Commack’s Alissa Braxton went back to her jumping roots and, not surprisingly, found success. Braxton, who broke the state triple jump record last weekend, began her high school career as a long jumper but has recently put the event on the back burner in favor of triple jump. She’ll rethink that now.
Turns out, there’s room for two. Braxton won both the long and triple jump at the Suffolk Large School track and field championships at Suffolk County Community College in Brentwood Saturday morning. She flew 19 feet, ¼ of an inch in the long jump and 40 feet, two inches in the triple jump.
“It feels great because now I know I can actually focus on both,” Braxton said. “Before, I was just concentrating on triple and I thought ‘I’m not doing well in long jump, so I’m not going to worry about it.’ But now I’m going to have to worry about it because I’m doing better.”
Braxton’s long jump distance was a personal best, she said. It is also the best distance in the state this season. Braxton now holds the state's top mark in both the long and triple jump, according to milesplit.com.
Braxton said that competing in long jump after the triple jump helped her greatly.
“Usually (when jumping in two events), I do better in the second one because I’m warmer,” Braxton said. “Because long jump was second, I got a better jump.”
Braxton’s triple jump personal best came last weekend when she flew 41 feet, 9 ¾ inches at the Ocean Breeze High School Invitational, breaking a nearly 18-year-old state record. The outstanding indoor season has given Braxton tremendous confidence before every jump.
“Sometimes I get a little nervous, but then I get more adrenaline because I knew people are watching me,” Braxton said. “My adrenaline pumps more and I just go farther.”
Bay Shore won the team championship with 56 points, their first indoor county title since 2015. Sachem East was second with 50 points. Bay Shore’s Roshni Singh started the meet off with a 10 minute, 26.28 second victory in the 3,000 meters.
“I knew my personal best (time) was a little farther ahead of the rest of the girls in the race, so I knew I didn’t have to go all out for that,” Singh said. “I knew I was going to have to run a 1,500 and a 4X8 (meter relay) later, so I stayed with them and, with a mile left, I picked it up a little so I wouldn’t have to kick as hard.”
Singh’s teammate, Caitlin Christie, won the shot put with a 38 foot, two inch throw.
“My technique was good today, so that had a lot to do with it,” Christie said. “…In shot put, a lot of it is just hip action, so getting your hips through the circle and through the back is really what helps the most. It helps your speed and increases your momentum.”
Christie’s twin sister, Rebecca, cleared five feet, two inches and placed second in the high jump. Half Hollow Hills East’s Soledad Jean cleared 5-3 to win.
Sachem North’s Molly Ramirez made up a nearly 40-meter deficit to break through on the final straightaway and win the 1,500 in 4:53.36. Singh, who took the race out hard, was second in 4:53.66.
“In the last 150 (meters), it looked like (Singh) was getting closer and starting to slow down,” Ramirez said. “I just tried picking it up and caught her at the end…Usually, I don’t have that big of a kick, but I figured I’d just give it all I had on the last straightaway and see if I could beat her.”