Ethan Wechsler led a deep, fast group around the Bennett Center track for the fastest 3,200-meter run in the state this year Saturday in Toms River.
Wechsler, a Cherokee junior, ran a N.J. #1 9:28.00 to win the Olympic Conference race at the Olympic / Tri-County meet at the Bennett Center.
The race produced three of the four-fastest times in the state this year and some interesting PR’s.
—> Wechsler actually broke both his indoor PR [10:00.31 last year at sectionals] and his overall PR [9:31.06 at the Holmdel Night of 3200s last May] in leading the field across the line. His time is fastest by a Cherokee runner indoors since Keith Krieger ran 9:25.88 for third at the 2003 Meet of Champions and third-fastest overall indoors, behind Marc Pelerin [9:11.78 converted from two miles] and Krieger.
—> Camden Catholic senior Matt Coffey was two strides back in a school-record 9:29.04, which is NJ#2 this year and shattered his indoor PR of 9:47.19 at the same meet last year and was less than three seconds off his overall PR of 9:26.24, from his win last year at Parochial A sectionals.
—> Connor Melko of Bishop Eustace was third in 9:31.56, NJ#4. That’s also an overall PR because it appears to be his first serious attempt at the distance either indoors or out for the 800 / 1600 specialist [1:56.53 / 4:16.20]. Is that a Eustace indoor record?
—> Junior Oliver Adler of Cherry Hill East ran fourth in NJ#8 9:34.97, a huge breakthrough for another runner who is more of an 800 / 1600 guy and hadn’t run any serious 3,200s in the past.
Cherokee junior Chase Miller [9:46.10], Cherry Hill East senior Kyle Krell [9:52.50] and Camden Catholic senior Denny Kelly [9:56.80] also broke 10 minutes.