SOUTH PLAINFIELD, N.J. - Seneca's Michelle Brown and Oakcrest's Nijgia Snapp have become rivals this season in the 200- and 400-meter dashes.

So when Brown got set to race the senior yesterday at the girls' Meet of Champions, she was determined to make up the stagger in the 400, get the lead, and hold it to the end.

Brown, the No. 2 seed, did just that from Lane 5 while trying to keep an eye on Snapp, the No. 1 seed, in Lane 4.

As a result, the Seneca junior won in 53.72 seconds. Snapp came in second in 54.11.

Other area winners were Our Lady of Mercy's Victoria Imbesi and Kingsway's Chelsea Ley. Imbesi won the discus with a throw of 134 feet, 6 inches.

Ley won the 3,200 in 10 minutes, 19.31 seconds.

"I was surprised [at winning the 400]," Brown said. "I knew I had a good chance, but actually doing it felt good."

The time set a personal mark for Brown, whose previous best was 53.91 last year at the state meet.

Brown's teammate, Mary Bohi, a junior, found herself in fast company in the 400 hurdles. Union High's Ugonna Ndu, the top seed, owned the fastest time in the nation with a 59.36.

However, Ndu finished second to Passaic Tech's Amber Allen, who was clocked in 58.44 to break a 1988 meet record (59.03 by Rancocas Valley's Tonya Lee).

Bohi, the third seed, placed fourth in 1:02.09 behind Millville's Brooke Kott. Bohi's personal-best time in the 400 is 1:01.49, which won the event in the Group 3 state meet last weekend.

"I hit the first hurdle, so my steps were a little messed up," Bohi said. "This is the first time all year that I clipped the first hurdle."

Kott placed third in the Group 4 state meet in 1:02.74.

Lenape's Caitlin Orr finished fourth in the 1,600, but her reaction made it look as if she had won. Orr was clocked in a personal-best 4:52.95. Voorhees' Melanie Thompson won in 4:46.28 to break the 1985 meet record (4:46.4 by Ridgewood's Margaret Scruto).

"Last weekend I didn't do well in the 1,600," Orr said. "I wasn't as confident as I should have been. I learned from that. I realized that I can run with all of those girls."

Girls' Results

400-meter hurdles: 1, Amber Allen, Passaic Tech, 58.44 (breaks 1988 meet record of 59.03 by Rancocas Valley's Tonya Lee). 2, Ugonna Ndu, Union, 59.35.3, Melissa Bellin, Rumson-Fair Haven, 1:00.62. 4, Brooke Kott, Millville, 1:01.14. 5, Mary Bohi, Seneca, 1:02.09. 6, Emily Kulcyk, Cherokee, 1:02.54.

1,600: 1, Melanie Thompson, Voorhees, 4:46.28 (breaks 1985 meet record of 4:46.40 by Ridgewood's Margaret Scruto). 2, Ajee Wilson, Neptune, 3, Ariann Neutts, Roxbury, 4:46.95. 4, Caitlin Orr, Lenape, 4:52.95. 5, Sophia Ginez, South Brunswick, 4:53.15. 6, Claira Buck, Hopewell Valley, 4:54.

100 hurdles: 1, Ugonna Ndu, Union, 14,17.2, Stephanie Hicks, Hamilton North, 14.65. 3,Ashley Porterfield, Neptune, 14.72. 4, Amber Scott, Robbinsville, 14.76. 5, Rita Taste, Bloomfield, 14.82.

100: 1, Myasia Jacobs, Paramus Catholic, 11.72. 2, Dominique Booker, Immaculate Conception, 11.97.3, Tylia Gillon, Jackson Memorial, 12.07. 4, Audrey Wilson, Deptford, 12.07. 5, Morgan Gordon, Rancocas Valley, 12.30. 6, Kayann Richards,Columbia, 12.30.

400: 1, Michelle Brown, Seneca, 53.72. 2, Nijgia Snapp, Oakcrest, 54.11. 3, Amber Allen, Passaic Tech, 55.91. 4, Steyce McNeil, Winslow Twp., 56.06. 5, Natalie Englese, Cranford, 56.39. 6, TyVonna Johnson, Columbia, 56.85.

800: 1, Jillian Smith, Southern Regional, 2:04.67. 2, Emily Carrollo, PopeJohn XXIII, 2:06.94. 3, Marielle Hall, Haddonfield, 2:07.33. 4, Ariann Neutts, Roxbury, 2:09.85. 5, Kari Shoolbraid, Voorhees, 2:11.36. 6, Julieanne Fontana, Pascack Hills, 2:11.87.

200: 1, Myasia Jacobs, Paramus Catholic, 23.99. 2, Morgan Gordon, Rancocas Valley, 24.45. 3, Dominique Booker, Immaculate Conception, 24.60. 4, Michelle Brown, Seneca, 24.60. 5, Vicky Caruso, Wallkill Valley, 24.65. 6,Tylia Gillon, Jackson Memorial, 24.94.

3,200: 1, Chelsea Ley, Kingsway,10:19.31. 2, Katie Kellner, West Windsor South, 10:34.04.3, Sarah Pagano,Immaculate Heart, 10:35.42. 4, Meghan McGlinchey, West Deptford, 10:37.47. 5, Laura Vigilante, West Morris Mendham, 10:37.73. 6, Ines Simoes, Roselle Catholic, 10:39.86.

4x400 relay: 1, Neptune (Jade Wilson, Ishakeema Swain, Ashley Porterfield, Ajee Wilson), 3:55.40. 2, Seneca, 3:55.66. 3, Voorhees, 3:57.11. 5, Delsea, 3:57.47. 6, Hopewell Valley, 4:01.12.

Pole vault: 1, Emily Urciuoli, Clifton, 12-6 (breaks 2006 record of 12-3 byHanover Park's Nicole Pompei). 2, Nicole Pompei, Hanover Park, 12-00. 3, Chrissy Finkel, Montville, 12-00.4,Kelly Burke, Cranford, 12-00. 5, Michelle Favre, Saddle Brook, 12-00. 6, Jillian Hart, Somerville, 11-6.

Long jump: 1, Shantal Athill, Montclair, 18-4 1/2.2,Mariah Browne, South Brunswick,17-10. 3, Tayona Brown,Ewing,17-8. 4,Essence Mayers, Lakewood,17-7 1/2. 5, Emily Vargas, Arthur L. Johnson, 17-6 1/2. 6, Kristen Brown, Dwight Morrow, 17-4 1/4.

Triple jump: 1, Ebony Young, Hillsborough, 40-1 1/2.2, Adaobi Unachukwu, Marlboro, 39-8 1/2.3, Christina Epps, Morristown,38-9. 4,Emily Vargas,A.L.Johnson,38-6 1/2. 5, Kristen Bowens, Mahwah,38-3. 6, Essence Mayers,Lakewood,37-6 1/2.

High jump: 1, Emily Kianka, Hopewell Valley, 5-9 1/4. 2, Samantha Yeats, Voorhees, and Maggie Gilbertson, Howell, 5-6. 4, Fiona Paladino, Montgomery, 5-6.

Shot put: 1, Sandra Jean-Romain, Old Bridge, 44-0 1/4. 2, Kathryn Hirsch, NV Demarist, 42-2 1/4.3, Apresha Hampton, Teaneck,41-9 3/4. 4, Lavon Childress, Paulsboro, 40-9 3/4. 5, Shannon Watt, Jackson Memorial, 40-8 3/4. 6, Ashley Sims, Paramus Catholic, 40-4 1/4.

Discus: 1, Victoria Imbesi, Our Lady of Mercy, 134-5. 2, Chloe Early, Delaware Valley, 131-9. 3, Shannon Watt, Jackson Memorial,130-5. 4, Alana Pantale, Wayne Valley, 129. 5, Lee Ann Still, Cerry Hill West, 121-8. 6, Genevieve Rybicki, OLMA, 119-3.

Javelin: 1, Shannon Sullivan, Immaculate Mary,136-7. 2, Lindsey Minch, Pennsville, 136-1. 3, Victoria Imbesi, OLMA,136. 4, Teresa Kirkpatrick, Pascack Hills, 130-2. 5, Nia Barnes, West Orange, 129-5. 6, Hannah Mayer, N.Highlands, 126-5.

Contact staff writer Bill Iezzi

at 856-779-3826 or biezzi@phillynews.com

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