Billy Clewell edges Patrick Ditmars for individual title; Cherokee races to team title at Olympic Conference Championships!!!

Camden Catholic senior Billy Clewell edged Cherokee junior Patrick Ditmars for the individual title but Cherokee placed six runners in the top 14 and ran away with the team title Wednesday at the Olympic Conference XC Championships.

Clewell ran 15:46, 3rd-fastest ever on the 5,000-meter DREAM Park course in Logan Township. Cherokee’s Ethan Wechsler ran 15:12 at the 2019 Olympic Conference meet and Nick Loffredo of Manchester Township ran 15:40 earlier this month at the South Jersey Open.

Cherokee won its fifth title in six years by packing its five scorers in 40 seconds and averaging 16:22 at Dream Park.

Ditmars placed 2nd in 15:56, seniors Joe Natoli and Bradley Popler took 5th and 6th in 16:24 and 16;25, and junior Conor Jacob ran 8th in 16:30 and sophomore Robert Poplau was 12th in 16:36, backed up by junior Thomas Bromley in 14th in 16:42.

The Chiefs outscored 2nd-place Washington Township 33-79, with Cherry Hill East 3rd with 101 points and Lenape fourth at 107.

Others in the top 10 included Lenape senior Jake Buniva [3rd in 16:01], Washington Township senior Chris Colavita [4th 16:16], Lenape senior Justin Penny [7th 16:29], Eastern sophomore Owen Karcsh [9th 16:31] and Lenape junior Colin Hermack [10th 16:31].

Cherokee’s 16:22 average is 3rd-fastest ever at DREAM Park, behind Cherokee’s 2019 team [16:00 at Olympic Conference meet) and 2018 team (16:14 at Olympic Conference).

here’s a look at all the sub-16:50 times (I think) since the inception of the DREAM Park course:

16:00 … Cherokee, 2019 [Olympic Conference Championships]
16:14 … Cherokee, 2018 [Olympic Conference Championships]
16:22 … Cherokee, 2021 [Olympic Conference]
16:23 … Cherry Hill East, 2019 [Olympic Conference Championships]
16:32 … Cherry Hill East, 2020 [Olympic Conference Championships]
16:34 … Haddonfield, 2020 [S.J. Group 2]
16:35 … Cherokee, 2020 [Olympic Conference Championships]
16:38 … Cherry Hill East, 2020 [Olympic Conference Batch Meet]
16:42 … Washington Twp., 2020 [Olympic Conference Championships
]
16:43 … Cherokee, 2020 [Olympic Conference Batch Meet]
16:46 … Cherry Hill East, 2021 [South Jersey Open]
16:47 … Washington Twp., 2020 [Olympic Conference Batch Meet]
16:47 … Cherokee, 2020 [S.J. Group 4]
16:48 … Haddon Heights, 2021 [South Jersey Open]

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