Distance powers to compete at Cougar Relays

BY TIM MORRIS Staff Writer

Staff Writer

For scholastic track and field fans, the place to be Saturday is Colts Neck High School for the inaugural Cougar Relays.

Many of the finest individuals and teams in the state will be in action.

The most loaded field will be the Distance Medley Relays where, for the girls, four of the top 10 teams from the 2005-06 indoor season seven of the 24 fastest, will be in action.

Topping the field, of course, is host Colts Neck, which turned in the second fastest time of the season, 12:01.40 in finishing third at the Eastern States. Ramapo (12:27.40), Freehold Township (12:28.13) and Howell (12:34.83) all finished among the nine fastest teams.

The Cougars feature state champion Ashley Higginson and state freshman record-holder Briana Jackucewicz. They were one-half, along with Allison Linnell and Kristen O’Dowd, of the Cougars’ national championship 4×1-mile relay team.

On the boys side, the host Cougars, with Craig Forys running the anchor 1,600 leg, are the team to beat. They finished third at the national indoor championships, running the sixth fastest time in the country (10:19.66).

Phillipsburg (10:35.06) and Cherokee (10:43.82), which had the seventh and 10th fastest times in the state, will be the teams to challenge the Cougars.

On the girls side, the other relay teams to watch are South Brunswick’s 4×200 team that had the eighth best time in the state (1:45.99), and its 4×400 squad, which had the seventh fastest time (4:01.57), just ahead of Old Bridge (4:01.85) and Colts Neck (4:03.73).

South Brunswick also had the seventh best Sprint Medley team (4:16.0).

Colts Neck (9:33.3), Red Bank Catholic (9:40.49) and Howell (9:44.33) had the fifth, 10th and 11th best times during the season.

Among the individuals to look out for are: Brittni Rodriguez of East Brunswick (hurdles/800/1,600); Ashley Gonzales (sprints), Christina Marguez (seventh at the Meet of Champions in the 200) and Brittany Gibbs (triple jump) of Old Bridge; Christina Nelson (second at the MOC in the 800) of Red Bank Regional; Stephanie McIntyre (sprints) and Yesenia Boynton (eighth in the 400 at the MOC) of South Brunswick; Janel Parker (800/1,600/3,200) and Charlotte Walsh (high jump/distance) of Freehold Township; Kelly Hand (800), Lauren Rome (1,600), Anna DiPaolo (shot put) of Howell; Meryl Wimberly (400) and Allison Linnell (1,600) of Colts Neck; and Kristen Andrews (400) of Manalapan.

Among the other top relay teams for the boys are: East Brunswick’s 4×800 team, which had the fourth best time in the state (7:59.75) and finished third at the Eastern States; and Howell’s 4×400 squad, which was sixth at the MOC in 3:28.3.

Among the boys to look out for are Red Bank Regional’s Tom Friscia, the MOC 800 champion, and teammates Dennis Waite (1,600) and Sean Bartlett (a 13-6 pole vaulter); Manalapan’s Adam Hegel, fourth in the pentathlon at the national championships; South Brunswick’s John Viotto (second in the shot put at the Group IV State championships) and Emory Greenfield (400); East Brunswick’s Jeremich Lachaud (sprints), Yannick Wood (800) and Justin Granit (State Group IV 1,600 champion); Freehold Township’s Steve Pugliese (pole vault); and Raritan’s Rick Jaeger (seventh at the MOC in the shot put) and Mike Buccheri (eighth at the MOC in the high jump).

Action will begin on the track and in the field events at 9 a.m.

Rain wreaked havoc on last weekend’s Huskie Relays at Matawan High School, which were not able to be completed.

Before the meet was canceled, however, Freehold Township’s boys collected a pair of wins in the Division III.

Sean Coyne, Paul Proctor and Dan Mularz were the common denominator in both wins.

They splashed their way to a win in the 3×400-meter intermediate hurdles relay turning in a 3:10.4 that was 10 seconds clear of the field. The trio was joined by O’Shane Rennie in the 4×110 hurdles, which they won in 1:07.0.

Freehold Township and Howell each collected wins in the girls Division III.

The Lady Patriot quartet of Charlotte Walsh, Megan Matza, Christine Menhart and Janel Parker won the Distance Medley in 13:23.

Freehold Township also won the long jump relay with Crystal Mahoney and Desiree Reese teaming up to jump 27 feet, 4 1/2 inches.

Anna DiPaolo and Brittany Napoli teamed up to win the javelin relay at 187-4.

Freehold Borough’s girls won the Distance Medley in Division II in 13:54.1. Laura Gatti, Karly Duven, Elise Tagatac and Megan Patterson made up the winning quarter.

Up in Cranford at the Cougar Classic, Colts Neck’s girls ruled winning events.

The Cougars won the 4×100 hurdles in 1:11.2 with the team of Julia Tomaro, Karissa Herrick, Lindsey Rappleyea and Kathlyn Herrick.

It was Tomaro, Kathlyn Herrick and Karissa Herrick combining to win the 3×400 intermediates in 3:51.9.

Allison Donaghy, Erin Donaghy, Allison Linnell and Kristen O’Dowd won the 4×800 in 10:08.8. Linnell, Nicole Vacarella, Ashley Rizzo and O’Dowd, took the DMR in 13:28.4.

Kathlyn Herrick, Carrie Schmidt, Melissa Hannon and Julia Tomaro won the 4×400 in 4:36.6.

The Cougars picked up a sixth win in the freshman 4×1,600. Alyssa Morgan, Rachel Morris, Morgan Clark and Allie Flott turned in a 22:50.3 with Flott posting a 5:30.1.

Marlboro went to the Comet Relays at Englewood High School in Bergen County, where the girls finished sixth. The Mustangs collected one victory, in the discus relay, with the combined throws Kristen Batts and Illysaa Harbutkin reaching 196-7.

Meagher matches District

pole vault record

The week before at the Kearny Relays, Jenna Meagher matched the Freehold Regional District record for the girls pole vault, clearing 10-0. She equaled the mark set by Gretchen Volherbst of Colts Neck last year.

Meagher’s vault and the 7-6 by Meghan Donovan in her pole vaulting debut broke the old District pole vault relay record of 17-0, held by the Cougars’ Volherbst and Amy Lewis. Their 17-6 was good enough for third place.