It will go down as one of the most amazing accomplishments seen in high school track.
Put aside for just a moment the school name across the front of the jersey and process what happened at the 60th Jordan Relays on Thursday night.
Four girls ran together as one relay team in four events. Because of the uniqueness of the relay format that features three traditional relay races and three races that combine distances to form medleys, that in itself is a rare attraction for this carnival.
Traditional track coaches were likely scratching their heads when they saw that these four girls were even thinking about competing in four events, in one night.
But these girls weren’t thinking about just competing. No, no, no. They were focused on something much greater.
They had their sights set on history.
Cassidy Jenkins, Corah Krantz, Brooke Estadt and Madison Harding didn’t just agree to run in four events together. They had a pact. If they were going to do this, they were going to try to win.
“People were doubting that we could do four events, and they were asking why were we even trying. But we wanted to make this memorable, and we did.” — Cassidy Jenkins
Then, the improbable began to take shape in the first event they ran.
When Harding took the baton and stormed off the corner, the crowd gathered at the finish-line end of the bleachers rose to its feet. The 400-meter relay is the marquee event of the annual meet, because fans love speed.
As she pulled away and crossed the finish line first, the Fantastic Four had their first gold medal. It would be the first time that a Class AA team had won the coveted 400 relay title since Montrose did it in 2009. What is more remarkable is that the race was the first time that Jenkins, Krantz, Estadt and Harding had run it together as a team, and only Jenkins and Krantz had competed in the 100 during the regular season. Their time of 51.17 fell just short of the meet record of 50.49 that was set in 2012 by Lakeland — a team that Jenkins ran on as an emerging freshman.
Then came the 1,200 medley. This is a race that combines speed and endurance. Krantz gave her team an early advantage in the 400, Estadt extended a 200 and Harding bolted to a huge advantage in the 200 that Jenkins maintained on her 400 jaunt. They combined to cover the distance in 2:57.93 and again, beat all of the Class AAA teams with Pittston Area second, almost a full 6 seconds behind.
Later, after giving their legs a break during the 3,200 relay, Krantz, Jenkins, Harding and Estadt were at it again. They cruised to an impressive win in the 1,600 medley, punching the clock at 4:21.52, well ahead of another Class AAA team, second-place Abington Heights, which finished at 4:27.56.
That was the tricky one. Why? Because to win that relay, teams need two sprinters, a quarter-miler and an 800 runner. Generally, teams take that 800 runner from the distance corps. Lakeland uses Estadt.
“I was dying to be honest. It was really rough, but it was an amazing day.” — Brooke Estadt
Three races and three overall gold medals. That in itself would have been enough to steal the spotlight at the Jordan Relays. Many of the greatest track and field athletes of all-time in the Lackawanna Track Conference have won three races overall, but not many did it together on the same relay team.
Finally, with their legs withering, but their resolve strengthening, Krantz, Estadt, Jenkins and Harding achieved what many thought to be impossible.
No, they weren’t able to make it a clean sweep overall. Pittston Area, which had a great night in its own right, made sure about that with a AAA championship clinching win. .
Still, they won the Class AA race, and left Scranton Memorial Stadium with four gold medals draped around their necks. They accounted for 40 team points in Class AA. … second-place Blue Ridge and Elk Lake each had 33.
Experts on site believe the accomplishment to be unprecedented. Four girls, four races, four gold medals.
Had the meet been scored straight with no division of Class AAA or Class AA, Jenkins, Krantz, Estadt and Harding totaled 38 points out of a maximum of 40. That would have edged Pittston Area, which had 34 team points overall.
“I am extremely proud of how the team did and am so happy that the four of us were able to pull off what we did.” — freshman Corah Krantz
Now put the name across the shirt.
For the Lakeland Lady Chiefs, who claimed the Class AA team championship and these four girls, it was a night to remember. It will go down as one of the greatest feats of all-time and a standard that most will never attempt to achieve. Their place in history in Class AA can only ever be equaled.
Track and field measures speed and endurance with a clock. It leaves no doubt and no grey area for debate as to who or what team is the best.
Locally, people will look to this night as the way to measure grit, determination, and most of all heart.
That will be the legacy of Cassidy Jenkins – the only senior – Corah Krantz, Brooke Estadt and Madison Harding.
A legacy that will last forever.
“We knew that it was going to be an exhausting meet. We took as much rest as we could and we went out and did the best we could because it was Cassidy’s last Jordan Relays meet.” — Madison Harding
Pittston Area won its third straight girls Class AAA team championship. Since 2007, only Abington Heights and Pittston Area have won the team championships at the annual Jordan Relays. The Lady Patriots join Wyoming Valley West (1982, 1983, 1984), Scranton Prep (1996, 1997, 1998), Wallenpaupack (1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003) and Abington Heights (2007 to 2012) as programs with three championships in a row in girls Class AAA.
- Lakeland boys made it three in a row in Class AA. That is nothing new for the program. The Chiefs have now won 22 Jordan Relays championships. They won three straight from 1985 to 1987 and 15 straight from 1991 to 2006 (There were no relays in 1992 due to rain).
- Scranton Prep boys and girls teams swept the Distance Medley and the 3,200 relays overall. The Classics won the Distance Medley in a time of 9:41.75 and the 3,200 in 9:522.98. The Cavaliers won the Distance Medley in 8:16.25 and the 3,200 relay in 8:25.43.
- It was a brutal spring weather-wise, so it comes as no surprise that there was only one meet record set. Lakeland’s team of Collin Cooper, Mark Arzie, Garth Estadt and Nathan Morgan set a mark in the 1,600 relay at 3:24.18. It broke the Class AA record of 3:25.00 set by Lakeland in 2004. It is also the overall meet record, breaking the mark of 3:24.87 set by North Pocono in 2004.
Images by Butch Comegys:
Team standings: Pittston Area 43; Abington Heights 42; North Pocono 33; Scranton Prep 30; Wallenpaupack 30; Scranton 19; Valley View 14; Delaware Valley 13; West Scranton 7; Tunkhannock 2; Honesdale 1.
Distance Medley: Scranton Prep (Kate Reilly, Rachel Kerr, Julia Kerr, Erin Feeney) 9:41.75; Pittston Area 9:48.21; North Pocono 9:49.60; Abington Heights 9:59.55; Delaware Valley 10:13.21; Valley View 10:39.33; Wallenpaupack 10:50.46; Scranton 10:58.12.
400 Relay: Abington Heights (Kelsey Wynn, Ally Christman, Emma Henzes, Allyson Derry) 51.77; Pittston Area 51.89; North Pocono 51.90; West Scranton 52.40; Scranton 52.75; Wallenpaupack 53.01; Valley View 53.18; Scranton Prep 53.80.
1200 Medley: Pittston Area (Tara Johnson, Jamie Chisdock, Olivia Giambra, Allison Barber) 3:02.99; Abington Heights 3:04.06; Scranton 3:09.17; Scranton Prep 3:13.91; Delaware Valley 3:14.57; North Pocono 3:14.99; West Scranton 3:20.19; Wallenpaupack 3:20.77.
3200 Relay: Scranton Prep (Emily Carr, Mary Lundin, Kate Reilly, Erin Feeney) 9:52.98; Wallenpaupack 10:04.10; North Pocono 10:07.35; Valley View 10:11.88; Abington Heights 10:15.46; Pittston Area 10:16.72; Delaware Valley 10:18.21; Scranton 11:30.17.
1600 Medley: Abington Heights (Catherine Pusateri, Abby McMinn, Faith Judson, Katie Dammer) 4:27.56; Wallenpaupack 4:41.43; North Pocono 4:42.54; Scranton 4:43.04; Pittston Area 4:45.78; Delaware Valley 4:45.95; Tunkhannock 4:56.03; Valley View 4:59.61.
1600 Relay: Pittston Area (Allison Barber, Liz Waleski, Samantha Mayers, Maddy Mimnaugh) 4:07.41; Wallenpaupack 4:10.15; North Pocono 4:12.09; Abington Heights 4:13.28; Scranton Prep 4:20.69; Valley View 4:25.07; Scranton 4:28.46; Honesdale 4:39.82.
Team standings: Scranton Prep 43; Western Wayne 34; Scranton 33; Abington Heights 27; Delaware Valley 21; Valley View 21; Pittston Area 20; West Scranton 11; Wallenpaupack 10.
Distance Medley: Scranton Prep (Anthony Nardone, Alex Karam, Kyle Perry, Ben Evans) 8:16.25; Scranton 8:16.82; Valley View 8:24.89; North Pocono 8:30.67; Western Wayne 8:40.90; Pittston Area 8:46.64; Abington Heights 8:51.03; Delaware Valley 8:58.57.
400 Relay: Scranton (Justin Kasper, Nafees Stewart, Victor Burns, Milton Matybel) 43.72; Delaware Valley 43.90; Western Wayne 44.12; West Scranton 45.07; Pittston Area 45.44; North Pocono 45.46; Abington Heights 45.69; Wallenpaupack 45.89.
1200 Medley: Western Wayne (Kyle Haines, Kourtney Harp, Alex Long, Billy Schumacher) 2:28.28; Abington Heights 2:31.38; Delaware Valley 2:33.73; Scranton Prep 2:34.18; Pittston Area 2:35.43; Scranton 2:35.78; Valley View 2:36.80; West Scranton 2:40.68.
3200 Relay: Scranton Prep (Owen Brier, Ryan Burke, Kyle Perry, Anthony Nardone) 8:25.43; Valley View 8:30.59; North Pocono 8:32.85; Abington Heights 8:34.10; Wallenpaupack 8:34.82; Scranton 8:47.67; Western Wayne 8:48.65; Delaware Valley 8:49.74.
1600 Medley: Scranton Prep (Tim Rose, Curry Hennigan, Ryan Burke, Ben Evans) 3:45.08; Abington Heights 3:45.23; Scranton 3:45.71; West Scranton 3:50.84; Wallenpaupack 3:55.11; Pittston Area 3:55.46; Western Wayne 4:01.96; Valley View 4:03.29.
1600 Relay: Western Wayne (Kyle Haines, Kyle Smith, Alex Long, Billy Schumacher) 3:25.04; Scranton Prep 3:30.82; Pittston Area 3:33.36; Delaware Valley 3:33.97; Valley View 3:34.46; Scranton 3:34.70; Abington Heights 3:38.71; Wallenpaupack 3:39.93.
Team standings: Lakeland 46; Blue Ridge 33; Elk Lake 33; Holy Cross 28; Dunmore 27; Montrose 27; Western Wayne 23; Riverside 5; Mid Valley 4; Susquehanna 3; Mountain View 2; Lackawanna Trail 2; Carbondale Area 1.
Distance Medley: Holy Cross (Mackenzie Greenfield, Lexi Walsh, Abby Corrigan, Tess Kearns) 9:54.01; Elk Lake 10:21.96; Montrose 10:39.97; Blue Ridge 10:56.88; Dunmore 10:59.88; Lakeland 11:10.86; Western Wayne 11:16.26; Lackawanna Trail 11:46.56.
400 Relay: Lakeland (Corah Krantz, Cassidy Jenkins, Brooke Estadt, Madison Harding) 51.17; Blue Ridge 52.03; Montrose 52.44; Dunmore 52.90; Elk Lake 53.68; Western Wayne 54.26; Mountain View 54.63; Carbondale Area 54.66.
1200 Medley: Lakeland (Corah Krantz, Brooke Estadt, Madison Harding, Cassidy Jenkins) 2:57.93; Western Wayne 2:59.81; Blue Ridge 3:01.99; Dunmore 3:07.87; Montrose 3:10.64; Susquehanna 3:13.22; Elk Lake 3:14.46; Riverside 3:16.94.
3200 Relay: Elk Lake (Katie Bennett, Justine Johns, Keri Jones, Julie Vanetten) 10:07.39; Holy Cross 10:22.23; Montrose 10:50.26; Dunmore 10:54.64; Mid Valley 11:30.73; Lakeland 11:43.51; Blue Ridge 12:11.08; Lackawanna Trail 12:15.67.
1600 Medley: Lakeland (Corah Krantz, Cassidy Jenkins, Madison Harding, Brooke Estadt) 4:21.52; Holy Cross 4:31.19; Blue Ridge 4:43.89; Dunmore 4:46.58; Elk Lake 4:46.59; Riverside 4:46.96; Western Wayne 4:53.88; Montrose 4:58.11.
1600 Relay: Lakeland (Brooke Estadt, Corah Krantz, Cassidy Jenkins, Madison Harding) 4:09.42; Western Wayne 4:10.48; Blue Ridge 4:17.35; Elk Lake 4:19.30; Montrose 4:25.18; Dunmore 4:29.44; Holy Cross 4:33.85; Riverside 4:42.17.
Team standings: Lakeland 56; Riverside 40; Montrose 29; Carbondale Area 20; Holy Cross 19; Mid Valley 17; Elk Lake 16; Dunmore 15; North Pocono 14; Blue Ridge 12; Mountain View 5; Lackawanna Trail 5.
Distance Medley: Lakeland (Mark Arzie, Caleb Morgan, Dan Brown, Nathan Morgan) 8:16.31; Elk Lake 8:43.12; Holy Cross 8:53.93; Montrose 8:58.73; Carbondale Area 9:03.46; Lackawanna Trail 9:10.94; Blue Ridge 9:38.63; Riverside 9:43.30.
400 Relay: Riverside (Jon Tucker, Mikkell Green, Kishod Stanton, Joe Austin) 44.42; Lakeland 45.24; Blue Ridge 46.06; Montrose 46.41; Dunmore 46.48; Carbondale Area 47.09; Mid Valley 47.45; Lackawanna Trail 49.34.
1200 Medley: Lakeland (Collin Cooper, Garth Estadt, Tyler Schwartzstrauber, Cyril Babcanec) 2:30.09; Riverside 2:36.79; Mid Valley 2:37.87; Montrose 2:38.13; Holy Cross 2:40.77; Dunmore 2:42.01; Blue Ridge 2:44.58; Carbondale Area 2:46.96.
3200 Relay: Lakeland (Mark Arzie, Nick Setta, Mike Arzie, Nathan Morgan) 8:27.00; Montrose 8:50.78; Riverside 9:01.73; Holy Cross 9:04.00; Carbondale Area 9:15.77; Mid Valley 9:28.99; Mountain View 9:30.71; Lackawanna Trail 9:33.02.
1600 Medley: Riverside (Mikkell Green, Joe Austin, Will Davies, Randy Kincel) 3:47.12; Lakeland 3:48.78; Carbondale Area 3:54.29; Mid Valley 3:55.96; Dunmore 3:59.37; Mountain View 4:08.68; Blue Ridge 4:10.37; Holy Cross 4:17.54.
1600 Relay: Lakeland (Collin Cooper, Mark Arzie, Garth Estadt, Nathan Morgan) 3:24.18 (meet record; old mark, Lakeland, 2004, (Jon Machiesky, Travis Pregnar, Tim Toolan, Tony Prudente) 3:25.0. Elk Lake 3:33.12; Montrose 3:38.14; Riverside 3:41.35; Dunmore 3:49.14; Holy Cross 3:51.18; Carbondale Area 3:51.48; Mid Valley 3:51.76.