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Near prefect racing weather and a lineup of elite athletes and top 20 ranked teams made Shore Conference Championships one to remember on Thursday at Ocean County Park, Lakewood.
Freehold Twp History & Zawatski - DeSousa Clock All-Time Runs
Freehold Township junior Emma Zawatski ran to No. 2 all-time in course history clocked at 17:10 to win her first Shore Conference title. This was a highly anticipated rematch with senior Cate DeSousa of Red Bank Catholic, second at 17:16 and now fourth all-time at the course, after DeSousa won Monmouth County head to head with Zawatski just a week before.
The course record was set just last year by the now graduated Lilly Shapiro of Colts Neck when she won Shore Conference with 17:07.
Lily Oliver of Toms River South ran to third at 17:33, the senior won Ocean County Championships the week before. Tilly O'Connor of St. Rose fourth 17:55, Julia Shanes of Rumson-Fair Haven closing the top five at 18:18. Megan Donlevie, Jessica Abbott, Rhiannon Hill, Emma Luo, and Ivy Slavinski all in the top ten under 19-minutes.
Zawatski's starting individual effort led a surging NJ No. 4 ranked Freehold Township team to their first Shore Conference Championship cross country title in school history scoring 94 points (1-12-18-20-43) and averaging 19:02. Scoring four points ahead of No. 7 ranked Rumson-Fair Haven's 100 point total.
Watch: Girls Championship Race
Freehold Township's victory was almost derailed on the starting line but after some tough running when the unexpected happened they managed to hold strong. Their number five scorer, Sophia Briggs, lost her shoe on the starting line after being stepped on and she ran the entire race wearing one spike.
Zawatski earned the one card at 17:10, Ava Biemuller 13th at 19:07, Heather Feinstein 19th 19:21, Leah Rutledge 21st 19:25, and the one shoed Sophia Briggs 45th at 20:11. Points displacers Caroline Cox and Leah Bloom were 50th and 70th.
With Freehold Township and Rumson-Fair Haven first and second the Red Bank Catholic girls were third as a team edging out No. 20 Middletown South 140 to 147.
This is the third time in the past five years of Shore Conference Championship competition a school has won their first girls championship title.
CBA Rolls 15th Straight, Barrett Earns Exciting Win Over Kyvelos
US No. 5, NJ No. 1 ranked Christian Brothers Academy boys, had their scoring five in by the ninth position for 23 points, and an impressive 47 second split paired with a 15:25 average.
No. 12 ranked Southern Regional was second as as team with 65 points, Colts Neck third at 123 with No. 14 Manalapan and No. 20 Howell closing the top five.
Late in the race sophomore Joe Barrett of CBA and junior Stephen Kyvelos of Manalapan broke away from the lead pack to finish 1-2 separated by less than a second at a rounded 15:00 and 15:01.
Watch: Boys Championship Race
Barret is CBA's first individual winner since Blaise Ferro in 2014 and this was their their 10th individual title overall at the Conference meet.
Following Barrett's one card finish his teammates closed out their 23 point performance with Nicholas Sullivan third at 15:14, Jack Falkowski fourth 15:26, Alex Kemp sixth 15:43, and Zach Shroba ninth 15:48. Displacers Lucas Ward and Ryan Schmitt were 16th and 19th overall.
This was CBA's 38th Shore Conference cross country title and 15th in a row.
Also in the top ten individuals not previously mentioned: Fabian Ramales fifth at 15:28, Andrew Bowker seventh 15:43, Santino D'Amelio eighth 15:47, and Nicholas Loffredo 10th 15:51.
Oct. 14th - Ocean County Champs
Ocean County Park
- Boys Individual - Fabian Ramales - Southern Reg - 15:41
- Boys Team - Southern Regional - 26pts, 1-2-4-6-13, 16:09 Avg.
- Girls Individual - Lily Oliver - Toms River South - 17:50
- Girls Team - Toms River North - 48pts, 2-7-8-13-18, 19:48 Avg.
Oct. 11th - Monmouth County Champs
- Boys Individual - Stephen Kyvelos - Manalapan - 16:24
- Boys Team - CBA - 80pts, 3-12-14-23-28, 17:18 Avg
- Girls Individual - Cate DeSousa - RBC - 18:37
- Girls Team - Freehold Township - 68pts, 2-11-16-18-21, 20:20 Avg