Pleasantville’s Gabriel Moronta runs huge 800 PR and S.J. #1 to win first state title!!!

Now, THAT’S a PR!

Gabriel Moronta lowered his 800 PR more than 2 1/2 seconds Saturday on his way to his first state title.

The Pleasantville junior ran away from the field with a 1:56.71 to win the state Group 2 800-meter run title Saturday at the Bennett Center in Toms River.

That’s No. 1 this year by a South Jersey half-miler and No. 4 in the state and No. 7 in Atlantic County indoor history, with six of the top-nine times in Atlantic County history coming from Pleasantville runners.

Moronta’s previous PR was a 1:59.48 at a meet at the Bennett Center in January. HIs fastest last year was a 2:02.44 outdoors and a 2:03.84 indoors, so he’s shown tremendous improvement this year at the Pleasantville 800 Factory.

On Saturday, Moronta led three runners under two minutes, with Matawan’s Dylan LoPresti second in 1:57.54 and Haddonfield’s Derek Gess third in 1:58.00.

Moronta was also fourth in the 400 with a personal-best 50.42 — his first time under 51 seconds indoors or out — and ran on P’ville’s third-place 1,600-meter relay time, which ran 3:29.47. Benjamin Clark, Kinderson Cajuste and Quentin Bundy joined Moronta on the 4-by-4 team.

1:51.52 … Jacob Clark [Pleasantville], 2013
1:51.72 … Isaac Clark [Pleasantville], 2013
1:53.51 … Alan Laws [Pleasantville], 2007
1:53.68 … Ishmael Muhammad [Oakcrest], 2013
1:55.13 … Joe Lewis [Pleasantville], 1998
1:56.43 … Eric Barnes [Egg Harbor Twp.], 2017
1:56.71 … Gabriel Moronta [Pleasantville], 2019
1:56.73 … Dan Galeano [Absegami], 2010
1:56.77 … Larry Ramirez [Pleasantville], 2010

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