A clash between New Jersey titans Ridge and Union Catholic produced the greatest DMR battle in U.S. high school indoor history at the New Balance National Championships on Friday night at the Armory in New York.
Union Catholic held the lead after the first two legs, but Ridge took the lead on the 800 leg, and then Georgetown-bound Jackson Barna dropped a 4:03.71 anchor leg and held off UC's Shane Brosnan to bring Ridge across the line first in a national record 9:53.40! Union Catholic was second in 9:55.12, No. 3 in U.S. high school indoor history .
Ridge broke the national mark of 9:54.41 that was set in 2019 when Loudoun Valley of Virginia won the New Balance National title.
The race started out with Union Catholic grabbing the lead when Myles Plummer went out aggressively. Plummer stayed in front for all six laps, handing off with a step lead over Ridge after a 3:03.01 1,200 leg. Nick Givan increased UC's lead to 3.2 seconds over Ridge with a 48.51 400 carry.
Then Ridge senior James Kisker reeled in Caudell Cajuste on the 800 leg when he split 1:54.96. Kisker handed the baton to Barna with about a seven meter lead on the Harvard-bound Brosnan. Brosnan, who split 4:04.62, eventually got on Barna's heels. But Barna kept hammering the pace, and with about 100 meters left, he finally started to open up the lead just enough to secure the victory and the national record in this instant classic!!!