Sunday, September 16, 2012

MXC Weekly Updates Sept. 16

This Past week
This week marked the start of the racing season!  On Tuesday we got our Batch Meet season started with solid wins over Delran (21-40), Bordentown (17-44), New Egypt (18-50), BCIT Westhampton (15-50). Bordentown and Delran took the pace out quickly the first mile, and our guys settled into a set of packs running together, staying calm, and knowing the race was a full 5K.  Horten and Inglis went 1-2 with very, very fast times (that might have been courtesy of a somewhat short course).  We had a full minute gap between our 1 and 5 runner, which will need to come down by the end of the season to be as competitive as we want to be in the big meets.

We had nearly 30 new guys, who were "initiated" into the world of XC, and it was a great learning experience.  Everyone across the board has made a lot of progress from those time trials we did in August.

On Saturday, we went to the Cherokee Challenge.  This is a HUGE race with over 2,500 runners this year.  Each race had 300+ runners on the starting line, so the guys got some great experience in a fast, crowded start that will pay off down the line.  It is really not our kind of race, as our team really trains for the full 5K (3.1 miles).  A lot of our guys, including Horten and Kramer, got caught off guard by the fast start and were in 80th+ place after 600 meters, with no room to pass people in the back woods.

The Frosh got the day off to a very fast start.  Morris was 5th, Schneider was 12th and Cramer was 25th - all bringing home medals. Dyer, Boyle and Argentieri all broke 13 minutes as well - laying the foundation for the fastest freshman class we have ever had.  Hill and Feldon both improved over 2 minutes from their 2 mile time trial, while Topel and Klawunn ran a faster pace over 2 miles than they were able to do a mile on the track at the beginning of the season!  The improvement is what we strive for on this team, and it has been outstanding!

We have a small Sophomore class, but the improvement there has been just as impressive. Bauscher, Spirgel and Graham all improved over a minute, and Infanger and Voyack both improved by over 2 minutes from their time trials.

We had 29 Juniors and 11 seniors "toed the line". Inglis ran a superb race and also brought home a medal with a 14th place finish. LaLumia, Hillman, Topel, Entwhistle, Waldin, Voyack, Handlan, Moorer, Schafhauser, Dugan, Elia, and Spirgel all had over 1 minute improvements from their time trial.

I wanted to highlight two seniors, Siegel and Klawunn. First, they both ran very good, solid races - picking up runners the whole way. Second, I wanted to give some perspective to the power of the hard work they have put in over the past 4 years and this summer. Their freshman year, Siegel ran 12:37 and Klawunn ran 12:52. Yesterday they ran 11:00 and 11:19.  Neither are naturally "talented" runners, but the thousands of miles they have done in high school have brought them to the point that they are key contributors and leaders on the team. Congratulations to both of them!

This Coming Week
Meet at BCIT Westhampton (again). The bus will leave right after school from the front of the MAC center. The gun will go off sometime between 3:45 and 4:15. Northern Burlington is our big competition in our league this year, as usual. This will be a tight race, so we can use all the support we need! Taking the times from Cherokee, they beat us 27-30 head-head.

Also make sure to take a look at Pre-Race Preparations on our website -  The big two things to remember are run in packs and respect your competitors.

South Jersey Shootout. This is a fun race with separate events for Frosh, JV and a 1-2 race, a 3-4 race and a 5-6-7 race. We will have to determine who is running in those during the week. Bus departure time will be announced during the week at practice.

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