2023 AAU Junior Olympic Games

AAU Junior Olympic Games Preview: Jumps Edition

AAU Junior Olympic Games Preview: Jumps Edition

Preview The Jumps For The 2023 AAU Junior Olympics

Jul 27, 2023 by Olivia Ekpone
AAU Junior Olympic Games Preview: Jumps Edition

We are less than two weeks away from the start of the AAU Junior Olympic Games.

This year's installment should offer some of its best action yet. 

Below, we've examined multiple areas in the jumps and outlined areas of importance, historical data and more. You'll find our top athletes, our can't-miss event, throwbacks and more. 

Be sure to check out all of our coverage through our meet page. We'll have race and field archives, interviews, daily recaps, videos and much more during meet week. 

In the meantime, check out the top jump storylines below. 


Streaming: You can watch the 2023 AAU Junior Olympic Games LIVE on FloTrack. MileSplit subscribers will need to upgrade to the Universal plan to access the livestream.

Watch Live Link

On Your TV: Now available on Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast and Apple TV.

Cast: Cast to your smart TV, including Vizio, Samsung and LG TVs.

On The Go: Download the FloSports app on iOS or Android


Video footage from the event will be archived and stored in a video library for both MileSplit and FloSports subscribers to watch fro the duration of their subscription. 


Isaiah Whitaker, Bloomington Central Catholic (IL), Class of 2028, 15-16 yo: Whitaker had a meet to remember last year. Not only did Whitaker break a 35-year-old age group record for 14 year olds, but he also set a World Record with a 16 foot, 2 inch clearance in the pole vault. So far this season, the rising sophomore vaulted 16-11.15 (5.16m) to set a personal best at the AAU Central District Qualifier. Whitaker enters the competition as the heavy favorite. In fact, he's the only athlete who has cleared over 15 feet from the regional qualifiers. 

Mya Strahm, Elmwood (IL), Class of 2028: 15-16yo: The reigning Illinois state champion in the pole vault will look to earn her first gold medal at nationals. Strahm cleared 13-0 during the indoor season and has two clearances this spring over 12-0. She was able to set a new lifetime best of 12-5.25 recently at the AAU Region 13 Qualifier. She's the only girl across either the 15-16yo or 17-18yo age groups who has cleared over 12-1 from their regional meet.

Iyanna Webb, Harland (TX), Class of 2024, 17-18yo: The New Balance Nationals Outdoor triple jump champion will look to add another title to her name this summer. She was a quarter of an inch off her personal best in Pennsylvania as she landed in the pit with a mark of 41-8.5, which was good enough to be ranked U.S. No. 4. Last year she leapt to the title with a 40-0.25 mark and was third in the long jump in 18-10.75. Can Webb improve on her best mark at the Games and defend her title?

Juriad Hughes, Irondale (MN), Class of 2024: 17-18yo: The bronze medalist at Nike Outdoor Nationals will return to the AAU Junior Olympic Games for the first time since 2019. Hughes has scored a personal best of 24-11 in the long jump and is currently the nation's fifth-best jumper. 

Taylor Nunez, Randolph (TX), Class of 2025, 15-16yo: Nunez is a heavy favorite going into AAU as she's earned a gold and bronze medal in the sprints in 2022. When it comes to the long jump, no one has been able to beat her since May 2022. The UIL Outdoor Track and Field champion covered a season best at states with a mark of 20-2.5, which ranks her at U.S. No. 13. 


With four boys clearing over 14 feet, 6 inches in the pole vault this spring, the 17-18yo pole vault will be an epic competition. 

William Hagemeier, Jonathan Lee, Heath Hawkins and Gabriel Dupuis all have a chance to walk away as this year's champion. 

But the gentleman who might have the inside lead is Hagemeier. Despite not having his best showing at New Balance Nationals Outdoor, he vaulted over 15-0 three times this spring, including a new personal best jump of 15-6 from the Tennessee Section Championships. 

However, Hagemeier wasn't the only boy this year who went over 15-0 three times this outdoor season.

Look no further than Dupuis. While he hasn't cleared those heights since April, his season has progressively improved after he set a personal best of 15-2.

Hawkins enters the competition with a 14-7 clearance from his regional meet, though he's gone over 15-feet. The rising senior cleared 15-1 in his second outdoor meet of the year.

Lee will be another vaulter in the mix as he cleared 14-6 twice in June. 


Before becoming an All-American at LSU, Morgan Smalls was a two-time AAU Junior Olympic champion in the high and triple jump in 2019.

At North Carolina A&T, the then-Panther Creek (NC) athlete cleared 5-10.75 in the high jump and leapt 41-8 in the triple jump.

Smalls even earned a third-place finish in the long jump with a mark of 19-0.75w.

While wearing the purple and gold this year, Smalls finished fifth in the long jump at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships with a 19-11.75 performance. 


High Jump

9yo Girls -- Essence Kendall, Grandview, MO, 4-4, 2014; 9yo Boys -- Chase Drewery, Waldorf, MD, 4-5.75, 2011; 10yo Girls -- Alexa Harmon-Thomas, Lawrence, KS, 4-10, 2006; 10yo Boys -- Travis Schmidt, Goessell, KS, 5-0, 1987; 11yo Girls -- Stacey Destin, Boynton Beach, FL, 5-0, 2007; 11yo Boys -- Dylan Faulker, Calhoun, GA, 5-2.25, 2015; 12yo Girls -- Stacey Destin, Boynton Beach, FL, 5-6, 2008; 12yo Boys -- David Gonzales, Corpus Christi, TX, 5-8.5, 1991; 13yo Girls -- My'Khiyah Williams, Brooklyn, NY, 5-9.25, 2014; 13yo Boys -- Ashton Allen, Odenton, MD, 6-0.75, 2015; 14yo Girls -- Amy Acuff, Robstown, TX, 5-8.5, 1988; 14yo Boys -- Joshua Harel, Encino, CA, 6-5; 15-16yo Girls -- Vashti Cunningham, Las Vegas, NV, 6-1, 2014; 15-16yo Boys -- Randall Cunningham, Las Vegas, NV, 7-2, 2012; 17-18 Girls -- Susan Lind, Albien, NE, 6-0, 1980; 17-18yo Boys -- James Harris, Birmingham, AL, 7-3.25, 2010

Long Jump

8yo Girls -- Lilyanna Duvra, Ocoee,  FL, 13-8.25, 2021; 8yo Boys -- Joseph Mosbey, Spring, TX, 14-9.75, 2010; 9yo Girls -- Avery Lewis, Philadelphia, PA, 14-11.5, 2014; 9yo Boys -- Pierce Thomas, Indianapolis, IN, 15-7.50, 2012; 10yo Girls -- Mikele Vickers, Antioch, TN, 15-9, 2012; 10yo Boys --Steffin McCarter, Copperas Cove, TX, 16-10.75, 2007; 11yo Girls -- Tierra Crockrell, University Place, WV, 17-2.50, 2012; 11yo Boys -- Derrick McPhearson, Columbia, MD, 18-1, 1997; 12yo Girls -- Avery Lewis, Philadelphia, PA, 17-11.75, 2017; 12yo Boys -- Trevor Tatum, Smyrna, GA, 19-11.25, 2004; 13yo Girls -- Tia Taylor, Philadelphia, PA/Jahnelle Saunders, Hampton, VA, 18-9, 2016; 13yo Boys -- Navarsea Conner, Monroe, LA, 21-2, 2021; 14yo Girls -- Rhesa Foster, Clovis, CA, 19-9.5, 2012; 14yo Boys -- Ja'Mari Ward, Centerville, IL, 22-5, 2012; 15-16yo Girls -- Ychlindria Spears, Luling, TX, 21-1.5, 2000; 15-16yo Boys -- Curtis Williams, Tallahassee, FL, 24-7, 2019; 17-18 Girls -- Roxanne Lawson, Lake Park, FL, 21-10.75, 1996; 17-18yo Boys -- Johnny Carter, Bakersfield, CA, 25-6.5, 2012.

Triple Jump

13yo Girls -- Jada Joseph, Hallandale, FL, 38-0.25, 2016; 13yo Boys -- Isaiah Griffith,  Detroit, MI, 42-5.75, 2011; 14yo Girls -- Ychlindria Spears, Luling, TX, 40-2, 1998; 14yo Boys -- Dapo Akinmoladun, Grandview, MO, 46-11.75, 2008; 15-16yo Girls -- Ychlindria Spears, Luling, TX, 42-1.75, 2000; 15-16yo Boys -- Bryan Delsite, Elysburg, PA, 49-9.50, 1987; 17-18 Girls -- Deanne Davis, Burlington, NC, 42-6, 1996; 17-18yo Boys -- Christopher Carter, Hearne, TX, 52-1.25, 2007.

Pole Vault

13yo Girls -- Jaisan Avery, McKinney, TX, 11-1, 2015; 13yo Boys -- Ben Haywood, Tomball, TX, 11-9.75, 2021; 14yo Girls -- Rhiannon Held, Decatur, IL, 11-7.25, 2017; 14yo Boys -- Adam Coulon, Bloomington, IL, 14-2, 2011; 15-16yo Girls -- Sky Schuller, Coppell, TX, 13-11.25, 2021; 15-16yo Boys -- Isaiah Whitaker, Bloomington, IL, 16-2, 2022; 17-18 Girls -- Heather Abadie, Baton Rouge, LA, 13-11.25, 2021; 17-18yo Boys -- Shawnacy Barber, New Caney, TX, 18-3.50, 2012.


Khloe Washington, Furosity Track (TX) and Kaidyn Holmes-Oliver, Alamo City TC (TX)

Category: 13yo girls long jump

Seed Marks: 18-09 & 18-05

Note: It's going to be a Texas Showdown.

Xavier Drumgoole, Round Rock (TX) and Jaden Smith, Pleasure Ridge Park (KY)

Category: 17-18yo triple jump

Seed Marks: 49-3 & 47-3.50

Mae Kreifel, West Omaha Track (NE) and Liyah Mallett, Severn Highsteppers TC (MD)

Category: 11yo girls high jump

Seed Marks: 4-7 & 4-7

Annalee Gardner, Butler (MO) and Allison Shelton, Ortonville-Brandon (MI)

Category: 17-18yo girls pole vault

Seed Marks: 12-0 & 12-0

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