Boys highlights from the Manhattan Invitational. If you would like a New Jersey only merge check out this article!
Eastern States - Full Results
Blaise Ferro (blue singlet) and Edwin Rutto (white singlet) coming down with about 500 meters to go. / Photo by Steve Pisano
This was it, the showdown many around New Jersey and the country had been waiting for. We had a heavy talented field in terms of teams and individuals, not only between New Jersey elites but on the national rankings scale as well. Edwin Rutto of St. Benedict's Prep and Blaise Ferro of Christian Brothers Academy faced off on the Van Cortlandt 2.5 mile course and Rutto won this decision with a big kick the last 600 meters. Rutto made the move to pass Ferro just after 600 meters to go, right where I was taking photographs. Rutto would finish in third with a time of 12:15 while Blaise Ferro would take fifth with a 12:21. Both juniors had great races as Ferro improved his 2013 time by almost 15 seconds while Edwin Rutto hit a course best by around 55 seconds! When comparing fellow NJ times on Saturday they posted the two best performances of the meet.
Some other great individual performances from this section were posted by Aaron Groff of Cherry Hill East and Craig Corti of Wallkill Valley. Aaron Groff placed 11th in the Eastern States race with a time of 12:29. Craig Corti right there in 15th with 12:32. They would have the third and fourth best New Jersey performances of the meet.
On the team front I'm going to type something I'm not used to typing, CBA didn't win. They were gearing for a big rematch with Fayetteville-Manlius (FM) who they defeated in 2013 while breaking the team course average record at 12:44 and outscoring FM 90-114. This year FM not only won the meet with 80 points but destroyed the team average record with a 12:32 average. The US#1 NJ#1 Christian Brothers would have to settle for fourth place with 215 points and a still impressive team average of 13:01. Right behind them was NJ#4 Cherry Hill East in fifth with 235 points and a team average of 13:04. NJ#2 Don Bosco Prep came in behind Cherry Hill east in 10th with 303 points and a team average of 13:16.
Vasirty A - Full Results
Austin Stoner of Haddonfield thunders it home with just over 400 meters to go! / Photo by Steve Pisano
The Haddonfield boys continue to impress in 2014. Individually Haddonfield and NJ were led in the Varsity A race by Austin Stoner in second place with a time of 12:54. He improved his course best run in 2013 by almost 16 seconds and it was the eighth best Jersey performances of the meet. We had many great individual performances in the top 15 here. Samuel Layding of North Hunterdon finished fourth with a 13:00, Matt Grossman of Millburn sixth with 13:04, Chad Evans of Haddonfield 9th with 13:07, Dan Brennan of Haddonfield in 13th with 13:16, Chris Stone 14th 13:18, and Colin Gallagher 15th 13:20.
On the team side Haddonfield won the race with a dazzling 46 points and a team average of 13:08, the second best Jersey team performance only seven seconds behind CBA! All five of Haddonfield's scoring runners were in the top 15.
Varsity B - Full Results
Paul Ehmann of Mendham took second in Varsity B on Saturday. / Photo by Steve Pisano
Paul Ehmann of Mendham continues to roll! He placed second for New Jersey in this race at 12:49, only three seconds off Michael Grady first place 12:46 performance for East Meadow. That was a course best for him by 13 seconds! Also in the top 15 for Jersey was Jordan Earlywine of Delbarton who ran 13:14, he just had a victory at Shore Coaches as well. Elliot Gindi of Ocean Twp in eighth with 13:17, and Joey Defeo of Delbarton in 14th with 13:26.
Team wise Mendham did some work placing second with 134 points to first's 121 and a team average of 13:41.
Varsity C - Full Results
Shawn Hutchison and Leland Jones battle on the final stretch. / Photo by Steve Pisano
We have a Jersey winner in this race! Shawn Hutchison of Biship Eustace ran a 12:35 to win! The fifth best Jersey time from the meet. Right behind him was Leland Jones of Summit in second with a 12:36 and the sixth best Jersey time. Also in the top 15 for the Garden State: Mitchell Booth of Summit seventh13:17, Zack Csipkay of Colts Neck 11th 13:22, and Jordan Brannen of Colts Neck 14th 13:25.
We performed very well on the team side with the NJ#8 Summit Boys winning with 98 points and a team average of 13:28. They had the fifth best Jersey team performance according to the merge. The Colts Neck boys took third as a team with 128 points and an average of 13:40. Seventh as a team in the NJ merge.
Varsity D - Full Results
Will Delaney of St. Peter'ss Prep with a huge kick to finish the race. / Photo by Steve Pisano
Jersey was led by Will Delaney of St. Peters Prep in the Varsity D race. Will placed 13th with a time of 13:28, right behind him was teammate Brandon Parrado in 15th with 13:31.
The St. Peters boys of Jersey City placed sixth as a team scoring 163 points and posting a team average of 13:58.
Varsity E - Full Results
Patrick Castro (left) battles home in the Varsity E. / Photo by Robert Kellert
The leader in this race for us was Patrick Castro of Elizabeth HS. He finished 19th with a time of 13:55. As a team Elizabeth would finish seventh with an average time of 14:20 and 214 points.
Varsity F - Full Results
Aaron Barlev of Holmdel ranked 9th among Jersey runners on Saturday. / Photo by Steve Pisano
A solid amount of top performances here. Aaron Barlev of Holmdel nabs a third place finish with a time of 12:54, ranking him ninth among Jersey athletes at the meet. Senior Mike Marano of Middletown North took fourth with a personal course best at 13:09. Also in the top 15 were Adam Herskovits of Wayne Valley in sixth at 13:23 and Nick DeMaio of Holmdel in 10th at 13:28.
On the team side the Middletown North squad didn't put Marano's awesome finish to waste as they scored second as a team with 121 points and an average of 13:49. That team performance would rank 10th among Jersey teams in the merge.
Varsity G - Full Results
Owen Long on the final stretch. / Photo by Robert Kellert
Owen Long of Haddon Twp placed third in group G with a time of 12:56. Right behind him in fourth was Joshua Clark of Highland Regional with 12:58. These two teams would keep rolling after their leaders with many athletes in the top 15: Ryan Carroll of Highland Reg 8th 13:24, Jose Figueroa Highliand Reg 12th 13:34, Mike Tanier of Haddon Twp 13th 13:35, Randy Ladd of Haddon Twp 14th 13:40, and Zach Samalonis of Highland Reg 15th 13:43.
Those high places would lead Highland Regional to a team title with 78 points and an average of 13:33. Jason Leonardo rounded out their top 5 with a 39th place finish at 14:05.