Team NSAF selects 28 student athletes for Bahamas debut!

by Steve Underwood


The NSAF has announced the selection of a 28-member team of top prep track and field student-athletes (14 girls, 14 boys) to represent our 2018 Team NSAF in an international Junior competition Saturday, June 2 at the Grand Bahama Stadium in Freeport, Bahamas. The event is the continuation of what originated as the Caribbean Scholastic Invitational, launched by the NSAF in 2006.

The roster is comprised of athletes from 13 different states (all of whom will have completed their state meets by the weekend preceding CSI): Alabama (3), Florida (2), Georgia (4), Illinois (2), Kansas (1), Maryland (1), North Carolina (3), Pennsylvania (1), South Carolina (1), Texas (7), Utah (1), Virginia (1) and Washington (1).

SEE FULL LIST and BIOs below | Team NSAF Boys Photo Page and Girls Photo Page | Team NSAF Staff Bios/Photos

Several were New Balance Nationals Indoor All-Americans or at least finalists this past March, including Nick Ramey (400m runner-up), Kevin Synder (3rd TJ & LJ), Annika Williams (3rd pentathlon), Charles O. McBride (3rd HJ) and Chloe Lindeman (3rd shot put). Then there’s Titiana Marsh, who had two silver medals, a bronze and a 4th-place finish in the NBNI and NBNO LJ and TJ in 2017. She is the only senior on the team.

Others rank in the top 5-10 in the country in their events – or have in previous seasons – including current national leaders Meghan Hunter (52.59 400 meters) and Skylar Ciccolini (172-2 javelin), indoor national leader Kevin Snyder (49-9 triple jump), and Sam Hankins (3rd JT), Matthew Boling (3rd 400m), Myles Marshall (5th 110H), Dominick Houston-Shephard (5th 300H), Tosin Alao (5th triple jump), Nick Ramey (6th 400m), Rayniah Jones (6th 300H), Kailee Collins (8th 100m/200m), Annika Williams (8th high jump) and Hugh Brittenhan (8th 800m).

Marsh and Ciccolini are part of two of the NSAF’s Elite Training Programs, with Marsh representing Project Triple Jump and Ciccolini with Project Javelin Gold.

The Caribbean Scholastic Invitational (CSI) was launched by the NSAF in 2006 to give elite high school athletes – mainly junior-class students – an international team competition and travel opportunity. The idea was to provide a “Team USA”-type environment, but in a low-pressure event, for those who have demonstrated the potential to make U.S. Junior, Youth or even Senior teams in the future – to compete in IAAF World U20 or Senior Championships, Pan American Championships and Olympic Games.

The photo at right was taken at the NSAF site visit at Grand Bahamas Stadium in early May. Pictured are (left to right): Jason Larrimore; Sandra Laing, Special Projects Ministry of Tourism; Denyse Ferguson Rolle, Bahamas Air representative; Kristi Rieger, NSAF; Joy Kamani, NSAF; Jay Philippe, Ministry of Tourism-Sports Division. Jason Larrimore is the meet director and head coach of the Kenyan Knights TC in Freeport.

CSI was held by the NSAF in Puerto Rico from 2006-2013. In 2015, we were able to move the meet to Cuba, giving our squad the amazing bounty to be historic “athletic diplomats.” The first meet in Havana was essentially a NSAF-Cuba Junior/Youth dual meet. Then in 2016-17, Team NSAF competed as part of the Memorial Barrientos. But with the national stadium in Havana having undergone renovation this year, and the Memorial Barrientos meet now set for June 15-17 (same weekend as NBNO), Team NSAF will compete for the first time in the Bahamas.

Team NSAF will leave from Ft. Lauderdale to Freeport on May 31 and return June 3.  The NSAF staff for the event, serving as managers, coaches and other capacities, includes:

  • COO Joy Kamani (Director and Team Manager)
  • Coach Paul Limmer (NSAF Board Member)
  • Coach Macka Jones (NSAF Project Triple Jump Coordinator)
  • Miami Northwestern coach Carmen Jackson
  • Sports Psychologist Dr. Margaret Ottley
  • Director of Special Projects Kristi Reiger
  • Medical Staff: Claudia “Sparky” Chapel, Performance Specialist, BCMT, ISP
  • Medical Staff: Dr. Emily Krodel
  • Medical Staff: Marissa Caldwell, AT.
  • Director of Media and Public Relations Steve Underwood

For more on the background and history of CSI, go HERE.

For brief profiles of each Team NSAF athlete, see below!

Note: Athletes’ listed events subject to change. PRs mentioned are as of 5/2/18.


Gatlin Lawson

100m/200m – PRs: 10.51/21.56
Elgin HS, Lugoff SC; Class of 2019
Notes:  Was a strong 3rd in NBNI 60m prelims (6.79) before coming up short in semis … ran a fine 3rd at Dunamis Super Meet 60 (6.83) … set 10.51 100m dash PR with runner-up finish at Bojangles Classic, while 21.56 200 best came at USC Open … 2nd in 100, 3rd in 200 at AAAA state last year, then won both in SCRunners Meet of Champs … also ran at 2017 NBNO.



Caleb Jackson

100m/200m – PRs: 10.50/21.22
Pleasant Grove HS, Pleasant Grove AL; Class of 2019
Notes:  In his first year of track, blasted to a 4th-place finish in 6.76 for a big 60m breakthrough at NBNI … won 4 of 5 60m finals indoors, including state 5A title (6.89) … started on fire outdoors with 10.50 100m and 21.22 200m PRs at Homewood Invite … won 100 and 3rd in 200 at Mobile Challenge … took both dashes in sectional meet.



Charles Lewis

100m/200m – PRs: 10.59/21.04
Sparkman HS, Sparkman AL; Class of 2019
Notes:  At NBNI, just missed 200 final (9th, 21.78 prelim) and took 3rd in EE 60m (PR 6.91) … set 10.59 100m PR this spring, while 21.04 200m PR stands from ’17 … won 200 (21.61) at Mobile Challenge and was 2nd at FSU Relays (21.21) … 2nd in 200, 4th in 100 at 7A state last year … 3rd at 100 & 200 at ’17 AAU JOs … also sports 47.94 400 PR.



Randolph Ross

400m – PRs: 47.96/48.36i
Garner HS, Garner NC; Class of 2019
Notes:  Outstanding all-around sprinter and jumper, who took 6th in the NBNI 400m dash (indoor PR 48.36) and 4th in the high jump (overall PR 6-10.75) … also run 34.56 300m and 1:04.97 500m indoors (also 500m state champ) … outdoors this spring has dashed 10.79 100m, 21.33 200m and 47.96, while also hitting 22-10 long jump and 6-10 HJ.



Nick Ramey

400m – PRs: 46.55/46.78i
Brookwood HS, Snellville GA; Class of 2019
Notes:  Finished outstanding indoor season with runner-up finish in NBNI 400 (then-PR 46.78) behind Flight 400 teammate Brian Herron (2017 CSI) … recently improved outdoor PR to 46.55 and also has 21.14 200 best … also indoors, he ran 33.77 300m (4th) and 1:03.95 500 (2nd) PRs vs. super elite fields at VA Showcase.

 



Hugh Brittenham

800m – PR: 1:51.92
Estero HS, Estero FL; Class of 2019
Notes:  Has won 7 of 8 800m finals this spring, including 1:51.92 at FSU Relays – where he also won 1600m with PR 4:12.02 … also won 1600 and 3rd in 800 at Florida Relays … was runner-up in 3A state 1600 last year, then 2nd at NBNO EE 800 (1:52.88) … indoors this winter, he was 2nd in 800 and won mile at Dunamis Super Meet.



Andre Turay

110m hurdles – PR: 14.00w
South Hagerstown HS, S. Hagerstown MD; Class of 2019
Notes:  Ran a fine PR 7.83 in NBNI 60m hurdle final, good for 4th and the top non-senior … he also clocked 7.27 for 55mH en route (and 7.33 in the semis), beating his previous PR of 7.35 from his 3A state title run … unbeaten so far outdoors, including PR 14.00w to win Bullis Bulldog Invite … other PRs: 39.98 300H, 35.85 300i, 55.03 400H.



Myles Marshall

110m hurdles – PR: 13.87
Lassiter HS, Marietta GA; Class of 2019
Notes:  Won NBNI EE 60m hurdles with PR 7.95, improving on 7.97 best from Kentucky Invite … progressed from 14.32 in 110H in ’17 to 14.00w at Texas Relays (3rd), then wind-legal 13.87 at recent sectional … lowered his 300H PR to 38.48 during regional victory … unbeaten in Ga. during ’18 in 110H … also has 10.96 100m dash PR.



Dominick Houston-Shepard

400m hurdles – PR: 36.76 (300H)
Fort Bend Marshall HS, Missouri City TX; Class of 2019
Notes:  After lone loss at 300m hurdles this spring at TSU Relays, ran to huge PR 36.76 to win Victor Lopez Classic … has unfinished business at state after missing it in ’17 despite 38.01 pre-region best … also won Lopez 110H at 14.16 and has since run three sub-14s (all windy), including winning 13.86 at Region 3-5A … making debut at 400H.



Charles O. McBride

High Jump – PR: 7-0.25i/6-10
Apex HS, Apex NC; Class of 2019 
Notes:  Scored high jump PR at perfect time, leaping 7-0.25 to take 3rd at NBNI … has also cleared 6-10 twice, once indoors at 4A state (2nd) and recently to win Apex Relays … other PRs include 21-6.25 long jump and 46-3.25 triple jump … goes by “Charles” in results, but commonly known as “Omar.”



Matthew Boling

Long Jump – PR: 24-2.75
Strake Jesuit HS, Houston TX; Class of 2019
Notes:  Unbeaten outdoors in long jump in ’18, including Texas Relays and PR 24-2.75 at Victor Lopez Classic … 4th at 6A state in ’17, but hit then-PR 23-11 for surprising 6th at NBNO … also has 6-7 HJ and 42-2.5 TJ PRs … also suddenly a national star in 400, having improved 47.38 PR from ’17 to 47.16, 46.83 and 46.15 in last three meets!



Kevin Snyder

Triple Jump – PR: 49-9i/49-3.25
Christ School, Arden NC; Class of 2019
Notes:  Leapt to matching 3rd-place horizontal jump finishes at NBNI, with 48-10.75 in TJ and indoor PR 24-1 in LJ … PR in the TJ came during big VA Showcase win at US#1 49-9 … won LJ (24-0.5) and 3rd in TJ (49-3.25) at Bojangles … claimed 4th in Penn Relays LJ (1st U.S.) at 23-6 … sports solid 100m/200m PRs of 10.89 and 22.34.



Patrick Piperi

Shot Put – PR: 62-6/62-4i
The Woodlands HS, The Woodlands TX; Class of 2019
Notes:  Has thrown 62 feet or better five times in ’18 (and won 13 of 14 finals), including 62-6 PR at Victor Lopez Classic … only loss was 2nd at Texas Relays … set discus PR at 183-5 at Region 2-6A meet … older brother is Texas frosh Tripp Piperi – 2016 NBNO champ, 2015 World Youth champ and 3-time international medalist.



Sam Hankins

Javelin – PR: 212-10
Manhattan HS, Manhattan KS; Class of 2020
Notes:  Nation’s best Class of ’20 thrower (in both ’17 and ’18) joined NSAF’s Project Javelin after runner-up finish at American Javfest last July … 6A state champ as frosh and had PR of 205-11, just off national class record … has five meets between 205-212 this year, including Kansas Relays win and US#3 212-10 PR.


GIRLS


Aliya Wilson

100m/200m – PRs: 11.55/11.49w/24.29
Tahoma HS, Seattle WA; Class of 2019
Notes:  Was 7th in NBNI 60m dash final with 7.51, just .01 off PR, after 2nd in EE final in ’17 … also 6th in ’18 EE 200 final … won ’17 4A state meet with all-conditions PR 11.49(2.8w) after legal 11.55 semi … set 200 PR last summer at USATF JOs with 24.29 … swept both dashes at big Pasco Invite … 5th in 200, 7th at 100 at Arcadia Invite.



Kailei Collins

100m/200m – PRs: 11.32(nwi)/23.49
Cypress Ranch HS, Houston TX; Class of 2019
Notes:  Is a key 100/200 state title contender after runner-up finishes in Region 3-6A meet at 11.81(-1.1w) and 23.64(+1.7w) … set 23.49 200 PR in District 17-6A win, while 11.32 100 PR goes back to ’17 (11.49w this year) … swept both events at Victor Lopez Classic … 3rd in 6A state 100 last year … 2x USATF JO runner-up at 100m.



Nicole Payne

400m – PRs: 53.98/54.22i
Oak Mountain HS, Oak Mountain AL; Class of 2019
Notes:  Got her first career sub-54s 400m with 53.98 to win Mtn Brook Invite in mid-April … unbeaten outdoors headed into 7A state, where she hopes to defend 400 title and win 1st 200 … set 54.22 indoor PR winning MLK Classic … later just missed NBNI 400 final … 200 PR of 24.42 came from 3rd place finish at ’17 state meet.



Jan'Taijah Ford

400m – PRs: 52.92/55.21i
Northeast HS, Oakland Park FL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 400 53.19, 3rd 200 23.69 (3A)
Notes:  Her 3A 400 title in May was her 3rd straight since frosh year ... also has finished 2nd, 3rd and 3rd past 3 seasons in state 200 ... set 52.82 400 PR to win prestigious Louis Bing Invite in Feb., while 23.62 200 best dates back to last spring.



Dajour Miles

400m – PRs: 53.98/54.14i
West Aurora HS, Aurora IL; Class of 2019
Notes:  Big indoor 400 PR 54.14 to win Kentucky Invite confirmed she’d come all the way back from injury issues … finished 5th at NBNI 400 54.58, then swept Illinois Top Times 200/400 … set 53.98 career PR in ’16 (AAU JO title) … unbeaten in ’17 at 400 through 3A state title and AAU region … also has 24.14 PR at 200, 12.06 at 100.



Meghan Hunter

400m – PRs: 52.59/53.92i
Provo HS, Provo UT; Class of 2019; 400m dash
Notes:  Blasted a 52.59 400m PR at recent Davis Invite to improve by nearly a second and take over national lead … only loss outdoors is 4th at Arcadia Invite … 53.92 indoor PR came in runner-up finish at Simplot; also won indoor state title … great range with PRs of 2:11.38 for 800, 24.28 for 200, 11.96 for 100 and 43.49 for 300H.



Brynne Sumner

800m – PR: 2:11.96i/2:12.11
Woodstock HS, Woodstock GA; Class of 2019; 800m run
Notes:  Set her career 800m PR at this year’s NBNI, running 2:11.96 for 11th overall (3rd 1st section) … won sectional and regional (2:12.11) titles leading into state … 2nd in 7A state last year and won Music City 800 … also won sectional and regional 1600 races and has 4:56.65 PR … also sports 57.51 best at 400.



Ally Henson

100m hurdles – PR: 13.90
Yates HS, Houston TX; Class of 2019
Notes:  With major invite wins (TSU and Houston Relays), plus district and region titles, she’s a favorite headed into TX 4A state … set 13.90 PR in winning prelims at TX Relays … also broke 300H PR by more than 2 seconds to win Region 3-4A in 44.76 … at 60H, she has a 8.71 PR and advanced to NBNI semis.



Darci Khan

100m hurdles – PR: 13.79
Stockbridge HS, Stockbridge GA; Class of 2019
Notes:  Unbeaten at 100H in ’18, including Mobile Challenge victory, she has 13.87 best going into state … set career PR of 13.79 in winning 5A title in ’17 … has won 3 golds and a silver in USATF Youth and JO 100H past two years … competed in both NBN meets last year, just missing 60H final … 300H PR of 43.85.



Rayniah Jones

400m hurdles – PR: 42.78 (300H)
Southridge HS, Miami FL; Class of 2019
Notes:  Unbeaten in the 300m hurdles since early Feb., starting with a 42.78 win at the big Louie Bing Classic … has also steadily improved at 100mH, hitting a PR 14.11 to win district before a less successful outing at regions … she is the 3rd Southridge Team NSAF member in three years, following Symone Mason and Kayla Johnson in ’16.



Titiana Marsh

Long Jump – PR: 20-5
Thomas Dale HS, Chester VA; Class of 2018
Notes:  Project Triple Jumper and 4-time NBN All-American regaining form after losing fall and winter to injury … has 40-10.75 and 41-4.75 TJ wins, plus 18-2 LJ in 2 April meets … 10-time VA state champ has 20-5 LJ and 43-5 TJ PRs … in ’17, she was 2nd LJ, 4th TJ at NBNI, then 2nd TJ, 3rd LJ at NBNO … she’s the only senior on Team NSAF.



Tosin Alao

Triple Jump – PR: 42-3.25 (nwi)
Allen HS, Allen TX; Class of 2019
Notes:  Established herself at national class level with 42-3.25 triple jump PR (nwi) at Dist. 5-6 Area 6A meet … previous best was 41-1 from Texas Relays (4th) in ’17 … 6th in state 6A TJ in ’16, then missed making state last year, so extra motivated this year … also set new long jump PR at Area meet of 18-11.



Chloe Lindeman

Shot Put – PRs: 48-2.5i/47-5
Fulton HS, Fulton IL; Class of 2019; Shot Put
Notes:  Came through with a 47-2.5 to take a surprising 3rd in the shot at NBNI this March … two weeks later at Illinois Prep Top Times, she set a big PR at 48-2.5 … previous best of 47-5 was in ’17 sectional, before runner-up finish at 1A state … finished last spring with 47-2.25 win at Great Southwest … also has 129-4 discus PR.



Skylar Ciccolini

Javelin – PR: 172-2
Mifflin Co. HS, Lewistown PA; Class of 2019
Notes:  Recently captured Penn Relays title and broke meet record of fellow Project Javelin and CSI alum Sophia Rivera with mighty US#1 172-2 … joined Project in fall ’16 with 134-11 as a frosh, then improved in ’17 to 140-7, 153-1 (2nd Penn) and breakthrough 164-9 PR to win Iron Wood … later won AAU JOs at 155-7 to cap off ’17 … also has PRs of 33-11 TJ, 16-0 LJ and 5-1 HJ.

 

 


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