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National record set at Griffin Classic

June 12, 2011|By ANDREW MASON | andrewm@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN — All in all, the second annual Jack Griffin Mid-Atlantic Prep Track & Field Classic this weekend at North Hagerstown was a success, said Wayne Kretzer Jr., the director of the three-day meet.

“We had about 130 athletes here. We would have liked to have had a few more, but I’m happy,” he said. “We had a lot of good performances, and we had a lot of people who said they liked the facility and that they’re coming back. We want the meet to grow into a regional championship.”

The meet began Friday night and ended Sunday afternoon.

The weekend’s top performance came in the boys 5,000-meter run Friday. Michael Wegner, 14, of Columbia, Md., who just completed the eighth grade, won the race in 15 minutes, 17.9 seconds, shattering the United States age-14 record in the event by 29 seconds.

“It’s verified,” Kretzer said. “It’s been confirmed that he will be the national record holder.”

Wegner, who will be a freshman this fall at Loyola Blakefield in Towson, Md., won Friday’s race by more than a minute.

“It was pretty incredible,” Kretzer said. “He’s got some good things coming to him in the future if he continues to work hard.”

Saturday’s 800-meter runs also were fast. Maria Seykora, of Pennsylvania, won the girls race in 2:14.91, and Carlton Sheppard, of Baltimore, was the boys champ in 1:55.41.

On Sunday, Jonathan Russell, of Virginia, impressively won the boys 400 in 48.53.

A few local high school standouts also captured titles.

For Boonsboro, J.R. Lowery prevailed in the boys shot put (52 feet, 8 inches) Sunday after winning the discus (135-6) Saturday, and Maggie Sullivan won the girls 100 hurdles (15.77) Saturday.

“It was a nice warmup meet to do before nationals. It was good practice,” said Lowery, who will compete in the shot put next weekend at New Balance Nationals in North Carolina. “I’d really like to break my school record (56-1 1/2 from earlier in the spring).”

Also, Jefferson High School’s Dante Price won the boys 100 (11.11) and 200 (22.67) Saturday, and Mercersburg Academy’s Sarah Firestone won the girls javelin (129-4) Saturday.

“We had six states and D.C. represented, so it’s nice to have some local champions,” Kretzer said.

Boonsboro’s Sarah Zielinski had a pair of runner-up finishes — in the girls 5,000 (19:26.0) Friday and 2-mile (12:03.26) Saturday — and Faith Christian’s Nicole Deneseus was second in the girls high jump (5-2) Sunday.

The “Fastest Kid in Hagerstown” 100-meter dash, which was open to all Washington County students in grades first through eighth, was held Friday. Isaac House, of Hagerstown, was the fastest boy in 12.7 seconds, and Celina Merchant, of Hancock, was the fastest girl in 13.9.

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