Girls Track: Morolake Akinosun sets national-best time in 55-dash
Updated: March 24, 2012 10:10PM
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Morolake Akinosun was practicing starts on Thursday when her hamstring started acting up.
So the Waubonsie Valley senior cut short her workout and did nothing more than jog a mile on Friday.
By Saturday, she was running faster than anyone in the country.
Akinosun won her heat of the 55-meter dash at the Illinois Prep Top Times Indoor Classic in 6.81 seconds, tying the fastest time in the nation this indoor season. Then she went out and won the final in 6.76, a new national best.
“I guess it was good I took [Friday] off,” a smiling Akinosun said afterward. “I felt fine through the first race. ... It’s always like my fourth step out of the blocks when I feel [any hamstring issue].
“When I didn’t feel it, I knew I was good to go and accelerate.”
Akinosun came back later to win the 200 in 23.91, a meet record time that was just .09 off the 2012 national best in that event.
“If I can do it again [win two events at outdoor state] in May in Charleston, I will be the happiest person ever,” Akinosun said.
She shared Class 3A girls athlete of the meet honors with Glenbard East’s Lindsey Rakosnik, the other double winner.
Rakosnik took first in the 800 in 2:12.38, edging Kenwood’s Dhiaa Dean (2:12.48), and then came back to win the 1,600 in 4:56.86.
She exceeded expectations, especially considering the short turnaround time between events.
“I ran a couple laps 20 minutes before the [1,600] race and I felt sort of tired,” Rakosnik said. “My legs weren’t as fresh. I think [the difference] was all the adrenaline, the good competition to push me.”
Also ready to race was Lindblom junior Shamier Little, who was named the Class 2A girls athlete of the meet after winning two events and finishing runner-up in a third event.
Little took first in the 55 hurdles in 8.06, a personal best and a Class 2A meet record. Then she won the 400 in 57.10 and was second to Springfield’s Charday Crawford in the 200 with a time of 25.34.
“My strategy was to pump my arms and keep lifting my legs to fight the burn,” she said after the 400 win.