Pennsauken didn’t finish first in the South Jersey Large-School 1,600-meter relay, but the Indians did win the race.
With Bryce Tucker anchoring in 47.97, Pennsauken ran 3:20.38 – fastest by a South Jersey school this year – in the annual Penn Relays South Jersey Large-School race.
The problem is meet officials mistakenly placed Westwood High from Bergen County in the race, and Westwood won in 3:19.21.
Westwood was scheduled to run in one of the numerous class races but with the meet running 15 minutes ahead of schedule Westwood missed its race, and officials in the paddock placed them in whatever the next race was.
And the next race on the track was the South Jersey Large-School Relay. Which is open only to schools from the seven South Jersey counties – Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester and Salem.
So by no fault of its own, Westwood wound up winning a race that it wasn’t eligible for.
The whole thing was complicated by the fact that the official results listed Toms River North as the winning team, even though TRN wasn’t in the race.
In any case, meet officials quickly declared Pennsauken winner of the South Jersey Relay. Westwood’s 3:19.21 is not currently listed in the ranked 1,600-meter performance list.
Pennsauken’s time is 23rd-fastest of the 416 schools that raced the 4-by-4 Saturday and 5th-fastest among New Jersey schools.
The time qualified Pennsauken for the Philadelphia Area Championship race, which is scheduled for 5:50 p.m. Saturday. Timber Creek and Rancocas Valley also qualified.
For Pennsauken, Nadir Paige led off with a 51.74 split, followed by Premier Wynn, who ran 48.62. Joel Oquendo ran 52.07 to set up Tucker’s anchor leg.
Timber Creek won the Small-School race in 3:26.25, with Haddon Heights [3:28.35] and Willingboro [3:28.78] also under 3:30.
For Timber Creek, Nasir Ali, Robert Wakefield, Zyheem Coleman-Frazier and Austin Brown ran, with Brown anchoring in 49.80.
Masai Byrd, Rahmier Patterson, Antoine Brown and Terrance Howard ran for R.V., with Patterson splitting 49.54.
In the large-school race, Kingsway [3:25.26], Winslow Township [3:27.91] and Washington Township [3:28.45] also ran sub-3:30.