Runners and Parents,
In my youth (when I was in my 50's) I could get around the Tiffin course pretty quickly. This year I must have lost a step! I barely made it to the mile mark to catch Steve Zucca and the leaders in the Varsity A race fly by in 4:45. As I caught my breath, the rest of the 'Cats cruised past in 5:05 to 5:15. A good start in a tough field. The 'Cats maintained their composure as they hit the 4k mark, where they powered up the short, rutted hill with determination etched in their faces (as seen in the photos taken by Jennifer Fitzpatrick at this point). Steve's kick carried him to an impressive PR of 15:48 and a 8th place finish.
Not to be out done, Pete Fitzpatrick ran 16:22, a 1 minute pr from last year! Nick Mulhern 16:31 PR, Matt Kelly 16:51, Sean Uhran 17:04 PR, Eliott Rodstrom 17:08 PR and Jack Mayer 17:34 carried the Blue and Gold to a 4th place tie out of 34 teams.
The Varsity B race was even more exciting! The Wildcats were lined up next to perennial power St Xavier at the starting line. There would be no quarter given between the teams. From the start, the runners jockeyed for position amidst the other 32 schools. Coming around the final turn, Alex Paliga drove to the finish and led the team in 17:03, a 40 sec PR. Aidan Monroe 17:09, PR, Connor McAndrew 17:17 PR, Mike Mayer 17:22 PR, John Pawlikowski 17:24 PR, Sean Becker 17:49 and Joe Maloney 17:54 carried the Catpack to a 1st place finish in the race!!.
Below is the Walsh summary and spreadsheet of times compliments of Coach Stefancin. Pretty good work for an accounting major!
In past years at the Pat Ritchie Invitational (or any race out at Walsh Jesuit) the Cat Pack endured rain and mud that left runners searching for shoes stuck in the mud and parents hosing them off before being allowed to step foot in the house. This year was quite different. For the first time in recent memory, the rain held off and the Wildcats were blessed with a dry course. And did the team ever take advantage of the conditions.
The Varsity team toed the line against teams from Walsh and other local schools, ready to show the depth of the Cat Pack. Luke Chesney led the team from the gun, weaving his way past runners and finishing in a strong PR of 17:18 that challenged the team statistician to find an Ignatius time that fast at Walsh. Robby Klanac used a great 3rd mile to finish in a PR of 17:33, while Sean Ward
(17:35) and Tom Kilbane (17:47) followed closely behind to earn their first varsity letters. Charlie Rooney (18:05) closed out the scoring, while Andrew Eicher (18:06), Danny Becker (PR of 18:12), Connor McGuire (PR of 18:15) and Joe Sepsey (PR of 18:33) rounded out the varsity team that finished 8th.
The Open team followed the lead of the Varsity and set out for some PR’s of their own. The team's depth was on display, as 7 of the top 10 spots in the open race were captured by Wildcat runners. Will Leahy lead the attack from the starting gun, hanging with the leaders and finishing 3rd overall in 18:27. The others in the top 10 scoring for the 'Cats included Christian Wolke (18:55), Stephen Poulopoulos (PR of 18:56), Jack Kander (19:01), and Carmen Caserio (PR of 19:03). Ben Showman (9th in 19:03), Caleb Delacruz (10th in 19:05), and John Scally (20th in 19:38) took the top freshman honors.
When all the racing was complete, the 'Cats kicked off a great day of racing with 22 PR’s at Walsh, including 2 new varsity letter and 9 improved times by the freshmen. The PR’s and top finishes foreshadowed what would come later in the afternoon out in Tiffin. All times can be found in the attachment.
This week's schedule;
Monday: Mastic 3:30 - 5 (please note the new finish time) bus provided
Tuesday : Edgewater 3:30 - 5
Wednesday : Mastic 3:30 - 5
Thursday: SIHS 3 - 4:30, lifting at 4 .
Friday: SIHS 3 - 4:30 pre comp, guest speaker meet in Mr Wolf s room at 3.
Saturday: Forest Hills McDonough Invite: JV 10:40 Open 11:50 Varsity 1 PM. Bus leaves at 9:15 rosters will be announced at practice.