The Duel At FSU: Riley Smith Outlasts Patrick Koon In 3,200m

Riley Smith is on a heater. 

The Gainesville Buchholz (FL) senior scored another late win on the heels of a monster kick on Friday at the FSU Relays in Tallahassee, as he took down Tallahassee Leon's Patrick Koon in the final 250 meters to win the 3,200m in a new U.S. No. 1 time of 8:39.71.

Koon followed with a new personal best of 8:42.74, while two more athletes found themselves under the nine minute barrier, with New Orleans Jesuit's Brady Mullen clocking a time of 8:50.89 and Miami Belen Jesuit's Marcelo Mantecon following in 8:55.72.

It's becoming increasingly obvious that Smith is near untouchable in the final 400 meters -- he dropped a final split of 58.11 to out leg Koon, who followed with a admirable 61 seconds. 

Smith's time improved upon his season-opening 8:48.11 from the Bolles Bulldog Classic on March 1, but it also downed Koon's state record of 8:44.95 from last April at the Arcadia Invitational. Koon took down his own best from last year. 

Mullen, meanwhile, set a new Louisiana state No. 2 mark in the 3,200m less than a year after he became the first athlete in over 40 years to break nine minutes at the distance. He's No. 2 in history, only behind Bobby Deck's 8:43.84 from 1979.

Smith became the 10th athlete all-time to duck under 8:40 and registered the 10th-best performance in high school history. 

Photo Credit: Dave Tibbetts/MileSplit Florida

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