St. Augustine senior Sincere Rhea placed second in the 110-meter high hurdles to long-time rival Kurt Powdar of Oscar Smith High in Chesapeake, Va., at the New Balance National Championships Saturday but ran the third-fastest time in state history and he did it with legal wind!

Powdar won in a ridiculous 13.27, a meet record and the 8th-fastest time in U.S. high school track history. Rhea was second in 13.51 with a 0.5 wind.

Rhea’s PR was 13.52 with a 3.5 wind. His previous-best legal hurdles time was a 13.68 in the trials of the South Jersey Invite.

Here’s the all-time state list:

13.43 … Danye Brown [Camden], 1999
13.46 … Cory Poole [East Orange Campus], 2017
13.51 … Sincere Rhea [St. Augustine], 2019
13.52 … Todd Matthews [Notre Dame], 1998
13.59 … Gerard Reynolds [Willingboro], 1990
13.62 … Christopher Stephens [Plainfield], 2001
13.66 … Sultan Tucker [Delsea], 1997
13.66 … Emmanuel Deux [Linden], 2001
13.67 … Jermaine Collier [Trenton], 2012
13.70 … Chris Alexander [Christian Brothers], 2015

Rhea is now a three-time first-team All-America. He placed fourth at New Balance Nationals last spring and won the 55 hurdles indoors this past winter.

Rhea over the last few days has demonstrated that he’s one of the most versatile athletes in South Jersey history. He won the Meet of Champions 400 last weekend in 47.89, the No. 2 time in Atlantic County history.

Rhea’s 13.51 is the 10th-fastest time in meet history and the fastest ever at nationals by a New Jersey hurdler. Todd Matthews of Notre Dame ran 13.52 in 1998.

His 13.51 is the second-fastest non-winning time ever recorded at Nationals. In 2016, Marcus Krah of Hillside High in Durham, N.C., won in 13.39, and Trey Cunningham of Winfield (Ala.) High was second in 13.43.


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