Tuesday, September 27, 2011

MXC Weekly Update - Sept. 26

This Past Week

Home Batch Meet - We had a very successful home meet again this year.  We shifted the course, to very positive results.  We won all of the match-ups:
MXC 21, Holy Cross 40
MXC 18, Maple Shade 43
MXC 22, Bordentown 39
MXC 15, Palmyra 50

On a traditionally slow course (probably about the same as GCC, but a bit faster than Holmdel), we had a number of PR's:  Lavery, Connelly, Martainou, Poaletti (49 seconds!), Novak (55 seconds!), Lee, Kahn (over 2 minutes!!), LaLumia, Schlesinger, Reubel, Kohart, Dugan and Maier.  And we had a number of guys that were close.  We are clearly benefitting from the miles and they will pay dividens over the next few weekends.

Special kudos to Connelly.  Broke 19 minutes for the first time, earning a Varsity letter.  Your consistent, hard work is really a great example for the whole team.

Up top, we were really impressed with Inglis being so tough the last mile and putting away the race, as well as Horten being willing to take a chance and take the lead after the mile point.  Howard showed some resilience to come back in the last mile and Spirgel seems to be rounding into racing shape.

The finish of the day was between Reubel and Kohart.  Freight trains hurtling toward the line, although I am still not sure who won...

Final shout-out to Kramer, who withstood the rath of all the coaches yelling at him because they were so frustrated with the official.  Kramer had unknowingly volunteered to help mark team places - thanks!

Friday Workout - The JV had a track workout on Friday to start to build a bit of speed as they come toward the end of their season the next few weeks.  We did 800's and 400's on the track, working on feeling comfortable at a faster pace.

Saturday Workout - The Varsity headed to Holmdel to get ready for this weekend's Shore Coaches meet.  They did 4 X 1 mile at threshold pace for the first 3 and then worked hard on the last mile.

This Coming Week - 
Tuesday - Batch meet at BCIT Westhamton.  Remember you can get directions to all race locations on our website at http://www.moorestownxc.org/Racing/Directions.html.   Starts at 3:45.

Psych Party Special Collection - Luke Howard will bring a box to every psych party that people can donate non-perishable food items into, and he will take care of the rest, delivering the food to the SJFB center, in Pennsauken.

Saturday - Shore Coaches Championship at Holmdel.  Meet Information is at http://nj.milesplit.com/meets/95925.  Frosh Boys run at 1:10, Varsity is in the B school size Race - at 2:15, and the JV will run the B race as well at 4:35PM.  Expect a late return home! 

Thought for the day:
"It's very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners. Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit." - George Sheehan

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

MXC 2011 Weekly Update - Sept. 20

Special Thanks to the Kramers and Poaletti's for forwarding pictures!  They are linked from www.moorestownxc.org.  You can also see the latest results spreadsheet with VDOT's and PR's there as well.

This Past Week

New Egypt Dual Meet - The team followed the plan.  The guys were grouped based upon VDOTs from Saturday's race, gave them approximate pacing, and urged initial restraint due to the warm, muggy weather.  Regardless, most guys were still out comfortably and looking good.  Horten and Inglis worked together and ran with Andrew Stewart and Kevin Wright from Cinnaminson, quickly separating from the rest of the field.  We had a whole pack next -- the potential strength of the team -- led by Howard, Little Inglis, Spirgel, and Nece.  Mitch Cain, Connelly, Lavery were clinging on.  They came out of the woods the final time looking steady and strong.  The rest of the team -- in spite of encouragement to run together, got pretty strung out.  Guys were working hard but not tightly packed.  Still, effort was there and the results, again by appearance only, looked good.

Some guys jumped up the ladder compared to their Cherokee Challenge times.  Evan pushed out a strong final 300 on the track to come in 4th on the team behind Inglis, Horten and Howard, beating Joe by 4 seconds.  Reed Kramer, who didn't race on Saturday, bounced back from his illness to clearly inject himself into the varsity conversation with a 7th place finish,  30 seconds behind Spirgel but right ahead of Lavery.   And Greg Rothman looks to be gaining back more of his form, finishing as the #1 JVer (and 12th overall, up from 16th best time at CC).  Of course, there was a lot more shuffling as the rest of the field came through, but kudos should also go to Connor Ems and Nick Novak, who passed lots of guys who beat them on Saturday. 

South Jersey Shootout - 
Frosh Races:  Welcome to the true world of XC for the young ones - hills!  Barsoum learned from last week's quick start and ran much more conservatively, leading the frosh in 15:03 and medaling in 22nd place.  He now has to figure out the smart start and the strong 2nd half push to the top.  Mike Macaluso, Mike Ing, Sam Bauscher, and Sam Spirgel followed, not really packed up but not too far apart either.  Macaluso led most of the way before feeling the full impact of the hills.  The others, again out a little more conservatively, looked solid.   Graham and Maier ran much of the way together before Ryan separated to outdistance Nolan, who again displayed a good final surge.

JV:  We have a BIG team.  And, for the most part, they ran with great effort, raced with each other - lots of black and gold packs out there - and found good results.   Lavery led the squad, running a consistent and solid race, passing guys throughout to finish in 7th.   Right on his heals were Sheehan (who was as high as fourth early on, probably getting out too fast in 5:30) and a solid pack of Cain, Caffrey, Rothman, and Martinou.  Klawunn and Orzechowicz ran with them for much of the race, too.   Caffrey and Martinou posted some big life PRs. 
Other noteworthy performances:
·         Dan Poaletti running a strong race, picking up runners the whole time, to PR in 20:16.
·         Vincent Lee quantifies his improvement, knocking 33 seconds off his life PR
·         Greg Munilla starting very slowly, but picking up steam the entire race and looking as fresh as anyone crossing the line.
·         Stephen Burke showing off the speed on the final stretch, finishing in 22:02, a PR by 17 seconds.
·         Andrew Moorer running 45 seconds faster yesterday on 5k of GCC's hills than he did on 4700m of flat New Egypt course.  A little experience goes a long way.
·         Jon Pollock finished a 5k without his knee killing him!
·         David LaGatta led another pack to some strong finishes as well.  He, Dugan, Reubel (who will love the 800 after this XC season!), Kohart, and Gross all ran the entire race together.  Great push to the finish line, too.  Big PRs for LaGatta and Gross.  Gross knocked almost two minutes off! 

5,6,7 Race:   Joe Inglis ran a fist-pump worthy race - looking cool, calm, and collected as he cruised to a big PR (18:07 from last year's 18:40) and a 9th place finish.   Jack Spirgel ran well, too, although he let Joe go early and never was able to make up the difference.  He finished in a respectable 18:17.  Reed Kramer proved he belonged in the Top 7, running a smart and consistent race to finish in 18:43.   All three ran strong tactical races - no one got caught up in the fast start, all ran with strength through the hills, and finished well.  Great building block for the rest of the year.

3,4 Race:  As often happens, after watching the 5,6,7 guys run well, the 3,4 guys rose to the raised expectations.  Luke Howard ran a wonderful race, starting comfortably (he was in the 30s at the 800) but slowly and strongly moving up the fast field the entire race.  He closed to 14th with a powerful kick, finishing in 17:45, nearly 45s faster than last year's PR and 1:30 faster than last year's time at the Shoot-out.  Who says summer mileage doesn't pay off?  Evan ran with Luke until the hills, where he slowly let him go.  To his credit, he rallied over the last mile and closed confidently with a strong kick, picking four or five runners in the final 400.  His 18:16 is a life PR (imagine that) and, more importantly, a strong step forward.  He faced down a crisis on those hills and came out strong.  Bodes well for the future!

1,2 Race:  Jack Inglis was on his way to a big break out race - rising up as high as #9  (he was 25th at the 800) and running with confident comfort - until he ran out of gas after the hills.  He dropped a couple of places but rallied to hold onto 14th by the finish.   Right behind him?   Kevin Horten, who looked great, again out conservatively and picking up guys the entire time.  A 17:17 is a big step up from him and his 16th place finish definitely earns the stud label.

Overall, a good day.  Lots of kids took steps forward.  Many had their first XC experience on the hills of GCC, gaining some valuable experience.  And the entire Top 7 had positive races to build on as we go forward.  What to complain about?   Well, Ringo talked way too long at the awards ceremony.  But it was Ok because not only did we get two kids on the podium, but the GIRLS TEAM WON!   Denning got to give a speech.  I wanted to cry....

This Coming Week - 
Tuesday - Our HOME Batch Meet!  Come out and cheer the team on.  Starts at 3:45.

Saturday - No meet.  We may take the Varsity level guys to Holmdel - details at practice.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

MXC Weekly Update Sept. 13

This Past Week
Overall, we are happy with the day.  Given where we are, the guys ran great races.  Lots of conservative starts and strong finishes.  Lots of guys coming off the course talking about all the runners they picked up over the second mile and feeling like they had more to give.   Given our training and lack of emphasis on speed, I thought that was promising.  

Noteworthy performances: 

1.  The Inglis Brothers:  Joe got out strong, ran steady through the middle mile, and continued to pick up runners right to the end.   He kept Kevin in sight and cut 30 seconds off his 2 mile time trial time.  Jack followed suit in the senior race, running like a #1.  Out strong (but not foolishly).  He was 25 at the 800, held steady through the mile, and picked up 10 guys over he last half of the race.  Look collected and strong throughout.  

2.  The Solid Seniors:  Evan Nece, Jack Spirgel, Mitch Cain, Mike Connelly:  While Lavery and Sheehan were a little off, the rest of the crew ran good races.   Following instructions, they were out slow -- maybe a little too slow -- but picked up steam throughout the race and finished strong, picking off lots of runners as they went.  Times are good, but the promise is better.   Looking forward to bigger things as they continue to get stronger and push harder. 

3.  The Bounce Backs --  Greg Rothman, Spiro Martinou:   Although he said he is feeling much better, I am still impressed with Rothman's performance given the roller coaster health ride he has been on over the last two seasons.  And Spiro, while not improving on his time trial time, still looks infinitely better now that he is healthy again.  Evan Nece could get an honorable mention, here, too. 

4.  The Flashes:  As in, flashing some potential.  Corey K (12:07), Mike O (12:16), Devin C (12:37), Connor Ems (12:43), and even Hillman (12:53) ran aggressively and well, all finishing much improved over their time trial times and pushing themselves up the depth chart.  They now sit right outside the top 12 and one only wonders how good they could be if they got serious about summer mileage.   Carrigan could also fall into this category.  He was a little slower, but still chopped 1:26 off his time trial time to finish in a respectable 12:58. 

5.  Frosh Figuring it Out:  In their second races, several of the young guys really stepped up time wise from their track time trial.   Micro Spirgel (-2:02 to 13:18), Macaluso (-2:55 to 13:26), Ing (-1:49 to 13:46), and Graham (-2:00 to 14:49) all ran markedly better the second time around.  Their leader, Barsoum, roared off the start line a little too quickly, seemed to struggle soon after, before crossing the line first for our frosh squad in 13:02, about 30 seconds slower than the track time. 

6.  Rounding into Shape:  Like some of the frosh, many of our older guys are in much better shape now than they were when practice started in August.  Carrigan (-1:26), Voyack (-1:20), Handlan (-1:05), Burke (-1:06), Burns (-1:45), Coneby (-1:19), LaGatta (-1:41), Malta (-5:03!!), and Charlie S (-1:12) all dropped over a minute.   Overall, 30 runners improved on their time -- to be expected, but good none the less. 

7.  Vincent Lee:  Special shout out to Vincent, who I've been impressed with.  A senior who has come in running more than ever continues to make strides.  He hoped to break 14 minutes (topping last year's CC time of 14:33).  After racing down the back stretch chasing two guys, he crossed in 13:14!   A just reward for a guy who is doing all he can to max out his potential.  The moments I live for! 

This Coming Week - 
Tuesday - Batch Meet at New Egypt

Saturday - South Jersey Shootout.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

MXC Weekly Update Sept. 3

Special - MXC Apparel
Mrs. Testa has again organized a special ordering of MXC apparel.  This is separate from the Uniform program, and offers everyone a chance to get some cool MXC logo gear.  You can print off this webpage - http://www.moorestownxc.org/2011/XCApparel2011.jpg.  Either bring it to a coach or drop it off at the Moorestown Running Company.  All orders are due this Tuesday, Sept. 6.

This Past Week
Trail Work - Thanks to everyone who came out and helped spread the chips before the big storm!  They mostly stayed in place.  Later in the season we will do a refresh from the piles we left remaining.  It was a quick 2 hours, gave us a break from running for a day and we even got donuts!

Workouts - We focused again on accumulating miles this week.  We are really impressed with a lot of guys.  The high mileage group looks very strong.  We got a bit of speedwork and cross training in on Thursday with Frisbee.  On Saturday the high mileage guys did a 4.2 mile tempo workout designed to build strength as well as learn how to run in packs.  The rest of the team did 1000 meter Thresholds.  

We were very happy with how well the top guys were able to run in packs and focus on negative splits.  Inglis looked very strong, and Horten was able to hang with him for splits of 9:00, 8:55 and 8:35 - perfect way to run.  Nece also looked great and the concept of running in packs proved very useful to Howard, who was able to gut it out and run right with him.  Lavery led the third pack with Joe Inglis and Connolly hanging tough.  This whole group, including Sheehan, really shows the great work they did this summer.  We can't talk about PR's and most improved until late in the season, but it has to be noted just how much Connolly has improved - his consistent long miles this summer are paying off.  It was a shame Spirgel and Kramer could not have been there.

The Threshold group also looked really good.  Caffrey and Martainou were simply cruising at the top of the group and should be considered potential contenders for the Varsity 7.  It was great to see Klawunn, Ems and Devin Connolly also having good, solid workouts.  Newcomers Novak and Voyack also both looked like they have some interesting potential.  The best thing was seeing good, consistent effort from everyone.

You can read about the type of workouts we do  at http://www.moorestownxc.org/Training/TrainingPhilosophy.html.  Again, we are focusing on building the basic cardio system this year.  You can read more about that here - http://www.moorestownxc.org/Training/RunningPhysiology.html. 

Logging Miles - We have a Uniform Program, where runners can earn uniforms, shirts and even sweats.  To earn a uniform (that you keep for the 4 years you run), runners must complete 100 miles.  T-Shirts are awarded at 250 miles, 500 miles, 1,000 miles and every 1,000 miles after.  That is based on total cumulative miles during a runner's career on the team.  We also award full sweats with embroidered name for runners who run over 500 miles from June 1 thru the Turkey Trot.  We are using a new log program this year - you must signup to be part of the MXC Club and then you will get weekly assignments as well as be able to log your miles.  We are using this effective for all miles after June 1.  You do not need to transfer Voomaxer miles - we will keep track of those.  Go to
https://www.runclubsignup.com/Club/NJ/Moorestown/MoorestownBoysCrossCountry and
join the club and start logging miles.

This Coming Week - 
We meet on Monday at 8AM, and then the rest of the week we shift to the afternoon at 3PM.  

Cherokee Challenge - Saturday is our first meet.  You can learn more about it at http://www.ccctf.com/ch_chal_main.html.  It is a great meet where there is a different 2 mile race for each class - Frosh, Soph, Jr and Sr.  We strongly encourage parents and family to come out and cheer for their favorite runners!  It is a blast, and even if your son says he doesn't want you - tell him Bickel said you were allowed to come ;-)
Eagles, Cote & Bickel