Is it too early to start planning for 2020? A can’t miss race next spring will be the girls 400-meter intermediate hurdles at the Rowan Invitational.
If all goes well, it could feature five of the top 20 returning intermediate hurdlers in the country!
According to the MileSplit database, two of the top 10 underclassmen in the country in the 400-meter hurdles and six of the top 28 are from South Jersey!
Aliya Rae Garozzo of Paul VI leads the way at 1:00.16, which makes her the No. 4 returner in the country, and two-time state Group 2 champion Meredith Updike, a Cinnaminson junior, who ran 1:00.67 at the Meet of Champions, is the No. 8 returner.
Here’s the full list of returners along with their national rank among underclassmen:
#4 … Aliya Rae Garozzo [Paul VI], 1:00.16
#8 … Meredith Updike [Cinnaminson], 1:00.67
#17 … Jewel Ash [Eastern], 1:01.46
#20 … Janeya Hammond [Winslow Twp.], 1:01.54
#26 … Nylah Perry [Winslow Twp.], 1:02.00
#28 … Amirah Sharpe [Paulsboro] 1:02.07
The top five are juniors. Sharpe is the No. 7 sophomore in the country.
How dominating were South Jersey’s intermediate hurdlers this year?
Five of the top seven finishers in the Meet of Champions are from South Jersey: Winner Arianna Smithm of Pennsville won in 1:00.30, Updike was second at 1:00.67, Garozzo took fourth in 1:01.37, Eastern’s Jewel Ash ran sixth in 1:01.46 and Hammond was seventh in 1:01.54.