Runners PR by 12 seconds all the time.
In the 5,000 or 10,000. Maybe in the 3,200 if they get a fast race and great conditions.
But in an 800???
But that’s exactly what Collingswood senior Owen Marish did on Saturday.
In his second lifetime 800, Marish won the 800 at the Camden County Championships in 1:56.65. He led Audubon senior Zachary Williams to a 1:57.85, with Haddon Heights senior Andrew Bayna also dipping under two minutes at 1:59.53.
In his only other lifetime 800, Marish ran a hand-timed 2:08.1 in a dual meet three weeks ago at Haddonfield, taking second to Sean Eisenhower, who won the race in 2:06.8.
Marish has run cross country throughout his high school career. He had a solid season this past fall, placing 12th at Group 2 sectionals with a 17:06.90 at DREAM Park in Logan Township.
This spring, in addition to the 2:08, he’s run 4:51.50 in his only 1,600. He did break 10 minutes in the 3,200, placing 48th at the Henderson Invitational in West Chester, Pa., with a 9:59.52.
His time is No. 11 this year in New Jersey and No. 4 in South Jersey, behind junior Kyle Rakitis of Kingsway (1:55.04), Pennsuaken sophomore Bryce Tucker (1:56.07) and Cherokee senior Brett Shea (1:56.60). It’s also fastest in the state this year in Group 2.
His time is the fastest by a Collingswood half-miler – by far – as far back as the MileSplit database goes, which is 20 years. They show Peter Urian running 2:01.00 at the 2011 Haddonfield Invitational.
And I’m willing to bet it’s the fastest time ever by a New Jersey half-miler with a PR over 2:08!