Wechsler leads all-underclass Cherokee boys to impressive win at Olympic Conference championships!!!!!

Individual winner Ethan Wechsler led three Cherokee runners among the first four finishers to lead Cherokee to its fourth straight Olympic Conference XC title and 11th overall.

Wechsler, a junior, covered the 5,000-meter course at Dream Park in Logan Township in 15:41 Wednesday, finishing 50 meters ahead of Bishop Eustace senior Connor Melko for the  title.

This is the third straight year and eighth time in the last 18 years a Cherokee runner has won the individual title.

Cherokee, ranked No. 2 behind Haddonfield in South Jersey and No. 4 in the state, outscored second-place Camden Catholic 28-90.

Juniors Chris Spisak and Chase Miller finished third and fourth for Cherokee in 16:01 and 16:17, sophomore Brett Shea ran 16:29 for seventh, and junior Michael Gavio made it five runners in the top 13 with a 16:43.

Junior Tyler Jackson backed up Cherokee’s five scorers with an 18th-place finish in 16:48, and sophomore Nico Grilli nearly made it all seven runners under 17 minutes when he placed 26th in 17:02.

Scoring Cherokee against the entire field, Cherokee goes 1-3-4-7-13 and the field goes 2-5-6-8-9 for a 28-30 Cherokee win.

Cherokee averaged 16:14, which is fast no matter how flat the course is.

Also in the top 10 were Washington Township senior Austin Milou [5th in 16:23], Camden Catholic senior Richard Castaneda [6th in 16:26], Cherry Hill East junior Oliver Adler [8th in 16:33], Washington Township senior Evan Chu [9th in 16:34] and Camden Catholic senior Matt Coffey [10th in 16:36].

Cherokee, which joined the Olympic Conference in the fall of 2000, previously won Olympic Conference titles in 2000, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Here’s a look at Cherokee’s individual winners:

2005 … Greg Bredeck, 16:05 [Gloucester County College]
2006 … Alex Yersak, 15:58  [Gloucester County College]
2007 … Alex Yersak, 16:38  [Gloucester County College]
2011 … Shawn Wilson, 15:41 [Gloucester County College]
2012 … Shawn Wilson, 15:25 [Gloucester County College]
2016 … Jack Shea, 15:44  [Gloucester County College]
2017 … Justin Kelly,15:37 [Gloucester County College]
2018 … Ethan Wechsler, 15:41 [Dream Park]

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