A year ago, Richie Castañeda edged Connor Melko of Eustace to win the individual race at the Bob Kiessling meet, but Bishop Eustace won the team title by four points over Camden Catholic.
This year, Melko edged Castañeda for the individual win, but Camden Catholic won the team title.
So Melko and Castañeda, two of South Jersey’s top seniors, now each have an individual win and a team title.
Castañeda edged Melko by seven seconds to win the 2017 individual race, but Eustace won the team title by four points.
On Saturday, Melko finished 26 seconds ahead of Castañeda, but Camden Catholic outraced Paul VI and Eustace for its first title in meet history.
Camden Catholic’s 35-36 win over PVI was the first at the Kiessling meet in school history, after four second-place finishes. Eustace finished third with 64 points.
Castañeda led six Fighting Irish runners in the top 13, and that sixth runner — senior Max Baier — was huge, because he finished two spots ahead of Paul VI’s fifth runner, which made the difference in the final team score.
Through four runners, Paul VI led 21-23.
Castañeda ran 16:21 over Delsea’s flat 5,000-meter course, senior Matt Coffey was fifth in 16:41, senior Ray Derman placed seventh in 16:46, senior Denny Kelly was ninth in 17:04 and junior Matthew Denton and Baier ran 17:15 and 17:23 for 12th and 13th.
Camden Catholic was second to Holy Cross in 1979 [39-52], Paul in 1987 [15-52], Moorestown Friends in 2007 [46-86] and Eustace last year [37-41.
Senior Matthew Slattery [4th in 16:28], senior Ryan Tenerelli [5th in 16:38], junior Colton Johnson [6th in 16:42], senior Tyler Gargano [8th in 16:50] and senior Ben Jennings [16th in 17:28] scored for Paul VI.
Also in the top 10 was sophomore Mark Johnson of Moorestown Friends [10th in 17:06].