OVERALL WINNER SETH CLEVENGER LEADS HADDONFIELD TO 19TH STATE XC CHAMPIONSHIP!!!!!

From left to right: Liam Daugherty, Donald Jellig, Tobias Janssen, George Andrus, Seth Clevenger, Andrew Sullivan and Robert DiMedio (courtesy @dawgsxctf)

So much for running cautiously with a short week before Meet of Champions.

Led by individual winner Seth Clevenger, a senior, and with junior George Andrus and Senior Tobias Janssen also in the top 5, Haddonfield blazed to its 19th state XC title – and 11th in the last 15 years – at the rain-delayed state Group 2 championships at Holmdel County Park.

And the Bulldogs did it with one of the fastest team averages in South Jersey history!

The boys Group 2 race was one of three delayed two days because of wind and thunderstorms that tore through Monmouth County Saturday afternoon.

So instead of six days between states and the Meet of Champions, Haddonfield only has three days.

But the notion of two hard efforts in five days didn’t deter Haddonfield, which averaged 16:28 over the challenging Holmdel 5,000-meter layout, the 7th-fastest team average ever run at Holmdel by a South Jersey school and fastest since Kingsway’s 16:22 at the 2017 state Group 4 meet.

Clevenger ran 15:51, a four-second Holmdel PR, and finished 65 meters ahead of senior Jack Tavaglione of Voorhees, who ran 16:04.

He became Haddonfield’s 12th individual state champion but first in 11 years.

Andrus placed third in 16;11 – a 32-second Holmdel PR – and Janssen ran 16:24 – a 27-second Holmdel PR.

Haddonfield then placed its next three runners – all underclassmen – between 12th and 18th. Junior Rob DiMedo ran 16:50, Junior Donald Jellig 17:07 and sophomore Liam Dougherty 17:13. Senior Andrew Sullivan also raced for Haddonfield, placing 48th in 17:59.

Ten of the top 13 runners in the Group 2 race were from South Jersey schools.

Scoring South Jersey vs. the field, South Jersey wins 22-33.

Rapidly improving Cinnaminson with its all-underclass lineup placed second with 88 and Haddon Heights scored 119 for third. This will be Cinnaminson’s first trip to the Meet of Champions since 2008.

Woodbury sophomore Peyton Shute ran 16:27 for 6th and a spot in the Meet of Champions, Haddon Heights juniors Jack Bolling and Colin Patterson placed 7th and 8th, both in 16:31, to qualify for Saturday back at Holmdel, and West Deptford senior Jacob Cobb made it seven South Jersey runners in the top 10 with a 10th-place finish in 16:35.

Juniors Alex Boyko [11th in 16:41], Tyler Schill [16:55] and Matt McCarron [17:17] placed 11th, 13th and 19th for Cinnaminson. Juniors Derek Coceano [17:22] and Patrick Storti [17:39] placed 23rd and 38th.

This was the first 1-2-3 South Jersey sweep in the 101-year history of the New Jersey state championships.

This was the third team Haddonfield and Cinnaminson finished 1-2 in Group 2. They also did it in 2002 and 2008.

Haddonfield also won Group 2 in 1978, 1980, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018 and 2019 and Group 1 in 1985, 1987, 1989 and 1990.

The meet wasn’t contested last year, so Haddonfield has now won four straight state titles. That’s the 7th-longest streak in state history. Haddonfield’s streak of five straight from 2006 through 2010 is tied for 4th-longest.

Haddonfield’s total of 19 state championships is 3rd-most in state history, behind Christian Brothers Academy, which has won 30, and Bernards, which has won 23.

Here’s a look at the top 10 team averages by South Jersey schools in Holmdel history:

16:19 … Mainland Regional, 2003, Meet of Champions [1]
16:19 … Haddonfield, 2010, Meet of Champions [2]
16:21 … Haddonfield, 2001, Meet of Champions [1]
16:22 … Kingsway, 2017, Group 4 [1]
16:25 … Mainland Regional, 2003, Group 4 [1]
16:26 … Cherry Hill East, 2014, Group 4 [1]
16:28 … Haddonfield, 2021, Group 2 [1]
16:30 … Haddonfield, 2018 Meet of Champions [2]
16:30 … Cherokee, 2019 Meet of Champions [4]
16:31 … Cherry Hill East, 2014, Meet of Champions

Clevenger’s 15:51 made him the 4th-fastest Haddonfield runner at Holmdel and the fastest in 11 years.

15:41 … Jon Vitez [Haddonfield], 2009
15:42 … Ben Potts [Haddonfield], 2010
15:48 … Chris Platt [Haddonfield], 2001
15:51 … Seth Clevenger [Haddonfield], 2021
15:54 … Skip Stiles [Haddonfield], 2001
15:55 … Breton Bonnett [Haddonfield], 2001
15:55 … Seth Clevenger [Haddonfield], 2021
15:56 … Jon Vitez [Haddonfield], 2009
15:56 … Ben Potts [Haddonfield], 2010
15:58 … Martin Ridell [Haddonfield], 2019

Here’s a look at all of Haddonfield’s state champions:

1978 … Jim Smith, Group 2 [16:04]
1985 … Dan Gough, Group 1 [16:57]
1986 … Dan Gough, Group 1 [16:24]
1987 ..;. Joe Shanahan, Group 1 [15:36]
1995 … Eric Bonnette, Group 2 [17:13]
1996 … Eric Bonnette, Group 2 [16:43]
2001 … Chris Platt, Group 2 [16:11]
2002 … Chris Platt, Group 2 [16:11]
2007 … Jonathan Vitez , Group 2 [16:20]
2008 … Jonathan Vitez , Group 2 [16:33]
2009 … Jonathan Vitez , Group 2 [15:57]
2010 … Ben Potts, Group 2 [16:09]
2021 … Seth Clevenger, Group 2 [15:51]

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