Girls Event by Event
by Ricky Quintana
60 meter dash
None of this year's competitors made it past the first round in last year's star-studded final. This year's group is tightly packed and any one of four could win the title.
US # 3 55m ranked Sarah Matthews (Colorado Flyers, Longmont, CO) figures to be the top seed by a scant margin. Hot on her heels should be USATF JO YW 100m 5 th placer
Tenille Wilson (Foley HS, Summerdale, AL) who comes in ranked US # 4 in the 60m. Francena McCorory (Bethel TC, Hampton, VA), US #5 in the 55m, could also be vying for a top spot on the podium. Frosh Clarenchell Tate (Simon Gratz, Philadelphia, PA), ranked US #5 in the 60m, has a shot at the frosh record of 7.50 set in 1999 by Zenobia Reed (Lamar, Houston, TX). She has run a converted 60m best of 7.53 this season.
Sophomore Bianca Knight ( Ridgeland TC, Ridgeland, MS) comes in as the heavy favorite and has the accolades of a veteran. After setting a blazing best of 23.06 last summer in winning the USATF JO IG 200m championship, T& F news # 3 ranked 200m runner recorded an indoor best of 23.70A at the Simplot Games on February 19. That was good enough for 11 th fastest runner of All-Time. Pretty good for someone who has only two years of experience undercover.
Before the season, she said that Simplot and NIN were the two races she was pointing towards this season, so expect a sizzling performance from her in Landover.
Her biggest threats will come from US # 4 Krista Simkins (Wissahickon TC, Ambler, PA), US #5 Clarenchall Tate (Simon Gratz, Philadelphia, PA) and fellow soph and US # 6, Sa'de Williams (Rancho Cucamonga, Alta Loma, CA).
The meet record of 23.78 set in 2001 by Erica Whipple (Palm Beach Lakes, West Palm Beach, FL) may be in jeopardy. Ebony Collins' (Wilson, Long Beach, CA) frosh record of 24.47 could fall to Tate who has a best of 24.26 this season.
Bianca Knight's (Ridgeland TC, Ridgeland, MS) efforts in the 400m last outdoor season earned her T & F News # 3 ranking. Indoors, she has yet to find her groove, but with a personal best of 52.96 set last summer, she will toe the line as the favorite.
Sa'de Williams (Rancho Cucamonga, Alta Loma, CA) finished 7 th in the highly competitive CA State meet and should pose a threat to Knight's sprint sweep attempt.
Andria Smallwood (Ballou HS, Washington, DC) will be a strong contender also.
One of the marquee events of the meet.
Last June, Sarah Bowman (Fauquier, Warrenton, VA) recorded the fastest time since 1996 in winning 800 meter run at the adidas Outdoor Championships in Raleigh, NC. Her 2:04.94 outdistanced the next best outdoor performance by more than two seconds and earned her T & F News' #1 ranked 800m runner,
After a tepid start to this indoor season, she set the high school track world on it's ear by crushing Arianna Lambie's (Bromfield School, Harvard, Ma) US 1k record by whopping two seconds with her 2:43.40 at the Virginia State meet. Reports had her coming through the 800m in 2:08.2, the third fastest 800m time in the nation. She enters as the odds on favorite.
At NIN, she will be challenged by surprising junior Katie Doswell (St. Catherine's, Richmond, VA). At the same adidas Outdoor Championship meet where Bowman scorched the field, Doswell recorded a modest 2:13.4 relay split in the 4 x800m relay for her 17 th place St. Catherine's team. After a solid fall in cross-country, Doswell has seen an alarming improvement recording bests of 2:08.86(US # 5) in the 800m and 2:47.21 (US #2). She will definitely be in the hunt.
Adding spice to the field, US # 4 Geena Gall (Detroit Cheetahs TC, Flint MI) and 1k US #5 performer Brittany Sheffey (Bellport TC, Bay Shore, NY) have PR's of under 2:09.01.
With 90 minutes between the mile and 800m, Doswell and Bowman will have little time to rest.
The meet record of 2:09.52 set by Katya Kostetskaya (Jonesboro, AR) in 2003 could be broken if not smashed by any of the top four.
The junior record of 2:06.60 by Joetta Clark (Columbia, Maplewood, NJ) and the senior record of 2:04.90 set by Tamieka Grizzle (George Washington, NYC) could also go.
Nicole Blood (Kinetic RC, Ganesvoort, NY) sped to the fastest sophomore mile time ever undercover, 4:46.13, in finishing second to Katelyn Kaltenbach's (Smoky Hill TC, Aurora, CO) meet record of 4:45.32 last year. She followed that with an outdoor sophomore record and US #1 time of 4:42.40 at the adidas Outdoor Championships in June. Her undefeated season earned her T & F News' # 1 ranking.
Picking up where she left off last indoor season, Blood has produced the third fastest mile time, 4:50.87, and US #1 in the 3k, 9:35.40(US #11 All-Time).
T & F News #3 miler, Sarah Bowman is coming off a US 1k HSR and best of 4:52.84 this season. She also owns the 2003 indoor mile title. She could be a threat once again for the title.
Other challengers in this tough field include: 1500 US #1 (4:33.4) and frosh, Caitlin Lane (Kinetic RC, Ganesvoort, NY); US #8 and sophomore, Brittany Sheffney (Bellport TC, Bay Shore, NY); US #10 and new Wake Forest commitment, Nicole Schappert (Pope John Paul II, Boca Raton, FL); and US #13 Kelly Parrish (Vanguard, Ocala, FL).
With such a strong field, Kaltenbach's year old mile meet record could be history.
UNC signee, Katelyn Kaltenbach (Smoky Hill TC, Aurora, CO) returns to claim her second title in as many years. She'll be looking to improve on her 3 rd place finish from 2003 and also get back to her winning ways on the track where she suffered her only three loses of her junior year in post season track meets last summer.
USR steeple record holder (6:45.49) and Foot Locker finalist, Lindsey Ferguson is coming off a 3 rd place finish at the New York state meet behind US #1 and US #2 runners, Nicole Blood and Aislinn Ryan (Warwick Valley, NY). She owns the US #6 fastest time in the 3k and should be on the podium by race's end.
Brittany Sedberry (Ocean City TC Beesleys Port, NJ) owns the fastest two-mile in the nation (10:37.02) and should also challenge for a top spot.
Three time Foot Locker finalist, Kate Niehaus (Spring Valley TC, Columbia, SC) owns US #6 time in the 3k and should round out the field.
The meet record of 10:23.63 set by Carol Henry in 2002 could be threatened.
1 Mile Run Freshman
Lindsay Anderson (Leeds Public TC, Leeds, ND) won the class B title with her state meet record time of 4:58.04 last May. that is faster than Chantelle Dron's (Central, Manchester, NH) meet record of 5:00.22.
Kinetic RC's Hannah Davidson could give Anderson some company.
Look for a fast race from some of the future stars.
1 mile Walk
Katy Hayes (Lake Country, Oconomowoc, WI) set the meet record last year with her 7:00.94 mark, but just missed the national high school record by 0.04 seconds. She'll be back for the record this year.
New Yorkers, Kathleen Cannon (Somers TC, Granite Springs, NY) and Brittany O'Brian (Bay Shore TC, Brightwaters, NY) have national meet experience after placing 5 th and 4 th at the adidas Outdoor Championships last June.
4 x 200m
Bethel (Hampton, VA) comes in with the second fastest time in the nation, 1:39.85 and a 10 th place finish from last year. They are a vastly improved team and are led by top sprinter, junior Francena McCorory and long sprinter, senior Shakirra Pinnock . They will be tough to beat.
Hermitage TC (Richmond, VA) comes in with the US #8 fastest time. Hometown, Blazin Raiders (Roosevelt, Greenbelt, MD) sports a solid team. Rancho Cucamonga TC (Alta Loma, CA) will have Sa'de Williams and Nicole Stone plus a strong supporting cast that could challenge for the top spot.
Bethel may have a chance at James Logan (Union City, CA) meet record of 1:39.87 set last year.
Rancho Cucamonga TC (Alta Loma, CA) will be led by two DyeStatCal preseason first and third team 400m runners, Sa'de Williams and Nicole Stone. Both have PR's of better than 56.10 which is best among the entrants. They finished a close second to perennial powerhouse Wilson (Long Beach, CA) at Simplot in an ultra fast US #3 time of 3:49.45 and will be heavily favored to take the title at NIN.
Hopewell Valley TC (Titusville,) will feature variety of short and mid distance runners that could give great chase. Kecoughtan TC (Hampton, VA) finished 6th at last year's NIC and 5 th at last year's AOC. Bethel finished 3 rd at AOC and will again rely on Francena McCorory and Shakirra Pinnock to do the most damage.
4 x 800m
Kinetic RC (Saratoga Springs, NY) laid claim to the best cross country team ever after dominating the competition last fall, winning the inaugural NTN Cross Country Championship and qualifying four runners to the Foot Locker National Cross Country Finals.
This indoor season they have raced to a US #6 time in the 4 x 800m and will be looking for more in Landover this weekend.
Nicole Blood, Lindsey Ferguson, Caitlin Lane, Karyn Delay and Alysha McElroy give Coaches Art and Linda Kranick ample depth to crush the meet record of 9:11.82 set by Boys and Girls (Brooklyn, NY) in 2001. Boys and Girls' national record of 8:53.67 may be a stretch, but remember that all these girls are underclassmen.
The Blazin Raiders (Roosevelt, Greenbelt, MD) finished 3 rd in the 4 x 800m at last June's AOC. They have three sub 2:20 800m runners in Tameka Jameson, Nyada Pirela, and Tunisha Milner that will give them the strength to contend with Kinetic RC early on and maybe into the final straight away.
1600m Sprint Medley
The Blazin Raiders (Roosevelt, Greenbelt, MD) will come out firing with a strong core of sprinters and mid distance runners. Tameka Jameson, Nyada Pirela will be the long sprint cogs and Marika Walker, Lindsey Jefferson and Bever-Leigh Holloway will be the go-to sprinters.
Hopewell Valley TC comes in with the US #3 time and a 7 th place finish from last year's AOC. James Logan (Union City, CA) finished 3 rd last year at NIC and has run the US #5 time. Ballou HS (Washington, DC) finished 6 th at NIC last year and will have top long sprinter, Andria Smallwood on the squad. 10 th place NIC finisher, St. John's the Baptist rounds out a solid field.
The meet record of 3:59.62 set by Wilson (Long Beach, CA) in 2002 could be challenged.
Kinetic RC (Saratoga Springs, NY) returns to defend their title. They recorded a US #1 time of 12:03.03 without top miler Nicole Blood on Dec. 27 at the Brown Invite. Nicole Blood and Lindsey Ferguson are also on the roster this time as well as three from last year's championship team, Brianne Bellon (400m), Alysha McElroy (800m) and Caitlin Lane (1600m). It remains to be seen exactly what the order will be, but it will certainly be a fast quartet.
The Detroit Cheetah TC (Renaissance, Detroit, MI) will have sub 5 minute miler, Kelly Sampson and US #12 ranked Ramzee Fondren in its camp to stay hot on Kinetic RC's heels. Kinetic RC is able to field a very competitive B team that could reach the podium. Ocean City TC will rely on anchor and top miler, Brittany Sedberry to bring them to a top spot.
The meet record of 11:56.87 set by Rockford, MI in 2003 is most likely to be broken by two teams. The national record of 11:35.43 set by Mountain View (Orem, UT) may just be out of reach this year.
4 x 1 mile
So many relays and so many records to assault. Kinetic RC is saddled with this envious position and luckily they have the elements to take down any record they set their eyes on. Last year's 20:08.72 smashed the previous meet record by an astounding 14 seconds. This year, the same crew returns with the Beamonesque 20 minute barrier within their grasp.
Nicole Blood, Lindsey Ferguson, Caitlin Lane, Karyn Delay and Hannah Davidson give Kinetic the firepower to break the barrier. They also have the depth to field another team that could repeat their 1-2 finish from last year.
A young Mountain Brook TC (Mountain Brook, AL) will toe the line with four freshmen giving a preview of one of the NTN SE's top returning teams next year.
4 x 55 m hurdles
Two of last year's top ten teams return to improve their standing in this riveting race. Hammer TC (South regional, Manahawkin, NJ), 6 th last year and, Hillsborough TC (Hillsborough, NJ), 9 th .
Jackson, NJ comes in as the top seed and will try to go away with top honors.
Five of this year's top six ranked jumpers will be on hand in one of the most hotly contested fields event of the meet. All are so close; anyone could walk away with the title.
US #1 Nicole Smith (McDowell, Erie, PA) has the best mark entering the meet by a quarter inch with her 5-10.50 this indoor season. The multi talented jumper has improved 2.5 inches on her outdoor best and has scaled 5-10 or better on two occasions this season.
Lauren Biscardi (Shoreham-Wading River, Shoreham, NY) came away with the NIC title last year with a 5-08.75 clearance. She also was runner-up at the adidas Outdoor Champs in June. This year she comes in with a best of 5-10.25 and will be eyeing a second consecutive title.
Chelsea Taylor (Colorado Flyers, Denver, CO) finished runner-up at NIC last year with a height of 5-07. Last outdoor season, she scaled 6-0 to claim the second highest jump in the country. This indoor season, she has cleared 5-10.
Raevan Harris (Northridge TC, Tuscaloosa, AL) and Erin Hannon (Bradford Area TC, Bradford, PA) come in having cleared the US #3 height of 5-10.
The meet record is 6-00 by Sheena Gordon (McDowell, Erie, PA). The same school as Nicole Smith. An omen?
Sarah Matthews (Colorado Flyers, Longmont, CO) soared to the 8 th best mark all-time, 20-08.50, February 12 to lead the nation by 3.50 inches.
US # 7 Nicole Smith (McDowell, Erie, PA), US #8 Angela Jenkins (Buffalo Gap TC, Staunton, VA), US #11 Kenyatta Brooks (FL Parishes Youth, Jackson, LA) US #13 Pat Springs (Mount Tabor, Winston Salem, NC) and US #14 Decontee Kaye (James Logan TC, Union City, CA) make this a tough field.
The meet record of 20-06.25 set by Marshevet Hooker (Southwest, San Antonio, TX) could go down if Matthews is on so keep an eye on her. She had a reported 1.5 foul at 21-3.50 which is in the range of the junior record of 21-04 set by Kathy McMillan (Hoke County, Raeford, NC) in 1976; the longest standing LJ record in the books.
The PV is another event which will bring together some of the best in the nation.
Soph Allison Stokke (Newport Harbor, CA) tied the soph outdoor national class record with a 13-04 clearance last week. The frosh record holder at 12-08 will come in as a strong favorite.
Lindsey Regan (Easton Area TC, Easton, PA) will be looking for the NIN title after finishing second here last year. The very consistent performer also earned a 4 th place finish at the adidas Outdoor Championships in June.
This season she has jumped the 13-00 to claim the US #3 spot. That mark is just shy of her PB of 13-02 set last outdoor season.
Jacquelyn Perryman (Phoenix, AZ) enters the meet as the new AZ state indoor record holder, 12-09.5. She placed 4 th at this meet last year.
Two jumpers over 13-00 could certainly push the bar to new record heights. The meet record of 13-01.50 by Samantha Shepard (Weston, MA) in 2002 should fall. Shepard's could also lose her sophomore class record of 13-00.25 and her junior class record of 13-03.50 in one day.
Queen Harrison (Hermitage TC, Richmond, VA) comes in as the top jumper with her US #8 performance of 39-11.75. Nicole Smith (McDowell TC, Erie, PA) is just a few inches behind and could claim another title or at least another top placing. Decontee Kaye (James Logan TC, Union City, CA) and HJ Erin Hannon are a few inches back and could also challenge for a spot at the top.
T & F news #1 ranked thrower of 2004, Michaela Wallerstadt (Burke, Omaha, NE) returns to defend her title. She had one lone loss last year outdoors and claimed all the major titles indoors and out. She leads the nation by 6 inches with her best of 47-04.5.
US #2 Ashley Muffett (North Canton TC, OH) comes in within spitting distance of Wallerstedt which should make for some great competition.
T & F News #5 ranked and last year's runner-up, Kamorean Hayes (Harding, Charlotte, NC), US #3 and frosh Karen Shump (Media Striders, Media, PA) and last year's 15 th placer, Kathy Howard (Lee-Davis TC, Mechanicsville) round out the solid field.
Shump has a chance at the Collinus Newsome's frosh record of 45-07.25 set in 1991. Hayes could have a chance at, Briona Reynolds' (Red River, Grand Forks, ND) soph class record of 47-06
US #1 Tara Cooper (Logan Elm TC, Circleville, OH) owns 4 of the top five marks in the nation. Her best is 53-05 this indoor season.
US #2 Ashley Muffett (North Canton TC, OH) is two feet of that mark with her season best of 51-04.
T &F News' # 2 ranked Hammer Thrower, Emily Sanders owns the 6 th best mark in the nation.
Megan Maloney (LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI) has the US #8 mark.
Also look for Kim Williams (Alexander TC, Douglasville, GA) to be in the hunt. She comes in with a seed mark of 56-01.75.
Philipa Davies (Personal Best TC, Franklin, TN) will try and move one up from her second place finish last year. She scored a 3571 mark behind Gayle Hunter's (Riverside, CA) meet record of 3709 last year. Versatile jumper, Lauren Stewart was just nine points behind Davies and should be neck and neck with her throughout the competition.
Boys Event by Event
by Pete Cava
60 meters: This event promises more fireworks than a Chinese New Year celebration. The top contender, J-Mee Samuels (Mt. Tabor, Winston-Salem, NC), won this year's 60m title at the Simplot Games on Feb. 19 with a time of 6.72, the U.S. prep leader. Samuels, an Arkansas recruit, second in the 2003 NIN 60m.
Nate Yorks ( Littleton , CO ), runnerup to Samuels at Simplot, is a 6.80 performer this year. LSU signee Trindon Holliday (Northeast, Zachary , LA ) ranks right behind Samuels in prep 55m standings. Others to watch are teammates Trenton Guy and Jonathon Hancock (West Charlotte, Charlotte, NC), Darrius Heyward-Bey (McDonough, Owing Mills, MD), plus junior Ahmad Rashad (Carman-Ainsworth, Flint, MI).
200 meters: Another potential barnburner, with J-Mee Samuels (Mt. Tabor, Winston-Salem, NC) and junior Ahmad Rashad (Carman-Ainsworth, Flint, MI) shaping up as the leading players. Samuels won at Simplot in 21.47, while Rashad has a flat-track time of 21.85, tops in the nation this year. Teammates Trenton Guy and Jonathon Hancock (West Charlotte, Charlotte , NC ) will also attempt sprint doubles, while Texas-bound Trevor Gerland (Cinco Ranch, Katy , TX ) and J.T. Scheuerman (Chaparral, Parker, CO) should make things interesting.
400 meters: Texas A&M signee Justin Oliver (Re dan , Stone Mountain , GA ) ran 47.68, the year's fastest prep time, on Simplot's banked-track. Afolabi Aromire (C.H. Flowers, Springdale , MD ) is this year's best high school flat-track performer at 300m (34.35) and 500m (1:03.52). Aromire, nicknamed Fu the Champ, won both events at last month's Maryland 4A meet on this track. Another local favorite, Romaine McKay (Eleanor Roosevelt, Greenbelt , MD ), ranks near the top along with Simplot runnerup J.T. Scheuerman (Chaparral, Parker, CO) and Kentucky Invitational champ Simeon Harris ( Cordova , TN ).
800 meters: Two to watch in this event are E.C. Gibbs ( Cullman , AL ) and Evan Bardach ( Carmel , IN ). Gibbs is the flat-track national leader at 1:53.90 while Bardach ( Carmel , IN ) ran 1:54.07 on an oversized track at the Kentucky Invitational on February 19. A year ago at the NIN, Bardach's dive at the finish gave Carmel a razor-thin victory in the 4x800m relay. Other notables include Rob Novak ( Bordentown , NJ ), Mike Pachella ( Wallkill Valley , Ogdensburg , NJ ), Chris Clymer (North Star, Lincoln , NE ), Luis German ( Southampton , NY ) and junior Bob Hewitt-Gaffney ( Campbell County , Gillette , Wyo. )
Mile: More drama here than a daytime soap opera, with starring roles for Laef Barnes (Mead, Spokane, WA) Andrew Bumbalough (Brentwood, TN, Academy), Cody Harper (Albuquerque, NM, Academy) and Ken Cormier (Douglas, AZ). Barnes has a flat-track season best of 4:12.00, the year's fastest prep time. Harper has a banked-track season-best of 4:15.32. Bumbalough, the 2004 national outdoor prep leader at 2-miles, has 4:13 mile speed. Cormier, who runs at altitude on the USA-Mexico border, is a 4:15.30 performer this year. Although home-schooled, he wears the uniform of Douglas High School .
2-mile: Up for grabs. Daniel LaCava ( Grace Prep Academy , Hurst , TX ) won the Arkansas Invitational title in 9:14.86 back on January 15. Junior Sandy Roberts ( Broughton Raleigh , NC ) has 9:24 speed. Duke recruit Kevin McDermott (Chaminade, Mineola , NY ) could surprise. Ken Cormier ( Douglas , AZ ) is entered, but may scratch down to one event.
60 meter hurdles: A solid field that includes two national leaders, Jared Huske ( Highland Park , Topeka , KS ) and Myles Bradley ( Norwich , CT ). Huske, an Oregon recruit, is the No. 1 prep 60m hurdler at 7.86. The Stanford-bound Bradley leads the 55m hurdles high school list with a 7.26 performance. Texas-bound Trevor Gerland (Cinco Ranch, Katy , TX ) checks in with a time of 7.92, second only to Huske on the prep 60mH charts. Sophomore Johnny Dutch ( Clayton , NC ) has a time of 7.40 for the 55mH No. 2 on the season and B.J. Revis (Freeman, Richmond , NC ) has the No. 4 clocking at 7.45.
Future UCLA Bruin Kevin Craddock (Logan, Union City , CA ), the nation's premier high school 110m hurdler, is making a rare indoor appearance. Two other outdoor standouts, Simeon Harris ( Cordova , TN ) and Florida recruit Dennis Martin ( Anderson , SC ), could challenge.
Mile walk: Christopher Diaz ( McAllen , TX ), the 2004 runnerup in this event, comes in with the best time in the nation at 6:59.8. The Vergaras, Roberto and Ricardo ( Edinburg , TX ), finished fifth and sixth last year. They should push Diaz, their club teammate. Michael Kazmierczak ( Plainview , NY ) comes to Landover with a 2005 best of 7:03.84.
4x200m relay: Montbello ( Denver , CO ) won at Simplot with a time of 1:28.72, but faces stiff competition from Bowie ( Md. ), Cinco Ranch ( Katy , TX ) and West Charlotte ( Charlotte , NC ).
4x400m relay: Winslow Township ( Atco , NJ ) won this event a year ago, but a repeat could be difficult. Last year's runnerup, Eleanor Roosevelt ( Greenbelt , MD ), has a 3:21.02 clocking this season. They'll compete here as the Blazin' Raiders. Camden (NJ) checks in with a 2005 best of 3:21.35.
4x800 relay: Coach Bart Sessa's Syosset (NY) squad is a prevailing favorite after a record-breaking 7:42.22 performance at the Armory Collegiate Invitational in New York on February 5. The Syosset foursome of Adam Lampert (1:58.4), Chris Howell (1:54.6), Sean Tully (1:52.1) and Dan Tully (1:57.1) zapped the five-year old U.S. prep indoor standard of 7:42.67 by York High School ( Elmhurst , IL ).
4xMile relay: Predictions don't come easy in this seldom-seen event. Top candidates appear to be the Kinetic Running Club, Cedar Cliff Track Club, Jackalope RC and Archbishop Carroll ( Radnor , PA ).
1600 sprint medley relay: Another tough race to forecast, with Cinco Ranch ( Katy , TX ), Archbishop Carroll ( Washington , DC ), the Blazin' Raiders (Eleanor Roosevelt, Greenbelt , MD ) and Mountain Brook (AL) Track Club among the leading contenders. Distance medley relay: Too close to call. Leading entries are the Herndon (VA) Track Club, last year's runnerup, Mountain Brook (AL) Track Club, J.R. Tucker TC, Carmel (IN) TC and Syosset (NY).
4x55 meter shuttle hurdles: Contested about as often as the Boston Red Sox win pennants, the shuttle hurdles is always an exciting event. This year's leading candidate appears to be last year's second-place team, Winslow Township ( Atco , NJ ).
High jump: Scott Sellers (Cinco Ranch, Katy , TX ) comes here looking to repeat. Sellers, who will enter Kansas State this fall, has dominated the prep scene this season with four jumps over seven feet. His best performance, 7-5, is just a quarter-inch below the national record he set at the 2004 NIN. Sellers is up against one other seven-footer, Ryan Fritz (Octarora, Altglen , PA ), who cleared 7-0 ¼ this year. Rounding out an excellent field are 2004 runnerup Juan Cave ( St. Joseph 's, Philadelphia , PA ), a 6-10 ½ performer this year, along with Demarcus Stalling (North Rowan, Spencer , NC ), Christopher Faison, (Lahser, Bloomfield Hills , MI ) and Andrew Dodson ( Frankenmuth , MI ). A year ago at this meet, Fritz, Faison and Stallings took the fifth, sixth and seventh spots. They've all cleared 6-10 this year.
Long jump: This shapes up as a spirited event with Dennis Boone (Thomas Dale, Chester , VA ), the national leader at 24-9 ¾, leading the way. Myles Bradley ( Norwich , CT ) is right behind him at 24-2 ½. Brandon Cathcart ( Salisbury , NC ) and future Texas Longhorn Trevor Gerland (Cinco Ranch, Katy , TX ) were over 24-feet last outdoor season. Texas A&M recruit Justin Oliver (Re dan , Stone Mountain , GA ) isn't far behind with a 2005 indoor best of 23-10 ¾. Some interesting doublers: Bradley in the 60m hurdles, Oliver in the 400 and Gerland in the 200.
Triple jump: Simplot winner Nkosinza Balumbu ( Logan , Union City , CA ), the U.S. high school leader at 49-3 ½, tops an excellent field that includes five others with marks over 48-feet. Gary Jones (Webster-Schroeder, Webster , NY ), a junior, has jumped 48-4 ½ in 2005 and Brandon Cathcart ( Salisbury , NC ) checks in at 48-0 ½. Daniel Joseph (Northwest Cabarrus, Concord , NC ) and Larry Jackson, (North Rowan, Spencer , NC ) were outdoor 48-footers in 2004.
Pole vault: Three of the five preps over 16-feet this year are entered, all of them underclassmen. Junior Jordan Scott ( Oconee County , Watkinsville , GA ), the national high school leader, cleared 16-4 last month at the Volunteer Invitational in Knoxville . Junior Michael Morrison (Great Bridge, South Chesapeake, VA), who tied for sixth in this meet in 2004, is a 16-2 vaulter this year, while sophomore Spencer McCorkel (Bryant, AR) has a best of 16-1.
Shot put: Arizona State recruit Ryan Whiting has been ruling the shot this season the way Papa Doc Duvalier used to run Haiti . Whiting (Central Dauphin, Harrisburg , Pa. ) is the national high school leader at 68-11 ½ and could move into the 70-foot stratosphere in Landover. Whiting was fourth at NIN in 2004. He's a prohibitive favorite this time around, even in a solid field that includes John Hickey (Tappan Zee, Piermont, NY), junior Eric Flores (Custer, SD) and Nick Panezich (Springfield, New Middleton, OH), who hold down second through fourth place on the current U.S. prep chart. Hickey placed eighth at NIN a year ago. Virginia signee Rob Rankin ( Upper St. Clair , PA ) should be near the top.
Weight throw: More strength in this event than a moon-sized Tylenol. Sophomore Walter Henning (St. Anthony's South Huntington, NY) has the nation's best prep mark this season, 75-0 ½, followed by Matthew Maloney (LaSalle, Providence, RI) at 74-6. Alex Pessala (Chaminade, Mineola , NY ), John Freeman (Bishop Hendricken, Warwick , RI ) and Brandon Lodge (Bishop Hendricken, Warwick , RI ) hold down third through fifth place on the current high school list. For good measure, throw in sophomore Trevor Kreychir (Bishop Amat, La Puente , CA ) and Dominick Gonzalez (Monroe-Woodbury, Central Valley , NY ). A year ago, Freeman was second here while Lodge placed fourth, Maloney took fifth and Gonzalez was eighth.
Pentathlon: Heading this event are a pair of returnees. Daniel Kinsey (Beaver, Lisbon , OH ) was fifth in 2004 while Tim Wunderlich (North Carr, Hampstead, MD) placed eighth. Last year Kinsey and Wunderlich were two of the nation's top underclassmen in the decathlon.