Kyree Johnson is preparing for what he hopes will be an exceptional senior year at Huntington High School. Already one of the top track athletes in the state, the teenager is vying to join the elite on the national level.
“Kyree is arguably one of the top sprinters in the country and statistically he’s the top 400m runner in the state,” said Ronald Wilson, head coach of the Blue Devil boys’ winter and spring track and field programs.
Johnson excels in the 100m, 200m, 400m, long jump and 4x400m relay. He won NYSPHSAA and State Federation gold medals in the 400m dash.
“Kyree set a new school record in the 400m dash this past spring at the state qualifying meet at Port Jefferson when he finished the event in 47.79 seconds,” Wilson said. “That time also beat out the meet record of 48.50 that was set last year by Hills West.” The teenager went on to improve his record setting time in the 400m dash to 47.75 seconds in June at the New Balance Nationals Outdoor at North Carolina A&T University in Greensboro. Johnson won the Emerging Elite division race in the fastest time recorded by a New York athlete in 2016. (The Emerging Elite is typically filled with underclassmen and is one notch below the championship division that the incoming senior will compete in next spring.)
Johnson raced through the Suffolk League IV schedule unbeaten in the 100m, 200m and 400m dashes. His best time of 10.98 seconds in the 100m dash won the Suffolk Division II title and his 200m time of 22.23 won the 200m dash county crown.
The incoming senior ran the third leg of Huntington’s county, state and national champion 4x400m relay. His best split in the event came at the national championships where he ran 47.17 to help the Blue Devils’ Fabulous Four break a 50 year old New York record by crossing the finish line in 3:10.93 to win the national crown.
“Like his brother, Tyriek Johnson, Kyree has that ‘eye of the tiger’ when it comes to competition,” Wilson said.
One difference between his first three years of high school and Johnson’s senior year will be the absence of teammate Infinite Tucker from the Huntington roster. The duo pushed each other to new heights and were also fierce competitors in long jump. Tucker graduated in June, but his influence on the program and with his teammates will surely remain.
Johnson plans on playing football again in the fall. “I have to stay in shape,” he said. But, there’s no doubt that he places track and field above all his other pursuits.
The teenager is certainly not lacking in confidence. When asked whether he was going to the Olympics one day, Johnson responded nonchalantly, “of course.”