High School Nationals x 3 Weekend!

The 2022 Missouri High School State Track & Field Championships provided some of the best performances and competition in its history in May. They were followed by the Festival of Miles where more history was made, and many PRs (Personal Record) were set. Then came the Great Southwest Track and Field Classic where Team Missouri showed off the talent in the state, sweeping the team titles in Albuquerque. Now, high school athletes have more chances than ever to compete in high level summer competition in the form of three national championship meets this weekend, at three facilities with lots of history.

The National Scholastic Athletics Foundation (NSAF) has been hosting a national meet for since 1991, with different presenting sponsors at a few different locations. Mizzou grad Jim Spier co-founded the NSAF, which was previously called the National Scholastic Sports Foundation (NSSF). Spier has spent decades as a journalist, meet director, announcer, statistician, and now after 30 years as executive director of NSAF, is retiring this month.

After hosting the meet in Greensboro, North Carolina since 2005, they partnered with Nike to host the meet at the brand-new version of Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon last year. New Balance, the most recent NSAF sponsor and partner, ventured out on their own last year. Their 2021 meet in Greensboro was cancelled because of Covid-19. This year's New Balance Nationals Outdoor kicked off Thursday with four events at Franklin Field, in Philadelphia, host of the annual Penn Relays.

Adidas, a one-time sponsor of the NSAF (previously NSSF) meet, has hosted its own indoor track and field national meet the last two winters in Virginia Beach, Virginia. They now are hosting the outdoor equivalent beginning Friday. It will be held at the same Irwin Belk Track at North Carolina A&T University that's hosted NSAF meet since 2005. Many of the country's best have performed on the national stage in Greensboro, producing records, making memories, and showcasing many athletes that have gone on to collegiate, world class, and professional success. That includes many Missouri preps, plenty of which earned All-America honors and won national championships at the Irwin Belk facility. That will continue this weekend at adidas Track Nationals Outdoor, which will be streamed live on MileSplit 


adidas Track Nationals Outdoor Schedule


adidas Track Nationals Outdoor

Two Missouri schools will be represented in North Carolina, Ladue Horton Watkins High School in St. Louis County and St. Teresa's Academy in Kansas City. St. Teresa's sophomore All-Stater Gracie Jacobs will run the mile. Jacobs has had an excellent first two years for the Stars. She helped St. Teresa's to the Class 4 3rd-place state cross country trophy in 2020 and a Class 5 2nd-place finish in 2021. She's earned All-State honors six times. She was 11th as a freshman at the state cross country meet. Jacobs picked up three All-State medals as freshman in track in the 4x800, 1600, and 3200, helping St. Teresa's to the 3rd-place team trophy. She picked up two more medals this year in the 4x800 and 1600-meters. Jacobs will race the mile at 11:40 a.m. CT on Friday.


Gracie Jacobs

Some of head coach Nick Buckvar's Ladue ladies sprint squad will compete in Greensboro. Ladue is scheduled to have two individuals and three relays compete including the 4x200, 4x400, and 800-meter Sprint Medley relays.  

Kayliah Motes

Senior Kayliah Motes will look to put a final bow on her high school career and lead her teammates one last time. Motes will race in the National Elite 400-meter dash while freshman Delaney Brinker will race in the Freshman Elite 200-meter dash. Motes will run the National Elite 400 Final on Friday at 3:40 p.m. CT. Brinker will race the Freshman 200 Final at 5:15 p.m. CT on Saturday.

Motes will be looking for relay and individual success, and maybe a little redemption. At Sectionals, Motes ran a 400 PR of 56.56-seconds. At State, she helped the Lady Rams to 5th in the 4x200 prelims and was 5th in the Class 5 400-meter prelims. After that she was a DNS in the 200 before running on the Ladue 4x400 which placed 9th, missing the final by just 4/10ths of a second.

On day 2 at State, the Ladue team of Zoe Ademuyiwa, Delaney Brinker, Kayliah Motes, and Makayla White ran to a 5th-place 4x200 finish to earn a spot on the awards podium. Then, Motes was a heart-breaking DQ in the 400 final.  

In Greensboro, Brinker, Motes, and White will be joined by Harper Buxner in the 4x200 Relay Championship division that will race at 10:10 a.m. CT Saturday morning. They'll run the 2nd-highest level of competition, the National Elite 800-meter Sprint Medley at 6:15 p.m. CT Saturday evening. Then on Sunday, they'll race in the Championship 4x400 at 1:40 p.m. CT.