Around 6 p.m. June 21 at the New Balance high school national championships in Greensboro, North Carolina, Kate Hall Tweeted to the world: “What just happened?”

Minutes later, Olympic gold medalist and U.S. track and field Hall of Fame legend Jackie Joyner-Kersee responded: “@Katehall2043 congrats!”

Hall had just bounded down the long jump runway for the last time in her high school career and leapt into the record books with a jump of 22 feet, 5 inches to win her second national title and take ownership of a 39-year-old national high school record.

Not even Kersee as a high schooler in 1981 could break the record that stood since 1976, and Kersee went on to set the world record in the long jump.

The exchange between the three-time Olympic gold medalist and Hall speaks volumes about what the 18-year-old from Casco has achieved. As of last week, Hall’s historic jump ranked her 15th in the world this year and sixth in the U.S.

Hall broke numerous records (U.S. junior record, Eastern States, New England, Maine all-time) when she surpassed the mark of 22-3 set by Kathy McMillan of Raeford, North Carolina, in 1976. But Steve Vaitones at the USA Track and Field office in Boston said breaking the national high school record sets Hall apart because it was the oldest national high school record in annals that have been kept since 1903.

“U.S. high school record covers almost all the grounds necessary to impress the average fan, and breaking a 39-year-old mark is the exclamation point,” Vaitones noted.

McMillan first captured the national record with a jump of 21-7 in 1975, and then broke her record four more times, surpassing 22 feet twice.

Hall left it to the very last jump of her high school career to surpass 21 feet for the first time.

“She never lets us down,” said her coach, South Portland trainer Chris Pribish.

There was no question Hall would be the Maine Sunday Telegram performer of the year for girls’ outdoor track. She had already set two records at the New England championships. The question was how would Hall end her high school career.

This time, Hall amazed even herself with her come-from-behind win and national record.

“I knew what the national record was. I thought, ‘That’s going to be really hard to break,'” said Hall, who will compete for Iowa State next year. “It’s crazy. I went from 20-11 to 22 feet. I completely skipped 21. That surprised me.”


Kellie Bolduc, Waterville senior, hurdler/jumper: Captured the triple jump (36-1) and finished third in the 100 hurdles (16.16) and fifth in the high jump (4-10) at the Class B meet to help her team to its ninth straight state title.

Alyssa Coyne, Greely junior, thrower: Took sixth at New Englands in the discus (118-8) after winning Class B state titles in the shot put (37-6 3/4) and discus (127-10).

Tori Daigle, Thornton Academy senior, jumper: Took sixth place at the New England championships in the long jump (17-1 1/2). Also won a Class A title in the triple jump (36-13/4) and placed second in the long jump (17-1 1/2).

Kate Hall, Lake Region senior, sprinter/jumper: Set a U.S. high school record of 22-5 in the long jump at nationals and finished third in the 100 (11.37). Set two records at New Englands and won three events at the Class B state meet, including the 200.

Alex Hart, Thornton Academy freshman, sprinter: Finished third at New Englands in the 400 (57.90). Also set a Class A record in the 400 (56.87) at the state championships, won the 200 (25.95) and finished second in the 100 (13.00).

Victoria Lux, Thornton Academy senior, jumper: Finished fourth at New Englands in the shot put (40-6 3/4). At the Class A state meet, she won the shot put (38-3) and took second in the discus (113-1).

Sarah Shoulta, Waterville senior, hurdles: Captured the 100 hurdles (15.77), and 300 hurdles (47.65) at the Class B state championships, and finished second in the pole vault (9-6) to help her team win its ninth straight state title.

Maddie Stella, Noble senior, throws: Won the discus (113-6) at the Class A state meet and finished second in the shot put (37-1 3/4).

Lauren Stoops, Orono junior, sprints: Won the 100 (12.50) and 200 (26.24) as well as the 300 hurdles (46.95) at the Class C state meet.

Tiara Tardy, Mattanawcook Academy sophomore, distance: Took fifth in the 800 (2:14.33) at New Englands. Also won Class C titles in the 800 (in a record time of 2:16.34) and 3,200 (11.39.10).


Rob Stanton, Waterville: Had big shoes to fill following the departure of Coach Ian Wilson, who led the Panthers to eighth straight Class B state championships. Stanton guided Waterville to a ninth consecutive title in convincing fashion.