Malachi James Sets State Record, Leads Elite Marks at NJ MOC (2024)

Malachi James Sets State Record, Leads Elite Marks at NJ MOC (1)

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The great ones always back up what they say and level up when it matters most.

Malachi James did exactly that when he solidified his place as a New Jersey legend by smashing the state 100-meter dash wind-legal record and finishing offan electrifying sprint double by winning the 200 to lead a flurry of jaw-dropping performances at Wednesday's 55th NJSIAA Meet of Champions at Pennsauken High School.

James, a senior at Burlington City, left a lot of smoke on the track when he sent the huge and energetic crowd into a frenzy when he stopped the clock at 10.28 (wind legal 0.3) to shatter the 100 dash wind-legal state record and meet record of 10.35 that Jamar Ervin of Camden ran at the 2000 Meet of Champions at South Brunswick.

Two weeks ago on the same track, James ran a 10.18 to win the South Jersey, Group 1 100 dash, the fastest all-conditions time in NJ history. But since there was no wind gauge, the 10.18 couldn't be listed as the state wind-legal record.

But James guaranteed that he'd get the state record on Wednesday if the wind cooperated. He backed up his words as usual!!

James, who missed the Meet of Champions with a hamstring injury last year after winning the 100 and 200 as a sophom*ore, came back later to reclaim his half-lap crown by running a wind-legal 21.08 (-0.1), the fourth fastest wind legal auto time in NJ history.

James, who will play football and run track at Syracuse, finished his sensational high school career with six M of C titles. He also won the 55 and the 200 at the Indoor M of C in March.

This meet had at all!!!

There were six meets records broken!!

The boys 1,600 was a race for the ages!

Natalie Dumas produced a mind-boggling triple?

Sianni Wynn burned a hot sprint double?

And there were some historic field event marks!

Malachi James Sets State Record, Leads Elite Marks at NJ MOC (2)

EPIC 1,600

Luke Pash of Ridgewood and Peyton Shute of Woodbury waged the greatest 1,600 in state history as both runners went way under the meet record and moved way up on the state's all-time list.

After Shute hit 400 in 60.66 and 800 in 2:01.83,Pash jumped to the front with 500 to go and held off Shute with a 61.36 final 400, freezing the numbers in the clock at 4:04.49, the fastest time ever by a NJ runner in a 1,600 race!!! The Cornell-bound Shute was second in 4:05.26 as both ran well under the meet record of 4:07.31 set in 2011 by Chris Marco of Toms River South.

The 4:04.49 by Pash, a junior, converts to 4:05.91 for the mile, whichplaces him No. 6 in NJ history on the all-time mile/converted 1,600 list. Shute's 4:05.27 placed him No. 9 in NJ history on the converted list.

The state record, which Pash seems very capable of challenging, is 3:59.8 by Marty Liquori of Essex Catholic in 1967, which is the only sub 4 ever run by a NJ high school runner.

Malachi James Sets State Record, Leads Elite Marks at NJ MOC (3)


Sianni Wynn thought about defending her 400 title, but the sophom*ore at Pennsauken changed her mind because she wanted to challenge the state's fastest 100 and 200 sprinter instead, Naylah Jones of Timber Creek.

Wynn, who has never lost a race at the Meet of Champions, kept that undefeated streak alive when she simply overpowered the fields to win the 100 in a wind-legal (1.3) and meet record 11.36, No. 4 in state history,and the 200 in a wind-aided 23.29 (2.1 wind), which is No. 4 in state history in all conditions.

Jones, the defending champion in the 100 who came into the meet with times of 11.23 in the 100, No. 2 in state history, and 23.29 in the 200, was second in the 100 in 11.39 and didn't run the 200.

Wynn, who broke the 100 meet record of 11.47 set in 2011 by Myasia Jacobs of Paramus Catholic, is now a perfect 7-0 at the Meet of Champions. In addition to her two titles on Wednesday, Wynn won the 400 last year and she pulled the 55/200 double at the Indoor Meet of Champions the last two years.


Layla Giordano of Old Tappan and Liam Paneque of Demarest led a barrage of remarkable marks in the field.

The Princeton-bound Giordano, the reigning New Balance National champion in the discus, won her second straight discus title with a meet record throw of 171-7, and Liam Paneque of Demarest soared 25-2, No. 4 in NJ history, to break the meet and Bergen County record.

Giordano's 171-7, just off her NJ No. 2 all-time 172-2, broke the meet record of 168-1 that was set by Alyssa Wilson of Donovan Catholic in 2017. Wilson's owns the state record of 182-1.

Paneque, a junior, soared to a huge PR of 25-2 (wind-legal 1.0) in the long jump to break the 29-year-old meet record of 25-0 that William Spearman of Camden Wilson set in 1995. Paneque broke the Bergen County of 25-0.50 set in 2010 by Corey Crawford of Indian Hills.

. Malachi James Sets State Record, Leads Elite Marks at NJ MOC (4)


Nalalie Dumas of Eastern, who said she was inspired to win a Meet of Champions title after her sister Kadence won the 800 last year, added to her great family legacy with a stunning triple gold performance.

Dumas, a sophom*ore, won the 400 hurdles in 58.98, No. 7 in NJ history, then a couple hours later she won the 400 in a school record 53.16, also No. 7 in state history, and capped off her trifecta by splitting 52.57 on her anchor carry when she rallied Eastern to victory in the 4x400 in 3:49.01. ]


Jessica Oji of Livingston continued her amazing comeback season and Josh Huisman of St. Rose continued his Meet of Champions dominance in the circle as both athletes won shot put titles.

Oji, who won the Indoor M of C shot put crown as a sophom*ore last year, won her first outdoor title with a throw of 48-3.50. Oji has made a remarkable comeback after missing her whole outdoor season last year with a torn ACL. Layla Giordano, the discus champ, was second with a 46-4.75. This marked just the second time in meet history that two 50 footers clashed. Oji has PR of 51-10 and Giordano has thrown 50-0.

In the boys competition, the Michigan-bound Huisman came up with a clutch 67-3.75 on his next to last throw to win his second straight boys title and fourth overall (he won two indoors). Bergen Catholic junior Benji Shue, the state leader, placed second with a throw of 65-10.50


The Toms River North came to make a big statement, and they were heard loud and clear when the won the 4x400 in a 3:14.61, the No. 1 time in the state, and finished first in the 4x100 in 41.70, No. 2 in NJ this season. The 41.70 and 3:14.61 also broke the Shore Conference records.


Benji Shue of Bergen Catholic, second in the discus las year, won his first M of C title by unloading his best discus threw ever, sending the saucer 205-4 to move up to No. 5 in state history.Shue, a junior who is committed to the University of Texas, also had a 204-5 in his series and he finished second in the shot put with a 65-10.50.


Juniors Nick Vannatta of Pope John and Isabella Frattura of Spartawon the javelin titles.

Vannatta, who only started throwing the javelin last month after a fractured toe kept him from sprinting, unloaded a huge PR of 201-11, to win the boys title. It was just the third time Vannatta, a junior, has competed in a meet in the javelin.

Meanwhile, Frattura hit139-3 to edge Eastern senior Zoe Goldberg, second with a 137-10.


For the first time in meet history, two vaulters cleared 16-0.

Oakcrest senior Ryan Merlino and West Morris junior Cade Zeolla each made 16-0 with Merlino winning on misses. Merlino made 15-0 on his first attempt and Zeolla cleared 15-0 on his third try. Merlino and Zeolla are now tied with several others for third in meet history.


Emma Zawatski of Freehold Township earned her 5th Meet of Champions title by recapturing her crown in the girls 1,600 in4:50.15.

The Colorado-bound Zawatski ran 2:17.63 for her last 800 and cranked out a 66.04 to secure the victory.

Zawatski, who won two Meet of Champions in XC, one indoors in the 1,600, and now two outdoors, tiedOlympian Pam Dukes for the school record with 5 M of C victories. .


The Timber Creek girls broke the relay meet record, running 46.23. to break the time of 46.84 set in 2014 by Piscataway.

Moorestown had a pair of winners. Rece Englehart jumped 47-2.50 to win the boys triple jump, and junior Hannah Byrd-Leitner cleared 13-2, a State Junior Class Record and No. 3 in state history, to win the girls pole vault.

Yashahya Brown of Washington, the state leader in the boys 110 hurdles with a 13.43 (No. 3 in NJ history), won the high hurdles in a wind-legal 13.56. His 13.53 in the trials is No. 2 in meet history among wind legal times.

Abby Dennis of Old Tappan won the girls 100 hurdles for the second straight year by running 14.14.

Raynier Galvez of Passaic Tech and Jaden Marchan of Leonia became the first champs from their schools.

Galvez edged Jack Falkowski of CBA, 1:51.63 to 1:51.65 to win the 800. Marchan, who is headed to Georgetown, won the 400 in 46.93.

Addison Inge, a junior at Williamstown who battled back this season after a ton ACL,, pulled off a big upset when she won the high jump at misses at 5-6.

Jimmy Wischusen of Union Catholic andRosemary Shay of Middletown South, who have both won Indoor M of C title in the 3,200, used their superior kicks in he 3,200 to win their first outdoor titles.

The Virginia bound Wischusen, the 2023 Indoor M of C 3,200 winner, used a 61.73 last last to secure the win in the boys 3,200 in 9:06.57.

Shay, who is headed to Villanova, closed in 67.7 to rally for the win in the girls 3,200 with a time of 10:32.98. Shay also won the 3,200 at the M of C this past indoor season.

Rahway had two winners,Saniyah Evans and Rolando Simpson.

Evans, a senior, won her second straight long jump title with a mark of 19-2.50, and Simpson made 6-8 to capture the boys high jump.

Freshman Reagan Moore of Oak Knoll joined the sub 2:10 club by winning the girls 800 in 2:09.4

Jason Meza of Morristown, second in the flat 400 as a sophom*ore in the 2022 and sixth last year in the 400 IH, won his first M of C title when he ran 52.50 to win the boys 400 hurdles.

In the 4x800's Hillsborough smashed its school record for the second time in less than a week when the girls finished first in 9:15.15, just edging Ocean City, second in 9:15.51. Demarest, who didn't break 8:00 until last week, ran 7:51.08 to win the boys 4x800 by two-plus seconds over runner-up?

Ma'Syiah Brawner of Winslow soared 40-5.75 to win the triple jump.

Malachi James Sets State Record, Leads Elite Marks at NJ MOC (2024)


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