Willingboro girls open sectionals with 1-2-3 sweep of 400-meter dash!!!!!

One event, 24 points.

The Willingboro girls opened sectionals with a 1-2-3 sweep of the 400 Saturday afternoon.

Senior Tamia Welch Smith, sophomore Aleshia Mendez and junior Balkis Lyiola finished first, second and third in the 400 at the Central Jersey Group 1 Championships at the Bennett Center in Toms River.

Smith ran 1:00.33, Mendez 1:02.33 and Lyiola 1:02.87, and nobody else was under 62 out of 30 quarter-milers in the race.

So after one event, Willingboro led second-place Asbury Park 24-4.

Willingboro has won just one indoor girls sectional title, and that came in South Jersey Group 1 in 2010. Indoor sectionals began in 2008.

Smith lowered her indoor PR from 1:00.97. Mendez from 1:03.59 and Lyiola from 1:04.13. Lyiola actually beat her overall indoor-outdoor PR of 1:02.89, set at outdoor Central 1 sectionals last May at Howell.

Meanwhile, the Boro guys, seeking a record eighth indoor sectional title, scored 29 points in the first two events.

Senior Zaire Clements ran 51.31 to win the 400, and senior teammate Jamaho Kingsley was sixth in 54.02. In the pole vault, junior Glenn Ferguson (11-0) and sophomore Bryon Gary (10-6) went 1-2.

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