McNamara senior Jordan Martin looked at the packed grandstands around his home track, knowing he had one final opportunity to put on a show for fans who have seen him dazzle in two sports.
He came through, setting a McNamara Mustangs Invitational record Saturday in the 110-hurdles at 14.06 seconds, one of numerous standout performances on a cool, clear day in Forestville.
The McNamara girls won the team title with 98.5 points, followed by Elizabeth Seton (70). Forest Park took first for the boys (98), followed by McNamara (61.5).
“I didn’t have any choice but to show up, ball out,” Martin said. “There’s no other way to describe this moment. It’s my last time I’m going to be here with all my peers coming out to see me, support the team.”
Martin appeared a little let down when his time flashed at Jackson Field. It was not quite the sub-14 time for which he and Coach Keith Chapman were hoping.
Nevertheless, it was another step in a triumphant return to the track for Martin, a football standout headed to Toledo on scholarship. Plagued by various leg injuries early in his high school career, he took time off after his sophomore indoor season to concentrate on the gridiron.
Fully healthy again, he came back for his senior season, and track work has aided his technique to make the necessary cuts as a cornerback.
“A big lift,” Chapman said. “Senior year, his body was feeling good. He said, ‘I’ve got to do this.’”
Forest Park junior Mustaqeem Williams had an unmistakable bounce in his step, even playfully thumping his chest, after his 100-meter showing. The 10.49 he ran set a meet record and told him he was on the “right page.”
“I feel that if I keep hitting 10.5, 10.4 constantly, I’ll probably peak at states,” Williams said. “I was very excited.”
Osbourn Park’s Kiana Hairston also broke a meet record in the 100 (12.17), although a slight slip in the blocks kept her from setting a personal best.
“Unfortunately, not,” she said, smiling, about not beating her best of 12.04. “I think my block start, and I need to work on my form.”
The Mustang girls were carried by a record-tying high jump (5 feet 4 inches) by Christina Solomon and a first-place long jump by Jaidlin Hill (17-8.50). Farrah Suber had a huge day for Woodbridge, breaking Invitational marks in the 200 (25.19) and 300 hurdles (45.09).
Leading the Forest Park boys along with Williams was Calvin Michie, whose 21.95 effort broke a meet record in the 200. Boys’ MVP Rashad Manning of Riverdale Baptist came through with meet records in the discus (150-2) and shot put (56-8), and Atholton’s Jordan Palmer’s triple jump (44-5.75) was also best all-time at McNamara.