Track and field

The Baltimore Sun

NEW YORK --Matthew Centrowitz represents a wave of America's track and field future.

The Broadneck High senior's time of 4 minutes, 3.40 seconds in the mile - racing against a field of internationally elite runners - in the Reebok Grand Prix meet last night at Icahn Stadium moved him into 15th place on the all-time ranking of American high school milers.

At the same time, Baltimore's James Carter - the two-time Olympian out of Mervo and Hampton University - refuses to be relegated to America's track and field past.

Carter, 29, stunned a field of younger pursuers with a victory in the Reebok Grand Prix men's 400-meter hurdles final (48.37).

"It was awesome just lining up [with] these guys," the University of Oregon-bound Centrowitz said, referring to such global foot-racing celebrities as Alan Webb, Bernard Lagat of the United States and Craig Mottram of Australia.

"I tried [to break four minutes], but I really couldn't do it," he said. "I never heard any splits. I had no idea how I was doing. I felt strong but the wind didn't help any.

"As far as I know, this was my last chance to run a mile this year, but that's OK. You can't always do the things you want. That's track."

In the 400 hurdles, three younger American talents - Kenneth Ferguson (48.99), Derrick Williams (49.03) and Kerron Clement (49.21) - settled for the 2-3-4 spots behind Carter.

Was it a statement to the younger generation of intermediate hurdlers? "I guess, in a way, it was," he said. "None of them better get too confident about beating me at nationals, because if they do I'm going to kick their butt."

Webb's 3:53.43 for South Lakes High of Reston, Va., in 2001 remains the U.S. high school mile record and, six years later, he's back at the top of his game. His triumph last night in 3:52.94 brought him home ahead of two-time Olympic medalist Lagat (3:53.88). Nine of the 13 finishers broke four minutes; Centrowitz was 11th overall.

Centrowitz's next big start will be in the two-mile race at the Nike National Championships, June 15-16 in Greensboro, N.C.


Men's mile

At Icahn Stadium New York 1. Alan Webb (USA) 3 minutes, 52.94 seconds; 2. Bernard Lagat (USA) 3:53.88; 3. Craig Mottram (AUS) 3:54.54; 4. Nick Willis (NZL) 3:55.09; 5. Suleiman Simotwo (KEN) 3:55.69; 6. Chris Lukezic (USA) 3:57.02; 7. Kevin Sullivan (CAN) 3:57.91; 8. Rob Myers (USA) 3:59.36; 9. Nicholas Kemboi (KEN) 3:59.36; 10. Ryan McKenzie (CAN) 4:02.98; 11. Matthew Centrowitz (USA) 4:03.40; 12. Ming GU (CHN) 4:05.79; 13. Steve Slattery (USA) 4:09.41. Did not finish: Moise Joseph (HAI); Justus Koech (KEN); Dan Wilson (USA).

Men's 400-meter hurdles

1. James Carter (USA) 48.37 seconds; 2. Kenneth Ferguson (USA) 48.99; 3. Derrick Williams (USA) 49.03; 4. Kerron Clement (USA) 49.21; 5. Danny McFarlane (JAM) 49.28; 6. Michael Tinsley (USA) 49.70; 7. Joey Woody (USA) 50.34; 8. Josef Robertson (JAM) 51.08.

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