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Marissa Williams wins three times at City Section track championships

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Asked to do something no City Section female athlete has accomplished in track and field — win City titles in the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 meters — junior Marissa Williams of Palisades agreed to give it a try Wednesday night at the City Section championships at Birmingham High.

"I don't like doing three," she said after winning the 1,600 in 4 minutes 57:88 seconds.

With the sun setting to the west of the stadium, she won the 800 in 2:15.75.

"It was a blur," she said, walking to the victory stand.

Then, in a final challenge, with fans rising to their feet in the bleachers to cheer her on, Williams pulled off the triple, winning the eight-lap 3,200 in 10:49.72.

It equaled the performance of Roman Gomez from Belmont in 1985, when he won the same three races in the boys' competition.

"I'm happy, but I'm glad it's over," Williams said. "My coach made me do all three. I'd rather have broken a record in the mile and two-mile."

Williams, an A student, was headed home to shower and study for a physics exam. She will focus on the 1,600 and 3,200 at next week's state championships.

"For her to triple is history in L.A. Unified," Co-Coach Willie Decker said.

She ran three grueling events trying to help Palisades in the team competition, but Carson edged El Camino Real, 89-88, for the girls' title. Carson also won the boys' title.

Another athlete putting on a show was Carson hurdler Justin Collins. In the 2013 City final, he fell in his signature event, the 300 hurdles. In the fall, he broke his collarbone playing quarterback for the Colts against Santa Ana Mater Dei and missed most of the football season.

But all was forgotten as he raced to victories in the 110 highs in 14.39 and the 300 intermediates in 39.41.

"It's positive energy, which I need to get to the next level," he said.

Daniel Lawson of Dorsey won the 400 in a career-best effort of 47.81. He also won the 200 in 21.67. Brandon Hasson of Carson won the 100 in 10.82.

Kayla Williams of Crenshaw won the girls' 100 in 12.22. Ashley Anderson of Carson set a City record in winning the girls' triple jump at 40-4 1/2.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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