Eastern’s Jailya Ash edges Wilson’s Dennisha Page in wild M-of-C 55-meter dash final!!!!

Eastern sophomore Jailya Ash and Wilson senior Dennisha Page engaged in a titanic battle in the Meet of Champions 55-meter dash final, with Ash out-leaning Page by 1-100th of a second and both running big-time PR’s.

Ash, only fifth at states and the No. 9 seed coming into today, ran 7.06 with Page second in 7.07. Their times are No. 11 and No. 12 in South Jersey history!!! The all-time South Jersey list is below!

Ash’s previous PR was 7.17 and Page’s was 7.12.

Page’s time is the second-fastest second-place time in meet history, behind only Melisa Barber’s 6.97 behind Montclair teammate Aleah Williams in 1998.

Here’s a list of all the South Jersey girls who’ve won the Meet of Champions 55 over the years:

1980 – Michele Glover [Willingboro], 6.8
1981 – Michele Glover [Willingboro], 6.8
1982 … Denise Mitchell [Edgewood], 7.15
1983 … Denise Mitchell [Edgewood], 6.9
1986 … Artrelia Turner [Wilson], 7.21
1996 … Dana Burnett [Williamstown], 7.12
1999 …Amandi Rhett [Moorestown], 7.13
2007 … English Gardner [Eastern], 7.08
2010 … English Gardner [Eastern], 7.03
2014 … Torie Robinson [Winslow Twp.], 6.95
2016 … Aliyah Taylor [Pemberton], 7.04
2017 … Bria Mack [Williamstown], 6.99
2019 … Jailya Ash [Eastern], 7.06

The only other previous Meet of Champions winners from the Eastern girls program was Gardner, the 2016 Olympic gold medalist, who won the 55 in 2007 and 2010 and the 400 in 2007; and Courtney McCrudden, who won the 800 in 2000. Eastern also won the 1,600 relay in 2003 with the team of Jenelle Wilson, Jennifer Jackson, Brittany Wright and Kaliyma Barkley.

Here’s the updated all-time South Jersey 55-meter dash list:

6.73 … Michelle Glover (Willingboro), 1981
6.88 … Patti Dunlap (Camden), 1979
6.91 … English Gardner (Eastern), 2010
6.95 … Bria Mack (Williamstown), 2017
6.95 … Torie Robinson (Winslow Twp.), 2014
6.95 … Denise Mitchell (Edgewood), 1983
7.00 … Amandi Rhett (Moorestown), 2000
7.00 … Iyanli Kollock (Our Lady of Mercy), 2017
7.01 … Aliyah Taylor (Rancocas Valley), 2017
7.05 … Dana Burnett (Williamstown), 1996
7.06 … Jailya Ash (Eastern), 2019
7.07 … Aliya Harrison (Sterling), 2018
7.07 … Dennisha Page (Woodrow Wilson), 2019
7.07 … Annie Johnson (Shawnee), 2012
7.07 … Audrey Wilson (Deptford), 2009
7.07 … Magenta Taylor (Willingboro), 1999
7.07 … Angela Clyburn (Egg Harbor Twp.), 1991
7.09 … Ste’yce McNeil (Winslow Twp.), 2012
7.09 … Emily Carson (Haddonfield), 2013
7.09 … Lauren Princz (Egg Harbor Twp.), 2018
7.11 … Jamie Walker (Haddon Hts.), 2006
7.12 … Assante Johnson (Camden), 2009
7.14 … Shonda Burroughs (Vineland), 1999
7.17 … Nia Lawrence (Pemberton), 2013
7.17 … Kiara Lester (Deptford), 2014
7.17 … Krystal Cantey (Winslow Twp.), 2006
7.18 … Sherese Price (Pleasantville), 1997
7.19 … Latoya Benson (Washington Twp.), 2001
7.19 … Adia Starnes (Timber Creek), 2017
7.20 … Medina Salaam (Camden), 1974
7.20 … Nia Ali (Pleasantville), 2006
7.20 … Fametta Lewis (Wilson), 2007
7.20 … Tacquaya Tobias (Our Lady of Mercy), 2010
7.20 … Cidae’a Woods (Winslow Twp.), 2013
7.20 … Gabrielle Farquharson (Williamstown), 2011

And here are the fastest performances (not performances) in meet history:
6.92 … Dominique Booker, Montclair Immaculate, 2009 (1)
6.93 … Ogechi Nwaneri, Chatham, 2008 (1)
6.95 … Torie Robinson, Winslow Twp., 2014 (1)
6.7h … Wendy Vereen, Trenton, 1984 (1)
6.96 … Myasia Jacobs, Paramus Catholic, 2011 (1)
6.97 … Aleah Williams, Montclair, 1998 (1)
6.97 … Melisa Barber, Montclair, 1998 (2)
7.00 … Haisha Bisiolu, Union, 2013 (1)
7.02 … English Gardner, Eastern, 2008 (t)
7.02 … Sydney Hawkins, Phillipsburg, 2018 (1)
7.03 … Torie Robinson, 2014  (t)
7.04 … Aliyah Taylor, Pemberton, 2016 (1)
6.8h … Michele Glover, Willingboro, 1980 (1)
7.05 … Regina Trotter,  Weequahic, 1991 (1)
7.06 … Jailya Ash, Eastern, 2019 (1)
7.07 … Dennisha Page, Wilson, 2019 (2)
7.07 … Angie Clybourn, Egg Harbor, 1991 (2)
7.07 … Audrey Wilson, West Deptford, 2009 (2)
7.07 … Melisa Barber 1998 (trials)
7.09 … Georgina Nembhard, 2007 (2)

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Led by A.C.’s Claudine Smith, S.J. advances SEVEN hurdlers to 55-meter hurdles final!!!!!

The 55-meter hurdles final at the Meet of Champions will be an almost entirely South Jersey affair!!!

Seven of the eight qualifiers — including the seven-fastest — are South Jersey hurdlers, led by Atlantic City senior Claudine Smith, who ran within 1-100th-of-a-second of her PR in the trials!

The qualifying times were PRs for Camden’s Te’seanna Harris, Millville’s Malea Broom and Paul VI’s Aliya Rae Garozzo.

This is going to be a hot final!

Here is the field:

8.06 … Claudine Smith, Atlantic City [PR is 8.05]
8.13 … Tionna Tobias, Winslow Twp. [PR is 7.98]
8.18 … Te’seanna Harris, Camden [PR was 8.33]
8.29 … Malea Broome, Millville [PR was 8.40]
8.33 … Aliya Rae Garozzo, Paul VI [PR was 8.43]
8.33 … Tierra Hooker, Timber Creek [PR is 8.23]
8.35 … Jailya Ash, Eastern [PR is 8.10]
8.39 … Karen Hull, Randolph [PR was 8.48]

Ash and Broome also qualified for the 55-meter dash final, so they will be very busy this afternoon!!!

Eastern’s Jailya Ash, Wilson’s Dennisha Page post fastest qualifying times in 55-meter dash at Meet of Champions!!!!!

Eastern sophomore Jailya Ash and Woodrow Wilson senior Dennisha Page lead four South Jersey sprinters to the finals of the Meet of Champions 55-meter dash.

Ash ran 7.14 and Page 7.15 in the trials at the Bennett Center to earn the two middle lanes in the final, coming up later Sunday. For Ash, that’s only 1-100th of a second off her PR of 7.13 which she ran Tuesday night at Easterns. Page’s PR is 7.12, from the trials at Easterns.

It should be a wild final!

Egg Harbor sophomore Lauren Princz, second in last year’s race and the Meet of Champions 200 champ last spring, ran 7.21 and Millville senior Malea Broome also made the final with a huge PR of 7.24. Her previous PR was a 7.33 in the semis at Easterns.

Get ready for the Girls M-of-C Meet records with links to performance lists, meet program, all-time lists and more!

Here’s the all-time Meet of Champions girls top-10 performance list followed by links to the official meet program and seed lists for today’s meet!

55-METER DASH
6.92 … Dominique Booker, Montclair Immaculate, 2009 (1)
6.93 … Ogechi Nwaneri, Chatham, 2008 (1)
6.95 … Torie Robinson, Winslow Twp., 2014 (1)
6.7h … Wendy Vereen, Trenton, 1984 (1)
6.96 … Myasia Jacobs, Paramus Catholic, 2011 (1)
6.97 … Aleah Williams, Montclair, 1998 (1)
6.97 … Melisa Barber, Montclair, 1998 (2)
7.00 … Haisha Bisiolu, Union, 2013 (1)
7.02 … English Gardner, Eastern, 2008 (t)
7.02 … Sydney Hawkins, Phillipsburg, 2018 (1)

200-METER RUN
24.96 … Kiara Lester, Deptford, 2016 (1)
25.13 … Shauntae Nelson, Piscataway, 2018 (1)
25.17 … Cecelia Gerstenbacher, Delsea, 2016 (2)
25.18 … Kiara Lester, Deptford, 2015 (1)
25.29 … Lauren Princz, Egg Harbor, 2018 (2)
25.57 … Aliya Harrison, Sterling, 2018 (3)
25.58 … Shanelle Colman, East Brunswick, 2018 (4)
25.60 … Shakira Dancy, Winslow Twp., 2018 (5)
25.70 … Katherine Muccio, Ridgewood, 2018 (6)
25.74 … Nylah Perry, Winslow Twp., 2018 (7)

400-METER RUN
53.34 … Sydney McLaughlin, Union Catholic, 2016 (1)
54.09 … Olivia Baker, Columbia, 2014 (1)
55.19 … Nijgia Snapp, Oakcrest, 2008
55.45 … Mikele Barber, Montclair, 1998 (1)
55.74 … Amber Allen, Passaic Tech, 2008 (2)
55.75 … Emily Cowan, Columbia, 2014 (2)
55.7h … Denise Mitchell, Edgewood, 1984 (1)
55.83 … Kiara Lester, Deptford, 2016 (2)
55.88 … Michelle Brown, Seneca, 2009 (2)
56.08 … Kristen Mahon, Notre Dame, 2006 (1)

800-METER RUN
2:08.81 … Victoria Vanriele, Governor Livingston, 2018 (1)
2:10.45 … Ajee’ Wilson, Neptune, 2009 (1)
2:10.52 … Corinne Myers, Westwood, 2014 (1)
2:11.50 … Jasmin Jones, Hackensack, 1987 (1)
2:11.53 … Megan Tiernan, Washington, 2010 (1)
2:11.82 … Molly McNamara, Red Bank, 2010 (2)
2:11.89 … Catherine Pagano, Northern Highlands, 2015 (1)
2:12.25 … Chelsea Cox, Monmouth, 2009 (2)
2:12.46 … Monica Olkowski, Cherokee, 1990 (1)
2:12.91 … Ryan Davis, Pingry School, 2018 (2)

1,600-METER RUN
4:48.23 … Jill Smith, Southern Regional, 2009 (1)
4:48.5h … Michelle Rowen, Washington Twp., 1983 (1)
4:50.85 … Christina Rancan, West Windsor-Plains. South, 2016 (1)
4:51.18 … Ciara Roche, Freehold Twp., 2016 (2)
4:51.60 … Briana Gess, Haddonfield, 2016 (3)
4:53.17 … Kylene Cochrane, West Morris Central, 2014 (1)
4:53.36 … Lindsey Kane, Washington Twp., 2014 (2)
4:53.98 … Jill Smith, Southern Regional, 2007 (1)
4:54.15 … Marin Warner, Holmdel, 2014 (3)
4:54.41 … Molly McNamara, Red Bank Catholic, 2011 (1)

3,200-METER RUN
10:24.73 … Dana Giordano, Bernards, 2012 (1)
10:26.53 … Ashley Higginson, Colts Neck, 2007 (1)
10:27.25 … Mackenzie Barry, Mendham, 2012 (2)
10:31.06 … Megan Lacy, Cherokee, 2012 (3)
10:34.49 … Nicole Vanasse, Pingry School, 2018 (1)
10:35.70 … Julia Guerra, Indian Hills, 2016 (1)
10:36.7h … Meg Waldron, Bernards, 1983 (1)
10:37.70 … Dana Klein, Gill St. Bernard, 2014 (1)
10:38.31 … Megan Venables, Highland Reg., 2011 (1)
10:38.39 … Monica Hebner, Northern Highlands, 2018 (2)

55-METER HURDLES
7.82 … Sydney McLaughlin, Union Catholic, 2015 (1)
7.86 … Charmaine Walker, Plainfield, 1997 (1)
7.94 … Stey’ce McNeil, Winslow, 2012 (1)
7.97 … Sydney McLaughlin, Union Catholic, 2015 (t)
7.96 … Dawn Bowles, Neptune, 1988 (1)
7.99 … Patti Dziekonska, West Windsor-Plainsboro North (1)
8.04 … Trier Young, Neptune, 2005 (1)
7.8h … Wendy Vereen, Trenton, 1984 (1)
8.07 … Porscha Dobson, Kent Place, 2003 (1)
8.07 … Patti Dziekonska, West Windsor-Plainsboro North (1)
8.07 … Tia Livingston, Union Catholic, 2016 (1)

1,600-METER RELAY
3:47.27 … Union Catholic, 2016 (1)
3:48.30 … Columbia, 2013 (1)
3:50.32 … Union Catholic, 2015 (1)
3:52.76 … Columbia, 2014 (1)
3:53.50 … Columbia, 2010 (1)
3:55.08 … Camden, 2009 (1)
3:55.24 … Montclair, 1998 (1)
3:55.45 … Mount St. Dominic, 2014 (2)
3:55.58 … Union, 2013 (2)

3,200-METER RELAY
9:14.47 … Ridge, 2018 (1)
9:17.78 … Ridge, 2018 (1)
9:28.95 … Ridgewood, 2018 (2)
9:28.97 … Union Catholic, 2018 (3)

HIGH JUMP
5-10 1/2-Tatiana Smolin, Randolph, 1984 (1)
5-10-Deb Vento, Freehold Boro, 2003
5-10-Emily Kianka, Hopewell Valley, 2010 (1)
5-10-Alexa Williams, Dayton, 2011 (1)
5-10-Fiona Paladino, Montgomery, 2011 (2)
5-10-Jenna Rogers, Rutherford, 2018 (1)
5-8-Carol Lewis, Willingboro, 1981 (1)
5-8-Tish Edwards, Mater Dei, 1981 (2)
5-8-Tamika Toppin, South Plainfield, 1997 (1)
5-8-Cheryl Burdick, Ramsey, 1999 (1)
5-8-Lataya Dixon, J.P. Stevens, 2007 (1)
5-8-Magie Gilbertson, Howell, 2010 (2)
5-8-Kyaira Wright-Harmon, Franklin, 2012 (1)
5-8-Noel Jancewicz, Robinsville, 2012 (1)
5-8-Gabrielle Bennett, Winslow Twp., 2015 (1)
5-8-Tierra Hooker, Timber Creek, 2018 (2)

SHOT PUT
53-2-Nickolette Dunbar, 2016 (1)
50-0-Alyssa Wilson, 2016 (2)
49-9 ¾-Nicole Sims, Plainfield 1991 (1)
47-11 ¼-Nickolette Dunbar, 2015 (1)
47-8-Therewsa Picciallo, Immaculate Heart, 2012 (1)
47-5 ½-Kim Hicks, Plainfield, 1992 (2)
47-2 ¼-Jessica Molina, Westwood, 2016 (3)
47-0-Shelby Bigsby, Montclair, 2018 (1)
46-3-Taryn O’Connor, Hillsborough, 2007 (1)
46-1 ½-DeAnne Hahn, Brick Township, 2008 (1)

POLE VAULT 
12-6-Jen Holly, Barnegat, 2008 (1)
12-6-Chrissy Finkel, Montville, 2009 (1)
12-6-Chelsea Vaughan, Southern, 2012 (1)
12-6-Hayley Horvath, Notre Dame, 2018 (1)
12-6-Ashley Preston, Delsea, 2018 (2)
12-3-Natalie Gengel, Princeton, 2006 (1)
12-0-Kristen Hafford, Warren Hills, 2005 (1)
12-0-Nicole Pompei, Hanover Park, 2009 (2)
12-0-Catherine Shih, Bernards, 2010 (1)
12-0-Emily Urciuoli, Clifton, 2010 (2)
12-0-Kayla Polcari, Ridgewood, 2010 (3)
12-0-Dana Schweiger, Toms River North, 2011 (1)
12-0-Marlena Sabatino, Hillsborough, 2012 (2)
12-0-Kristina Langan, Wayne Hills, 2015 (1)
12-0-Lea Saifi, Governor Livingston, 2016 (1)
12-0-Melissa Purcell, Pascack Valley, 2018 (3)
12-0-Lauren Saifi, Governor Livingston, 2018 (4)

The official meet program with meet records and all-time winners is here.

Performance lists for every event for today’s meet are here.

Deptford grad Kiara Lester runs historic sprint double for Penn State at Big 10 Championships!!!!!

What a Big 10 meet for Deptford graduate Kiara Lester!

Lester, now a Penn State junior, had a huge breakthrough at the Big 10 Championships in Ann Arbor, Mich., Saturday, running sizable PRs in both the 200- and 400-meter dashes.

Lester ran 23.71 in the 200 and 53.78 in the 400, placing fourth in both races. She also ran a 54.8 third leg on Penn State’s fifth-place 1,600-meter relay team, which ran 3:41.39.

Coming into the meet at the University of Michigan, Lester had an indoor 200 PR of 24.10 from a meet last February at the SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio, and an overall PR of 24.05 a meet in Charlottesville, Va., last April.

She lowered her indoor PR to 24.07 in the trials before blowing both PRs out of the water in the finals with her 23.71.

In the 400, Lester arrived at the Big 10 meet with an indoor PR of 54.54 from a meet at Clemson earlier this month. Her college indoor 400 PR before two weeks ago was a 56.53 from last year, also at Clemson. Outdoors she’s run 54.74.

She PR’d twice in the 400 as well, with a 54.31 in the trials before her 53.78 in the finals.

Lester had PRs of 24.83 and 55.83 indoors at Deptford and 24.32 and 55.72 outdoors.

ALL-TIME PENN STATE INDOOR 200-METER DASH LIST
22.60 … Consuella Moore, 2004
22.98 … Shavon Greaves, 2010
22.93 … Mahagony Jones, 2014
23.48 … Shana Cox, 2005
23.48 … Kiah Seymour, 2014
23.55 … Keianna Albury, 2017
23.67 … Caitlin DeFusco, 2010
23.71 … Kiara Lester, 2019

ALL-TIME PENN STATE INDOOR 400-METER DASH LIST
52.31 … Shana Cox, 2007
52.53 … Fawn Dorr, 2010
52.53 … Kiah Seymour, 2014
53.14 … Shavon Greaves, 2010
53.15 … Dominique Blake, 2008
53.78 … Kiara Lester, 2019
53.87 … Dynasty McGee, 2013
53.96 … Gayle Hunter, 2008

Only two girls in Penn State history have run as fast as Lester in both the 200 and 400 – Shana Cox and Shavon Greaves, a Lakewood High graduate.

Delsea grad Josh Awotunde places 3rd in USATF National Championships shot put!!!!!

Josh Awotunde placed third in the shot put at the USATF Championships Saturday at the Ocean Breeze facility on Staten Island, N.Y., with a season-best throw of 67-8 1/4.

Awotunde, a Delsea graduate and five-time All-America at South Carolina, improved on the 66-4 1/2 he threw at the Millrose Games at the Armory earlier this month in his pro debut.

Awotunde’s mark is No. 18 in the world this year. He has PRs of 69-11 3/4 indoors and 68-1 3/4 outdoors, both from last year’s SEC Championships.

Awotunde opened with a 64-10 3/4 and a 64-3 1/4 before bombing his PR on his third attempt of the trials. He finished with a 63-11 3/4, a 65-11 and a 65-8 3/4, giving him six legal throws averaging 65-5 1/4.

So his AVERAGE on six throws was only a foot below his PR entering the competition.

Awotunde finished behind only Ryan Crouser [72-10 3/4] and Joe Kovacs [70-2 1/2].

South Jersey trio runs hot in Meet of Champions 3,200-meter run!!!!!

It was a fast race up front and it was a pretty darn fast race back in the pack as well.

Mainland Regional’s Kevin Antczak led three South Jersey juniors to huge performances Saturday at the 51st annual Meet of Champions at the Bennett Center in Toms River.

Antczak, Haddonfield’s Martin Riddell and Cherokee’s Ethan Wechsler placed fourth, fifth and sixth, Antczk in 9:18.59, Riddell in 9:18.81 and Wechsler in 9:21.02.

All three times are among the 15-fastest ever run at the Meet of Champions by South Jersey two-milers.

Antczak ran a two-mile that converts to 9:16.69 earlier this year, but the times are big PRs for Riddell and Wechsler.

Riddell’s previous indoor PR was 9:35.49 and Wechsler’s 9:28.00. None of the three has broken 9:30 outdoors.

They’re the three-fastest juniors in South Jersey in six years, since Hammonton’s Lou Corgliano ran 9:17.52 as a junior in 2013.

Liam Murphy of Allentown and Devin Hart of Point Pleasant ran 8:54.22 and 8:54.45, the two-fastest times in meet history and No. 2 and 3 in state history, with Jack Jennings of Mendham third in 9:18.11.

Sebastien Reed of Pitman, another junior, was also under 9:30 at 9:28.59 for 11th, and Greg Eisenhower of Haddonfield was 12th in 9:30.88, an eight-second indoor PR (and four-second overall PR).

For many years, the Meet of Champions was a slow race. During the 18-year span from 1983 through 2000, nobody broke 9:15 at the M-of-C and the winning time was 9:21 or slower all but twice from 1987 through 2000.

Highland’s Kevin Pumphrey ran 9:15.76 to win the 1986 race and no South Jersey two-miler broke 9:17 again until Mike Rankin of Paul VI ran 9:13.33 for seventh in 2010 — 24 years later.

On the all-time South Jersey Meet of Champions performance list, four of the top seven times are from the 1970s and 11 of the top 17 times come from the 2010’s.

ALL-TIME S.J. MEET OF CHAMPIONS LIST
8:58.81 … Jon Vitez, Haddonfield, 2010 (1)
9:10.4h … Ken Medlin, Haddon Township, 1970 (1)
9:11.7h … Mike Butynes, Sterling, 1970 (2)
9:11.9h … Johnny Englehardt, Willingboro, 1976 (5)
9:13.33 … Mike Rankin, Paul VI, 2010 (7)
9:13.93 … Paul Szulewski, Washington Twp., 2010 (9)
9:15.7h … Mike Mantini [Gateway], 1978 (1)
9:15.76 … Kevin Pumphrey [Highland], 1986 (1)
9:16.13 … Jimmy Daniels [Sterling], 2013 (5)
9:16.57 … Aaron Groff [Cherry Hill East], 2016 (3)
9:17.52 … Lou Corgliano [Williamstown], 2016 (5)
9:17.55 … Greg Hughes [Mainland Reg.], 2004 (3)
9:17.71 … David Forward [Shawnee], 2009 (5)
9:18.11 … Kevin Antczak [Mainland Reg.], 2019 (4)
9:18.81 … Martin Riddell [Haddonfield], 2019 (5)
9:19.62 …… Szulewski, 2011 (4)
9:19.81 … Martin Riddell [Haddonfield], 2019 (5)
9:21.02 … Ethan Wechsler [Cherokee], 2019 (6)
9:21.13 …… Vitez, 2009 (7)
9:21.52 … Salman Khalid [Absegami], 2016 (9)