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The Voice of the Black Community


Sprinters earn JCSU’s top prize
Berch, Williams earn athletes of year
Published Wednesday, April 30, 2014 6:17 am
by Herbert L. White

Johnson C. Smith celebrated its best athletes at its annual awards banquet.

Johnson C. Smith senior track standouts Rolando Berch (second from left) and Danielle Williams (second from right) earned the Pettis Norman Award for the top male and female athlete for the academic year.

More than 100 Golden Bulls in 15 school-sponsored sports and activities were acknowledged for their athletic and academic prowess at the annual  athletics awards ceremony on April 28.

The track and field team dominated the awards with senior sprinters Rolando Berch and Danielle Williams sweeping the Pettis Norman male and female student-athlete of the year awards.

Berch, a native of St. Andrew, Jamaica, finished third at the 2014 NCAA Division II indoor championships in the men’s 400 meter dash. He also earned a spot on the 2014 U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association indoor All-Atlantic Region team. At the CIAA Indoor Championships, Berch finished second in the 400 and third as a member of the 4x400 relay team.

At the CIAA Outdoor Championships, Berch finished second in the 400. He earned All-CIAA in both indoor and outdoor competition.

Williams, a St. Andrew Jamaica native as well, is one of the best sprinters and hurdlers in the nation regardless of division. She was named the Division II Indoor National Track Athlete of the Year after becoming the first athlete in Division II history to win three individual track titles at the same indoor national championship meet (60 meters, 200 meters and 60-meter hurdles). 

Earlier in the season she earned CIAA titles in each event and won the 60 meter hurdles and 200 meters at the Penn State National.

At last month’s CIAA Outdoor Championships, Williams was named MVP after winning the 100 meters, 200 meters, and 100 meter hurdles for the Golden Bulls, who earned their second straight women’s outdoor championship.



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