GREENSBORO, N.C. — Despite all of Sean McGorty’s accomplishments at Chantilly, a national championship that truly would ensconce him as one of America’s elite distance runners remained beyond his grasp.
He left no doubt after Saturday’s dominant effort at the New Balance Outdoor National Championships, running the two-mile event in 8 minutes, 45.61 seconds to set a new state record.
“It feels amazing,” McGorty said. “It feels like it brings everything together, and I’m so blessed to have all the support from my team. My coaches worked with me over the past four years, and everything got to come together.”
He led wire-to-wire, taking charge early and running the other national elites off his tail en route to claiming the championship by nearly seven seconds over runner-up James Randon of Connecticut (8:52.56).
“I wanted to run my race from the start and keep pushing from a strong tempo,” McGorty said. “I was able to break everyone else and finish strong. That was the plan, and I was very happy with how I was able to execute it.”
McGorty finished second in the same event at the New Balance indoors in March in 9:02.02 and had come up just short in cross country. He cruised to the 3,200-meter AAA Virginia title June 1 with a run of 8:58.02, but he wanted to leave his mark nationally.
Chantilly also had success in the 1,600-meter sprint medley relay. Its team of Justin West, Andris Sturans, Johanan Sowah and Logan Miller ran a 3:29.38 to take fifth place overall and earn All-America status. McGorty, who had helped the team qualify, did not run as he had the two-mile coming up later in the evening, but they managed nearly as fast a showing without the Stanford-bound star.
“The fact that we ran essentially the same time without Sean, we’re pleased with it,” Chantilly coach Matt Gilchrist said.
The McDonogh girls 1,600 sprint medley relay team (4:04.22) placed third to earn All-American honors.
Forest Park’s Mustaqeem Williams, fresh off his brilliant showing with three individual titles at the AAA Virginia state championships to lead the Bruins to the team title, placed fourth in the 100-meter dash (10.69).
In Friday’s action, Megan Wilson (Sidwell Friends) won the emerging elite 1-mile run (4:56.49), and the Osbourn Park 4x100 squad of Jordan Banks, Kiana Hairston, Natalie Dent and Alexys Taylor (47.17) also took first place in the emerging elite division. Also, Oakdale’s Jackie McNulty won Friday’s emerging elite pole vault (12-2.75), and T.C. Williams’ Josephus Lyles finished second in the the freshman 400-meter dash (48.73).