The stars of Staten Island and other islands shine in the wind and cold of the sea


It was a cold and windy day Saturday at Viking Field, site of the 23rd edition of the Big Blue Track and Field Classic, held on the campus of St. Joseph by-the-Sea HS in Huguenot.

The competition featured competitors from more than 80 teams from six states, with several nationally ranked athletes putting on a show in less than ideal conditions.

Only one varsity meet record was set, in the girls' pole vault, where Brayden Snider of John Glenn HS (Ohio) managed a jump of 11 feet, more than a foot below her best.

On the boys side, Joshua Huisman of St. Rose HS (NJ) continued his dominance in the throws, winning the throws and discus for the third consecutive year.

Huisman, who is headed to the University of Michigan, started his day with a win in the discus (160-5) and then completed the double with a win in the shot put (61-0.5).

There were some great performances from local athletes.

In a strong headwind, Tottenville HS freshman Kory Brown won the 100-meter dash in his outdoor debut in 10.98 seconds, just 0.02 seconds off the meet record. More impressively, Brown won by almost 0.5 seconds.

Brown later commented: “I felt good for the opener. I’m working on perfecting my craft in the sprints.”

Notre Dame Academy's Katelyn Kliesch led the way every step of the way in the 800-meter run in 2:18.24. Commenting on her first outdoor race, the sophomore star said: “The wind was very strong today. I wanted to have a good time, but…”

Host Sea's Samantha Walz won the 100-meter smooth acceleration race for the second time with a time of 12.42. She said: “It's not my best time, but I got off to a good start and got the job done.” She won by more than half a second.

She failed in the short medley sprint and chased St. John Vianney (NJ) star Alexandria Scott to the finish.

Scott on his way to the University of Massachusetts. had previously won the 400-meter hurdles with a good time of 1:01.78, No. 15 in the country, holding off Walz.

Another budding Sea star, junior Matt Brodsky, handily won the 400-meter hurdles in 56.74. He later said: “I knew the conditions weren't the best today but I did what I could. The conditions were the same for everyone.”

Sophomore Frances Maglione won her first invitational event by turning the discus throw 87-7. (

Sophomore Frances Maglione won her first invitational by turning the discus 87-7, noting, “I wanted a lot more, but the wind wasn’t good for the discus today.”

Susan Wagner's boys were impressive with their victories in the 4×100 meter relay in 44.66 seconds and the shuttle hurdle relay in 51.58 minutes.

Wagner's girls also had a good day: Mia Petersen won the triple jump (33-6.5) and took second place in the long jump (16-11.5). She narrowly lost to Rye Country Day School's Jocelyn Rice, who jumped 17-1.5.

Another SW athlete, Iceland record holder Jaice Dorsey, opened her outdoor campaign with an easy win in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.19.

Dorp HS new senior high jumper Ashley Korbul is making her final season a good one. She added another title to her resume, going 5-2.

NDA's Lily Plaia won the girls' javelin with a throw of 104-5, while Monsignor Farrell's Mike Galante won the boys' javelin with a throw of 152-8. His teammate Ty Lawless completed the triple jump (42-4.5).

Moore Catholic HS had a big winner: Gerald Green won the boys long jump with a performance of 19-4.5.

The boys' distance medley relays went to nationally ranked Union Catholic, while Notre Dame of Manhattan won the girls' race.

The best race of the day was the boys' 800-meter run, where twin brothers John and Jared Voorhees from Brick Memorial HS (NJ) competed.

The brothers, who were headed to Rider University, were well ahead of the field, with Jared taking the lead with a 56.5 in the 400 race. The strong wind down the homestretch proved to be his undoing as Josh caught him 20 yards from the finish and won in 1:57.53 while Jared ran 1:58.51.

Another repeat winner was Angelina George of Manasquan (NJ) HS, but winning the 2,000-meter steeplechase wasn't easy as she left the race with several grazes.

Shortly after the 800-meter mark, as she reached a barrier on a church tower, her spike got caught in the plastic rail and she stumbled forward and fell, her chin hitting the barrier. She calmly stood up, looked at the field far behind, regained her composure and won the race by 30 seconds in 7:29.22.

Another Jersey athlete, Cortland Wood of Highland Regional HS, won the boys' steeplechase race in 6:19.75.


REMARKS: Island athletes won several lower division events, with Farrell winning the freshman boys' sprint medley while St. Peter's won the sophomore 4×400 relay. McKee/SI Tech won the Soph boys' 4×800-meter run, while Notre Dame won the girls' 4×800-meter run. Farrell's Chris Palazzola won the shot put as a sophomore… In addition to John Glenn of New Concord, Ohio, Vermont was represented by Fair Haven HS, while St. Hubert's of Philadelphia and Greenwich Country Day School (Connecticut) also competed with New Schools in York and New Jersey… St. John Vianney HS of Holmdel is coached by former Farrell star Rich Agnello, a star on the 1976 Eastern States cross-country championship team. Agnello later won the East Coast indoor mile title Conference while he was at St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia.