Drew Hunter h as dominated high school competition f or so long that heading into Saturday’s Camel City Elite race against a field of collegians and professionals, the Loudoun Valley senior didn’t know what to expect.
But with the perfect combination of a fast pace and runners in front to keep him pushing, Hunter ran the fastest 3,000-meter race for a high school athlete in American history, setting the national record at 7 minutes 59.33 seconds at the JDL Fast Track in Winston-Salem, N.C.
“It’s actually a lot easier running with a pacer that’s going faster than I would by myself,” said Hunter. “I’m a competitive person and when there are people around me, I tend to run faster.”
He shattered the previous mark set in 2013 by Edward Cheserek (St. Benedict’s, N.J.) by more than five seconds and obliterated his personal top time in the event by more than 16.
Hunter, who is committed to run at Oregon, finished fifth in the race.
The sub-eight minute time qualifies him for the USA Track and Field Indoor Championships in March.
Heritage’s Kelati competed in the women’s 3,000 and finished seventh in 9:19.99, the fourth-fastest American high school mark on a 200-meter track.
Murphy, a junior from Lake Braddock who won a national title last June in the 1,500 at the National Junior Outdoor Track and Field Championships, ran in the women’s mile and finished eighth in 4:43.87.
That set a Virginia indoor high school mark.
At roughly the same time and 130 miles north, plenty of records were being broken at the Virginia Tech Invitational.
Noah and Josephus Lyles led the T.C. Williams 4x200 relay team to a 1:27.29 finish, which set a meet record. It was also the fastest time in America this year and the No. 2 time in Virginia history.
“We were really, really excited going in,” Noah Lyles said. “We had no idea how the race was going to go. Handoffs were a little iffy, but we were running for our lives.”
Senior Tre’kel Lockett and sophomore Kai Cole ran the first and third legs, respectively, and when Cole handed the baton to Josephus Lyles to start the final stretch, the two-time 400-meter outdoor national champion had to make up ground.
The 6-foot-2 senior blasted the final 200 meters, caught Archbishop Carroll and put the Titans out front for good.
Later in the meet, Noah Lyles edged out his brother in the 300 and won in 33.18 seconds, good for the third-best American high school mark all time. . . .
Chantilly junior Brandon McGorty raced unattached in the 800 at the Patriot Games at George Mason against collegians and professionals.
McGorty finished in 1:51.95, winning the race and setting the U.S. No. 1 mark for this year in the process.