Coaches say they are pleased with Cayman’s performance at the recent Carifta Games in Turks and Caicos. Highlighting the region’s premier age-group track meet was the dominant performance by the Jamaicans who earned more medals than any other team by far. For Cayman the highlights were the three silver medal performances by Kemar Hyman, Alexandra Terry and Shane Evans.
Hyman, 17, clocked an impressive 21.1 for second in the 200 meters to set a new Cayman Islands national junior record.
Alexandra Terry, 15, hurled the discus 37.4m for a silver medal.
Shane Evans bagged a silver in the shot put.
Williams said the girls 4x100m relay team ran well to make the final. He believes they will go much faster in the future.
Evans tossed the shot 14.26m to earn his silver medal. He placed 11th in the javelin. ‘I expected more in the shot,’ said Evans. ‘But it rained a lot and I didn’t get to really perform at my best.’
Terry was happy with her silver medal performance but feels she could have done even better. ‘My best is 38 meters and I threw 37, so I think that if I had given it just a little more I could have thrown about 41. I want to get the gold next time.’
Team sponsor Caribbean Utilities Company (CUC) was well represented at Owen Roberts Airport when the team arrived home. Richard Hew, CUC’s president and CEO, and Caren Thompson, CUC’s manager of corporate communications, were on hand to greet the athletes and congratulate them for their efforts against the Caribbean’s best. CUC has an impressive 21-year track record of sponsoring Cayman Islands Carifta teams.
‘It’s our privilege to support the team that compete in Cartifta every year,’ said Hew. ‘It’s very tough competition and they earned three silver medals, so that’s well done for them.’
‘It was a great performance by the team,’ said Coach Williams. ‘We were expecting some more medals but we did very well still. Kermar ran 21.1 which was very impressive. We are developing him for the World Juniors next year.
‘Overall the team was awesome,’ said assistant coach Tyrone Yen. ‘We had quite a few youngsters on this team. The average age was about 16, so nervousness set in a little bit with them. But the experience they gained this time will serve them well at next year’s Carfita.’
Delroy Murray, president of the Cayman Islands Athletic Association, is pleased with the team’s effort but feels a few medals were left on the track due to mental lapses. In fact, he believes that mental toughness is the one area Cayman’s track and field teams need to improve in if they are to become a regional force.
‘I think we had some good performances,’ said Murray. ‘But I feel some of our athletes were overawed by the occasion. They could have done better. Overall, however, we turned in a good performance, although it was a meet that was clearly dominated by the Jamaicans who took away 76 medals. That doesn’t leave much for the other countries. I think our athletes are a bit disappointed. They know we could have done better. That is not to say that they did badly.’
Murray says Cayman’s athletes must raise their level of mental toughness.
‘Our athletes must understand that Carifta is a worldclass meet. There are a number of things we need to improve. One thing is that we need to expose them to a very high level of competition more frequently. I think the major problem we have with them is mental toughness. We need to get into their heads and get them focused.’