Burlington’s Ny’era Hand-Brooks tears it up at state Group 1 meet!!!!!!

Dazzling performance Saturday from Ny’era Hand-Brooks, who scored 26 of Burlington City’s 30 points in the state Group 1 meet.

Brooks, a Burlington senior, would have placed 4th in the final team standings, behind only Clayton [41], Metuchen [38] and of course Burlington [30].

First, she placed 2nd in the 400 in a personal-best 1:00.68. What makes that especially impressive is that it was only her 4th lifetime 400. Because she’s so busy with other events outdoor, she’s never run a 400 in spring track. But she scored eight points Saturday, finishing 2nd to Ridgefield junior Kyle Castillo, who won the race in 58.99.

Hand-Brooks also placed 2nd in the 55-meter dash in 7.44, just 1-100th of a second off her PR of 7.43 that she set in winning at sectionals. She finished only 1-100th of a second behind winner Nelagh Matthews of Metuchen, who ran 7.43.

In the hurdles, Hand-Brooks set a PR of 8.59 in the trials, then won the final in 8.66, 12-100ths of a second ahead of Pompton Lakes senior Emma Keating. It was her second straight state title in the hurdles indoors. She won last year in 8.76. She also won the 100-meter highs at outdoor states last spring at Pennsauken.

Still, Hand-Brooks’ best event could be the 400-meter intermediates. She ran 1:04.60 as a junior last year to win Central Jersey Group 1 sectionals at Howell, and that makes her the No. 1 returning Group 1 intermediate hurdler in the state and the No. 6 overall returner.


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