This weekend saw some of the best weather of the season so far, and just in time for the first major Invitationals of the year. The New York Relays boasted some serious matchups, and some strong season openers. One of the biggest names to attend the event was Miles Green (Saint Joseph Prep, PA), who is one of the Nation's top returners for the 400m Hurdles. Green would indeed go on to win the event in a strong 52.81, but what came next was a little more unexpected.
Newburgh's Ryler Gould was keeping pace on the outside lane, finishing just a few steps behind the National standout. The sophomore crossed the line in 53.63, a significant personal best, and well within the company of the PA State Champ. While Gould had been respectable as a freshman, hitting 55.29 at his League Championship last Spring, this new breakthrough puts him in rare company. Demonstrating their depth, Newburgh put another on the podium as well, teammate Ricardo Singh finished in a best of his own, with a 56.68.
The Sophomore State Record stands at 53.13, held by none other than the overall State Record Holder Rai Benjamin (Mount Vernon). If the early season mark is any indication, Gould is ready to challenge that. Benjamin actually has a superior time from his Sophomore year, albeit with a caveat. He ran 52.36 in the IAAF World Youth Champs, however the Youth Height of the hurdles is lower than the NFHS standard used for record purposes. Benjamin would go on to run 49.97 to close out his HS career, and has since improved even more in the NCAA.
400 Meter Hurdles ================= Fr: 52.61 Ronaldo Griffiths (Clara Barton) 2014 So: 53.13 Rai Benjamin (Mount Vernon) 2013 Jr: 51.5 Brian Conolly (Northport) 1981 51.71 Greg Hines (Walt Whitman,Huntington Station) 1993 Sr: 49.97 Rai Benjamin (Mount Vernon) 2015