Millville sophomore Bryanna Craig, the national scholastic heptathlon champion last spring and freshman national record holder, contested her first lifetime high school indoor multi-event on Saturday and shattered a 31-year-old South Jersey record.
Craig scored 3,584 points in five events to win the pentathlon at the 20th annual Marine Corps Holiday Classic at the 168th Street Armory in New York.
The previous South Jersey record was 3,570, set in 1988 by Rancocas Valley’s Tonya Lee, who went to become an All-America intermediate hurdler at Tennessee and reached the finals of the 400IH at the 1996 Olympic Trials.
The previous Cumberland County record of 3,514 was set in 1994 by Bridgeton’s Helen Wilks.
Craig’s score is No. 2 in state history behind only a score of 3,674 set by Tia Livingston of Union Catholic, when she placed second to Canada’s Dallyssa Huggins at the 2016 New Balance Nationals, also at the Armory. Livingston is now at Penn and Huggins is at Maryland.
To make the all-time U.S. top 10, Craig would need to score 3,714 points, so she is 130 points away — or just 26 points per event.
She won’t contest another multi until February, when she competes in the Music City Invitational at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.
Craig had some familiar faces competing with her on Saturday.
Millville went 1-2-6 in the pentathlon, with sophomore Leah Ellis 2nd with 2,950 points and freshman Autumn Craig taking 6th 2,497 points.
For Bryanna Craig, here’s an event-by-event look at her day:
55-METER HURDLES: Craig ran a near-PR of 8.50 to lead the field. Her previous PR of 8.46 came last week at the Demarest Invitational at the Bennett Center in Toms River. Her best time last year was an 8.79. 909 points.
LONG JUMP: Craig jumped an indoor PR 18-1 1/2. It’s an indoor PR because she had never jumped in an official meet indoors. Outdoors Craig has a PR of 18-5 1/4 from last year’s Rowan Open. When she broke the national freshman record last June she jumped 16-11 1/4. 7.6 points.
800-METER RUN: Craig ran an indoor 2:27.25, finishing nearly eight seconds ahead of the next-fastest runner. Craig ran 2:31.04 in her only previous indoor 800, which was in a SJTCA event at the Bennett Center last January. She PR’d at 2:21.44 at New Balance Nationals last June. 728 points.
HIGH JUMP: Craig cleared 5-0 1/4, 5-2 and 5-4 on her first attempt before missing three tries at 5-6. The 5-4 ties her indoor PR. She cleared 5-8 last spring at the Under-20 Championships in Miramar, Fla. 771 points.
SHOT PUT: Craig threw 29-9 3/4, not far off her indoor PR of 30-8 1/4, which she set last week at the Demarest Invite. 470 points.
Ellis ran a PR 8.56 in the 55 hurdles, high jumped 4-10 1/4, threw the shot 28-3 3/4, long jumped 16-7 1/4 and ran the 800 in 2:52.33. She scored her most points in the hurdles (895).
Autumn Craig ran 9.69, cleared 5-0 1/4, threw the shot 23 feet, long jumped 14-8 3/4 and ran 2:52.92.
As for Lee, who previously held the South Jersey record, she set her mark of 3,570 when she won the 1988 National Scholastic Championships at Coxe Cage at Yale University in New Haven, Conn.
Lee’s marks that day: 8.47 in the hurdles, 27-1 3/4 in the shot, 5-7 1/4 in the high jump, 17-8 in the long jump and 2:25.97 in the 800.