Selma’s Strong captures state Class 5A 400 crown

Published 12:02 am Sunday, May 10, 2009

GULF SHORES — Selma senior Kamesha Strong missed the chance to compete in the state finals of the girls Class 5A 200-meter dash by less than a second.

An Auburn-Montgomery basketball signee who was the team’s most valuable player in basketball, Strong saved that extra second to capture the state 5A crown in the 400 meters Saturday.

She was the only sub-minute runner, finishing the distance in 59.79 seconds.

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Finishing second behind Strong in the 400 was Parker’s Iris Robinson with a 1:00.15.

Strong and fellow UAM basketball signee Ashley Grimes finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in the 100.

The two runners were so close, in fact, that the times were broken into thousandths — 12.632 for Strong and 12.635 for Grimes.

Grimes also was a big winner at the school’s athletic banquet, tabbed as the track team’s best female sprinter and best all-around.

In Friday’s prelimaries for the 100 dash, Strong and Grimes finished 3-4 with 12.47 and 12.43, respectively.

One surprise for Selma was the long jump for Grimes, who went into the competition as the favorite with a previous jump of 17 feet, 11 inches. Her 17-3 in the finals gave her a fifth-place finish after Lacey Dent of St. Paul’s won the high jump with an 18-9.

Selma’s girls 4×100 relays failed to qualify for the finals after finishing 10th with a 52.33-second showing in the preliminaries. Only the top eight teams advanced to the finals.

Along with Grimes, runners on the relay team included Jasmine Lewis, Emily Cleveland and Shaniqua Williams.