Two tremendous sprint battles between Northern Burlington junior Samuel Thomas and Willingboro sophomore Malachi James Saturday at the BCSL Championships.
Although we still don’t have any team scorers, we can tell you that the Liberty Division 100 and 200 in the Burlington County Scholastic League meet at Pennsauken were incrediblle races.
Thomas won both races by 1-100th of a second over James. In the 100, Thomas ran 10.78 and James 10.79, and in the 200, Thomas ran 21.97 and James 21.98.
For Thomas, the 10.78 was a school record and a big PR from his 10.93 at the South Jersey Elite earlier this month at Delsea. His 200 PR is a school-record 21.74 from the Lenape Day of Sprints and Hurdles late last month.
James has PRs of 10.76 for 100 meters from the prelims at last year’s Meet of Champions and 21.82 from last year’s County Open. He was state Group 1 champ at 100 and 200 last spring and placed in both races at the Meet of Champions as a freshman
He didn’t run indoors and didn’t open his 2022 outdoor season until last weekend because of an injury.
Thomas is the first Northern Burlington sprinter ever to win either the 100 or 200 at the BCSL Championships. He’s the first to win both races in sub-11 and sub-22 since Sterling Pierce of Rancocas Valley in 2015 [10.87, 21.75] and only the third ever in any division.
His 10.78 is the fastest FAT time in meet history – Pierce’s 10.87 was the previous meet record. The hand-timed 100 record is 10.6 by RV’s Josh Raines in 2006, but 10.78fat is faster than 10.6 hand-timed, which converts to 10.84.
There have been only two other sub-11 and sub-22 doubles in meet history:
1989 [Liberty]: Mario Henry [Lenape]: 10.8, 21.9
1997 [Patriot]: Louis Smith [Burlington]: 10.7, 21.9