Team NSAF selects 28 student athletes for Bahamas debut! (State meet update)

by Steve Underwood

It's meet week for Team NSAF, as they prepare to compete for the first time in the Bahamas at the Frederick Bastian Track and Field Classic at the Grand Bahama Sports Complex in Freeport on Saturday, June 2, 2018.

In early May, the NSAF announced its 28-member team of top prep track and field student-athletes (14 girls, 14 boys) to represent Team NSAF in this event, which is the continuation of what was originally the Caribbean Scholastic Invitational, launched by the NSAF in 2006. Top Junior and Youth athletes from throughout the Bahamas are expected to provide outstanding competition.

The roster is comprised of athletes from 13 different states: Alabama (3), Florida (3), Georgia (4), Illinois (2), Kansas (1), Maryland (1), North Carolina (3), Pennsylvania (1), South Carolina (1), Texas (6), 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

With their state meet seasons having just finished, the squad have racked up 26 individual titles between them -- led by Utah quadruple gold medalist Meghan Hunter -- plus 27 more podium finishes! Several team members 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), 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.

A big handful rank in the top 5-10 in the country in their events – or have in previous seasons – including indoor national leader Snyder (49-9 triple jump), Skylar Ciccolini (2nd JT), Sam Hankins (3rd JT), Hunter (3rd 400, 8th 800), Matthew Boling (4th 400m), Kailee Collins (4th 100m), Dominick Houston-Shephard (4th a-c 110H, 6th 300H), Ramey (5th 400m), Darci Khan (5th 100H), Tosin Alao (6th a-c triple jump) and Marsh (7th a-c triple jump).

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 5/28/18.

Gatlin Lawson

100m/200m – PRs: 10.51/21.56 (6.79i 60m)
Elgin HS, Lugoff SC; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 4th 100 10.65, 3rd 200 21.56 (4A)
Notes:  Ran close to PRs in both dashes at 2018 state ... was a strong 3rd oveall 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: 10.46/21.22 (6.76i 60m)
Pleasant Grove HS, Pleasant Grove AL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 100m 10.46, 3rd 200m 22.79 (5A)
Notes:  In his first year of track, unbeaten in 100m and won 5A state title; also led 200 prelims before 3rd in final ... 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.

Charles Lewis

100m/200m – PRs: 10.59(10.54w)/21.04 (21.31i)
Sparkman HS, Sparkman AL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 100m 10.71, 1st 200m 21.23 (7A)
Notes:  After state meet double, now has 4 overall outdoor titles ... 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) … 3rd at 100 & 200 at ’17 AAU JOs … also sports 47.94 400 PR.

Randolph Ross

400m – PRs: 47.58/48.36i (6-10.75i HJ)
Garner HS, Garner NC; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 400m 47.58, 3rd 200m 21.80, 2nd HJ 6-6 (4A)
Notes:  Ran to 400 PR in 1st outdoor state title while winning a medal of each color ... 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 also dashed 10.79 100m, 21.33 200m, while also hitting 22-10 long jump and 6-10 HJ.

Nick Ramey

400m – PRs: 46.20/46.78i (21.14w 200m)
Brookwood HS, Snellville GA; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 2nd 400m 46.90, 5th 200m 21.96 (7A)
Notes:  Coming off 46.20 400 PR at Atlanta Georgia Relays last weekend ... had set previous best in runner-up finish at region meet ... finished outstanding indoor season with runner-up at NBNI 400 (then-PR 46.78) behind Flight 400 teammate Brian Herron (2017 CSI) … also has 21.14w 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 – PRs: 1:51.92 (4:09.38 1,600m)
Estero HS, Estero FL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 800m 1:52.40, 2nd 1600m 4:09.38 (3A)
Notes:  Terrific state meet saw near-PR victory in 800, then huge PR in runner-up 1600 finish ... set 800 PR of 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 … 2nd in 3A 1600 last year, then 2nd at NBNO EE 800 (1:52.88) … he was 2nd in 800 and won mile indoors at Dunamis Super Meet.

Andre Turay

110m hurdles – PRs: 13.95 (37.72 300H, 7.83 60H)
South Hagerstown HS, S. Hagerstown MD; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 110H 13.97, 4th LJ 22-2.5, 17th 300H (3A)
Notes:  Unbeaten at 110H in '18, capped off by MD 3A title ... ran a fine PR 7.83 in NBNI 60m hurdle final, good for 4th and the top non-senior … also clocked 7.27 for 55mH en route, beating his previous PR of 7.35 from his 3A state title run … notched first sub-38 300H in regional victory ... almost got 1st sub-14 with 14.00w to win Bullis Bulldog Invite … other PRs: 22-5 LJ, 35.85 300i, 55.03 400H.

Myles Marshall

110m hurdles – PRs: 13.87 (38.48 300H, 7.95 60H)
Lassiter HS, Marietta GA; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 3rd 110H 14.19, 3rd 300H 38.93 (7A)
Notes:  Progressed from 14.32 in 110H in ’17 to 14.00w at Texas Relays (3rd), then legal 13.87 at sectional -- before twin 3rd's at state ... started post-season with fast 13.97 (4th) in loaded Atlanta GA Relays … won NBNI EE 60m hurdles with PR 7.95, improving on 7.97 best from Kentucky Invite ... lowered 300H PR to 38.48 during regional victory … also has PRs of 10.96 100m, 56.50 400H.

Dominick Houston-Shepard

400m hurdles – PRs: 36.76 300H (13.60w 110H)
Fort Bend Marshall HS, Missouri City TX; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 2nd 300H 37.81, 3rd 110H 13.60w (5A)
Notes:  A big reason Marshall won 5A title (also on winning 4x4) ... breakthrough 36.76 PR came during Victor Lopez Classic triumph … had unfinished business at state after missing in ’17 despite 38.01 pre-region best … also won Lopez 110H at 14.16, then ran four sub-14s (all windy), also including winning 13.86 at Region 3-5A … making debut at 400H.

Charles O. McBride

High Jump – PRs: 7-0.25i/6-10 (46-3.25 TJ)
Apex HS, Apex NC; Class of 2019 
2018 State Meet: 3rd HJ 6-4, 9th TJ 44-6 (4A)
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 to win Apex Relays vs. Randolph Ross … 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 – PRs: 24-2.75 (46.15 400)
Strake Jesuit HS, Houston TX; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st LJ 24-0, 2nd 400 46.76 (6A)
Notes:  Unbeaten outdoors in long jump in ’18, including Texas Relays, PR 24-2.75 at Victor Lopez Classic and 6A title … 4th at state in ’17, but hit then-PR 23-11 for surprising 6th at NBNO … enjoyed rapid ascension in 400, improving 47.38 PR from ’17 to 47.16, 46.83 and 46.15 over 3 meets, before runner-up at state ... also has 6-7 HJ and 42-2.5 TJ PRs.

Kevin Snyder

Triple Jump – PRs: 49-9i/49-3.25 (24-1.75 LJ)
Christ School, Arden NC; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st LJ 22-9, 1st TJ 48-5.5, 4th 100 11.00 (3A)
Notes:  Jumps double helped team to NCISAA 3A state title ... leapt to matching 3rd-place 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 – PRs: 62-10.5/62-4i (184-0 DT)
The Woodlands HS, The Woodlands TX; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 2nd SP 62-10.5, 3rd DT 184-0 (6A)
Notes:  Has thrown 62 feet or better six times in ’18 (and won 13 of 15 finals), including 62-6 at Victor Lopez and new PR at state … only losses were 2nd's at Texas Relays and state … reset discus PR at state, after 183-5 at Region 2-6A … older brother is Texas frosh Tripp Piperi – 2016 NBNO champ, 2015 World Youth champ and 3-time international medalist.

Sam Hankins

Javelin – PR: 220-9
Manhattan HS, Manhattan KS; Class of 2020
2018 State Meet: 1st JT 212-1 (6A)
Notes:  With 3rd best career meet, he defended 6A state title and stayed unbeaten ... big PR 220-9 came during regional victory ... nation’s best Class of ’20 thrower (both ’17 and ’18) joined NSAF’s Project Javelin after runner-up finish at American Javfest last July … best of 205-11 in '17, just off national class record … has 8 meets between 205-220 this year, including Kansas Relays win.


Aliya Wilson

100m/200m – PRs: 11.55/11.49w/24.27
Tahoma HS, Seattle WA; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 100m 11.96, 1st 200 24.43 (4A)
Notes:  Sprint sweep (w/200 PR in prelims) gave her 3 state titles overall ... 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 100 with all-conditions PR 11.49(2.8w) after legal 11.55 semi … swept both dashes at big Pasco Invite … 5th in 200, 7th at 100 at Arcadia Invite.

Kailei Collins

100m/200m – PRs: 11.45/11.32(nwi)/23.49
Cypress Ranch HS, Houston TX; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 2nd 100 11.45, 4th 200 23.66w (6A)
Notes:  Her 100m runner-up finish at state marked a big wind-legal PR ... scored 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 … swept both events at Victor Lopez Classic … 3rd in 6A state 100 last year … 2x USATF JO runner-up at 100m ... also has 19-1 LJ PR.

Nicole Payne

400m – PRs: 53.98/54.22i (24.27/24.11w 200)
Oak Mountain HS, Oak Mountain AL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 400 54.04, 2nd 200 24.27 (7A)
Notes:  Got her first career sub-54s 400m w/53.98 at Mtn Brook Invite, then has since come very close twice … her state 400 title was her 2nd and she now has 2 top-3 finishes in 200 … set 54.22 indoor PR winning MLK Classic … later just missed NBNI 400 final ... also has 7.74 60 PR indoors (3rd state).

Jan'Taijah Ford

400m – PRs: 52.92/55.21i (23.62 200)
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 (24.14 200m)
West Aurora HS, Aurora IL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 400m 54.72 (3A)
Notes:  Now has 2 straight 3A state 400 titles ... big indoor 400 PR 54.14 to win Kentucky Invite in Feb. 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) … also has 12.06 PR at 100.

Meghan Hunter

400m – PRs: 52.59/53.92i (2:09.26 800m, 24.20 200m)
Provo HS, Provo UT; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 100m 12.20, 1st 200m 24.42, 1st 400m 53.14, 1st 800m 2:09.26 (5A)
Notes:  Incredible 100/200/400/800 quadruple at state completed amazing regular season ... blasted her 52.59 400m PR at Davis Invite to improve by nearly a second and take over national lead at the time … only loss outdoors is 4th at Arcadia Invite … 53.92 indoor PR came at Simplot (2nd); also won indoor state title … stunning range includes 11.96 100, 43.49 300H and 18:32 3M XC.

Brynne Sumner

800m – PRs: 2:08.47/2:11.96i (4:50.13 1,600m)
Woodstock HS, Woodstock GA; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 1600m 4:50.13, 1st 800 2:13.44 (7A)
Notes:  Started off post-season with super 800 PR in Wingfoot Mile meet (4th vs. elites) ... state meet was also a stunner, but in 1600 with her 6-second PR ... indoor 800m PR came at NBNI, with 2:11.96 for 11th overall (3rd 1st section) … swept sectional and regional in 800 and 1600 … 2nd in 7A state 800 last year and won Music City 800 … also sports 57.51 best at 400.

Ally Henson

100m hurdles – PRs: 13.90 (44.76 300H, 8.71i 60H)
Yates HS, Houston TX; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 100H 14.00, 4th 300H 45.69 (4A)
Notes:  Came close to 100H PR w/state meet triumph ... scored major invite wins at TSU and Houston Relays and won district and region titles … 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 – PRs: 13.56 (42.37 300H, 8.39i 60H)
Stockbridge HS, Stockbridge GA; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 2nd 100H 13.56, 2nd 300H 42.37 (5A)
Notes:  She set 2 big PRs at stellar state meet, runner-up by just .01 (100H) and .13 (300H) ... was unbeaten at 100H prior to state, including Mobile Challenge victory … previous career PR of 13.79 came in winning 5A title in ’17 … has won 3 golds and a silver in USATF Youth and JO 100H past two years … ran both '17 NBN meets, just missing 60H final ... other PRs: 12.01 100, 24.69/24.57w 200.

Rayniah Jones

400m hurdles – PRs: 42.16 300H (14.08 100H)
Southridge HS, Miami FL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st 300H 42.16, 2nd 100H 14.08 (4A)
Notes:  She was unbeaten at 300H after early loss, starting with 42.78 win at Louie Bing Classic and finishing with state meet PR … also steadily improved at 100H, hitting 14.11 and 14.08 PRs in last 2 meets … she is the 3rd Southridge Team NSAF member in three years, following Symone Mason and Kayla Johnson in ’16 ... debuting at 400H here.

Titiana Marsh

Long Jump – PRs: 20-5i/20-2.75 (43-5 TJ)
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 won 6 of 7 competitions with seasonal bests of 19-11.75w LJ and 42-2.25 TJ ... 10-time VA champ has 20-5i LJ and 43-5 TJ PRs from ’17 ... She was 2nd LJ, 4th TJ at NBNI that year, then 2nd TJ, 3rd LJ at NBNO ... she’s the only senior on Team NSAF.

Tosin Alao

Triple Jump – PRs: 41-8/42-3.25(nwi)/40-8.25i
Allen HS, Allen TX; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 2nd TJ 41-8 (6A; 1/4 inch from 1st)
Notes:  Finished a miniscule 1/4 inch out of 1st at 6A state triple jump with her wind-legal PR 41-8 ... was 6th in ’16, then missed qualifying last year, so extra motivated ... hit big overall PR with 42-3.25(nwi) at Dist. 5-6 Area 6A meet ... runner-up at TX Relays after 4th in '17 ... also set LJ PR at Area meet of 18-11.

Chloe Lindeman

Shot Put – PRs: 48-2.5i/47-5 (136-2 DT)
Fulton HS, Fulton IL; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st SP 47-3.75, 4th DT 129-11 (1A)
Notes:  Captured 1A title with state-leading 47-3.75, moving up after runner-up finishes in '16, '17 ... took a surprising 3rd in the shot at NBNI this March, then 2 weeks later at Illinois Prep Top Times set a big overall PR at US#3 48-2.5 ... previous best of 47-5 was in ’17 sectional ... finished last spring with 47-2.25 win at Great Southwest ... also has 136-2 discus PR.

Skylar Ciccolini

Javelin – PR: 173-11
Mifflin Co. HS, Lewistown PA; Class of 2019
2018 State Meet: 1st JT 167-4 (3A)
Notes:  Unbeaten in '18, including US#2 173-11 PR (#10 all-time) and 3A title ... has traded US-leading mark back and forth with Project Jav teammate Dana Baker ... earlier won Penn Relays jav w/172-2, breaking meet record of Project alum Sophia Rivera ... joined Project in Fall ’16 after 134-11 as a frosh, then improved all the way to 164-9 PR to win Iron Wood ... also has PRs of 33-11 TJ, 16-0 LJ and 5-1 HJ.



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