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N. Babylon's Charles takes 55 and long jump

Action shots of the Suffolk Boys Large School

Action shots of the Suffolk Boys Large School track championships. Berfrantz Charles of North Babylon H.S. wins the 55 meter dash in a time of 6.67 seconds. (February 2, 2010) Credit: Bob Mitchell

Finding a satisfied athlete is often akin to looking for that proverbial needle in a haystack.

Even after a win, there's usually a flaw or a hitch in the technique that sends an athlete back to the drawing board.

North Babylon's Berfrantz Charles is a perfect example. The talented senior took first in both the long jump and 55 meters at the Suffolk boys Large School track and field championships at Suffolk CC-Brentwood last night.

But he was far from jubilant following his victory in the long jump. He was satisfied with the win, but not pleased with how he got the victory.

Charles fouled on his first two attempts in the preliminary round of the long jump and needed to jump at least 20 feet, 9 inches to make the final. Charles made the grade on his final jump and eventually won the championship with a leap of 22-8½, beating Bay Shore's Brandon Hutchinson (22-4½).

"I really haven't been jumping this year. This is only my second jump [at Suffolk CC] and third overall," Charles said.

He wasn't happy with his two fouls. "That happened to me last year at the state championship, I fouled my first two, but on my last one, I jumped a 23-4 out of nowhere," he said. "I guess it's starting to become a habit, but I don't like it."

He didn't have as difficult a time in the 55. Charles took first in 6.67 seconds, ahead of Longwood's Tom Scala (6.75).

"I'm hoping to get a better distance and time for the states, but I'm happy with the win," said Charles, who won the semifinal heat in 6.62.

In one of the more exciting events, West Babylon's Lionel Fontaine bested Drayke Jackson in the high jump, clearing 6-7. Fontaine cleared the height on his final attempt, and Jackson narrowly missed on his last try.

In other individual events: Whitman's Ben Windisch won the 3,200 meters in 9:44.47, Tyler Murtha (Connetquot) won the 1,600 in 4:32.83, James Snak of Smithtown West won the 1,000 in 2:39.2, and Longwood's Joe Fuller won the 600 in 1:26.09.

Bay Shore's Raphael Rother took first in the 300 (37.34), Mike Smith from Riverhead won the shot put with a toss of 52-7 and Longwood's Dimitrius Leonard won the 55-meter hurdles in 7.85.

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