Philadelphia - Steven Marrero of Puerto Rico’s Turabo University trailed Mount St. Mary’s David Hinton by just six points entering the 1500-meter run, the 10th and final event of the Penn Relays decathlon, but he easily outran the defending event champion to win the the two-day event with a total of 7047 points.
Hinton, taking part in his first decathlon of the outdoor season after suffering a groin injury during the indoor season, was second with 6925 points, well off his winning 7102 total of 2004.
Hinton fell far behind the small pack of six runners at the start of the 1500, while Marrero finished in third place; Marrero’s time was 4:38.94, Hinton’s 5:00.13.
“I was making a run for the gold,” said Marrero, who said he had been expecting to score 7100 points.
Marrero accomplished his victory with only one first-place finish in any of the events, the discus throw, where he hit a personal-best mark of 144 feet, 10 inches.
Hinton said he was not disappointed with his showing.
“We came in to score 6400,” he said. “I haven’t been able to train since January 20, so I wanted to see how healthy I was. I was surprised that I was still in first going into the 1500.”
Hinton may have been able top put himself in a safer position if he had cleared more than 15 feet, 11 inches in the pole vault. He had gone over 17 feet in the event in other competitions, and still hopes to compete in that championship event on Saturday at Franklin Field.
Marrero said he was done competing in this year’s Relays, but he earned a championship watch in his one event.
The 111th running of the world’s oldest, largest and best Relay Carnival gets into full swing on Thursday, with a full day of high school girls and college’s women’s events, and a full night of men’s and women’s distance races.
Written by Frank Bertucci