Lara Cota and Marco Langon took down the course records and a parade of runners threw down huge personal best times on a super fast day of racing at Saturday's Bernie Magee Class Meet at Oak Ridge Park in Clark.
Cota, a senior a Summit, and Langon, a senior at Bridgewater-Raritan, each smashed the course record in the Senior Division races on the fast 3-1mile layout. Cota burned an 18:23.6, and Langon blazed a 15:09.2 to highlight a meet filled with remarkable performances.
Cota's time of 18:23.6 eclipsed the girls CR of 18:29.3 set last year by current Kent Place senior Miranda Lorsbach, and is a 30 second PR for her. Cota's previous best time was 18:54 when she won she finished first in the Mountain Division race at the Union County Conference Championships last year at Warinanco Park.
"I wanted to run a fast time, but I had no idea that I'd be able to go this fast and break the course record,'' said Cota. "I just felt really good during the race, and the girl from Oak Knoll (Lily Murphy) went out fast, so I just tried to stay with her and in the second mile she seemed to slow down a little bit, so that's when I made a move to go into the lead.''
Murphy, a lacrosse player in the spring, has opened lots of eyes with the fast start to her first XC season. To run sub 19 in her first race ever on the course is very impressive, especially when she consider that she hasn't had any race experience before this season. Murphy, who has never competed in track and field, said she decided to run XC just for fun!
Langon continued his sizzling start to the season when he got away from Voorhees star and Skyland Conference rival Jack Tavaglione in the second mile on his way to a 25 second win. Langon's PR of 15:09.2 broke the course mark of 15:17.8.set by current Ridge senior Jackson Barna in the North Jersey, Sec. 2 Group 4 race last fall. Tavaglione was second in 15:34.9, No. 3 all-time in course history.
If Barna and Langon hook up at the Shore Coaches Invitational at Holmdel next week, how low could they go!
Langon, as always, was fired up after his race.
"I wanted to get that course record without having to kill myself to get it, so I backed it down after two miles,'' said Langon, who opened his season with a 15:23.5 at the Roxbury Invit., No. 2 in course history. "I need to make sure I'm ready to run fast next week at Holmdel, so I ran smart and did what I had to do today.''
How fast does Langon want to run at Holmdel next week?
"I don't exactly know how fast, but it will be very fast,'' said Langon. "I am going to run so hard that I'll have to crawl across that line. I can't wait to just let it all go there.''
Want more fast times?
Ok, here ya go!!!
- Check out what Jimmy Wischusen of Union Catholic did. He sliced 18 seconds off his PR , and ran a sophomore course record of 15:36 to win the Sophomore Division race. Wischusen's time is the fourth fastest time ever run at Oak Ridge, is the fastest time ever run by a Union Catholic runner on any course, and one of the fastest times ever run by a runner from Union County.
- Colin Riley of Dayton, the North Jersey, Sec. 2 Group 1 champ last year, used a huge late surge when he turned on the jets over the final half mile to win the boys Junior Race in 16:00.5. That's 55 seconds faster than his previous best time at Oak Ridge.
- Kaleigh Gunsiorowski of Union Catholic, another first-year XC runner, took 30 seconds off her PR when she won the girls Junior Race in 19:01.
- Grace Best chopped 2:01 off her PR when the J.P. Stevens runner won the girls Sophomore Race in 19:42
- Rising star Evan Weber of Union Catholic ran 10:42.2 to break the boys freshman course record (3200 meters) and win the boys freshman race by 30 seconds..
- Allison Rambo of Mount Olive, who is loaded with great potential, clocked a 12:58.0 to win the girls freshman race by 11 seconds.
In the team competition, the No. 4 ranked North Hunterdon boys and the Westfield girls captured the overall team titles, which were determined by adding the top three finishers in each race from every team.
The North Hunterdon boys, who also captured the Senior and Junior Division team titles, had a five-man average of 17:06. This was the third straight major victory for the Lions. They also won the team titles at Roxbury Invit. and the Back to the Mountain Invit. at Garret Mountain.
The No. 2 ranked Mendham girls went 4-5-6-12-18 to roll to the Senior Division title and they had a five-runner average of 19:50