Sunday, November 23, 2008


We went to NCAA Division III Nationals to cheer on Allison, Wash U, and an MXC alumni Eric Holaday. Eric and Allison graduated from Moorestown in 2006. It is amazing that two Moorestown grads worked hard enough to earn the honor of racing at the NCAA's.

It was a fantastic meet. There were about 300 runners in both the Men's and Women's races. And a LOT of fans. We are talking college teammate rabid fans. Running around in 25 degree weather shirtless, some in diapers, most painted with school colors. Here are some of the Wash U faithful who drove 5 hours to cheer on their teammates!
There is a lot ot be said for Division III athletics. It might not get the TV time of a Penn State-Michigan State or Ohio State-Michigan football game, but I can tell you the runners had a great experience. And in spite of their SAT scores, these fans were just as stupid!

More pictures at

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Going to Hanover...

Marlise and I are heading to Hanover to see the NCAA Division III Nationals. I am very, very excited! It looks like Allison, who was the alternate at Regionals last week, may run because Kelly has a bad back. Plus it will be great to cheer on the Washington University Bears! They are ranked 7th. I have to say it was cool to see Allison's name in the program guide.

We get a double treat since Eric Holaday
will be running for Amherst. He was their top runner at Regionals, and they are ranked 12th on the Men's side. It is great to see he was able to progress on after a frustrating high school career where he was limited by stress fractures. Eric ran 16:47 at Holmdel, but had much brighter potential, as he has proven in college!

Friday, November 14, 2008


In the fall of 2005 a new group of runners came out for Cross Country and has arguably been the most infuential class to date on the Moorestown Cross Country Program. Sunday (lightening is on their side of extending their high school XC careers!) is their last Cross Country race in high school.

I started looking back thru some photos earlier today and thought I would create a collage from 2005 and one from this year. It brought back a lot of really good memories.

Three of the Captains this year came from that class, Ben Friedman, Alex Matteson and Ryan Wolff. Dave Fauvell, Tim Simpson and Jon Plaut were a part of that initial class and are still running for the team. Micah Friedman stayed for three years and then went onto football this fall. But this core group was made up of guys who really liked running and guys who knew how to have fun. This led to growth of the team from their freshman year (36 runners to 67 this year).

Friedman, Matteson and Wolff took their training seriously and really helped to popularize year-round running. Friedman leaves with the most accumulated mile of any runner in recent Moorestown history - regularly logging 80+ miles per week (perhpas more impressively he has not missed a day of running in high school). Their dedication has been a great example for the rest of the team.

Fauvell, Simpson and Plaut have chosen not to take the year round path to training, but come out each year and are great parts of making the team who we are. Plaut is one of those guys who came out as a freshman unable to run a mile and has steadily progressed into a very good, solid runner. And they all provide plenty of entertainment to the whole crew.

These core guys were joined their sophomore year by Ringwood, Balch, Josephson, Shah, Ellison, and Mejia. Ringwood has had a stellar career and been a big part of the Varsity 7 since joining the team and became a Captain his Senior year. Balch, Josephson, and Mejia have become some of the very core guys on our team. Balch has improved greatly the past 3 years and made the Championship Squad this year. He and Fauvell also found a new passion with Triathlons where they can combine their running talents with biking and swimming. Josephson has grown tremendously. From early knee aches because of his growth to becoming a solid, steady, competitive Varsity level runner. Mejia is a free spirit who found a level of training and competitiveness that took him to being a real, competitive runner.

2007 brought on a couple of new runners from this class - Wilson, Dwosh and Briggs, while 2008 brought our Shelley, Sexton, Pica, and Thomas. Of course Wilson had enough time and spirit to really embrace the sport. He put in amazing work - 60 miles per week - and has made our Varsity 7. The other guys have come out more to enjoy the sport, and I am hopeful later in life when they go out for a run or pledge to lose a few pounds they will think of their teammates on the Moorestown Cross Country team and what great shape they got into that fall of 2008.

I have good memories of all of these guys. They've helped each other become better runners and have all really represented our 4 guiding principles - Work Hard, Learn, Be a Team, and Have Fun!

Tom Donnelly - Haverford

Great article in the NY Times on Tom Donnelly, the long time XC coach at Haverford.

My favorite quote is "You can only justify the existence of a team at a college campus if being on the team benefits the athletes’ educational experience." I think this goes for high school as well. I know I learned more from XC than any course I took at college...

Saturday, November 8, 2008


Sectionals were held across the state today. There is a very good website that has all of the detailed results. We ran in the South Jersey Group 3 race, and there was some fantastic competition. I decided to take a look around the state. Obviously all courses and conditions are different, but I did a quick listing of all the "quality times" that cover about the top 25 teams (not including prep and private schools).

I may be biased, but it seems like the South has the most quality times with 12 teams. Central and North 1 had 5 each and North 2 had 4. Group 2 has 2 quality teams, Group 3 has 10 quality teams, and Group 4 has 13 quality teams moving on (although South Jersey seems to have 7 in that category).

It will be interesting to see if it was simply the flat Delsea course that accounted for the strong South Jersey performances when all these teams converge on Holmdel next week. Maybe it was the South Jersey Running Companies ;-)

Group 2
Haddonfield - 16:31

Group 3
Ocean City – 16:42
Kingsway – 16:51
Shawnee – 16:56
Moorestown – 17:06
Highland – 17:07

Group 4
Toms River North – 16:43
Cherokee – 16:49
Washington Twp. – 16:54
CH East – 16:55
Southern – 16:57
Not qualifying – Mainland – 16:50, Lenape – 17:01

Group 3:
WWP North – 16:13
Holmdel – 17:11

Group 4:
WWP South – 16:45
Old Bridge – 17:00
Manalapan – 17:03

North 1:
Group 2:
Wallkill Valley – 17:17

Group 3:
Morris Hills – 16:31

Group 4:
Randolph – 16:47
Ridgewood – 16:51
Livingston – 17:11

North 2:
Group 3:
Mendham – 17:22
Millburn – 17:14

Group 4:
Ridge – 17:31
Bridgewater – 17:31

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


I have never been more proud of our country.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

MXC Alumni

We just came back from Atlanta where I got to see my daughter Allison run in the UAA Championship. Her team, Washington University in St. Louis, finished a very close 2nd in an exciting race to Case Western 48-52. Allison ran a nice race, breaking 24 minutes for 6K on a fairly hilly course on an absolutely gorgeous fall day.

The best part was getting to see her. She is doing great - loves Wash U, has great rommates and teammates. My parents also came down to the meet, so it was a real nice time. Meet Results.

I figured I would check to see how other MXC alumni were doing...

Eric Holaday at Amherst was the second man on his team in helping them to a 3rd place in their conference meet. Meet results

Kevin Healey is having a good first season at University of Rhode Island. In spite of some injuries, he was 5th man in yesterday's A-10 conference meet. Meet Results.

Brendan Banks continues to run well at Fordham.

Jess Rogers continues to run at Boston College.

Bri Rogers was part of the Brown team that took 3rd in the Ivy League Championships over the weekend. Meet Results.

Ursinus has three former MXC runners - Stephanie Donatone, Alex Morris and Lauren Goldstein. Stephanie and Alex helped them to a 7th place finish in their Centennial Conference meet this past weekend. Meet Results.

Devin O'Connell is also continuing to run at Towson State.

It is really great to see all these runners continuing into college, and I hope it is a trend that continues for future graduates.