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Nike Nationals — Riggs Wins Battle Of Mile Stars

Nike Nationals — Riggs Wins Battle Of Mile Stars

A 4:38.23 win over Karrie Baloga and Sophia Gorriaran moved Irene Riggs to No. 8 on the all-time mile list. (VICTOR SAILER/PHOTO RUN)

NEW YORK CITY, March 10–12 — The Armory’s season-ending prep showcase lost some luster when New Balance moved its well-established national championship to Boston, but Nike’s Big Apple affair still featured multiple notable performances. Irene Riggs (Morgantown, West Virginia) led the way with a win in the girls mile, over what was arguably the strongest field of the weekend.

After moving to the front shortly past the halfway, Riggs used a 31.9 final lap to seal the victory, clocking 4:38.23, ahead of Karrie Baloga (Cornwall Central, New Windsor, New York) in 4:39.96. Sophia Gorriaran (Brown, Providence, Rhode Island), who had won the 800 (2:07.30) a day earlier, took 3rd (4:41.94).

“I did feel pretty controlled the first 800, so I needed to start speeding up so I could try to set myself up for the last lap,” said Riggs, last fall’s Nike Cross Nationals winner, who moved to No. 8 all-time.

“I’m super pleased with that time. I’ve done pretty much all base-training this winter,” said the Stanford-bound Riggs, who won the USATF U20 XC title in January, then helped the U.S. Junior team take bronze at the World Championships in Australia in February. “I’ve not really done much speedwork, so that’s really exciting for me to hit a time like that indoors.”

Mia Brahe-Pedersen (Lake Oswego, Oregon) came into the weekend as the HSR holder in the 200. But her 22.89 from February was taken down twice by Adaejah Hodge (Academy, Montverde, Florida) in Boston. Still, Brahe-Pedersen won a convincing sprint double at the Armory, winning the 60 (7.37) and 200 (23.35).

“I’m happy with how this weekend went, there are definitely things that can be cleaned up,” the 11th-grader told RunnerSpace, adding that she missed two weeks of training with various injuries in the past month.

Brahe-Pedersen was gracious in surrendering the HSR. “Adaejah is very talented, I’ve known this for a long time,” she said. “I’m glad it got broken. Obviously having a record is nice, but records are made to be broken — and broken again and again. Eventually I might do it again. I have a whole other season, and so does Adaejah, and I’m looking forward to going head-to-head with her.”

Club teammate Sophia Beckmon (Oregon City) was 2nd in the 200 (23.77) as well as the long jump, jumping 19-9½. The long jump was…

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