Oakland Park Northeast (FL) High School junior Briana Williams was world-class on Saturday at the JAC Open in Jacksonville, destroying a talented field with an incredible performance.
Williams, 17, ran a personal and career best wind-legal 11.10 (+0.2) seconds, posting the No. 2 mark all-time at the distance for a high schooler to go along with a new junior class record. It marks a three-hundredths of a second improvement from Williams’ previous best of 11.13 seconds.
Running alongside her Born 2 Do It Track Club teammate, professional sprinter and Trinidad & Tobago international Khalifa St. Fort — the St. Thomas Aquinas (FL) High School graduate — Williams ran away in the final meters. Fort was second in 11.65 seconds.
🚨NEW NATIONAL JR RECORD🚨
Congrats to Briana Williams on her new personal best and 🇯🇲national junior record of 11.10 seconds (0.2 m/s) 👀🔥🔥🔥 in the 100m at JAC Open in Jacksonville, Florida.@AtoBoldon @brianastarr21 @TeamJA876 @lsabre_Avenger pic.twitter.com/zPXrsyAEQu
— 🇯 🇺 🇸 🇹 🇸🇵🇴🇷🇹🇸 (@JustSportsTweet) June 1, 2019
“I don’t think the high school record is going to last much longer,” said Olympian and NBC commentator Ato Boldon, Williams’ coach and Born 2 Do It Track Club coach. “She stopped at the wrong finish line today. She hasn’t run a 100 meter since April. It actually looked rusty.
“But she’s had such a great month of training in May that she’s reaping the rewards. New Mexico next week is going to be must-see!”
The time puts Williams on track for her quest to qualify for the Jamaican Senior team ahead of the World Championships this year in Doha, Qatar.
Williams’ time, currently is No. 9 in the world for 100 meters, puts the Jamaican youth international on track for a big performance next weekend at Great Southwest, where she will return to Albuquerque for a chance for an even faster time at altitude.
“I had a good execution and start but I never thought that I ran 11.10,” Williams said via text. “It felt more like an 11.3, especially on this hot day. But I’m very proud of myself. May was a month of training and it has surely paid off.”
Saturday’s performance marked just the third competitive performance at 100 meters for Williams on the season. She previously ran 11.25 seconds in the finals of the CARIFTA Games.
Williams’ time broke a 43-year-old national class record. She surpassed Chandra Cheeseborough’s junior class record of 11.13 seconds last set in 1976.
She’s now the second fastest high school athlete of all-time and the performance ranks tied for No. 3 all-time with Kaylin Whitney, who went 11.10 seconds in 2014.
Boldon said Williams was inspired by LSU’s Sha’Carri Richardson, a freshman who recently ran 10.99 seconds in her first year with the Tigers. Four women in the NCAA have run under 11 seconds in 2019, including former Miami Northwestern graduate Twanisha Terry, who’s recorded a time of 10.99 seconds.