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Kaiserslautern's Zhane Williams took gold in the girls shot put event at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a throw of 32 feet, 11.50 inches.
Kaiserslautern's Zhane Williams took gold in the girls shot put event at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a throw of 32 feet, 11.50 inches. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Kaiserslautern's Zhane Williams took gold in the girls shot put event at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a throw of 32 feet, 11.50 inches.
Kaiserslautern's Zhane Williams took gold in the girls shot put event at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a throw of 32 feet, 11.50 inches. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Ramstein's Dominique Arizpe reacts after anchoring the boys 4x100-meter relay at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, Saturday May 26, 2018. Arzipe and  teammates Jackie Harris, Nick Lowe and Gevaughn Bracy won in 43.72 seconds ahead of  Lakenheath and Vilseck.
Ramstein's Dominique Arizpe reacts after anchoring the boys 4x100-meter relay at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, Saturday May 26, 2018. Arzipe and teammates Jackie Harris, Nick Lowe and Gevaughn Bracy won in 43.72 seconds ahead of Lakenheath and Vilseck. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Kaiserslautern's Jada Branch defended her girls long jump title at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a leap of 18 feet, 4.75 inches.
Kaiserslautern's Jada Branch defended her girls long jump title at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a leap of 18 feet, 4.75 inches. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Stuttgart's McKinley Fielding leads teammate Tatiana Smith into the last lap of the girls 1,600-meter race at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, Saturday May 26, 2018. She won in 5 minutes, 19.92 seconds.
Stuttgart's McKinley Fielding leads teammate Tatiana Smith into the last lap of the girls 1,600-meter race at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, Saturday May 26, 2018. She won in 5 minutes, 19.92 seconds. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Rota's Deja Alexis was all smiles most of the way down the track on her way to winning the 100-meter dash at the DODEA-Europe track and field finals in 12.13 seconds, ahead of Wiesbaden's Whitney Bivins, left, and Vicenza's Brandy James.
Rota's Deja Alexis was all smiles most of the way down the track on her way to winning the 100-meter dash at the DODEA-Europe track and field finals in 12.13 seconds, ahead of Wiesbaden's Whitney Bivins, left, and Vicenza's Brandy James. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Vicenza's Brandy James pushes herself to the finish line, as she took the girls 100-meter hurdles race in 15.47 seconds at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, Saturday May 26, 2018. At left is Ramstein's Jaya Worthington, who finished second and Stuttgart's Annika Rivera, who placed fourth, at right.
Vicenza's Brandy James pushes herself to the finish line, as she took the girls 100-meter hurdles race in 15.47 seconds at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, Saturday May 26, 2018. At left is Ramstein's Jaya Worthington, who finished second and Stuttgart's Annika Rivera, who placed fourth, at right. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Vilseck's Tynniesia Wilson won the girls high jump competition at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships, with a leap of 5 feet, 5 inches, tying the DODEA-E record.
Vilseck's Tynniesia Wilson won the girls high jump competition at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships, with a leap of 5 feet, 5 inches, tying the DODEA-E record. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Wiesbaden's Caleb Brown rounds the track as he anchors the Warriors 4x400-meter relay team. Brown and teammates Caelum Wallace, Garrett Armel and Isaiah DeVane won the final race at the 2018 DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, in 3 minutes, 30.83 seconds. Brown also won the 400-meter dash.
Wiesbaden's Caleb Brown rounds the track as he anchors the Warriors 4x400-meter relay team. Brown and teammates Caelum Wallace, Garrett Armel and Isaiah DeVane won the final race at the 2018 DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany, in 3 minutes, 30.83 seconds. Brown also won the 400-meter dash. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Jose Serrano leads teammate Dashiell Rogers in the boys 3,200-meter run at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships. In a race with numerous lead changes between the two, Serrano came out in front, winning in 9 minutes, 51.43 seconds, a new DODEA-Europe record.
Jose Serrano leads teammate Dashiell Rogers in the boys 3,200-meter run at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships. In a race with numerous lead changes between the two, Serrano came out in front, winning in 9 minutes, 51.43 seconds, a new DODEA-Europe record. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Wiesbaden's Markez Middlebrooks, center, won the boys 200-meter race at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in 22.38 seconds. He also won the 100-meters in 11.03 seconds.
Wiesbaden's Markez Middlebrooks, center, won the boys 200-meter race at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in 22.38 seconds. He also won the 100-meters in 11.03 seconds. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Wiesbaden's Whitney Bivins won the girls 200-meter race in 25.36 seconds ahead of Kaiserslautern's Jada Branch, right, at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships.
Wiesbaden's Whitney Bivins won the girls 200-meter race in 25.36 seconds ahead of Kaiserslautern's Jada Branch, right, at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Tatiana Smith leads her Stuttgart teammates McKinley Fielding and Kate Bowman to the finish line in the girls 800-meter race at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships. Smith won in 2 minutes, 26.51 seconds.
Tatiana Smith leads her Stuttgart teammates McKinley Fielding and Kate Bowman to the finish line in the girls 800-meter race at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships. Smith won in 2 minutes, 26.51 seconds. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Stuttgart's Anders Bergeson threw the discus 134 feet, 10 inches to capture gold at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany.
Stuttgart's Anders Bergeson threw the discus 134 feet, 10 inches to capture gold at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in Kaiserslautern, Germany. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Lakenheath's Kobe Cox won the triple jump at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a leap of 45 feet, 1.50 inches.
Lakenheath's Kobe Cox won the triple jump at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships with a leap of 45 feet, 1.50 inches. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Ramstein's Christierra Williams, center, on her way to winning the girls 300-meter hurdle event at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in 46.88 seconds.
Ramstein's Christierra Williams, center, on her way to winning the girls 300-meter hurdle event at the DODEA-Europe track and field championships in 46.88 seconds. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Baumholder's Solo Turgeon, left, and Wiesbaden's Garrett Armel tied for first in the 110-meter hurdles, each running 15.47 seconds.
Baumholder's Solo Turgeon, left, and Wiesbaden's Garrett Armel tied for first in the 110-meter hurdles, each running 15.47 seconds. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)
Jada Branch reacts after setting a new DODEA-Europe record in the 400-meter race at the European championships. She finished in 57.28 seconds, breaking the record set in 2000 by Christina McDuffie of Hohenfels.
Jada Branch reacts after setting a new DODEA-Europe record in the 400-meter race at the European championships. She finished in 57.28 seconds, breaking the record set in 2000 by Christina McDuffie of Hohenfels. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany – Two new European records are freshly inked in the books following the Saturday conclusion of the 2018 DODEA-Europe Track and Field Championships.

In the 400 meters, Kaiserslautern’s Jada Branch bounced back from a third-place finish in Friday’s preliminaries to cross the line in 57.28 seconds for the win and a new record. The old mark of 57.30 was set by Hohenfels’ Christina McDuffie in 2000.

Branch had already dipped under 57 seconds this season and last year, she barely missed breaking the record at Europeans; her feat did not come as a surprise but was more of a relief.

"So happy, coming back from last year and yesterday, especially," Branch said. A year ago, Branch missed the record by less than a second.

The other record to fall Saturday was more of a surprise.

In the boys’ 3,200 meters, Ramstein senior Jose Serrano ran the race of his life to out-stride teammate Dashiell Rogers at the finish line by less than a second. Serrano’s time of 9:51.43 erased former Royal Colin McLaren’s 2017 record of 9:51.90. Serrano, who collected four gold medals over two days, said he was trying to end his high school track career with a win and wasn’t focused on the record.

“It’s my senior year. Got to go out with a bang,” he said.

Serrano helped lead Ramstein to the Division I team crown over Wiesbaden and Lakenheath. In Division II, Aviano took the title and top Division III boys’ team Baumholder showed its depth by finishing fifth in the overall team standings.

On the girls’ side, Stuttgart rode to a Division I team victory on the legs of a group of runners that dominated the middle- and long-distance events. Wiesbaden was second on the strength of its sprint relays and Ramstein was third. In Division II, Rota topped Aviano and Bahrain, while in Division III, a deep Brussels team led by senior Evin Harper took the title.

The Most Outstanding Athlete awards went to Serrano in the running events and to Baumholder’s Nathaniel Horton in field events. Branch was awarded the title in both categories. Besides winning the 400, the senior set a new European record in the triple jump on Friday, and on Saturday won the long jump and finished second in the 200.

For the second day in a row, hot temperatures cooked the track at the Kaiserslautern High School stadium. Bags of ice were given out to cool off runners as they finished races and many athletes doused themselves with water after their events.

Vilseck’s Tynniesia Wilson kept her cool en route to tying the European record in the high jump. The junior cleared the bar at 5 feet, 5 inches, matching the record set in 1993 by Hahn’s Drisana McDaniel.

With the high jump the last field event of the day, Wilson had already run three races - including finishing second to Branch in the 400 - by the time she lined up at the high jump pit.

“It was tough,” she said. “I had to make sure to stay focused. My teammates, coaches, they had drinks ready and everything.”

While Wilson eclipsed her closest competitor by six inches, there were plenty of nail-biting races on the track.

None, however, were closer than the boys’ 110 hurdles, where the finish was too close to call at the line. And it was too close to call by judges looking at the video replay, which showed the torsos of Baumholder’s Solo Turgeon and Wiesbaden’s Garrett Armel crossing the line at the same time. The result: A rare tie for first place.

When the announcer called out the results and said “’in second place, nobody,’ I was like, ‘Oh, what happened?’” Turgeon said. “And then he said 'a tie for first place', and I was like, ‘Oh, wow.’ I guess it never happened before.”

Turgeon, who was seeded fourth with a 16:01, “ripped a 15:47” to match Armel, he said. “I was just really happy for that.”

Wiesbaden sophomore Isaiah DeVane orchestrated a thrilling come-from-behind victory in the 1,600-sprint medley to beat Ramstein and Kaiserslautern. DeVane brought his team from fifth to first in his 800-meter anchor leg.

Wiesbaden’s girls’ sprint medley also won an exciting race, with anchor Ta’Nya Thomas holding off a late charge by Stuttgart freshman Linnea Meier, giving Wiesbaden the win, 4:34.07 to Stuttgart’s 4:34.62. The sprint medley consists of two 200 meters, a 400 meters, and an 800 meters.

Other notable performances Saturday included:

- Wiesbaden senior Markez Middlebrooks, who followed up on Friday’s win in the high jump with two more golds, in the 100 and 200. “Track might be my sport,” Middlebrooks said, reflecting on his achievements.

- Lakenheath senior Kobe Cox was a big reason the Lancers landed in the top three in team standings. Cox handily won the triple jump with a leap of 45 feet, 1.5 inches and was second in the 100; on Friday, he was third in the long jump.

- The Ramstein boys’ 3,200 relay team of Serrano, seniors Nick Clinton and Nicholas Blake, and junior Denver Dalpias missed the European record of 8:06.72 by less than a second.

- Stuttgart freshman McKinley Fielding won the 1,600 in 5:19.92, her third gold medal of the meet. Fielding ran about 10 seconds faster than fellow Panther Tatiana Smith. But in the 800 later in the day, Smith nabbed the gold with a time of 2:26.51, about a second faster than Fielding. Stuttgart, its depth on display, swept the event, taking the top five places.

- Wiesbaden junior Whitney Bivins gutted out a win in the 200 to edge Branch, 25.36 to 25.45. Bivins also placed second in the 100 and was part of the Warriors’ winning 400 and 1,600 relay teams.

- Kaiserslautern junior Zhane Williams threw a personal record in the shot put to win her first European title. Seeded seventh with a mark of 31 feet, 1.75 inches, Williams heaved the shot put 32 feet, 11.5 inches to top the field. “I’m on cloud nine,” she said. “I cried at first when I found out I won; I literally started bawling.”

- Vicenza senior Brandy James defended her title in the 100 hurdles, clocking a 15.47 to nip Ramstein junior Jaya Worthington, who was second in 15.87, the only other hurdler to break 16 seconds. Worthington's teammate, sophomore Christierra Williams, won the 300 hurdles in 46.88.

- Stuttgart senior Anders Bergeson threw 134 feet, 10 inches to take gold in the discus, one year after finishing second in the event. Kaiserslautern's Austin Higby was second.

- In the boys' 300 hurdles, Wiesbaden junior Caelum Wallace beat Baumholder's Turgeon by a lean, 40.53 to 40.55.svan.jennifer@stripes.com

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