TOMS RIVER, NJ -- The Union Catholic girls once again left little doubt about its status as the top team in the state by rolling to its sixth straight title, and the boys pulled off a huge win in the distance medley relay and pole vault at the NJSIAA Non-Public A Relays on Monday night at the Bennett Center.

Year after year the UC girls lose All-State athletes and key point producers to graduation, but every year new stars emerge to help the Vikings maintain their place as the best program in the state.

Despite not being a full strength, the Vikings still blitzed the competition by winning six of the nine events (shuttle hurdles, 4x200, SMR, 4x800, 4x400, and the high jump), on the way to a dominating 75-28 victory over runner-up Notre Dame.   

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The six straight titles by UC is the second most for a girls program in meet history behind the nine in a row that Hopewell Valley captured from 2002-10.  

UC, which came into the meet ranked NJ#1 in the 4x400 (3:56.34), 4x800 (9:21.86), and shuttles (31.50), and NJ#2 in the SMR (4:16.02), and NJ#3 in the 4x200 (1:44.82), nearly matched their season best times in the shuttles (32.17), SMR (4:16.16) and 4x200 (1:44.82).



Triple winner Avery Jordan (watch a video interview with her here) was one of many stars for Union Catholic. The junior anchored the shuttle hurdles (8.2), ran the third leg in the 4x200 (26.7), and led off the 4x400 (62.7). 

Jordan, a junior, was one of several athletes that came up big for the Vikings, who competed without state champions Leena Morant and Sydney Tucker (nursing injuries). 

Also for UC, junior A'Liyah Thomas anchored the 4x200 in 25.8 and cleared a meet best 5-2 in the high jump. Freshman Alexandra Bonn went 8.0 in the hurdles and cleared 4-10 in the HJ. Freshman Ajanae Thompson ran 8.1 in the hurdles and 27.1 in the 4x200. Senior Felicia Quainoo ran 26.7 in the SMR and 7.6 in the shuttles. Senior Chi Chi Nkulume ran 24.9 in the 4x200 and 59.4 in the SMR. Senior Zamira Ysaac and Aniyah Charles ran on the 4x400 and runner-up DMR, and freshman Maameyaa Nyinah ran on the 4x800 and 4x400. Morgan Jackson anchored the winning SMR with a 2:23.5 carry. Ashleigh Patterson split 2:26 as the anchor on the 4x800, and Abby Granrath ran 5:17.1 for the runner-up DMR.



The highlight of the meet for the boys, which placed a very strong second to Christian Brothers Academy, 80-54, came in the DMR.

The Vikings were trailing CBA after the first two legs, but George Mason-bound Elijah Brown, who won the 800 at the Meet of Champions last winter, blasted a 1:55.4 800 to come from way back to give UC the lead for good. Sophomore Myles Plummer closed it out with a 4:25.8 anchor to bring the Vikings across the line first in 10:34.19, the second fastest time in the state this season, to win the DMR. Zach Turner led off for UC with a 3:21.2 1,200 carry, and Tyhir Jones went 51.4 on the 400 leg.

The Vikings also picked up a victory in the pole vault when senior Conor Reilly, ranked NJ#3 with a 15-6, cleared a meet best 15-0, and Justin Lopez made 11-0 for a wining total of 26-0.

In other highlights for the UC boys, Reilly split 22.8, Jones 23.0, Connor Cooper 22.6, and Oluwafemi Asenuga 23.7 on the runner-up 4x200 team that ran 1:32.36. Brown ran 51.1 for 400, Reilly went 23.4, Cooper 23.3, and Plummer went 1:57.9 on the 800 in the sprint medley that placed second in 3:36.05.The Vikings also placed second in the 4x400, third in the 4x800 in 8:33.40, and fourth in the high jump.