break the 11-second barrier. Reid is reportedly matriculating to the University of Oregon in the fall.

Cole is currently with the Edwin Allen team at the Penn Relays in the United States.

 

 

Ray Harvey, the co-founder and organizer of the MILO Western Relays on Monday pleaded with authorities to expedite repairs to the track at the Montego Bay Sports Complex, the traditional home of the relays. The track has been out of commission for the past five years.

“I am one of hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands of people who want Western Relays to go back home. I have been waiting patiently for five years for the track to be repaired, it just hasn't happened and we just have to keep our fingers crossed that it will happen sometime soon," Harvey said during a ceremony at GC Foster College in St Catherine on Monday when cash prizes were handed over to the schools who participated in this year’s meet at the sports college that has hosted the meet for the past few years.

Harvey noted that having a working track in Montego Bay is integral to the development of track and field in western Jamaica. In addition to the Milo Western Relays and other athletics meets, the Montego Bay Sports Complex also used to host a number of other events leading up to the relays.

They include seminars for coaches and athletes regarding drugs in sports, physical fitness and nutrition and baton-passing clinics for 10 and 11 year olds as well as training sessions for meet officials.

Those activities have ceased for the past five years.

“It is kind of a tragedy what is going on in Western Jamaica regarding the track and everything that is happening and what has been in the news recently,” said Harvey while making reference to a revelation that racing cars were being driven on the worn-out running surface.

“I would like to take this opportunity to call on the government to restore that track, get it back up because it is a pride for the Western teams and they have always been consistent and I think not having access to that facility is kinds robbing Western Jamaica of their true and full potential," Harvey continued.

"We are looking forward to going back to Montego Bay because we are also robbing the spectators or the ardent track and field supporters that opportunity to see their home grown talent performing with the best in the country."

The meet organizer also revealed that he would be subsidizing the travel expenses of the teams that had to travel from western Jamaica to St Catherine to collect their prize money.

"We have a special programme to support the teams from the West. We recognize that they are not able to be at home in Montego Bay. They have to travel. It is expensive to travel so we are offering six teams a subsidy towards their travel here coming to GC Foster College. They are getting two touches. One, this prize money and two the transportation money so the teams from the West, several of them will get two cheques.

Edwin Allen were big winners as they collected a cheque for JMD$210,000 having won five of six relays at the last meet. Coach Abna Stoner and athletes Jounee Armstrong and Dylan Logan, were on hand to receive the prize money.

The Clarendon-based track power’s girls won the Class I 4x100m, 4x400m and the 4x800m relays while the boys won the Class I 4x100m, 4x400m and placed third in the 4x800m.

Edwin Allen bagged the largest cash bounty of the 10 schools that benefited financially. The other winners included Kingston College (JMD $50,000), Holmwood Technical (JMD $50,000), Excelsior High School (JMD $40,000), St. Jago High School (JMD $20,000), Vere Techincal JMD ($20,000), Mt. Alvernia High School (JMD $15,000), Bellfield High School (JMD $5,000) and Green Island High School (JMD $5,000).

"I am happy to come all the way from the West to GC Foster College to present Edwin Allen a decent cheque. Its $210,000. They have supported Western Relays from (the) beginning and one of the schools we can always count on at Western Relays to put on a show and to make our product into something special," said Harvey

Coach Stoner of Edwin Allen was gracious in his reply.

"We are so grateful for (this) presentation because I was pleasantly surprised when I opened it and looked at the figure. This is really a shot in the arm and it will go a long way in contributing to the programme,” he said.

“This week we will be departing for Penn Relays and with all the logistics - airfare, pocket money for students, it is a pretty penny and this money that we got, it really can help to develop the programme." Edwin Allen departed the island for the Penn Relays on Tuesday.

The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has announced that a delegation of 23 comprising eight students and two coaches each from Edwin Allen High School and Kingston College and three executive members from Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) will leave for Trinidad and Tobago on February 7, 2023, to participate in the Secondary School Relay Festival on February 9, 2023. 

The participation of the Jamaican team at the Relay Festival follows a sports study tour by the Minister of Sport and Community Development for Trinidad and Tobago, the Honourable Shamfa Cudjoe, and a team of officials. 

Minister Cudjoe and members of her delegation had met with Minister Grange, a technical team from the Ministry and its agencies, representatives from the Jamaica Athletics Administration Association (JAAA), ISSA, the University of Technology (Utech), GC Foster College of Sport and Physical Education, and the Ministry of Education and Youth. They also visited four high schools and a primary school. 

Minister Grange said, “It is expected that this bilateral cooperation between Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago will bear much fruit for both our countries.” 

The Jamaicans will be competing in the 4x100m and 4x400m relays at the festival.  Barbados and Guyana are the other countries that have been invited to send teams to participate in the Relay Festival. 

The exchange activities are also being celebrated as part of the 60th Anniversary of Independence of Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. 

The delegation will return to Jamaica on Friday, February 10, 2023.

 

Hydel High was the fastest qualifiers to the Championships of America High School Girls 4x400m final at the 2022 Penn Relays at the Franklin Field in Philadelphia on Thursday.

The team of Alliah Baker, Brianna Lyston, Kerrica Hill and Onieka McAnuff ran an impressive 3:39.34 to lead all qualifiers into Friday’s final.

Holmwood Technical (3:41.45), Edwin Allen (3:45.29), St. Jago (3:49.50) and Excelsior (3:51.15) also advanced to the final.

The region will also have two representatives in the 4x800m final, also scheduled for Friday, as both Edwin Allen (9:13.89) and Holmwood Technical (9:23.48) advanced from the heats.

 

Edwin Allen High School was the fastest qualifier to the final of the High School Girls 4x100m at the 2022 Penn Relays which got underway on Thursday morning at Franklin Field in Philadelphia.

The team of the Clayton twins, Brandy Hall and Shenequa Vassell scorched the track to run a time of 44.64 to win their heat. Hydel High (46.37) and IMG Academy (47.03) were second and third fastest to the final.

Holmwood Technical (47.12), Immaculate Conception (47.15), St. Catherine High (47.56) and St. Jago (47.37) will also be in Friday's final.

Holmwood Technical’s Cedricka Williams was dominant in winning the High School Girls discus with a throw of 54.00m. Camperdown’s Victoria Christie was second with 44.88m while Ella Lucas from Warwick High School was third with 42.53m.

Edwin Allen’s Serena Cole, who ran the first leg on Jamaica’s world record-breaking U-20 girls 4x100m team at the recently concluded Carifta Games, jumped 5.98m for second in the High School Girls long jump behind Avery Lewis of Friends’ Central (6.05). Hailey Rios of Somerset jumped 5.84m for third.

St. Jago’s Annishka McDonald was third in the High School Girls' high jump after clearing 1.69m. The event was won by Spring-Ford’s Nene Mokonchu (1.72m) while Conard’s Audrey Kirkutis was second with 1.69m.

The 2022 Penn Relays will run from April 28-30.

Kingston College secured their 33rd hold on the Boys title and Edwin Allen secured their ninth hold on the Girls crown as the ISSA Boys and Girls Championships came to a close at the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday.

Edwin Allen finished with 352 points followed by Hydel (295), St. Jago High (249), Holmwood (174) and Excelsior (107).

On the Boys side, Kingston College finished with a mammoth 372 points to win ahead of Jamaica College (300.83), Calabar (170), St. Jago (147) and Edwin Allen (95).

Edwin Allen’s team of Serena Cole, Tina Clayton, Brandy Hall and Tia Clayton sped to a world high school record 43.29 to win the Class I Girls 4x100m Relay ahead of St. Jago High (45.05) and Hydel High (45.12).

The Class II event was won by Holmwood Technical in 46.33 ahead of St. Catherine High (46.45) and Edwin Allen (46.55).

St. Jago won the Class III race in 45.64 ahead of Hydel (46.19) and Holmwood Technical (46.67) while Immaculate Conception took the Class IV relay in 47.32 over Edwin Allen (48.25) and Hydel (48.58).

Jamaica College won the Boys Class I event in 39.43 ahead of St. Jago (39.89) and Camperdown (40.02).

Kingston College sped to 41.28 to win the Class II relay ahead of STETHS (41.74) and Calabar (41.86).

Calabar won the Class III event in 43.99 ahead of St. Jago (44.86) and JC (44.88).

Edwin Allen tasted victory in the Girls 1600m Sprint Medley in 3:58.87 ahead of Alphansus Davis High (4:06.74) and Holmwood Technical (4:07.31) while Kingston College won the Boys event in 3:27.66 ahead of STETHS (3:27.70) and Jamaica College (3:30.97).

Brianna Lyston anchored Hydel to victory in the Girls 4x400m Relay in 3:35.38 ahead of Edwin Allen (3:37.71) and Holmwood (3:38.34).

Jamaica College ran 3:10.04 to win the final event of Champs 2022, the Boys 4x400m ahead of Kingston College (3:10.68) and St. Jago (3:11.69).

In the field, Serena Cole, before running a leg on Edwin Allen’s victorious 4x100m team, won the Class I Long Jump in 6.36 ahead of St. Jago’s Machaeda Linton (5.82) and her Edwin Allen teammate Paula-Ann Chambers (5.71).

Edwin Allen’s Christopher Young got his third medal of the championships with gold in the Class I Boys Shot Put with 19.37m ahead of Calabar’s Kobe Lawrence (18.86) and St. Jago’s Brandon Gayle (18.30).

KC took gold in the Boys Class I High Jump through Verrol Sam (2.05m) who won ahead of STETHS’ Dejone Raymond (2.00m) and St. Jago’s Demario Prince (2.00m).

KC’s Aaron McKenzie added to his gold medal in the Class II High Jump by jumping out to 14.27 to win the Class II Triple Jump ahead of the JC pair Chavez Penn (14.22) and Euan Young (14.15m).

 

ISSA Boys and Girls Championships pundit Hubert Lawrence believes that Kingston College and Edwin Allen are favourites to win the Boys and Girls titles, respectively, as the competition get underway at the National Stadium on Tuesday.

“It looks to me as if the boys' side could be quite close. Both KC, the 2019 champions, and JC, the 2021 champions, are quite strong,” Lawrence said.

“Early in the season, it looked as if JC was not as significantly strong as KC in Class III, but each week I saw the JC Class III look better and better and it may be that on balance now, the two teams are quite strong. I don’t think there’s a walkover even though, in general, KC might look a little bit ahead,” he added.

Lawrence also expressed where the main strengths of both teams are.

“Where KC is brilliantly strong is in hurdles across the classes while JC is brilliantly strong in the 800, 1500 area across all the classes. It may be that those strengths and balances cancel out and in the 800s and 1500s, there is an extra race than the hurdles because there is no Class III 400m Hurdles but there’s Class III 800m and 1500m,” he said.

On the Girls' side, Lawrence believes that despite the fact that Hydel looked good all season, Edwin Allen is still the team to beat.

“Girls Champs will be quite competitive as well. Edwin Allen is coming on every week. They’ve had a late start to training and rain in the hills in Frankfield but they look to be coming on each week and I would have to say they’re the favourites to defend their title,” he said.

“Who’s coming at them? Hydel. One of the remarkable things about coach Cory Bennett is his ability to hide a great side in plain view. So, you might go and score them 10 points but they’re really worth 17. St. Jago is also like that this year but coach Michael Dyke at Edwin Allen is a master at getting his teams to peak at the right time so that is up in the air but I say Edwin Allen would go in feeling in a stronger position than KC on the Boys' side,” he added.

Switching gears from teams to individuals, who, apart from the obvious candidates, does Lawrence have his eyes on to do big things at Champs?

“I’d go Alexis James from Petersfield in the Girls Class I sprint hurdles. Because Class I has a glittering 100m and 200m compliment of athletes like the Clayton twins and Briana Lyston, not many people are looking at the sprint hurdles," he said.

"James won at Carifta trials and in that race too, Oneika Wilson of Hydel got to the World Junior final but couldn’t run because of COVID protocols. Both of them are not far away from the Champs record of 13.12 so I think that’s an event we have to look at. We’re very sprint focused but I think the sprint hurdles with Megan Tapper getting the bronze in Tokyo, with us having two world champions in that event in Danielle Williams and Brigitte Foster-Hylton, that’s an event now at the Class I level that might just move forward,” he said.

“On the Boys' side, one athlete that we might not watch too much because we’re sort of track-focused is Christopher Young of Edwin Allen, former Class II discus champion. He’s been fantastic in the shot put, discus and javelin. I think his teammate, Trevor Gunzel, is just as good as he is in the shot as well as World Under-20 finalist Kobe Lawrence of Calabar so he won’t have it easy,” he said.

 

 

Edwin Allen’s Class I Girls 4x100m team stole the show at Saturday’s staging of the 2022 Gibson/McCook Relays at the National Stadium in Kingston.

The quartet of Serena Cole, Tina Clayton, Brandy Hall and Tia Clayton had a string of flawless baton exchanges to eventually cross the finish line in a time of 43.37 seconds, a new meet record and high school world record.

They finished more than a full second ahead of Hydel who ran 44.40 for second place while St. Jago finished third in 45.50.

Edwin Allen also took the girls Class 4 4x100 in 48.81 and the 4x200m Open in 1:35.91.

Hydel High girls won the Girls Class 2 4x100m in 44.62 and the 4x400m relay in 3:33.76.

Holmwood Technical was also in record-breaking form in the Girls Sprint Medley with 3:55.77 to better the previous meet record of 4:00.83.

Meanwhile, Jamaica College’s 4x800m team was also in fine form, running a new meet record of 7:24.30 to finish almost 12 seconds ahead of second-place finishers Kingston College who ran 7:36.21. St. Jago was third in 7:45.46.

JC smashed the previous meet record of 7:31.71.

Kingston College won two of the four sprint relays, running 44.36 and 45.99 to win Classes 3 and 4, respectively.

The Class 1 4x100m was won by St. Jago in 40.26 ahead of JC (40.40) and St. Catherine High (40.50) while Calabar stormed to victory in Class 2 in 42.19 ahead of KC (42.26).

St. Jago also won the final event of the meet, the boys’ 4x400m in 3:10.48 ahead of KC (3:11.43) and JC (3:12.49).

JC won the Boys’ Sprint Medley in 3:30.82 ahead of KC (3:31.53) and Calabar (3:38.40).

There were also some standout performances from the seniors on display, namely Tissana Hickling and Lushane Wilson.

Hickling won the Women’s Long Jump in 6.70m and 100m in 11.85 while Wilson leapt to a new personal best 2.21m to win the Men’s High Jump.

 

 

Edwin Allen High School won their first trophy in schoolboy football after defeating St. Elizabeth Technical 3-2 in an enthralling final at STETHS on Friday.

Negus Daley followed up his goal in the semi-final against Frome Technical with the opener for the home side in the 16th minute.

Edwin Allen got the equalizer in the 47th minute through a right-footed strike from close range by Alwayne Bryan.

Jahiem Harris scored the first of his two goals on the day to give Edwin Allen a 2-1 lead in the 63rd minute.

Substitute Davin Wright got the goal that he thought would send the game to penalties for STETHS with a header in the 85th minute to make it 2-2 before Harris got his second of the game, a brilliant left-footed strike from outside the box to give Edwin Allen a 3-2 lead and secure their maiden Ben Francis Cup title.

 

Edwin Allen High and St. Elizabeth Technical will contest the final of the Ben Francis Cup Knockout after winning their respective semi-final fixtures on Tuesday.

The double-header at STETHS saw Edwin Allen secure a comfortable 4-0 victory over Manchester High in the opening fixture and the host school pulling out a 1-0 win over Frome Technical in the second.

The final will be played at STETHS on Friday, January 21.

The hosts will be looking to secure their seventh Ben Francis Cup while Edwin Allen will be seeking their first.

Clarendon College became the fourth and final team to advance to the semi-finals of the 2021 DaCosta Cup football competition on Tuesday after recording a 3-1 win over McGrath High at St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) to finish with a perfect nine points from their three games in Zone 4.

Both DaCosta Cup semi-finals will be played at 3:00 pm on January 12 with Dinthill Technical taking on Mannings High School at the Montego Bay Sports Complex while Garvey Maceo will do battle with Clarendon College at STETHS.

Meanwhile, Manchester High beat Cornwall College 2-1 at Green Pond in Tuesday’s other Zone 4 encounter to finish second in the zone with six points and advance to the Ben Francis Cup Knockout.

Manchester High and Cornwall College join Edwin Allen, Christiana High, Munro College, Vere Technical, STETHS and Frome Technical in the Ben Francis Cup.

 

In a matter of weeks, St. Andrew Technical have gone from being out of the Manning Cup to being in the semi-finals.

After originally finishing fourth in Group B behind Camperdown, Tivoli and Excelsior, they advanced to the quarterfinal round as a second-placed team after Camperdown and Tivoli were disqualified from the competition for using ineligible players.

On Friday at Jamaica College, they played out a 1-1 draw with Mona High to advance from Group 1 along with defending champions Jamaica College to the last four of the competition.

JC finished with a perfect nine points from three games with a 3-1 win over St. Catherine at Stadium East.

On Saturday, Kingston College (KC) secured the top spot in Group 2 with a 2-0 win over Excelsior also at Jamaica College.

Charlie Smith beat Kingston Technical4-1 in the other Group 2 game to advance alongside KC.

KC will play STATHS in one semi-final and JC will play Charlie Smith in the other.

Meanwhile, Mona, Excelsior, Kingston Technical and St. Catherine High will contest the Walker Cup.

In the daCosta Cup, Dinthill Technical and The Mannings School advanced to the semi-finals on Friday.

Dinthill won Zone 1 after beating Edwin Allen 1-0 at Drax Hall, their third win in as many games.

Christiana beat William Knibb 3-2 in the other Zone 1 match at Drax Hall.

Mannings played to a 1-1 draw with Munro College at STETHS to finish with seven points from their three matches and win Zone 2.

Vere Technical and Happy Grove played a seven-goal thriller in the other Zone 2 game at STETHS on the day, with the former prevailing 4-3.

On Saturday, Garvey Maceo pulled off something special to get into the semi-finals.

Entering their final match against St. Thomas Technical at Kirkvine, trailing STETHS by three goals on goal difference, Garvey Maceo produced a massive 12-0 victory over St Thomas Technical to win Zone 3 and advance.

STETHS tried their best with a 6-0 win over Frome Technical at home but it wasn’t enough.

Garvey Maceo and STETHS both finished with seven points but Garvey Maceo’s massive win meant they ended with a goal difference of +16 whereas STETHS, with a big win of their own, ended up with a goal difference of +11.

Edwin Allen, Christiana, Munro College, Vere Technical, STETHS and Frome, as second and third-placed finishers from the respective groups,  have all qualified for the Ben Francis Cup.

The final two qualifiers as well as the final DaCosta Cup semi-finalists will be determined after rescheduled Zone-4 games on Tuesday when Clarendon College play McGrath High and Manchester High and Cornwall College meet.

 

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