W. Deptford's Kirschling breaks high-jump mark

Posted: June 03, 2012

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, N.J. - When Megan Kirschling soared over the high-jump bar at 5 feet, 101/2 inches, she didn't just break her own personal record. She also made state history.

The mark broke the Group 2 record first set in 1998, and put the West Deptford junior in a tie for second on the all-time state list. The jump also matched a nearly 30-year-old record for the all-group meets.

"There are always those butterflies," Kirschling said. "Once I hit the first jump, then it's just take a deep breath and see how high I can go."

After the successful record-setting attempt, Kirschling couldn't clear the bar on three attempts at 6 feet.

"The first jump was really close," Kirschling said. "That's really exciting to know that 5-10 isn't a limit."

Her teammate, senior Samantha Budd, won the 800 meters after trailing most of the race. She made her move in the last 100 and finished in 2 minutes, 14.78 seconds.

"I always like to stick with the pack. I don't like to lead a lot unless I have to and I think the pace is too slow," Budd said. "With 200 to go, the girl in the lead went out a little bit and I went 'Not yet, not yet.' With 100 left, I had my kick and I went with it. "

Oakcrest wins boys' title. Despite wincing in pain as he reached the finish, Oakcrest senior Fabian Santiago won the Group 3 200 in 21.97. Teammates Reginald Morton and Darnell Charles finished fourth and fifth.

Santiago, who won his third straight Group 3 100 title on Friday, didn't run the 4x400 relay because of a cramp in his right leg.

"I felt it right after the turn," Santiago said. "I just wanted to finish strong, and the last 10 meters it cramped."

Santiago said that he didn't think he drank enough water before the race but that he felt fine by the end of the meet Saturday.

Senior Syid Evans-White won the Group 3 high hurdles with a time of 14.26 as Oakcrest went on to win the Group 3 title.

Carson sets personal best. Emily Carson could feel it as soon as her feet hit the boards. The Haddonfield junior knew the jump was something special, and after she landed, Carson saw that she had set a personal record, winning the Group 2 long jump at 18-4.

"It's something I've seen so many people do, especially following KJ [Katie Johnson], who has done it so many times. Just to have one for myself is something I've only dreamed of," Carson said.

The jump was more than four inches better than the closest competitor and three inches more than Carson's previous best. With the Meet of Champions this coming week, the new PR has given Carson a newfound confidence.

"With this jump, I know I can compete up there with those high-level athletes," she said.

Teammate Johnson won the shot put (40-9), as the Bulldogs captured the Group 2 girls' title by 26 points over Buena.

Other highlights. Josh Awotunde, a Delsea junior, threw the discus 172-6, easily winning the Group 3 title. Bridgeton junior Braheme Days Jr. won the Group 2 discus by almost 13 feet, with a throw of 170-2. . . . Willingboro seniors Isaac Williams and Marlon Bryan placed second and third in the Group 2 high hurdles, finishing in 14.10 and 14.83, respectively. Williams won the 200 (22.05). . . . Pemberton senior Shailah Williams placed second in the 200 (25.16) in Group 2, and Delsea senior Ashley Woodards took second in the Group 3 200.

Contact Kate Harman at rallysports@phillynews.com.

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