MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ - The Saint Vincent de Paul (SVDP) Knights closed out their regular season with a trifecta of x-country meets within a week's time and they continued to amaze. Having already placed 2nd twice and 3rd once in their prior meets, the Knights continued their winning ways. First up was the Holy Trinity meet at Our Lady of Lourdes in Mountainside on Sunday, Oct. 20 where the Knights faced uncertainty because they were down a few good runners. But the team looked adversity in the eye and many of the Knights had their best performances of the year resulting in a "Third Place Win"!
Catherine Dolan led the way with a remarkable 1st place finish, Nate Gallic 2nd, Caitlin Bonnesen 3rd, Isabella Rogers 3rd, Richie Mistichelli 3rd and Tommy Garno 4th. Additional medal winners in the Top 15 included Isabelle Tamburri 7th, Matteo Baeyens 8th, David Vreeland 11th, Nick Lucente 13th and William Walto 14th.
Five days later the SVDP Knights were running again at the St Elizabeth X-Country meet held at beautiful Natirar Park in Peapack Gladstone on Friday, Oct. 25. And even though the Knights were still missing some of their strong talent, the team's confidence remained high. Led by Laura Baeyens who placed 1st and teammate Catherine Dolan who place 2nd the Knights pulled out a remarkable "Second Place Win"! Rounding out the Top 5 with strong 4th place finishes were Emily Dolan, Emma Baeyens and Isabella Rogers. Additional medal winners in the Top 15 included Tommy Garno 7th, Caitlin Bonnesen 8th and Isabelle Tamburri 9th.
Then to complete the x-country trifecta, on Saturday, Oct. 26 the SVDP Knights would finish their regular season at the St. Virgil Spooktacular Halloween meet held at Greystone in Morris Plains. Although the team was feeling the rigors of 3 meets within a week's time along with the cold / windy weather, the Knights closed out their remarkable season with a "Third Place Win"! This day would belong to 8th grader Emily Dolan who sprinted to the finish to secure her first 1st place win this season and to 6th grader Laura Baeyens, who set a record at SVDP for placing 1st at every race she ran. Other great finishes included Catherine Dolan and Isabella Rogers who both placed a strong 2nd and Nate Gallic who placed 5th. Additional medal winners in the Top 15 included Isabelle Tamburri 6th, Chris Apuzzo 12th , Mary Theoclitus 12th, Cosette Apuzzo 13th and Matteo Baeyens 15th.
And while this was a great way to end the Knights regular x-country season this year would also mark a historic achievement for the Saint Vincent de Paul School. This was the first time ever that the Knights would place First, Second or Third in all their regular season meets. Coach Dave Theoclitus summed it up this way, "We accomplished something that was unthinkable. Sure we always set our goals high but this year we had kids and coaches that were hungry and challenged each other to get better. Again, we had parents, teachers and administrators that were very supportive of our efforts. Everything just came together this season. Wow, what a magical ride. Now it's on to the Championship meet!"