Current, former DSU track stars stay busy
It has been a busy summer for current and former Dickinson State track and field stars. So much so that Blue Hawks coach Pete Stanton makes sure he's never too far away from a computer with e-mail access. "We stay in touch, I give those guys work...
It has been a busy summer for current and former Dickinson State track and field stars.
So much so that Blue Hawks coach Pete Stanton makes sure he's never too far away from a computer with e-mail access.
"We stay in touch, I give those guys workouts and they follow them," Stanton said.
One athlete who Stanton remains in contact with is hurdler Allan Ayala.
Ayala, who will be a sophomore at DSU this fall, is trying to make a name for himself at the Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Ayala will be running the 400-meter hurdles for his native country of Guatemala on July 25. He's competing at a meet in El Salvador this weekend.
Ayala broke his own Guatemalan national record in the 400 hurdles with his second-place run of 51.416 seconds at the NAIA national championships in May.
While Ayala has national team coaches in Guatemala, he continues to ask Stanton for advice via e-mail.
"I'm just staying in touch, providing more moral support than anything else," Stanton said. "He doesn't have much direction there. It has given him a chance to stay with it (hurdling)."
Former DSU star Derrick Atkins continues his climb to the top of the men's 100-meter charts at massive events sanctioned by the International Association of Athletics Federations.
On Friday, Atkins took second behind world-record holder Asafa Powell in the 100 at the Golden Gala at Rome's Olympic Stadium.
Powell, who is Atkins' distant relative from Jamaica, finished in 9.90 seconds while the former Blue Hawk clocked a 10.02 time.
DSU sophomore Jamal Forbes, who finished fourth in the 100 at the NAIA national championships last season, won the Bahamas Junior National Championships in the event this summer.
Ironically, Atkins won the Bahamas National Championships in the 100.
Ramon Miller, who will also be a sophomore at DSU next fall, is part of the Bahamas six-man, 1,600-meter national relay team who will travel to Osaka, Japan, for the IAAF World Championships in August.
Bahamas native Trevor Berry, a DSU school-record holder in the high jump, is continuing his run toward an Olympic bid.
He's already cleared 7 feet, 7½ inches, which would have been enough to meet Olympic qualifying standards. However, on the jump the bar wobbled and fell off, negating Berry's attempt.
Berry, Atkins and former Blue Hawk Adrian Griffith will all compete at the Pan American Games this month.
It's likely Berry's last chance to break through to the Olympics.
"He's got one more shot," Stanton said.