UC Girls And Elizabeth Boys Win Union County Relay Titles


The Elizabeth boys edged Union Catholic in dramatic fashion to capture its first title since 2017, and the Union Catholic girls continued their incredible streak by winning the championship for the eighth time in a row at Saturday's Union County Relays at the Jersey City Armory. 

And the Scotch Plains-Fanwood girls and Union Catholic boys each smashed meet records by running NJ No. 1 times.

The boys team title wasn't decided until the final event.

Elizabeth was clinging to a two-point lead over Union Catholic heading into the meet-concluding 4x400 when the Minutemen clinched the title by crossing the line first in 3:32. 34 to finish on top of the team standings with 68 points. Union Catholic was second in the 4x400 in 3:33.78 and finished second in the team score with 64.    

On the girls side, Union Catholic left no doubt about its superiority as the Vikings won five events and rolled to a 74-46 victory over runner-up Rahway. 

The well-balanced attack by Elizabeth featured strong performances from several athletes.

Greg McQueen, Zyeim Lawrence, and Wendell Cadet all ran on four relays for Elizabeth, including the title-clinching 4x400. McQueen anchored the winning 4x200 with a 22.1 split, and Lawrence put an exclamation point on the team title by brining home the 4x400 with a 51.6 carry.

Lucas Reguinho also came up huge for the Minutemen with a great distance triple. Requinho anchored Elizabeth's winning 4x800 with a 2:02 carry, ran 2:03 on the SMR that placed second, and anchored the runner-up DMR with a 4:28 split. 

Elizabeth, which placed third or better in all eight events, also finished second in the shuttle hurdles, second in the high jump, and third in the shot put.

In the girls competition, Union Catholic won the DMR (12:48.39), the shuttle hurdles in a NJ#1 34.09,  the 4x800 in 10:18.92, the sprint medley in a NJ#2 4:21.03, and the shot put.

Junior Kaleigh Gunsiorowski ran on two winning relays for UC, and Jada Mia Puryear, the state's No. 1 ranked shot putter, had the top throw of the meet (38-7 1/2) to lead UC to victory in the shot.

Gunsiorowski split 2:26 on the SMR and led off the DMR with a 3:48.3 carry. Also for the Vikings, junior Maameyaa Nyinah ran 60.4 on the SMR and split 26.9 on the runner-up 4x200, Asydiah Pray-Brown split 2:24.3 on the DMR, and 61.5 for the runner-up 4x400 squad, Jenna Keith ran 2:26.8 in the 4x800 and 62.5 in the 4x400, and sophomore Leilani Gibson also ran on the 4x400 and 4x800. 

UC's winning shuttle hurdle team consisted of Taylor Cox, Ajanae Thompson, McKenzie Johnson, and Alexandra Bonn.

The Scotch Plains-Fanwood girls, who won the 4x400 at the Meet of Champions last spring, broke the meet record in the 4x400 and also captured the 4x200.

In the 4x400 for SPF, sophomore Keira Kelly (68.8), senior Grace Kennedy (59.0), junior Jenai Berry (58.7), and senior Julia Jackson (59.1) combined to run a NJ No. 1 time of 4:05.42, which broke the meet record of 4:05.67 set in 2018 by Union Catholic. The same foursome teamed up for SPF to win the 4x200 in a NJ No. 3 1:48.06.

This was the first meet of the season for the Duke-bound Jackson, the Meet of Champions winner in the 400 last spring. 

In other highlights, Harvard-bound Shane Brosnan, coming off an All-American XC season, made a sensational season debut by splitting 3:10.6 on Union Catholic's meet record-breaking boys DMR that ran a NJ No. 1/US No. 2  10:42.22, and he came back to split 1:57.6 as the anchor on the runner-up 4x800.

UC's Nick Givan led off the winning shuttle hurdles (32.31) with a 7.2, led off the runner-up 4x200 with a 23.1, ran 51.7 on the runner-up 4x400, and cleared a meet-best 5-10 to lead UC to victory in the high jump. Myles Plummer ran 1:57.9 on the runner-up SMR, and 51.6 in the 4x400 for UC. Sophomore Jimmy Wischusen anchored the DMR with a 4:29.6 for UC, and ran a 2:00.0 leg on the 4x800. 

In the boys shot put, junior Quamir Brown unloaded the top throw of the meet with a personal best 46-9 to lead the Union to a first-place finish.

Senior Alivia Peterson and sophomore Asia Howard each cleared a personal best 4-8 as they combined to give the Rahway girls a first-place finish in the high jump.