Sincere Robinson won’t let one hurdle decide his fate.
The Newark Tech senior made a valiant attempt to become just sixth boy in the history of the NJSIAA Group Championships to win four events but lost his bid at a historic performance after stumbling on the last hurdle and finishing second.
When all was said and done, Robinson scored 38 points by himself, which after two days of competition at Franklin High was nearly enough to win the team title in Group 2.
Rumson-Fair Haven ended up winning the team title with 41 points while Delsea and Madison tied for second with 40. Robinson won all three jumps and took second in the 110 hurdles to nearly top several teams who had multiple point scorers.
“He’s proof that hard work pays off,” Newark Tech coach Kcyied Zahir said. “He’s proof that you can take an athlete, and if his or her want-power is more than his will-power, they’ll go far.”
On Friday, Robinson jumped 47-10 1/2 to win the triple jump and cleared 6-2 to win the high jump. He came back Saturday to take second in the 110 hurdles and ended his meet by winning the long jump with a 23-3 3/4.
Zahir said hurdlers, like motorcycle riders, expect to fall. It’s part of the sport, he said.
Coming into the final of the 110 hurdles, Robinson fell for the first time and also experienced something he’s not used to either — a challenge.
In his first season of track and field, Robinson has been mostly unchallenged by his competitors until Saturday when North Plainfield’s Jason Agyemang pulled even with Robinson at the final hurdle. Agyemang crossed the line in 14.98 while Robinson took second in 15.19.
“That last hurdle, I’ve never felt that pressure before,” Robinson said. “I kind of stumbled and got second for the first time. It’s nothing to get worked up about because I still got the Meet of Champions.”
Depending on how the timing of the meet works out, Robinson said he will try to compete in all four events at the Meet of Champions.
“We’re just going to see what happens,” Robinson said. “I’m going to try to do four. I’m striving for four.”