Freeport relay runs to states


Freeport’s girls’ 4x400 relay is headed to the New York State track & field championships after stellar performances in consecutive weeks, with the first bringing a Nassau County Class AAA title and the second top billing at the state qualifier meet.

The Lady Devils won the relay at the qualifier hosted by North Shore May 31 and June 1 and set a season-best time of 3 minutes, 52.49 seconds in the process. Coach Jahn Scott said she could ticker with the foursome’s order at Union Endicott High School this weekend.

“I don’t think it matters to the girls which legs they run,” Scott said. “They set a goal to break 3:50. My goal for them is to get to the finals and try to win it. It’s something within reach.”

At the county meet and qualifier, junior Efe Omokeni ran the leadoff leg, followed by her younger sister Enyero, a sophomore, junior Liz Marine and junior Alexandria Yarbrough. They breezed to the county title with a time of 3:53.22, distancing runner-up Port Washington by 15 seconds.

“I’m very happy with their progress,” Scott said. “I started coaching the girls last spring and they were strong then. They’ve absolutely improved and everyone is saying it’s the best girls season Freeport has had in 20 years.”

The Lady Devils finished third in the 18-team county meet with 56 points. Uniondale ran away with the title with 101 points, followed by Port Washington with 58.

Yarbrough won two individual county titles to go with the relay. She won the 400 in 55.39 seconds and the 200 in 24.97 to grab 20 points. “Alexandria is a very driven runner,” Scott said. “She eats, sleeps and drinks track and field. We changed her strategy in the 400 and she’s been running evenly all the way. In the 200, the race is so short we just want to her go get it from the start.”

Efe Omokeni won the long jump at the state qualifier, almost hitting 18 feet, after placing second at the county meet. “We call Efi O1 and Enyero O2,” Scott said. “Efe won the county title in the long jump during the winter and was fifth in the state. It’s her main event.”

Enyero is one of the most versatile athletes on the roster, Scott explained, and has plenty of time to focus on a select few events. “She can figure out what she wants to do down the road,” Scott noted.

Marine has been dubbed a “heat-seeking missle” by the coach. Of the four relay participants, she sounds locked in to the third leg. “No matter where we stand, she makes things happen,” Scott said. “If we’re behind, she closes the gap. If we’re ahead, she widens the lead.”

Junior Quincy Easter also enjoyed a successful spring. She placed fourth in the county in the triple jump and fifth in the long jump. “She’s a strong athlete who might be doing the pentathlon next year,” Scott said.