June 11, 2011
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By Miquel Jacobs
A transfer from Central Arizona College, the Pinelands, Barbados native placed sixth overall in the event, surpassing the seventh-place finish by Ellakisha Williamson in 1999 and the eighth-place finishes by Williamson (2000) and Beijing Olympian Tiffany Ross-Williams (2002). Beckles is now one of four Gamecocks to earn All-America honors in the 100-meter hurdles, joining Williamson, Ross-Williams and Ronnetta Alexander (2006).
"Coming out of Barbados, I could have gone Division I, but I didn't have a required science class," Beckles said. "Coming to South Carolina as a transfer from junior college and doing all of this in one year - PR'ing indoors every weekend and coming outdoors and breaking my national record - it's been a great season. I accomplished a lot in a couple of months being on the team. I'm looking forward to next year and having a fall season for the Gamecocks."
Beckles, the SEC silver medalist in the event, admittedly didn't get the best jump on the gun, but she used a push over the final three hurdles to edge Clemson's Michaylin Golladay and Miami's Ti'erra Brown.
"I was trying to execute what coach told me to do in the warm up," Beckles said. "I was kind of nervous coming out of the blocks, and I didn't get the start that I'm accustomed to getting. I just knew I had to push and get some points and do what I could to get my time down. I came out sixth. I'm pretty thankful for what I've done, but I'm still unhappy in a way."
The season is not over for Beckles, who two weeks ago set the Barbados national record with a time of 13.01. She will compete at the Barbados National Championships at National Stadium (St. Michael, Barbados) from June 24-26. She will then compete at the CAC Senior Championships in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico from July 15-17 before competing at the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea that are being held Aug. 27 to Sept. 4.
"I don't know what to expect next year, but my season isn't really done yet," Beckles said of prospects for a senior year encore. "I'm still going to rep the Gamecocks all the way to the Barbados nationals, CAC Seniors and World Championships and possibly the Pan Am Seniors in Mexico. I'll be representing the Gamecocks all the way until October."
The Gamecock women earned six points over the course of the meet to finish tied for 40th overall as a team. Senior Lakya Brookins placed sixth in the 100-meter dash finals for three points, and Beckles earned three points for her sixth-place finish in the 100-meter hurdle finals.
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