It wasn't quite the 33.05 300m National Record - but Mount Vernon senior Rai Benjamin did go home with the New York Armory Track facility record and new US #1 of 33.17 at the Armory Track Invitational.
The UCLA commit led Taylor McLaughlin (Union Catholic, NJ) to the US #4 time of 33.62. Michigan All-Stars runner Jaron Flournoy came away with the US #5 time of 33.93. Noah Lyles and Grant Holloway clocked the other top five national performances at the VA Tech High Invitational, also this weekend.
Varsity Boys 300 Meter Dash ========================================================================== Name Yr Team Time Pts ========================================================================== 1 Rai Benjamin Mount Vernon 33.17 10 2 Taylor Mclaughlin Scotch Plains 33.62 8 3 Jaron Flournoy Westland 33.93 6 4 Anton Porter Bronx 34.87 5 5 Byron Hearst Rochester 34.89 4 6 Darryl Mcneil Middle Village 35.25 3 7 Mergaran Poleon Brooklyn 35.41 2 8 Elliot Everett Bayside 35.80 1
The Girls 300m battle was just as exciting as McLaughlin's sister, Sydney, charged to a new US #1, US #2 All-Time and National Sophomore Class Record of 37.49. Quashira McIntosh, a 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships competitor for the U.S. Virgin Islands, was runner-up in US #5 38.89. Ariel Strunkey also snuck under 39 seconds, clocking 38.96 for fourth overall and US #6.
In the interview below, Sydney said she wasn't looking for a record - she just wanted to win.
Varsity Girls 300 Meter Dash ========================================================================== Name Yr Team Time Pts ========================================================================== 1 Sydney Mclaughlin Scotch Plains 37.49 10 2 Quashira Mcintosh Providence 38.89 8 3 Ariel Strunkey Bronx 38.96 6 4 Arianne Strunkey Bronx 39.27 5 5 Zola Golden Lagrangeville 39.60 4 6 Anna Jefferson Oak Park 39.80 3 7 Kiana Lee Irvington 40.10 2 8 Taylor Chapman Perkasie 40.32 1 9 Thaila Cooper Woolwich Township 40.97
Any meet at the Armory is bound to feature top relay performances from the city's greatest programs.
Nine of the top ten performances in the Boys 4x800m came out of Saturday's meet, led by Shenendehowa in a US #1 7:50.03. The mark also set a new school record by about two seconds. Tyler Schmidt led off with a 1:59.69 leg, as Connor Buhrmeister clocked 1:58.42, Mitchell Halpern ran 1:56.48 and Colin Rowe closed in 1:55.46 anchor.
On the girls side, Cardozo and Western Branch dominated the field and previous US #1 mark with times of 9:11.38 and 9:12.47. Relay legs for Cardozo included lead-off Alana Williams (2:19.71), Nia Lundy (2:18.92), Shaniqua Kirkpatrick (2:18.32) and anchor Emma Gallagher (2:14.45). For the Virginia squad, Faith Ross (2:20.59), Alexis Thomas (2:15.98) and Jada Terrell (2:25.14) handed off to anchor Jewel Smith, who boasted the fastest recorded split of the event at 2:10.78.
In the Invitational 600m, Richard Rose (Boys & Girls, NY) finished just off pace from his prior US #1 but still won in 1:18.43.
Joe Luongo broke the Massachusetts State Record with his first-ever sub-1:20 clocking of 1:18.84, good for second overall and US #2.
The Girls 600m featured one of Cardozo's leading relay studs, senior Emma Gallagher, versus the nation's No. 1 800m runner in Sarah Walker (Germantown Academy, PA). The sophomore has never raced a 600m before and said she relied on her 2:10.52 chops to unleash a huge kick in the end.
Gallagher, who nearly contended for the National Record in the event last weekend with Amanda Crawford before a collision, said she knew the 400m was too slow this evening as they crossed in 59 seconds.