Local track and field stars to go up against nation's best

Posted: June 15, 2007

Methacton's Ryann Krais will find out whether she's actually the nation's top 400-meter hurdler among high school girls.

Delsea's Aaron Younger will get another opportunity to defeat Lakewood's Emanuel Mayers in the boys' intermediate hurdles. Eastern's English Gardner (girls' 100) and Cheltenham's Brandon Bing (boys' 200 and 400) will see where they rank among the nation's elite. And Penncrest's Karen Shump (shot put) will compete for a national title.

Those six area standouts are among about 60 athletes from Southeastern Pennsylvania and South Jersey competing in the Nike Outdoor Nationals. The three-day track and field meet started last night at North Carolina A&T University. It will conclude tomorrow.

Last night's only events were the boys' and girls' 5,000-meter runs. The meet resumes today at 1 p.m.

The girls' shot put is one of today's much-anticipated events involving area participants. Shump took second at the Nike Indoor Nationals in March. The junior is the nation's fourth-ranked shot-putter with a season best of 49 feet, 03/4 inches.

As Shump looks to walk away with a medal, Krais hopes to win tomorrow's 400 hurdles race.

The Warriors star, who just finished her junior year, is the No. 1 seed and has the fastest time in the nation this season at 58.93 seconds.

Shortly after that race, Younger will get another shot at the runner who denied him titles at the NJSIAA Group 3 state championships and the Meet of Champions. Younger finished second to Mayers in the 400 hurdles at both meets earlier this month.

Mayers is ranked second nationally at 51.98 seconds; Younger is ranked third at 52.66.

Gardner does not have lofty expectations for this weekend's competition. The freshman just wants to improve on her Meet of Champions winning time of 11.62 seconds in the 100.

The Rutgers-bound Bing will look to run faster than his first-place times at the PIAA Class AAA state championships. He won the 200 meters in 21.33 seconds and the 400 in 46.84.

Contact staff writer Keith Pompey

at 610-313-8029 or kpompey@phillynews.com.

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