Cherry Hill East graduate Maya Drayton is off to a terrific start at Georgetown, with times of 56.77 and 56.38 in her first two collegiate races, which also happen to be her first two career indoor races.
Drayton, who didn’t run indoors at East, ran 56.77 in an invitational at Navy in December and then 56.38 last weekend in a meet at Penn State.
Racing at the Nittany Lion Challenge, Drayton placed third, less than a quarter of a second behind winner Antoinette Bradley of Penn State, who won in 56.05.
She’s actually closing in on her outdoor PR of 56.00, which she set at Group 4 states last spring, when she placed second to Shauntae Nelson of Piscataway.
Drayton’s time is No. 2 in the Big East behind only DePaul junior Kiersten Walker, who ran 55.33 in a meet at Notre Dame last month. It also makes her the No. 14 freshman in NCAA Division 1, three spots behind Nelson, who’s at U. Conn and ran 56.14 last month.
Drayton also ran on Georgetown’s third-place 1,600-meter relay team, which ran 3:50.10. Also on that team was Lexi Del Gizzo of Tenafly, the 2016 Meet of Champions 800 champ.
Interesting to note that the first three finishers in the 1,600-meter relay at Penn State each had a South Jersey runner.
Senior Kiara Lester of Deptford led off for Penn State, which won in 3:42.60, and sophomore Flora Ahiarakwe of Winslow led off for Pitt, which was second in 3:45.01.