adidas Garden State Track Club Wins Gold at Millrose Games, from

adidas Garden State Track Club, one of the newer clubs in New Jersey, did very well at the Millrose Games. Here is their newsletter detailing their success in the Millrose Games, thanks to Jeff Benjamin, who sent us the newsletter! 
aGSTC Wins Gold at Millrose Games

NYC- On paper, the club's sprint medley relay of Tyrone Ross (400m), Jamal Roberts (200m), Isaiah Gill (200m), and Dylan Lowry (800m) seemed unbeatable.  However, anything can happen in the sport of track and field--especially with sprint handoffs--so execution was essential.

And execute they did.

Ross ran a flawless opening leg of 49.35, sitting on the Central Park lead-off for 350 meters, waiting for the final stretch to unleash a kick pushing the Black and Gold to a half-second lead they would only build during the next three legs.

From there, Gill (22.26) opened up a full second on the CPTC, whose athlete split 23.32; Roberts widened the lead even more, rolling a 22.29 while the cross-river rivals countered with a 22.70. 
Roberts passes to Lowry in the final exchange

This left anchor Lowry a comfortable two second buffer, and the crafty middle-distance star opened his first 400m in a relaxed 57.0.  The Central Park half miler worked hard to get on his shoulder, but Lowry evenly-split his next 400m in 57, leaving the Blue and Orange three seconds back.  Crossing the finish line, knowing it was the club's first-ever gold medal at the historic meet dating back to 1908, he extended his arm upward, baton to the sky, as he hit the famed Millrose Games tape.   Watch the race here.
Ross, Roberts, Lowry, and Gill (sitting) pose after winning the SMR
And with that, the club's quartet joined an elite group of athletes such as Kip Keino, Bernard Lagat, Eamonn Coghlan, Paavo Nurmi, Mary Decker, and Carl Lewis: Millrose Games champions.

Men's 4x2: OUTLEANED
Kirkland, Duncan, Roberts, and Robbins post-race
The good news: they ran a club record by a whopping two seconds, leading for most of the race.  The bad news: they lost by .02, getting out leaned at the finish line.

Things got off to a rocky start, as Gill became dehydrated minutes before the race and passed out.  Rushed to the medical tent, the group had to take Herman Kirkland, who has only long jumped this year, from the B team to the A Team.  This left the B Team one man short, but that's a different story below.
Robbins on the final stretch 

Kirkland leadoff in 22.7, putting the team in a distant fourth.  Duncan grabbed the baton and pushed the team into third, closing the gap with the top two teams.  He and Roberts struggled with the baton pass, but once Roberts got rolling, he picked off another team--pushing the club into second.  Robbins opened up a very hard 100m, bringing the crowd to its feet as he moved into the lead.  As he navigated the final turn, however, John Lundy of DC International gained hard on him.  They both leaned hard at the tape, but it was clear Lundy, with a season best 21.02 FAT this year, had stolen the gold medal.  The final times were 1:28.82-1:28.84.

Women's DMR: THIRD!
Black, Salge, Prettyman, and Davis
Despite lots of last minute scratches, resulting in the unfortunate scratching of the B Team just two days before, the quartet of Ally Black (1200), Shene Davis (400), Nicole Salge (800), and Lindsay Prettyman (1600) ran an incredibly tough race.  They finished 3rd in 11:57.37, the second fastest time in club history.  They also beat Central Park TC, putting them as the 2nd overall club, both club firsts.

Black, an eighteen year old first-year student at Rutgers, ran a gutsy opening leg.  Battling NYAC and St. John's down to the very last stride, she handed off in fourth in 3:43.  CPTC opened a six second lead on the field with an impressive 3:37 lead-off.  
Davis, a triple jumper nursing an injury sustained last month, gained on the entire field.  With 100m to go, all four teams were clustered together, as the CPTC 400 leg split a pedestrian 65.05 dissolving their once insurmountable lead.  The aGSTC were still in 4th, but just a second separated the entire pack.
Black taking an early lead in the DMR

The race immediately broke up during the third leg, as NYAC (2:12), CPTC (2:12), and St. John's (2:14) all had monster half milers.  Salge, a last-minute switch from the b-team, ran her heart out, splitting an all-time indoor PR of 2:19.37 despite doing all of it alone.

Anchor Prettyman opened up her first several laps running sub-5:00 pace, but it all looked futile as fourth place seemed a lock.  At the half mile mark, however, the CPTC anchor began to falter, as she no longer could keep pace with the NYAC anchor Esther Erb.  Prettyman made up ground during the entire last 800m, finally passing her on the final lap.  She carried the baton in 4:55.85--the fastest in club history and the second fastest in the race behind Erb's 4:49 carry. 

SMR: B Team Medals
Ramirez, Parisen, Duncan, and Robbins (sitting)
The sprint medley "B Team" lined up knowing they had a chance to win it all, and coming off the final turn, they were a stride behind Central Park, fighting for a silver medal.

Mark Parisen started things off with a 51.7 400m leg, handing off in third by almost two seconds.  From there, Duncan and Robbins made up serious ground in the 200m legs, splitting 22.56 and 22.43, respectively.  This put anchor Larry Ramirez just three strides behind second place, and he pushed hard in the opening lap to get on CPTC's shoulder.  He hung on for the next 500 meters, fighting hard off the last turn to pass for the silver medal, but his efforts fell just .4 short.  His 1:53.76 was the fastest split in the race, as the club finished eight seconds ahead of 4th place Shore AC.  The top three teams in each race medaled, making this group the only B Team to win hardware in the evening.

4x2 B Team: Literally, 
Last Second Heroics
Parisen, Jackson, Persson, Erazo after the 4x200 relay
This race was about two minutes from not happening.

When the A Team took Kirkland, this left the B Team with just three runners. Kevin Persson ran over to club management, shared the news just one event before the 4x200, and the hunt was on to find a replacement.  

As luck would have it, Parisen, Lowry, and Ramirez were in the midst of a three mile warm down, but Parisen and Lowry decided to head back and finish just two after the sprint medley.  The moment they came back into the building, Parisen was told, "You're going to hate me for this, but grab your spikes, run across the track, and anchor the $%^& 4x2 relay."  As such an event usually requires a rigorous 45-60 minute warm up, this was an extremely unusual demand to be placed on an athlete.

George Erazo, the lead-off man, was literally in the blocks as he trotted across the track.  Moments later, Parisen got the baton in fourth out of six teams, blasted a 23.3, passed two teams, and helped the group finish 2nd in the heat--and 6th overall, out of twelve teams in 1:32.83...just .05 behind CPTC's A Team from the fast heat.

Check out all GSTC races here on the club's YouTube video channel.  The victorious SMR already has 172 views!

Check out all Millrose results here.

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