CYUP Misfits Invite was stocked full of action

The experience of the CYUP Misfits Invitational explained in a highlight video is something for all to enjoy




Gately Track & Field Stadium came alive over the weekend and presented itself as one of the meccas for youth and high school track and field. The CYUP Misfits Invitational navigated its way onto the national landscape and it did not disappoint. Follow along to 125 national elite performances as well as tons more personal best efforts. 

The long meet was broken up into two parts. The morning session featured elementary and middle school athletes for several reasons. 1) Track meets are too long and when you mix them with high schoolers, especially in an indoor barn it could turn out to be a horror show. 2) Being innovative for the fans and the sport by showcasing the younger age groups in brackets in their own time slot is a win-win.


US 60H leader Nonah Waldron may have had plans to come in and get under her 8.32 personal best. But the junior from Oak Park/Motor City Track Club in Michigan could only 8.43 which is still very good. MTC copped the first four spots which put smiles on their coach's faces.

There was national record talk in the 60m because of Kaila Jackson. The Detroit Renaissance senior who reps Track Life U Track Club came in with a US#2 7.26 and within striking distance of the 7.19 landmark. Jackson would breeze in her prelim with a blistering 7.39. Jackson hit the tape hard in the final but she came up a little short of her goal, but it was still a great 7.30. Lyric Steele of Charlestown, Indiana took second in 7.61. Delea Martins of Shorewood, Wisconsin grabbed the bronze medal in 7.69. She would star in the 4x200 relay later with teammates that ran a ridiculous 1:37.09. Though it does not count toward an official national lead, it was still incredibly impressive.

Ava Parekh (Sr., Chicago Latin) quietly opened her season in the 1000m and 600m. She won the first one in 2:57.64. She was fourth in the latter behind winner Kylee King of Motor City Track who clocked a fast US#3 1:34.54.

Ali Ince and a dozen of her distance running sisters would take center stage for the HOKA Mile. The sophomore star from Normal Community had been off the grid because of basketball. Limited time training during the indoor may have given a few peers a false sense of hope. Ince would take charge right away and set the tone. Though she was challenged and appeared vulnerable for a moment, there was no doubt she would come away with the win in 4:52.42. Elia Ton-That of Northside Prep fought hard but settled for second in 4:57.05. Mary Grace Hegberg of St. Viator was third in 5:00.45.

It was a 1-2-3 finish for Track Life U in the 300m as Leeah Burr rolled to a meet record  and US#7 38.89


The build-up to Will Sumner (Sr., Woodstock, GA) was a pleasant journey to follow. Stephen Brown picked up another win and proved that Track Life U is more than girls' dominance in the sprint game. Brown was the only one to dip under seven seconds in the 60m with a solid 6.98.

Another top Michigander Tamaal Myers II of Detroit Cass broke the 60H record with a sensational 8.02. He remained in the US#5 position as he moves toward his state and national championship competition.

The 1000m field did not feature as many standouts as it usually does because of the popularity of the mile. That did not deter Hunter Whitney of Chicago Lane Tech from standing out. The junior took charge after a sluggish 400m (1:01.25) and opened things up. Whitney hit the 800 in 2:05 and cruised to victory in 2:38.40.

Back to the short events was the wildly popular 300m where many 200/400 performers got in on the action. Liam Gair of Villanova, California stood tall over 50 competitors and close out the final section in a US#8 meet record 34.51.

The HOKA Mile was also the featured event on the male docket and the talented field was ready to debut their talent. Top seed Luke Wiley of Warren would sit behind Tyler Freiner of Wentzville, Missouri for the first several laps. They were joined by Ryder James (Sr., PBL) and Micah Wilson (Sr., St. Charles East)- all in the 2:11 first half-mile range. 

Wiley would take over the race by the 1K and leave the rest to decide the silver and bronze medals. His winning time of 4:18.11 was the 13th best time in the country and newly established meet record. Wilson took second over Freiner 4:21.06-4:21.73.

We can only speculate how things would play out before the gun went off in respect to the 600m. Immediately, Sumner was off to the races as he hit the opening circuit in 24.48. The crowd was buzzing and evermore high pitched at the 400m mark which was a ridiculous 49.66. It was no one but himself, the energy of the crowd, and the clock as motivation. Sumner hit the finish line a full two seconds ahead of New Yorker Strymar Livingston's great 1:17.58 standard. The emotional Sumner stood in the infield appreciative of the feat and the fans acknowledged him as well of the historic accomplishment.