By Dean ‘The Sportsman’ Greenaway
Adaejah Hodge swept the 100, 200m and the Long Jump, to claim the 13 year old Girls Division at the AAU Jr. Olympics in Greensboro, North Carolina, July 29-August 3.
Hodge began her golden treble feat that would see her in competition every day, by winning the Long Jump with a leap of 5.43m (17 feet 9-3/4 inches).
She then tackled the 200m meters prelims, where she ran 24.76 seconds, laying down the fastest time of the competition.
Hodge then began her 100m title quest with 12.23 seconds in the preliminaries and advanced to the semis.
She followed up the following day, with 24.34 seconds in the 200m semifinals to qualify for the finals, showing her opponents they’d have a fight on hand as she was seeking a second medal.
It was back to the 100m where she ran 12.18 seconds in the semifinals to place second in her heat and secured a spot in the finals—in what would become the only time that she didn’t cross the line first.
In the 200m finals that followed, Hodge ran a personal best of 24.22 seconds to bury the field and claimed her second gold medal.
Hodge returned the next day and dropped an 11.91 (1.7) personal best time on her 13 year old rivals to claim 100m victory with her third gold medal of the competition.
“In the Long Jump, I had the second longest jump going into the finals and I knew I had to get the highest jump to make my coach proud,” Hodge told Island Sun Sports. “I did it and got my first gold medal and it encouraged me to get two more. I did all six jumps then I had to do the 200m.”
Hodge said her 200 meter goal was to break tree 24.00 seconds barrier.
“I wanted to run a 23.9, but I was already tired from the previous days,” she said. “But I was still proud of myself. My mother (Tonya Hodge) told me to come off the curve hard and keep running.”
In the 100m final, Hodge said she was looking for a good start and her Mother told her if she came out first, the rest of the race was hers.
“I came out of the blocks first and the rest of the race was mine,” she said. “I was practicing for it for a very long time so I was proud of myself. I was really excited about my 100m victory, because I knew I’d won triple gold.”
With her 11.91 seconds time, Hodge was surprised to learn that at 13, she had the second fastest 100m time of any BVI female athlete in 2019.
“Wow,” she said when told. “I am surprised.”
Pulling off the treble feat wasn’t as easy as it might have seemed Hodge stated.
“It was very difficult,” she pointed out. “I had to run every day with no breaks or anything.”