Beyond the nat’l records at NBNI: Amazing relays, long jumps and much more

by Steve Underwood

The 2016 New Balance Nationals Indoor featured 11 head-shaking national records, performances that kept fans riveted at The Armory for 3 days.  But while the HSRs get the biggest headlines, some of the performances just beyond that were nearly as impressive, sometimes even more dramatic, and sometimes evoked even more jaw-dropping reaction because of the depth of excellence or the historical context of the performances.  For example, long jump marks that may have been “only” #3 all-time, but were the best anyone’s seen in 25 years or more.  Or a girls’ 4x4 with not one, not two, but THREE teams at 3:40.  Here are some of the top stories that percolated just beyond the national records. Photos from Vic Sailer, and John Nepolitan, from To check out the overall national records and national class records, go HERE.

FIVE more championship meet records: Sizzling relays, amazing LJs!
  • US#1 3:40.28 girls’ 4x400m relay (#2 all-time) by the Union Catholic, NJ team of seniors Tia Livingston (56.41) and Amari Onque-Shabazz (54.80), and juniors Cassandra Lamadieu (57.44) and Sydney McLaughlin – who brought the team back from 5th place with her 51.65 anchor.  McLaughlin, who set the 400 HSR earlier in the day, didn’t pull ahead until the final meters and in her wake was the greatest finish in the history of the prep indoor 4x4, as defending champ Motor City TC/Oak Park, MI at 3:40.69 and Paul Robeson, NY at 3:40.95 moved to #3-4 all-time.  Never had three teams run so fast and Bullis, MD 3:43.92 and Western Branch, VA 3:45.99 also set marks-for-place in the 4-5 spots.  Anna Jefferson (MCTC) at 53.69 and Amanda Crawford (Robeson) at 52.77 also had exceptional anchors.
  • US#1 1:26.21 boys’ 4x200m relay (#2 all-time) by the T.C. Williams, VA squad of seniors Noah and Josephus Lyles, senior Tre’kel Locket and soph Kai Cole, missing Long Beach Poly’s HSR by just .12 and lowering Union Catholic’s 2014 meet mark of 1:27.04.  TCW led by more than 1.5 seconds after Noah’s 2nd leg – surely under 21 seconds – and ran along thereafter with Josephus hitting 20.94 on the anchor.  The winning margin was a big 2.38 seconds, with defending champ Western Branch, VA at 1:28.59 and Newburgh Elite, NY 1:29.13 in the next two spots.  TCW had already made #2 all-time with their 1:26.86 prelim, setting up the record shot. 


  • US#1 21-3.25 girls’ long jump (#3 all-time) by Samiyah Samuels (Cypress Springs, TX sr), the longest girls’ prep jump in 35 years and topping Kate Hall’s 20-11.25 NBNI standard from last year!  The 2015 Pan Am Junior champ hit her winner on the 2nd attempt, then added four more jumps between 20-5 and 20-7, completing an incredible series.  The event set NBNI all-time-best-for-place through the top 8, with World Youth champ Tara Davis (Agoura, CA jr) – who beat Samuels at Simplot with the #5 all-time jump – barely missing that mark with 20-10 in 2nd.  Courtney Corrin (Harvard-Westlake, CA sr) – the 2013 NBNO champ and 3 times an NBN runner-up, settled for 3rd with a fine 20-3.5.  Just missing 20 feet were Daloria Boone (Milledge Acad., GA soph) at 19-11.5 and Madeleine Akobundu (Duval, MD sr) at 19-10.25.
  • US#1 26-0.25 boys’ long jump (#3 all-time) by Rayvon Grey (Beacon, NY sr), the longest boys’ prep leap in 27 years and beating Ja’Mari Ward’s 2015 NBNI mark of 25-7.25.  Grey hit 25-8 on his 2nd jump, then the winner on his 5th, and won by more than a foot.  Still, four others were over 24, with Grey’s teammate Terrell Davis just missing at 23-10.75 in 6th.  William Henderson (Baltimore Poly, MD jr) had a big US#5 24-8.5 PR (by 1 foot) for 2nd, while NSAF Project Triple Jumper Jalen Seals (Ft. Worth Boswell, TX jr) just missed his PR with 24-4.25 for 3rd.  Early-season nat’l leader Harrison Schrage (Grant, OR sr) was 4th at 24-3 and Noah Igbinoghene (Hewitt-Trussville, AL jr) – who would win Sunday’s TJ – was 5th at 24-1.


  • 71-2.75 boys’ shot put by standing US#1 Jordan Geist (Knock, PA jr), beating Stephen Sainz 71-0.5 standard from 2009.  Geist came in at #3 all-time (72-9.5 PR), but his winner here was still farther than all but 4 preps have thrown before.  He led from his first throw and got his best mark on #5.  World Youth champ Adrian “Tripp” Piperi (The Woodlands, TX jr) hit an indoor PR 69-2 for 2nd, a US#2 and #10 all-time Isaiah Rogers (Throw 1 Deep/Campbell, GA sr) took the bronze at 65-9.75.
More Top 5 ALL-TIME and US#1s (mostly)
  • US#2 54-7.5 girls’ shot put (#3 all-time) by Nickolette Dunbar (Whippany Park, NJ sr), winning the first shot competition ever with five 50-footers entered and one that nearly matched the Raven Saunders-led 2014 battle for depth of performance.  Dunbar took the lead on her 4th throw over standing US#1 and NJ rival Alyssa Wilson, then extended it by 2cm on her final throw – while Wilson finished with two fouls but still a fine runner-up 53-3.5.  Dunbar had handed Wilson her first loss of 2015-16 at the NJ Meet of Champs, but Wilson had returned the favor at Eastern States three days later with her 54-11 PR – setting up this finale.  Elena Bruckner (Valley Christian, CA sr) was 3rd at 50-8, defending champ Sophia Rivera (Brentwood, MO sr) 4th at 50-1.25 (better than her ’15 winner) and Kathleen Young (Warrensburg-Latham, IL jr) 5th at 49-2.25.
  • US#1 4,230 boys’ pentathlon (#3 all-time) by Grant Holloway (Grassfield, VA sr) in his first-ever multi, leading all the way and scaring Gunnar Nixon’s HSR until the final lap of the 1,000m.  Holloway had winning marks of 7.78 60H and 24-5 LJ to start, was 4th in the shot at 41-3.25, ruled the HJ at 6-10.25, but then settled for 2:52.21 (2nd) in the 1k.  With defending champ George Patrick not entered, Holloway was far ahead of the rest of the field – but Germantown Academy, PA soph Kyle Garland’s 3,699 total was just 86 points off Curtis Beach’s 10th-grade class record.
  • 3,885 girls’ pentathlon by Canadian Dallyssa Huggins (Markham, ON sr), a performance only two U.S. preps – 2013 champ and HSR-holder Kendell Williams (4,068) and Shana Woods – have ever beaten.  Huggins won by 211 points despite winning just two events – but they were doozies: a 5-10.5 in the HJ and 2:13.82 in the 800.  She was also 12th in the 60H, 3rd in the shot, and 5th in the LJ.  Tia Livingston (Union Catholic, NJ sr) was 2nd with a US#1 3,674 (#11 all-time), winning the 60H (8.71), 4th in the HJ, 2nd in the shot, 8th in the LJ and 5th in the 800.
  • US#1 1:50.29 boys’ 800m run (#4 all-time) by Michael Slagowski (Rocky Mountain, ID sr), coming from behind with a terrific kick in his 1st NBN appearance.  Slagowski passed Domenic Peretta (Beaver Falls, PA sr) and pre-race favorite Brandon McGorty (Chantilly, VA jr) in the final lap.  Peretta held 2nd at US#2 1:50.58 (#8 all-time) and McGorty was 3rd in the final section at 1:51.36.  Winding up 3rd overall was previous section winner Cameron Cooper (Motor City TC/Oak Park, MI jr) with his US#3 1:50.97 – the first time 3 have been under 1:51 in the meet.
  • US#1 62-8.5 girls’ weight throw (#4 all-time) by CSI alum Kamryn Brinson (Throw 1 Deep/Marist, GA sr), scoring one of the meet’s more dominant wins with a margin of nearly seven feet.  All three of her fair throws topped the rest of the field as she added more than 3 feet to her indoor PR.  Brinson was followed by 4 throwers in the 55s, topped by Jill Shippee (Shenendehowa, NY jr) at 55-11 and Lysah Russell (Classical, RI sr) at 55-9.
  • US#1 31.87 girls’ 4x55m shuttle hurdle relay (=#4 all-time) by the Hoover, AL team of Brittley Humphrey, Caitlyn Little, Kyla Horn and Michelle Nkoudou, winning the final section by nearly a second – and finishing .05 faster than H4 winner (and defending champ) Western Branch, VA (31.92, #6 all-time).  It was the 2nd win in 3 years for the school, led by World Youth bronze medalist (100H) Humphrey.  Final heat runner-up Oscar Smith, VA was 3rd overall at 32.82.
  • US#1 10:02.71 girls’ 2-mile run (#5 all-time) by Weini Kelati (Leesburg-Heritage, VA jr), completing a weekend 5k/2M double.  Kelati, who’d broke the 5,000m HSR two days earlier, set out at a pace that seemed it might threaten Mary Cain’s HSR, but soon it was more of a question if she could beat Aisling Cuffe’s MR or 10:00.  Her time is #2 in NBNI history and she became the 3rd 5k/2M doubler in 4 years.  Kelati was followed by hard-finishing fellow Virginia Libby Davidson (E.C. Glass jr) at 10:14.97 and Jessica Lawson (Corning, NY jr) at 10:18.30.  Eight broke 10:30 for the first time.
  • US#1 20:11.70 girls’ 4x1 mile relay (#5 all-time) by La Salle Academy, RI of sr Karina Tavares (5:07.54), soph Grace Connolly (5:13.06), soph Emily Kane (4:59.97) and sr Eliza Rego (4:51.13), pulling away from 7-time champs Kinetic RC/Saratoga Springs, NY (US#2 20:22.78) to defend their 2015 title.  La Salle ran more than 14 seconds faster than in their win last year, while national-record holders Kinetic (19:59.24 in 2005) – with this year’s #9 all-time mark – now has the fastest two non-winning performances in history.

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