This Week in SJ Track: The Haddonfield Show

Toms River, NJ:  The John Bennett Indoor Complex played host to the NJSIAA South Jersey Group 1 and 4 Sectional Championships this past Saturday.  The Group 1 competitions had a familiar but never stale result as Haddonfield registered a boys, girls sweep.  

Group 1 Boys:

Haddonfield Frosh Phenoms Bolster Senior Star

Haddonfield won its 3rd straight South Jersey Group 1 Championship this past Saturday defeating A.P Schalick 78.5 to 43.  A.P. Schalick Coach Stephen Pierangeli, whose Cougars 2nd place finish was a staggering improvement from last years 9th place showing, said he, “continue(s) to be impressed by the domination of Haddonfield.”  

The Dawgs were lead Boston University bound Greg Pelose who won the 1600 (4:20.03) and 800 meter (1:57.97) races.  His 800 meter performance was a Haddonfield School Record.  Pelose also scored in the 3200 (5th, 10:14.01) but teammate Colin Gallagher came out on top with his first major championship victory in 10:02.22.  The Senior leaders were bolstered by two freshman phenoms.  Luke Colehower continued his unbelievable freshman season winning the 400 and breaking his own school record with a time of 50.85 seconds.  He returned later in the meet to place 4th in the 55 dash (6.83) and lead off the Dawg’s 2nd place 4×400 relay (3:36.78).  Another Haddonfield freshman made huge contributions to the team victory.  Derek Gess (brother of Briana) came in 2nd to Pelose in the 1600 (4:28.53) and the 800 (2:02.03 PR).  He also capped off the 4×4 his freshmen compatriot sparked.  Other Haddonfield individual scorers included: Brandon Quanci (3200, 4th, 10:13.55); Grady Carr (HJ, T-6th, 5’6); and Sam Rivard (SP, 5th, 42’3).  

A.P. Schalick’s Samuel Gerstenbacher continued to show improvement in the 1600 with his second consecutive sub 4:30 performance and 3rd place finish in 4:29.45.  Gerstenbacher’s teammate Cosmo Pirozzi lead the other qualifiers in 4:40.90.  He was followed by Pennsville’s Zachary Pope (4:42.69), and Haddon Heights Junior Eric “Rice” Rosenheim (4:43.53).  In the 800, Pelose and Gess were followed by qualifiers Giovanni Aracena of Pleasantville (2:02.95), Cosmo Pirozzi of Schalick (204.32), Buena’s Billy Francz (2:07.35), and Tom Bardon of Gateway (2:07.89).  Gerstenbacher was also the first non-Haddonfield finisher in the 3200 where he placed 2nd in 10:05.81.  He was followed by James Snyder of Pitman (10:09.44), Quanci, Pelose, and Adam Quann of Pennsville (10:15.55).  

Jason Staefanski of Penns Grove proved victorious in the 55m Hurdles with a winning time of 7.85 seconds.  That time was 3/10ths of a second faster than his trial time.  He was followed by Kyle McNeely of Audubon (7.96), Jael Hernandez of Schalick (8.38), Thomas Akins of Buena (8.40), Clayton’s Tom Cliver (8.60), and Darius Burden of Woodstown (8.62).  

Audubon Junior Kyle Limbaga won the 55 dash in 6.76 seconds over Schalick’s Julani Carter (6.82).  They were followed by Ramon Bentley of Salem (6.82), Colehower, Julian Norman from Woodstown(6.94), and Haddon Heights Freshman Anthony DeVan (6.95).  In the last track event of the day, the 4×400 relay, Woodstown’s Barius Burden, Jack Danner, Andrew Horner, and Julian Norman teamed up for a 3:36.58 victory over Haddonfield.  They were followed by Audubon (3:40.77), Pleasantville (3:41.14), Penns Grove (3:44.44). and Schalick (3:48.89).

In the field Pleasantville’s Jean Brevil notched a narrow victory in the shot put with a toss of 47’2.  An inch and a half behind Brevil was Avory Ransome of Penns Grove. LaQuay Bishop, also of Pleasantville, finished 3rd with a throw of 45’7.75.  He was followed by Jaquan Solomon of Woodbury (45’3.75), Rivard, and Dae’shawn Robinson of Penns Grove (41’9.75).

Tarik Robinson of Penns Grove defeated Rahsaan Hayes from Woodbury on misses in the high jump.  Both jumpers cleared 6 feet.  They were followed by Glassboro Freshman John Wallace (5’10), Juan Casiano of Schalick (5’8), and Andrew Horner of Woodstown (5’8).  Kyle Limbaga of Audubon and Grady Carr of Haddonfield tied for the last spot and both qualified with jumps of 5 feet 6 inches.

Gateway’s Steven VanderMeer won the pole vault by a foot with a clearance of 12 feet 6 inches.  Woodstown’s Shane Lister (11’6) placed second.  VanderMeer’s teammate Jarrett Bullock was 3rd with an 11 foot clearance and Pennsville’s Spencer Walker placed 4th (10’6).  Trent Lowe of Schalick placed 5th.  He also cleared 10 feet 6 inches.  The final qualifier was Alec Labb of Pennsville who cleared 10 feet.  

Group 1 Girls:

Haddonfield Girls Dominate South Jersey Group 1

If you place in the top 6 at a Sectional Championship two things happen: 1) you qualify for the State Group Meet, and 2) you score a minimum of 1 point for your team.  The Haddonfield girls qualified 15 athletes!  There are 10 events at the indoor sectional meet.  The Haddonfield girls scored in 9!!  If you win an event at Sectionals you earn 10 team points.  The Haddonfield girls won 7!!!  In all Haddonfield scored 124 points and defeated a solid second place Audubon by 85.5 points.  What a day for the Dawgs!  

Haddonfield was lead by Junior star Briana Gess who won every event she entered.  Gess earned victories in the 400 meters (60.24), the 800 (2:19.46), the 1600 (5:03.25), and the 3200 (11:26.1).  Other Haddonfield event winners included Ana Buzzard who set a personal record of 7.46 second to win the 55 dash, Bridget Kane who cleared 4 feet 10 inches to win the high jump, and the 4×400 relay which consisted of Bridget Kane, Kaitlyn Bonnet, Lizzy Mulvenna, and Nicolette Barranger (4:17.33).  

The only non-Haddonfield track victory was registered by Freshman India Norman of Woodstown who had an absolutely dramatic time drop from the trials to the final in the 55 meter hurdles.  She ran 9.59 seconds in the prelims and entered the finals a distant 3rd seed.  In the final she dropped an astonishing 3 / 4 of a second for the victory in 8.84 seconds.  She was followed by qualifiers Rachael Leyrer of Buena (9.31), Audubon’s Danielle Nicklas (9.35), Lizzie Mulvenna of Haddonfield (9.66), and Schalick teammates Avery Bramell (9.69) and Olivia Moore (10.03).

The shot put was won by Sophomore Zyra Thomas of Schalick (36’8) who won by nearly 2 feet over Jennifer Figueroa of Pleasantville (34’10).  Haddonfield Megan Helf was 3rd in 29 feet 10 inches.  She was followed by Gateway’s Gianna Gismondi (29’1.25), Hannah Carr of Haddon Heights (28’4.75), and Na’Tanya Bryant of Woodbury (27’11.5).  

The Pole Vault was won by Rachel Ondricek of Pennsville who outclassed the competition with a 9 foot 6 inch clearance.  The other qualifiers were Haddon Heights Sophomore Morgan Raws (7’6) and Rebecca Martin of Woodbury (7’0).

Following Gess in the 400 meters were qualifiers Rebekah Clark of Pleasantville (61.25), Danielle Nicklas of Audubon (62.23), hurdles champion Norman (62.95), Nicolette Barringer of Haddonfield (63.33), and Woodstown’s Neshani Biegen (64.40). Haddonfield teammate Kaitlyn Bonnet followed Gess in the 800 with a time of 2:22.10.  Other qualifiers included Molly Furlong of Audubon (2:25.03), Meg Schroeter of Haddonfield (2:27.84), Haddon Heights’ Claudia Bowman (2:31.30), and Alyssa Sanders of Pitman (2:33.02).  

Behind Buzzerd in the 55 meter dash were qualifiers Rebekah Clark of Pleasantville (7.51), Gabrielle Dillard of Clayton (7.57), Haddonfield’s Layla Watkins (7.67), Freshman Morgan Bull of Haddon Heights (7.70), and Danielle Nicklas of Audubon (7.74).  In the 1600 meters Haddonfield’s Bonnet placed second to teammate Gess in 5:19.28.  They were followed by Olivia Gerstenbacher of Schalick (5:32.32) whose brother qualified in the boys race.  Other qualifiers included Casey Clarke of Haddonfield (5:37.63), Courtney Catlin of Pennsville (5:38.10), and Buena’s Kristin Siegle (5:42.03).

The 3200 followed the theme of the meet:  It was a Haddonfield affair.  Behind Gess were her teammates Lauren Lynch (12:08.06) and Casey Clarke (12:14.31).  They were followed by Gerstenbacher in 12:15.37.  Between the 1600 and 3200 two families consisted of 33% of the boys and girls qualifiers (Gess’, Gerstenbachers).  Holly Schaffer of Audubon finished 5th in 12:26.20, while Woodstown’s Isabel Gallatig closed out qualification in 12:36.64.  

In the last track event of the day (the 4×400 relay) Haddonfield was followed by qualifiers Audubon (4:19.66), Woodstown (4:20.70), Pleasantville (4:23.06), Buena (4:31.77), and Glassboro (4:31.79).  Alyssa Davis of Audubon just narrowly missed out on victory in the high jump.  Her clearance of 4 feet 10 inches tied for the best performance of the day with Haddonfield’s Kane but Kane squeaked out the win on misses.  Other high jump qualifiers included Tiana Jones of Woodstown (also 4’10), and Claudia Bowman of Haddon Heights (4’6).  The final qualifiers tied for 5th place with a 4’6 clearance.  They were Danielle Swilley of Woodstown and Emily Hagan of Audubon.   
Tomorrow: Group 4 Recap and Haddon Township’s Central Jersey Excursion

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