Jim Thorpe sweeps Marian
Marian's Phil Marzen's near record setting moment was a bit overshadowed by the end results.
Jim Thorpe's cross country teams walked out of Men of Marian Stadium with a sweep winning both the boys' and girls' meets by identical scores of 15-50.
As Marzen crossed the finish line, Marian head coach Jeremy Dormer announced his time of 18:52 as he earned himself a first-place finish in the boys' meet. That time was a mere second shy of the school record of 18:51 set by Mike Legath in 2009.
Marzen's effort didn't figure in the team score, however, since Marian didn't field a full five-person team in the boys meet.
"I'm just proud that he's setting some goals and he's determined to reach them," Dormer said. "It's seems like he's really set on accomplishing what he's set out to do this year. He's more determined than he has been before."
Yet, Marzen knows there still a possibility to do so with one meet left this season.
"I still have one more chance to beat it on Monday," Marzen said. "So, there's still some hope. But to be one second off today, it's more of heartbreak than anything.
"Still, I got a positive out of it. I'm proud of myself for setting a personal record for this year."
While a pack of Olympians Christian Fields, Zach Nace, Johnathan Condly and Chris Boyd finished in the top-five and the Olympians took eight of the top 10 spots overall, Marzen won in commanding style by finishing nearly a minute ahead (49 seconds) of the second-place finisher Fields.
"He ran very strong," said Jim Thorpe coach Drew Benyo of Marzen. "There was no one to push him, so that's even better. It's more impressive when you can do it by yourself. If someone was on his shoulder, it would have been a little bit different. He did very well being out there by himself running alone."
No one held a commanding lead on anyone on the ladies' side. In fact, the Olympians' Caitlin Liscinski edged teammate Erin Bucci by two seconds for first place. After that, 31 seconds was the difference between the Olympians' Courtney Capper, Cat Condly and Kayla Susko, who finished third, fourth and fifth respectively.
Emma Boyle paced the Fillies with a sixth-place finish.
When it came to talking about both team's victories, Benyo wasn't concerned about the difference in the final scores.
"They're both commanding wins, but yet they're misleading," Benyo said. "When someone reads that, they'll say Jim Thorpe was outstanding.
"We did run very well and we ran the way I expected us to run at this point of the season, but Marian didn't have the numbers. Marian didn't have a full boys team. So 15-50 is misleading.
Benyo added that that team scores and records aren't what he is focused on right now.
"It was nice to win and it's impressive to have a 5-2 record at this point of the season. But the kids are running good and that's the most important thing. If they can improve week-in and week-out, that's what we're looking for."
Jim Thorpe 15, Marian 50
1. Caitlin Liscinski (JT) 23:00, 2. Erin Bucci (JT) 23:02, 3. Courtney Capper (JT) 23:25, 4. Cat Condly (JT), 5. Kayla Susko (JT), 6. Emma Boyle (M), 7. Caitlin Henninger (JT), 8. Molly Balliet (JT), 9. Brianna O'Donnell (M), 10. Rebecca Osborne (JT).
Jim Thorpe 15, Marian 50
1. Phil Marzen (M) 18:52, 2. Christian Fields (JT) 19:41, 3. Zach Nace (JT) 19:57, 4. Johnathan Condly (JT), 5. Chris Boyd (JT), 6. Bob Taylor (JT), 7. Darren Gehres (JT), 8. Jake Saxson (JT), 9. Nathan Fields (JT), 10. Nick Hopeck (M).