Willingboro Malachi James runs fastest sprint double ever by a NJ freshman!!!

A fast sprint double Saturday at the Burlington County Open for Willingboro’s Malachi James, who won the 100 in 10.81 and the 200 in 21.82, among the fastest times in state history by a freshman.

State class records are shaky and have not been maintained, updated or checked for errors for years.

That said, the fastest 100 time on record by a New Jersey freshman is 10.80 by Rosell’s Josh Fitts at the 2017 Union County Championships in Plainfield. The fastest South Jersey time was 10.83, by Washington Township’s Clayton Crosse at the 2015 South Jersey Group 4 sectionals at Egg Harbor.

Oakcrest’s Wayne Davis is credited with the state freshman 200 record at 21.16 from 2004, but it’s likely he never ran that fast as a freshman (or any other year). The fastest confirmed 200 by a South Jersey freshman is Crosse’s 21.91, also at the 2015 sectionals. ]

Either way, 10.81 and 21.82 has to be the fastest sprint double ever by a New Jersey freshman because no other freshman has ever run that fast for both dashes.

The last Burlington County sprinter in any grade to run faster in both dashes the same year was R.V.’s Sterling Pierce, who ran 10.72 and 21.66 in 2016.

James, coached at Willingboro by the legendary Martin Booker, ran the fastest 100 by a Willingboro sprinter since Michael Bolling’s 10.78 in 2000 and the fastest 200 since Antonio Abney ran 21.75 in 2007.

According to the MileSplit database, James is No. 15 nationally among freshmen in the 100 and No. 12 in the 200.

Overall, he’s now No. 4 in the state in the 100 and No. 2 in South Jersey behind Bridgeton junior Edward Jamison, who ran 10.81 at the Cumberland County Meet earlier this month at Bridgeton. He’s No. 5 in New Jersey in the 200 and tied for the top spot in South Jersey with Pennsauken sophomore Ejani Shakir, who ran 21.82 in the BCSL Meet at Pennsauken.

James, the freshman 60-meter dash national champ, was pushed by R.V. runners in both events. In the 100, senior Isaiah Arzu was second in 11.01, No. 11 in meet history, and in the 200, he finished just ahead of Rancocas Valley junior James McGhee, second with a PR of 21.92, No. 8 in New Jersey this year and No. 6 in meet history.

James is the first to double the 100 and 200 at a County Open since Willingboro’s Isaac Williams ran 11.12 and 22.80 in 2011. His double is the fastest at a County Open since Lamont Smith of Willingboro ran 10.6 and 21.4 at the 1991 County Open.

Here’s a look where James’ times rank in County Open history:

10.74 … James Townsend [Holy Cross], 2003
10.78 … Todd Lowber [Delran], 2001
10.6h … Lamont Smith [Willingboro], 1991
10.81 … Malachi James [Willingboro], 2021
10.88 …… Townsend, 2002
10.88 … Miekel House [Delran], 2019
10.91 … Jamal Harris [Palmyra], 2002
10.95 … Kamal Steward [Moorestown], 2011
10.96 … Robert Jones [Maple Shade], 2013
10.97 … Purvis Coley [Pemberton], 2000
10.98 ……. Jones, 2014
10.98 … Sterling Pierce [Rancocas Valley], 2015

21.2 … Rob Gary [Lenape], 1998
21.4 … Lamont Smith [Willingboro], 1991
21.6y … Mackie Lewis [Kennedy], 1972
21.82 … Malachi James [Willingboro], 2021
21.86 … Michael Bolling [Willingboro], 2000
21.92 … James McGhee [Rancocas Valley], 2021
21.93 … Jusson Boyd [Willingboro], 2007
21.7y … Mackie Lewis [Kennedy], 1972
21.7y … Kevin Holloway [Palmyra], 1975
21.98 … Darrin Scott [Willingboro], 2001
22.00 … Antonio Abney [Willingboro], 2007
21.8y … Lee Oldershaw [Moorestown], 1954


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