SATELLITE — Making the most of her opportunities has been what Dunbar senior Luchenoya Weaver has accomplished once her junior season on the track was wiped out due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Competing this weekend at the AAU Junior Olympics in Brevard County, she capped off an outstanding summer with a national title in the 100-meter hurdles on Friday albeit with a performance that didn’t quite meet her standards.
“I sat in the blocks and my reaction was kind of slow,” Weaver said. “I feel like I peaked for the season and my body is gassed. I ran 13.4 (seconds) in the hurdles, 24.2 in the 200 and 12.1 in the 100 in Las Vegas last month so that was really good. My body needs a break, I haven’t stopped practicing since school let out.”
Twice a silver medalist in the 100 hurdles at the FHSAA State Championships as a freshman and sophomore, the Tigers standout was able to have an eye-opening meet at the start of her junior season. Posting a 13.63 mark in her best event at the Louie Bing Memorial Classic in February, Weaver didn’t get to see if she could eclipse that pace as COVID-19 ended high school sports.
Weaver had her best performance of the summer at the AAU West Coast Junior Olympics in July, scoring race wins in the 100 hurdles and adding victories in the 100- and 200-meter dash.
She says hasn’t stopped training and the work has elevated her as a college recruit. She named Southern Cal, LSU, Auburn, Texas and Clemson among schools she has had interest from.
“I’ve talked to my top five coaches like every day,” Weaver said. “I didn’t stop practicing, I knew we would have a season, and it probably would be how it is with everyone wearing masks. I’m very satisfied with the season.”
Weaver was not the only Dunbar runner that continued a strong summer as rising senior Leonard Mustari narrowly hit the finish line first in the 110 hurdles to go along with a second-place finish in the long jump on Wednesday.
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Mustari, like Weaver, hasn’t allowed a shortened spring season to hamper his progress. Finishing fourth in the 110 hurdles as a sophomore at state, he showed signs of his improvement at the start of his junior year, running a personal-best 13.84 at the Louie Bing Memorial Classic.
Also competing in the AAU West Coast Junior Olympics in July, Mustari won the 110 hurdles and the long jump to help boost his stock as a prospect.
He matched his personal-best time of 13.84 Friday, defeating Alexander Nunley of Garner, North Carolina, by .04 of a second. In the long jump, he set a personal best with his leap of 23 feet, 6¾ inches, earning him a runner-up finish.
“It’s been an exciting summer, I was ready today, I’ve trained really hard for this,” Mustari said.