by Kristen Ku
BELIZE CITY, Mon. Feb. 5, 2024
Twenty-year-old Kendall Morgan, the reigning Queen of the Bay, led St. John’s College Junior College (SJCJC) to a spectacular second place in the medal tally at the Association of Tertiary Level Institutions of Belize (ATLIB) National Athletics Championships.
The event, which took place at the Marion Jones Sports Complex in Belize City on Saturday, January 27, saw participation from tertiary level schools across the country.
Morgan, fresh off her triumphant performance at the 7th Copa Revolución Athletics Grand Prix in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, continued her winning streak by securing seven gold medals in various disciplines.
“Above all things, I’m grateful for the opportunity to represent my school along with my team. I must commend them; they did an awesome job; they made me proud,” she told Amandala.
Her victories in the sprints (100m, 200m, and 400m), 4x100m relay, shot put, javelin, and high jump, were instrumental in SJCJC’s impressive haul of 19 medals: 9 gold, 6 silver, and 4 bronze.
Morgan launched the shot put 8.87 meters, as IJC’s Emiliana Aguilar threw 6.30m for the silver, and Galen’s Christene Gillett took the bronze at 5.34.
She sprinted to victory in the 400 meters with a time of 1:04.72, while SJCJC’s Jada Logan took the silver in 1:10.05, and UB’s Jahniah Arnold ran 1:10.81 for the bronze.
She blazed through the 100m in 12.99 seconds, with Shamika Lambey of Ecumenical Junior College taking the silver in 13.28secs, and SJCJC’s Jada Logan clocking in at 14.27secs for the bronze.
Morgan also clinched gold in the 200 meters in 26.80 seconds, while EJC’s Janelle Nuñez took the silver in 27.00secs, and SJC’s Thayesse Alvarez ran 30.02secs for the bronze.
In the high jump, she cleared the bar at 1.35m, followed by SJCJC’s Thayesse Alvarez who took the silver at 1.30m, and Shenelle Lennan of Sacred Heart Junior College cleared 1.25m for the bronze.
Morgan also impressively won gold for her javelin throw at 29.96 meters, and anchored the SJCJC women’s team to gold in the 4×100 meters relay, with Independence Junior College women taking the silver, and the Galen Eagles claiming the bronze.
“It was all God’s work, for without Him I wouldn’t be able to conquer,” she expressed. “We’ve been training for two weeks straight. We did a lot of last-minute training too, so we had to hit the track late; but the saying goes, ‘What you put in you will get out,’ and that was exactly what was seen on the day of Atlib.”
This achievement comes on the heels of the recent success of her and her athletic team, Flash, comprised of other Belizeans from throughout Belize, at the 7th Copa Revolución Athletics Grand Prix at the Estadio Mario Villanueva Madrid in Playa del Carmen, Mexico on November 17 and 18, 2023, when she won four gold medals in javelin, 100m, 200m, and 400m, respectively, and a silver medal in long jump.
Her Flash teammates also enjoyed success, with Donovan Grinage, Jr. capturing two gold medals in the 400m and shot put; Gina Tejeda and Jada Logan each taking home gold in shot put and long jump, respectively; while Jalen O’Brien and Juan Portillo secured silver medals in their events.
According to Morgan, her wins were due to her mantra, “BDF”. “I won 7 golds because of BDF: Believing; Determination/ Dedication/Drive; Faith in the Father pushes you Further,” she explained.