A year for the small schools! Heading into the 2014 Meet of Champion the top Holmdel performance was a 15:40 from Craig Corti's Group 1 Championship win for Wallkill Valley over Luke Petela of Haddon Township.
Nikhil Pulimood ran 15:44 to win the Group 4 title, Blaise Ferro 15:51 in the Non-Public A, Aaron Groff of Cherry Hill East, Matt Grossman of Millburn, Shawn Hutchison of Bishop Eustace all under 16 minutes from Groups as well.
Come race day there was still a strong pack of nine battling for the lead together. The lead runners coming up the bowl looked like a wave of rush hour on the Parkway commute. At the two mile mark Corti made his push to break away but he didn't lose Pulimood, Hutchson, or Petela as they were all still in contention come the back woods with a half mile to go.
When the lead four popped out of the woods it was a kickfest for the ages, part of that title went to the crowd roaring down the hill to catch the finish as well. Hutchison had a step on Petela out of the woods but Petela was not a runner to leave on your shoulder late in the race and he powered ahead to win an extremely exciting Meet of Champions clocking 15:40.
Pulimood nabbed second with meters to go at 15:42, Hutchison 15:43, Corti fourth at 15:52. Leland Jones of Summit, 15:53, and Dominick Munson of Timber Creek, 15:56, also cracking 16 minutes.
The team race went to Christian Brothers Academy with 82 points led by Blaise Ferro in 18th at 16:13, scoring nine points. They averaged 16:24 and split a remarkable 21 seconds between their scoring five!
South Brunswick was second with 113 points, Cherry Hill East third at 126.
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