Boy’s Cross Country Prepares for Sectional Meet


Varsity cross country team returning to HHS after a meet. Photo courtesy of Eric Rosenthal

Katie Buelt, Features Editor


With the final meets of the season looming on the horizon, the HHS boy’s cross country team is winding down a memorable season. The team’s performance at the Skyland Conference Championships was mildly disappointing, finishing in 9th place out of the 24 teams present. Kenan Yahi posted a time six seconds worse than that of the same meet last season, while fellow senior Kyle Hudak also failed to improve his time by more than a few seconds. The team average was 18:14, compared to 17:34 in the championships last year, where they managed fourth place.

The meet, however, was not without its successes; the team still surpassed the vast majority of the opposing teams, and several members did improve their times from previous years. Senior Nicholas Bevilacqua, for example, managed to better his time by 31 seconds.

In the following weeks, however, the team put up several exceptional performances. At their last meet, the NJSIAA Championships on October 23,  the team ranked 3rd overall with an average time among varsity runners of 17:15.

The first Hillsborough athlete to cross the finish line was junior Christopher Digricoli with a time 16:49, a staggering 41 second improvement from his time in the same race last year.  About 30 seconds behind him was senior duo Kyle Hudak and Kenan Yahi, who finished within a second of one another. Both athletes also posted their season personal record in this race. These performances put them in a position to beat several notable teams, including Bridgewater-Raritan and Montgomery.

The close of the season comes with a whirlwind of bittersweet feelings, particularly for the seniors. The team has attested to the fact that years of running together have formed unbreakable bonds between both the athletes and the coaches. Most notably, Head Coach Eric Rosenthal has become an integral part of this program, from the first day of training to the final meet.

“Because of the positive experiences I had in high school, I am even motivated to continue running in college and have conversed with many college coaches,” stated Hudak when asked about his experiences with Rosenthal. “That may have not been the case if it were not for the coaching here.”

The team will compete in the sectional meet on November 9. Depending on the group’s performance, this could be their last meet, but many of the athletes do not find this to be likely.

“I have high hopes that we will make it out of sectionals this year,” said Hudak. “I believe that we have finally developed the motivation to push ourselves to reach that goal.”