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New Jersey XC Rankings

Pre Season
Boys - Girls

Week 1(10/1)
Week 2 (10/8)
Week 3 (10/16)
Week 4 (10/23)

Week 5 (10/30)
Week 6 (11/5)
Week 7 (11/19)

Week 7 (11/19)
After having the same teams on top for 4 weeks, the Group Champs resulted in a shakeup on top.  Next up the Meet of Champs

Week 6 (11/5)
For the 4th week in a row CBA and Hillsborough are on top

Week 5 (10/30)

CBA and Hillsborough once again are on top of the state polls

Week 4 (10/23)

There is little movement among the top teams as the championship season kicks off

Week 3 (10/16)

With a win at the Easterns CBA takes over the #1 spot.  Hillsborough girls stay on top and Pope John moves into the top 10

Week 2 (10/8) - Pre Manhattan Invite

Haddonfield boys remain on top, but Hillsborough girls climb to the #1 place in the New Jersey Top 25 rankings.

Week 1 (10/1) - Pre Shore Invite

Haddonfield boys and Ridge girls sit atop top the New Jersey Top 25 heading into the all important Shore Coaches Invite


Sept. 10 - The hunt for November gold at the Meet of  Champions and the road to the Nike National Team Championships in Oregon in December will begin for New Jersey teams under the lights tomorrow night at the Randolph Invitational at Freedom Park.

And this certainly promises to be one of the most exciting seasons in recent history as four NJ teams hit the trails ranked in the Harrier Super 25 national rankings, the most ever from the Garden State. No other state has more than three teams in the Top 25.

Haddonfield leads the way at No. 7, followed by Christian Brothers (No. 8), West Windsor-Plainsboro North (20), and Don Bosco Prep (23). Haddonfield and CBA are scheduled to meet on Sept. 26 at the Bowdoin Park Classic in Wappingers Falls, N.Y.

Five ranked teams will collide right out of the gate as No. 9 Ridge, No. 10 Millburn, No. 13 Bridgewater-Raritan, No. 21 Morristown and No. 24 Randolph are scheduled to clash at Friday night’s Randolph Invitational.

Here is a look at the NJ Preseason Top 25 (last year's final ranking are in parentheses)

1-Haddonfield (4)

With its entire top seven returning from last year’s fourth-place M of C team, coach Nick Baker’s pack certainly has the talent to make a run at finishing No. 1 in the state and earning a berth at the Nike Nationals this season.  Leading the way up front will be seniors Jon Vitez and Colin Baker, and junior Ben Potts, who all ran under 4:16 for 1,600 last spring. The rest of the top seven will be junior Matt Nussbaum, senior Ray Schlitt, junior Ethan Quanci and senior David Twitchell.

2-Christian Brothers Academy (3)

With five of its top seven returning, coach Tom Heath, in his 39th year at the helm, certianly has the pieces to extend CBA’s state record to 16 M of C titles and earn a spot in the Nike Natiional Championships. CBA, ranked No. 8 in the nation, is led by junior Mike Mazzaccaro, second in the 3,200 at the M of C last spring, seniors Dan Bailey, Peter Costa, Mark Lee, Colin Johnson and Richie Bohny, and junior Dan Mykityshyn.  Fast rising sosphomores George Kelly, Scott Zapcic and Conrad Lippert could also find themselves in the top 7.  

CBA heads into the season riding a national record dual meet winning streak of 296, which began 35 years ago. It is scheduled to win its 300th straight on Sept. 21 at home versus Manalapan and Colts Neck.

3-West Windsor-Plainsboro North (1)

Although it lost four runners off a team that won the M of C, set a Holmdel Park course record for team average (16:14.4), and wound up No. 5 in the nation, coach Brian Gould still has one of the best 1-2 punches in state history in juniors twins Jim and Joe Rosa. Also back is senior Jon Squeri.The other four spots will be handled by newcomers as juniors Casey Dalrymple, Matt Hackett, and Patrick O’Connell, senior Matt Kelly and freshman Eddie Cunningham battle for the 4-7 positions.

4-Don Bosco Prep (2)

Graduation claimed Rob Molke and Leighton Spencer, the top two runners, but coach Kevin Kilduff still has seniors Rafael Vargas, Michael Belgiovine and Howard Rosas, and junior Erik Lapinski back from a team that finished No. 6 in the nation last year.

5-Toms River North (20)

After finishing eighth in Group 4 last year, Toms River North’s  entire pack is in tact, headed by a lethal 1-2 combination in seniors Joe Kotran and Aaron Leskow. A Group 4 title is within its grasp.

6-Old Bridge (12)

The Group 4 champions from last year bring back four of its top six in seniors Moheb Thomas, Corey O’Neill, and Vince Vento and junior Shawn Burke as it tries to capture its fifth state title this decade.

7-West Windsor-Plainsboro South (7)

 Seventh at the M of C last year, coach Kurt Wayton has the horses to climb up even higher this season. Leading the charge will be seniors Sam Macaluso, Nick Schmidt and Max Margiotta, and junior Brian Shoepfer.

8-Southern (8)

 Lost two its top guns (Joe Tomczuk and Justin Brearley) off last year’s 8th place team at the M of C, but with five runners back, fronted by senior Matt Valeriani, a return to M of C is in the cards.

9-Ridge (NR)

An off day at the Group 4 meet knocked Ridge out of the rankings last year, but it has the talent and coaching to be a big factor this season. Seniors Anthony Bellitti, Vishaal Thanawala, Dan Guglielmo and Tim Lechleider are back, and the team will surley get a big lift from senior Patrick Farrell and junior Evan Roelke, who were out of action down the stretch last year with injuries.

10-Millburn (15)

Not only is defending Meet of Champions winner Tyler Udland  and sub 4:20 miler Brian Robinson returning, but Udland’s sophomore brother, Blake, is expected to show big drops in time. If sophomore John Murphy stays healthy and senior Will Friedlander continues his steady running, coach Jeff  Kaye’s Millburn squad could make a run at winning Group 3.  

11-Cherokee (10)

Seniors Steve Burkholder, a sub 17-minute runner at Holmdel, and Matt McCarroll, are the top returners for coach Steve Shaklee, who is as good as anyone at filling gaps and being ready to run when it counts the most.

12-Paul VI (13)
13-Bridgewater-Raritan (16)
14-Red Bank Catholic (NR)
15-Westfield (19)
16-Shawnee (NR)
17-Dickinson (NR)
18-Ridgewood (9)
19-Lacey (NR)
20-Moorestown (NR)
21-Morristown (NR)
22-Delbarton (NR)
23-Pope John (11)
24-Randolph (NR)
25-Hunterdon Central (NR)


Sept. 10 - With the 2009 girls’ cross-country season getting under way on Friday, It’s time to gauge how last year’s thoroughbreds will fare this fall, and also if there are any surprises in store for us.

Randolph, coached by Len Pietrewicz and ranked 42nd in the DyeStat Elite National Top 50, gets the nod as the preseason No. 1 because the team brings back its top six, including front-runner Joelle Amaral. Last season Randolph had high hopes of catpruing the state Group 4 title, but a few off-day performances left Randolph as the runner-up behind Ridge by 10 points. Randolph would go on to place eighth in the NJSIAA Meet of Champions.

Rank Team (Final 2008 ranking)

1-Randolph                          (8)

Seniors Natalie Anthony, Molly Higgins and Tori Kiss, sophomore Jennifer Zackowski and junior Rebecca Snelson will follow Amaral and form the core of this team’s charge for its first M of C trophy.

2-Toms River North           (6)

Angela Rugino has graduated but the sixth-place team from the M of C returned the other six, who boasted of a 65-second pack in that race. Junior Andrea Mathis leads the team.

3-Red Bank Catholic         (7)

Senior Michelle Capozzi and junior Molly McNamara lead a traditionally strong program. Junior Hannah Eckstein is the other returnee from the team which placed seventh at the M of C last season.

4-Hillsborough                    (3)

Perhaps the best surprise of last year’s M of C, Hillsborough returns six of its top seven from a group which placed third and gave the Skyland Conference a sweep of the top three places. Senior front-runner Ashley Smolinka is poised for a breakout season.

5-Immaculate Heart            (5)

Sarah Pagano has graduated, but the core of the team’s strength returns in the form of junior Erin Thompson, senior Julie Sinkovitz and sophomore Rachel Lotterman.

6-South Brunswick            (9)

Senior Sophia Ginez and sophomore Cayla Del Piano form the most formidable 1-2 punch in Middlesex County and will help their team try to repeat as Central Jersey, Group 4 champions. South Brunswick returns five of its top six from a ninth-place M of C finish last fall

7-Hopewell Valley              (10)

Senior Julie Jablonski takes over for the since-graduated Clare Buck as the leader of this perennial Mercer County powerhouse. Coach Aaron Oldfield will have his team, which returns five of its top six, aiming for its first state group title since 2002.

8-Pope John                        (4)

Traditionally a Sussex County force to be reckoned with, coach Brian Corcoran will have to devise a plan to make up fro the loss of two of his top three runners. Seniors Catherine Carey and Marissa Galante are the top returnees from a team which placed fourth in the M of C last season.

9-Voorhees                          (1)

The reigning two-time M of C champion is missing two-time individual champion Melanie Thompson, now a freshman at Oregon. But coach Justina Cassavell has developed as reputation for pumping out solid teams. The top girls coming back for Cassavell are seniors Colette Whitney and Katie Petruzzellis.

10-Holy Angels                   (11)

The Bergen County squad, always looking for ways to knock off Bergen County Non-Public foe Immaculate Heart, lost only front-runner Suzana Markolovic to graduation after the team placed fourth in the Non-Public A state meet. Junior Jen Molke and senior Kaleigh Kenny return to lead the team.

11-Southern Regional(13)
13-Chatham (20)
15-Ridge (2)
16-Howell (NR)
17-Hunterdon Central (NR)
19-Johnson (16)
20-Msgr. Donovan (18)
21-Haddonfield (15)
22-Seneca     (NR)
23-Morristown (NR)
24-Pingry     (17)
25-Summit     (NR)