RANDOLPH, NJ- The Randolph Youth Track & Field team hit its stride early with wins against Long Valley, Mount Olive and Parsippany. Now, after besting Mendham on May 6 (261-146) and Montville on May 12 (230-123), Randolph headed into the sixth and final regular meet of the season undefeated.
There’s no shortage of talent in the Lakeland League, and it’s often the most challenging match-ups that bring out the best in all of the Randolph boys and girls. The most competitive athletes are laser-focused on scoring points for the team, and they’ve achieved that goal week after week.
From the first finisher to the last, every kid sporting a blue Randolph t-shirt in this 300-strong program is striving for a new personal best, or at least to cross the finish line knowing they gave it their all. We know the season has been a success so far, not just for Randolph’s winning record, but because so many new personal bests are being set each and every week.
Randolph Goes the Distance Against Mendham
The Randolph sprinters were in top form from the very start, winning all but one of the 4x100 relays. Many of those same lightning-fast runners finished first in the 100 meter dash, including Alexander Barrett (9-10 boys), Gabrielle Ball (9-10 girls), Adrianna Cacciacarne (11-12 girls), David Turner (13-15 boys), and Lily Ward (13-15 girls).
Randolph placed first in all but one of the 200 meter races, as well, with age-group sweeps by Joshua Grannum, Matthew Campbell and Krish Desai (9-10 boys); Gabrielle Ball, Kayla Takacs and Isabella Schmidt (9-10 girls); and David Turner, Matthew Hyatt, Christopher Zeris (13-15 boys). Jayvin Valdez and Preston Noble (11-12 boys) and Adrianna Cacciacarne and Eden Lee (11-12 girls) finished first and second, while Julia Nitulescu (13-15 girls) took second.
The 400 meter, a difficult cross-over event for sprinters and distance runners, was also a sweet spot for this Randolph team. Andrei Nitulescu, Joshua Grannum and Zayne Carswell took all of the points for the 9-10 boys, and the 13-15 girls had similar success, with Sarah Bona, Cassidy Takacs and Julia Nitulescu finishing first, second and third. Cassidy Smith and Keili Semler (9-10 girls) took first and second, as did Kennan Byers and Bryan Rich (11-12 boys), and James Kehayas and Francis Zarro (13-15 boys). Carlie Wysocki came in second for the 11-12 girls.
Mendham’s formidable distance runners won many of the longer races, but Randolph had some stand-out performances as well. The Randolph 9-10 boys swept the 800 meter race, with Andrei Nitulescu, Gavin Drazek and Anthony Santoro following each other across the finish line. Ava Gumann (9-10 girls) and Francis Zarro (13-15 boys) also took first in the 800 meter.
Gavin Drazek won the mile, followed by Russell Goldstein (9-10 boys) in second. Randolph’s Ava Gumann (9-10 girls) Aidan Byers (11-12 boys), and Maya Wilkins (13-15 girls) placed second in their mile races.
There was a lot to cheer about off the track as well. Nicholas Mihalko, Preston Noble and Lucas Piccolo (11-12) won the top spots for shot put, while Alex Vadas (9-10) and Mike Wigdor (13-15) took second among the boys. Randolph won all three of the boys’ long jump events with Zayne Carswell (9-10), Jack Levine (11-12) and Mike Wigdor (13-15) taking the honors.
Lily Ward, Sarah Bona and Samantha Willis (13-15) swept the girls’ long jump. Mia Ball (11-12) took second, and Kayla Takacs and Cassidy Smith (9-10) took first and second in the event. In girls’ shot put, Gabrielle Ball and Olivia Walker (9-10) took first and third, Adrianna Cacciacarne and Lindsey Bona (11-12) took first and second, and Khy'aira Thorpe and Elizabeth Pietrucha (13-15) placed second and third.
Success at Home Against Montville
The home meet against Montville on Saturday, May 12 may go down in the record books not only for the runners’ results but for the speed of the event itself. Clocking in at an incredible 2 hours and 15 minutes, Randolph’s exceptional directors, coaches and volunteers maintained a vigorous pace and kept an eye on the skies. The clouds rolled in quickly toward the end, but the athletes had an opportunity to finish every event except the long jump before racing the rain back home.
Randolph’s distance runners set the pace early, with a particularly strong showing by the Randolph boys. Andrei Nitulescu, Ryan Schoenherr and Gavin Drazek (9-10) swept the 800 meter, and Kennan Byers (11-12) and Francis Zarro (13-15) also took first in the event. Andrei and Kennan came out strong again in the mile, winning their age groups.
The boys went on to sweep the 400 meter across all three age groups, with tremendous runs by Ryan Schoenherr, Zayne Carswell and Alex Vadas (9-10); Aidan Byers, Bryan Rich and Nicholas Gregory (11-12); and James Kehayas, Francis Zarro and Daniel Pinyan (13-15).
Maya Wilkins (13-15 girls) had an outstanding day, winning both the 800 meter and the mile. Sarah Bona (13-15) placed second in the 800 meter, and Adrianna Cacciacarne (11-12) and Cassidy Takacs (13-15) won the 400 meter event for the girls.
The Randolph girls shined in the shorter distances and the shot put. They swept the 100 meter races with wins by Gabrielle Ball, Seannah Parsons and Kayla Takacs (9-10); Adrianna Cacciacarne, Jadyn Lorent and Mia Ball (11-12); and Lily Ward, Sarah Bona and Rebecca Rubiano (13-15). Gabrielle Ball (9-10) and Eden Lee (11-12) also won the 200 meter. Gabrielle then took first in the shot put, as did Adrianna and Sarah.
Sprinters Mike Wigdor, James Kehayas and Christopher Zeris swept the 100 meter race for the 13-15 boys, and then Mike, Matthew Hyatt and Christopher did the same in the 200 meter. Christopher, Matthew and James, along with David Turner, turned in another sizzling relay performance for the win.
The younger boys had their day, too, with first-place finishes in the 4x100 relay by both the 9-10 and 11-12 teams, and a win by Joshua Grannum (9-10) in the 200 meter. Nicholas Mihalko, Preston Noble and Brian Cislo swept the 11-12 shot put. Reyan Sarker won for the 13-15 boys, followed by Mike Wigdor, and Alex Vadas and Dillon Hines took second and third for the 9-10 boys.