Cayden Spencer-Thompson of Lincoln became the first Maine high school triple jumper to exceed 50 feet Saturday during the 29th annual New Balance Nationals Outdoor track and field championships in Greensboro, North Carolina.
The Mattanawcook Academy product finished third in the triple jump with a best of 50 feet, 7 1/4 inches to earn All-America status. He also was an All-American in Sunday’s high jump, tying for sixth place with a best of 6-8 1/4.
Spencer-Thompson, who won Class C state championships in the long, triple and high jumps and New England titles in the long and triple jumps earlier this month, also competed in the long jump at the nationals. He placed ninth in that event Sunday with a best of 6-8¼.
Spencer-Thompson, who will compete on scholarship in track and field at the University of Louisville this fall, had a previous best in the triple jump of 48-10 1/4 as a high school junior when he finished fourth at the 2018 New Balance Nationals Indoor championships.
But he shattered that mark by surpassing 50 feet during the second of his six attempts at his final high school meet, held over the weekend at Aggie Stadium on the campus of North Carolina A&T University.
Spencer-Thompson went on to exceed 50 feet three more times on the day, including his best of 50-7 1/4 on his fourth try.
Judson Forde of Norwalk, Connecticut, won the event at 51-6 1/3.
Spencer-Thompson was even busier Sunday when he competed in both the high and long jumps, which began an hour apart amid temperatures in the upper 80s.
First for the 6-foot-4, 165-pound Spencer-Thompson was the high jump, an event he began to focus on midway through the current season for the first time since his freshman year of high school.
Two weeks after setting a Class C state-meet record with a best of 6-11 — believed to be an all-time best for a Maine high school competitor — to win the high jump at the Class C state championships, Spencer-Thompson posted his best effort of the day on his fourth and final attempt at the nationals to tie Mark Anselmi of Red Bank, New Jersey, for sixth place.
Trey Allen of Birmingham, Alabama, won the high jump at 6-11 1/2.
Spencer-Thompson’s final event was the triple jump, where he posted 24-1 1/2 on his first attempt, just ¼-inch short of his personal best. He took two more attempts before passing on his final three opportunities.
Etaijen Easter of Twinsburg, Ohio, was the national long jump champion at 24-9 1/4.