In June, Durham hosted the USA Track & Field Youth Outdoor Championships. Over the course of four days, young athletes from all over the country gave their all and competed in many track and field events at Durham County Memorial Stadium. Some were there representing their local athletic club, and some were unattached. Following is a recap of each day of the event.
DAY 1, JUNE 25
The Championships began with the 13-14 girls division pentathlon. Oteta Kitiona (Mercury Track of Utah, Salt Lake City) won the division with 2,085 points. Kitiona tied for the win in the 100 meters hurdles with a time of 18.44, but it was her three- foot win over the competition in the shot put (8.62 meters /28-3.5) that helped solidify her win.
Zachary Myers (Unattached) won the boys 13- 14 division pentathlon with 2,557 points. Myers won the 100-meter hurdles (16.02), shot put (12.13 meters/39-9.75), high jump (1.65 meters/5-5) and long jump (5.24 meters/17-2.25) and placed second in the 1,500-meter (5:56.09).
In the girl’s 15-16 division 2000-meter steeplechase, Alli Crytser (Unattached) took the national title by six seconds with a time of 7:35.11 ahead of second-place finisher Victoria Swepson’s (Triangle Champions Track, Durham) 7:41.33. Madison Chavez (Pacific Coast Shock Waves, Compton, Calif.) placed third with 8:34.59.
Daniel Norris (Greensburg YMCA, Greensburg, Pa.) won the Hammer Throw in the 17-18 division by nearly 3 meters with a toss of 48.31 meters/158-06. Nealon Jones (Let It Fly T, Colorado Springs, Colo.) took second with a throw of 45.32 meters/148-08 and Vishal Turna (Let It Fly T) finished third with a throw of 43.78 meters/143-08.
In the women’s 17-18 division hammer throw, Kira Linder (Hudson Valley Flight Club, Chappaqua, N.Y.) won the event by almost 4 meters with a throw of 45.35 meters/148-9. Following Linder was Sydney Lake (Unattached) with a toss of 41.45 meters/136-0 for second, and Abby Venglass (Unattached) placed third with 41.15 meters/135-0.
Talia Green (Oakland Cubs, Oakland, Calif.) led from start to finish in the 13-14 girls division 3,000-meter race walk. Green won the title in 16:54.23, while Caelin Sloan (Unattached) took second with 17:13.33.
In the women’s 17-18 division heptathlon, Hayden Colfax (Unattached) is the current leader through three events with 2,413 points. Colfax won the 100-meter hurdles (16.10) and placed second in the high jump (1.50 meters/4-11) and shot put (8.40 meters/27-6.75) and clocked 27.57 in the 200-meter. Trailing close behind is Grace Henderson (Valley Speedsters, Monessen, Pa.) with 2,090 points.
DAY 2, JUNE 26
On the second day, it was a tight race in the girl’s 11-12 division pentathlon. Zoe Eastman-Grossel (Connecticut Hawks TC, New Haven, Conn.) led from the beginning, scoring 758 points in the 80-meter hurdles. She went into the final event with a 163-point lead over Jordan Henderson (Rolesville Lightning, Rolesville, N.C.). Henderson placed third in the 800-meter with a 2:49.96, scoring 252 more points than Eastman-Grossel to finish in first with 1,907 points.
In the women’s 17-18 division heptathlon, Hayden Colfax (Unattached) led the competition at the start of the day and finished as the national champion with 3,839 points. Colfax won the 100-meter hurdles (16.10) and the long jump (4.85 meters/15-11) which allowed her win to be over 300 points.
John Swabik (Chautauqua Striders, Jamestown, N.Y.) won the boy’s 15-16 division decathlon with 5,317 points. Swabik clocked 11.71 in the 100-meter, cleared 1.80 meters in the high jump and wrapped up the competition with a 4:38.06 1,500-meter.
DAY 3, JUNE 27
It was a fight to the finish in the boys 15- 16 division 3,000-meter run on the third day. George Stark (Alpha Omega Elite, Miami) won the national title in a time of 9:17.82 just edging out Adrian Archer (Franklin Elite Athletics, Pinehurst, N.C.) who finished runner-up in 9:18.14.
Alyssa Barnes (Panthers TC, Brooklyn, N.Y.) and Amora Johnson (Rolesville Lightning) went head-to-head in a jump off for the girl’s 9-10 division high jump. They each cleared 1.10 meters/3-7.25 successfully before missing at 1.15 meters/3-9.25. In the jump off, it was Barnes who was able to clear the bar first to win the national title.
In the girl’s 7-8 division long jump, Cameron Joseph (Velocity Track, Rochester, N.Y.) blew away the field winning by nearly 3 feet jumping 3.19 meters/10-5.75. Tamara Mixon (Peak Performance T.C., Lincoln, Neb.) took second with a jump of 2.35 meters/7-8.50 and Michelle Pringley (Unattached) third in 2.29 meters/7-6.25.
Vishal Turna (Let It Fly Throwing, Hebron, Inc.) had a throw that shifted the competition, allowing him to move from third to first place in the men’s 17-18 division discus. With two throws remaining, Turna threw 46.55 meters/152-4 to take the lead and fouled on his final throw, but was able to withstand the field to win the title.