The state high school group track and field championships begin today with New Jersey's top performers competing not only for titles but also for berths in next week's season-ending Meet of Champions.
Here are some of the local contenders (listed alphabetically):
Christin Bettis, Hammonton: She won her first sectional title last weekend in the 3,200-meter race at the South Jersey Group III meet.
Darnell Charles, Oakcrest: The senior likely will score points in each of his three individual events: the 100, 200 and the triple jump.
Isaac Clark, Pleasantville: The junior won the 400 dash at the South Jersey Group II meet and is the second seed in both the 400 and the 800.
Jacob Clark, Pleasantville: Clark won the 800 in a meet record 1 minute, 53.12 seconds last week. He also won the 1,600 and is the top seed in Group II for both events. He and Isaac are twins.
Braheme Days Jr., Bridgeton: Days easily won South Jersey titles in the shot put and discus and is a heavy favorite in both events at the state Group II level.
Syid Evans-White, Oakcrest: He is the top seed in the Group III 110 hurdles.
Curtis Fitzpatrick, Egg Harbor Township: The senior sprinter is the second seed in the 100 and 200. He also has a chance to qualify for the MOC in the shot put.
Emily Higbee, Holy Spirit: A throw of 123 feet, 10 inches in the South Jersey Non-Public A javelin earned Higbee the top seed in the state meet.
Maria Jimenez, Vineland: Jimenez set a state record in the javelin (160-8) at the Cape-Atlantic League championship. She won the South Jersey Group IV javelin last weekend and is looking for her first state championship.
Helena Leyrer, Buena Regional: Favored to win both the 100 hurdles and 400 hurdles for the second year in a row. The senior could also qualify for the MOC in the 400.
Tracey Masterson, Mainland Regional: She vaulted 11 feet to win the South Jersey pole vault last weekend.
Reggie Morton, Oakcrest: Morton won the long jump at last week's sectional Group III meet. He is seeded second in the 100 and third in the 200.
Dana Ohlson, Southern Regional: Ohlson was the only multiple-event winner for the Rams at the South Jersey Group IV meet. She won the long jump and high jump.
Fabian Santiago, Oakcrest: Santiago won the 100 (10.54) and 200 (21.0) each in personal-best times. The senior has potential to break meet records in each event.
Chelsea Vaughan, Southern Regional: The senior pole vaulter is the top seed in the event. Vaughan cleared 12-3 at the South Jersey Group IV meet.
Carl Watson, St. Joseph: Watson won the South Jersey Non-Public B 400 and is the top seed. He earned the No. 3 seed in the 100 and 200.
Yvonne Wolef, Middle Township: Despite a knee injury, the senior won the long jump (18-1) in the South Jersey Group II sectional meet and is the top seed in the state meet.
Brianna Young, Barnegat: The defending state Group II champion in the discus won the sectional discus last week with a 131-6 throw. She hopes to throw around 136 feet this time around.
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