The question wasn’t whether Willingboro would win the sectional title this weekend. It was by how much.
The answer: Would you believe 120 points?
The Willingboro boys scored the second-most points in Central Jersey Group 1 history and roared to their 17th sectional title this weekend at Howell.
State-wide, the only schools with more sectional titles are Metuchen, which has won 26, including 22 of 26 from 1991 and 2016 in Central Jersey Group 1, and New Providence in North 2, which won its 20th this weekend.
Talk about balance: The Chimeras scored 41 points in the sprints, 36 in the hurdles, 20 in the relays, 57 in the jumps and 19 in the throws.
It was an incredible performance by the program with the greatest track tradition in New Jersey.
Willingboro finished with a 173-53 margin of victory over second-place Middlesex. The 173 points are second-most in CJ-1 history only to Metuchen’s 180 in the 2004 meet at Hillsborough.
Willingboro’s 120-point margin of victory is the largest in meet history. The previous record was 113, when Metuchen beat Spotswood 176-63 to win the 1999 Central Jersey Group 1 title at Monmouth Regional in Tinton Falls.
Of Willingboro’s 20 sectional titles, this is only the third in Central Jersey. The Chimeras won the 2003 and 2004 Group 3 titles, also at Monmouth Regional.
Willingboro won South Jersey Group 2 last year, and this is actually only the third time since 1981 the Chimeras have won sectional championships in consecutive years. They won South Jersey Group 4 in 1990 and 1991 with those legendary Gerard Reynolds / Lamont Smith teams and also CJ-3 in 2003 and 2004.
Below is a list of every sectional title the Willingboro boys have won.
And here’s an event-by-event breakdown of Willingboro’s record-setting weekend:
100-METER DASH: Junior Zaire Clements took second in 11.16 and freshman Jaylen Young took sixth in 11.36. 9 points
200-METER DASH: Senior Elijah Valme and Clements ran 1-2 in 22.77 and 22.95. 18 points.
400-METER DASH: Valme (51.11), senior Jayire King (51.48) and Young (52.37) went 2-4-5. 14 points.
110-METER HURDLES: King and seniors Kevin Peterson and Joshua Dorvilus went 1-2-4 in 15.13, 15.56 and 15.75, with only Riverside senior Alex Stockton breaking up a Willingboro sweep. 22 points.
400-METER HURDLES: King won in 57.03 and senior Dinonn Capp was fourth in 1:00.21. 14 points.
400-METER RELAY: Juniors Sheraton Gbeen and Jamaho Kingsley, senior Kevin Peterson and Clements ran 44.27, edging Middlesex by 13-100ths of a second. 10 points
1,600-METER RELAY: The Chimeras won in 44.27, with the team of Capp, King, Valme and Young. 10 points
HIGH JUMP: Juniors Kameron Smith and Nate Robertson both cleared 6-2 for first and second, and freshman Anaias Hughes took fifth with a 5-6. 20 points.
LONG JUMP: Smith went 19-9 1/2 for third place. 6 points
TRIPLE JUMP: Robertson jumped 43-10 for the win, and junior Dontavis Wilson placed sixth with a 40-2 1/4. 11 points.
POLE VAULT: Juniors Wilson and Jason Dingle went 1-2, Wilson clearing 12-6 and Dingle 11-6, and senior Glenn Ferguson took fifth at 11-0. 20 points.
DISCUS: Emmanuel Lewis III, a senior, popped a 151-4 for the win. 10 points.
SHOT PUT: Sophomore Deonte Allen threw 45-8 for second place, and Lewis was sixth with a 43-3 1/4. 9 points.
Here’s a look at all of Willingboro’s sectional titles. Has any other school won a sectional championship in all four groups?
1977 – South Jersey Group 4
1978 – South Jersey Group 4
1979 – South Jersey Group 4
1980 – South Jersey Group 4
1982 – South Jersey Group 4
1986 – South Jersey Group 3
1988 – South Jersey Group 3
1990 – South Jersey Group 4
1991 – South Jersey Group 4
1993 – South Jersey Group 4
2000 – South Jersey Group 3
2003 – South Jersey Group 3
2004 – Central Jersey Group 3
2005 – Central Jersey Group 3
2012 – South Jersey Group 2*
2018 – South Jersey Group 2
2019 – Central Jersey Group 1