North Babylon’s Alden Chambers gets past Northport’s Vito LaRosa to...

North Babylon’s Alden Chambers gets past Northport’s Vito LaRosa to win the 55 Meter Dash during the Suffolk boys and girls track and field state qualifier on Monday, Feb. 13, 2023, at Suffolk Community College. Credit: Bob Sorensen

Alden Chambers knows he can run with anyone, and certainly isn’t afraid to say where he believes he stacks up. Once the North Babylon senior gets to his top-end speed, it’s a quick sprint to the finish.

“I don’t think anyone [in Suffolk] can compete with me when it comes to my top-end speed,” Chambers said.

That has certainly been true this season, and he’ll get his shot to prove it on the state’s biggest stage next month.

Chambers ran a 6.47 to win the 55-meter dash at the Suffolk boys indoor track and field state qualifier Monday night at Suffolk County Community College in Brentwood. The victory earned him a spot in the state indoor championships, scheduled for March 4 at Ocean Breeze Athletic Complex on Staten Island.  

“I’ve raced pretty much every top kid in the state,” Chambers said of his state championship prospects. “At the end of the race, I’m always with them or catching them. For now, I’m [going to be] laid back with speed training. I’m just going to focus on getting stronger, and my reaction time getting better….I think I can outrace anybody.”

Chambers ran a 6.46 at the Millrose Games trials in January, which was tied for the sixth-fastest time in the state. He has the third-fastest clocking on Long Island, according to milesplit.com.

Chambers ran a 6.64 in the preliminaries Monday night, qualifying him for the finals with ease, but leaving him significantly unsatisfied heading into them.

“Sometimes I hesitate in my block start,” said Chambers. “Going into the finals, I knew that in the first 10-15 meters I had to get out really hard and really aggressive. I knew that if I could just stay with the group, the rest of the race would be easy.”

Chambers said that the weight of expectations may have affected him a little in the preliminaries. It’s one thing to be the top short sprinter in Suffolk in January, but it's another thing to finally have to do it on the biggest night of the county season.

“Everyone knows I’m the best,” Chambers said. “I let that get to me too much. I was talking to my trainers and my coaches and they said ‘you know you’re the best, so you just have to stay focused and worry about your race. As long as you worry on your race, that’s it.'”

In the finals, Chambers made sure that none of those thoughts were in his head.

“I just got really pumped up, and when [the official] said ‘runners on your mark,’ I closed out everybody,” he said. “I knew it was just me and the track. It was me and lane five. That’s the only thing that matters. Once the gun went off, I just focused on my race. When I picked up my head, I was gone.”

Elsewhere, Westhampton’s Max Haynia won the 3,200 in a dominating 9:24.12. Huntington’s Matt Armstrong won the 1,000 in 2:35.84, and Mount Sinai’s Zekey Huang won the 55-hurdles in 7.68 seconds.

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