Williams sparks Midwood to first-ever PSAL outdoor title

It wasn’t a pleasant night for Donald Williams. The following day, well that’s a different story.

The Midwood sprinter slipped down his stairs and injured his ankle prior to the PSAL city championship meet and was having some pain and swelling.

“I went to bed almost crying,” he said. “I was like, ‘My coach is going to kill me.’ I didn’t know what I was going to do.”

Williams iced the ankle and was feeling better in the morning. He looked just fine on the track.

With Midwood trailing by 40 points midway through the meet, the senior won the 100 meter dash in a season-best time of 10.56. It set in motion the Hornets’ comeback.

“It got everybody hyped up,” senior Olukayode Owolabi said. “It got me hyped up in the triple jump.”

Unlike in the indoor city final, Midwood didn’t falter in the final relay as anchor leg Andy Nicolas secured a fourth-place finish in the 4 x 400 to give the Brooklyn school the title. The Hornets edged rival Sheepshead Bay, 53-50, to win their first-ever PSAL outdoor track and field title at a windy Icahn Stadium Sunday. It is just the team’s second city championship overall as Midwood won the indoor crown in 2008.

“This was a phenomenal senior group,” fourth-year Hornets coach Marc Cohen said. “I’m very happy for this group. I started with this group. It’s a good way to go out with this group.”

The win comes after the Hornets lost 49-45 to the Sharks indoors. This time Donald Williams won the 100 and teammate Eric Williams was third in 10.68, one of his best performances of the year. Donald Williams was also a member of the fourth place 4 x 400 team with Alex Sterling, Gavin Henry and Nicolas. Owolabi was fantastic in the triple jump. His leap of 49 feet 6 inches broke his own school record, though he admitted it was aided by the intense winds. Scott Dorante placed second in the shot put with a toss of 47-06.50, after being seeded sixth.

“I couldn’t believe it,” Owolabi said of his mark. “I just ran and I just dropped. I was able to cry. It was wonderful.”

Sheepshead Bay did all it could. John Thomas blazed to the 200 title in 21.24 and teammate Jose Farley placed second in the 110 hurdles (14.41). Rolyce Boston took home the triple jump title with a leap of 22-05.

“My second jump is always my best,” Boston said.

Kareem Crawford won the 400 hurdles and 110 hurdles in times of 53.67 and 14.04 respectively for Curtis, which was third with 43 points. Teammate Jason Stapleton took home the steeplecase title with a time of 9.53.64 and was second behind Stuyvesant’s Daniel Hyman Cohen (9:57.85) in the 3200 in 9:58.19. Francis Lewis’ Chukwuebuk Enekwechi won the shot put with a toss of 52-10.55 and the discus in 156-10.

The day ultimately belonged to Midwood. It was an afternoon the Hornets felt was a long time coming and one to be remembered for years to come.

“Midwood will miss us,” Donald Williams said. “I’ll tell you that much.”

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