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Quinn Breaks own School Record at SEC Championships

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The Nutley Raider Boy’s Cross Country team competed in the SEC Championships on the always scenic and adventurous paths of Branch Brook Park.  This was the fifth race of the year for the Raiders on the Branch Brook Park trail.  Freshman Alvin Briones, was quoted at the pre meet press conference sponsored by The US Coast Guard “Are there other cross country courses in New Jersey besides Branch Brook Park?”  Overall the team ran very well, highlighted by senior Jimmy Quinn breaking his own school record on the paths of Branch Brook Park covering the course in 16:40. Nearly every Raider racing ran the seasonal best time for Branch Brook Park.

The day got off to a rousing start with the freshman short course race.  Freshman future stars Morgan DeFluri(14:12) and Luca Vespa(12:31) not only ran their fastest times of the year on the BBP course, they also placed in the top ten of their races.  DeFluri finished 3rd in the Girls race and Vespa was 8th. Vespa was quoted at the Turtle Back Zoo post meet press conference, “We don’t get medals? That stinks, I am writing to my Congressman!”  DeFluri could not be reached for comments, rumors were swirling the rest of the day that she was upset she didn’t dip under 14.  This could not be confirmed by officials.  Anish Kumar was right behind Vespa in the Boys race, clocking his fastest time of the year on the short course at BBP with a 12:47 which was good for 16th overall.  Matt Cozzi got back under 14 with a 13:44 and Alvin Briones pried himself away from the USCG pre meet press conference to run his fastest time at 14:46.  Ava Saccehetti clocked her fastest short course race with a 22:11.

In the JV Girl’s race, Sam Abernovich turned in her fastest BBP time at 26:58, while Kelly Waddleton covered the course in 30:58.  In the JV Boy’s race, the team was led by Phil Amiths 19:40 which was his fastest time of the year at BBP.  Darien Ramirez(19:54), Yuvraj Raja(20:29), Luis Hordista(20:42), Brian McCormack(20:49), Ege Dogan(21:31), Noah Roselli(21:37), Brandon DeFluri(21:43), Rich Robinson(24:36) and Anthony Gola(24:42) led the Raiders to a 6th place team finish in the JV division.  All Raiders turned in their fastest performances of the year at Branch Brook Park in the Race. At the Turtle Back Zoo post meet press conference, Yuvraj Raja stated, “I was really hoping to get under 20. I did run my seasonal best, or SB, in some cross country circles, so I am happy about that.”

The Girl’s Varsity team was racing without some of their top runners due to illness and injury.  Competing in the the always competitive SEC American Division, the Raiders were able to turn in their fastest times of the season at Branch Brook. Despite their SBs and gritty performances, the Raiders were 9th overall in the division. Clocking her 2017 SB on the trails of Branch Brook Park, senior Ellie McCreesh ran a 21:01 and finished 11th in the race.  At the USCG pre meet press conference, McCressh stated, “It’s a great day to run, the weather isn’t perfect like it was Saturday at Garrett, but we will take it.”  Junior Kate Contini ran her Branch Brook Park SB coming in at 22:56.  Jaela Small clocked a 23:31 which is her fastest BBP time of the year. Senior Taylor Waddleton ran her SB at 23:37.  Izzy Bernardo clocked a 24:05, while Team Meteorologist Emily McIntyre clocked a 24:16.  At the Turtle Back Zoo post meet press conference, McIntyre stated “It’s breezy”. Bernardo seconded that thought as the breeze knocked over a garbage can.  Sophomore Gianna Marinaro ran her lifetime all course best of 24:18.

In the Boy’s Varsity race, Jimmy Quinn led the Raiders with a Branch Brook Park school record time of 16:40.  The previous record was held by Quinn set last season. Quinn ran with the lead pack as they blistered past the one mile mark in just over 5 minutes.  As the race progressed, there was a bit of separation in that lead pack. Quinn finished 9th overall with his new school record time of 16:40.  Sophomore Nick Duca also brought his A game to the race, clocking a lifetime best at Branch Brook Park at 18:29.  His performance also earned him a spot on the Top Ten All Time Branch Brook list at #10. Coming in right behind Duca was senior Gerard Dimayuga who covered the course in 18:30.  Vinny “Sauce” Marinaro ran a 18:38 for the 5 spot in the Raider lineup. Rising star Sean Bernardo took another 14 seconds off of his overall 5K PR, and cut 53 seconds off of his Branch Brook Park PR clocking a 19:10.  When reached for comments at the Turtle Back Zoo post meet press conference, Bernardo stated, “1910, that was a good year.  Half-way through the Taft administration.  All kidding aside, I am happy with the time and am gaining confidence every week.”

The Raiders are back it at it on Saturday at one of the biggest cross country events of the season, The Shore Coaches Invitational held on the challenging paths of Holmdel Park.



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