Cherokee’s Kelsey Niglio, Kerry O’Day, Megan Niglio and Nicole Clifford teamed up to win the Meet of Champions 3,200-meter relay Saturday in record time.
Cherokee won the race by 110 meters – more than half a track length – over 2nd-place Ramapo, which took second in 9:33.36.
Ridge had won the Meet of Champions 4-by-8 every year since it was added to the Meet of Champions docket in 2017 and set the meet record of 9:14.47 in 2017. The meet wasn’t held last year.
The Meet of Champions title is the first for the Cherokee girls program since Monica Olkowski won the 800 in 1990 at Jadwin Gym in 2:12.45.
Niglio, O’Day, Niglio and Clifford all ran on Cherokee’s Meet of Champions-champion cross country team as well, so they’re now 2-for-2 in M-of-C’s this year.
Cherokee ranks No. 1 in New Jersey and No. 2 nationally this winter with its 9:07.81 at the Bubble last month.
Next weekend, the Chiefs will finally have the chance to run a 4-by-8 on a fast, banked track on Sunday at the New Balance Nationals at the Armory. That’s one of two so-called “national” meets being held in New York next weekend.
On Saturday, Kelsey Niglio led off with a 2:15.0 split, O’Day ran 2:21.4, Megan Niglio 2:22.1 and Clifford anchored unpressed in 2:14.8.