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A Tremendous Effort For Cross Country At State Sectionals

From+left%2C+Jessica+Le+24%2C+Annalise+Dantes+26%2C+Anna+Weng+26%2C+Annika+Villanueva+25%2C+Vamil+Sreedharan+25%2C+and+Rylee+Mcevoy+25+pose+before+their+race.
KARINA HAWALDAR ’25
From left, Jessica Le ’24, Annalise Dantes ’26, Anna Weng ’26, Annika Villanueva ’25, Vamil Sreedharan ’25, and Rylee Mcevoy ’25 pose before their race.

After more than two months of training and competing in meets, the Edison High Cross Country (XC) team saw some incredible achievements from its players during their seasonal State Sectionals championship. Spending hours on October 28 at Greystone Park at the 2023 NJSIAA State Sectionals, Edison did exceptionally well. From breaking personal records (PRs) to making it to Group Championships, the Eagles’ XC season ended on a high note.

The Edison girls had a few notable achievements.

Anna Weng ‘26 was one of only seven sophomores to place top fifty in the Girls’ 5000-meter run finals in Group Four while simultaneously hitting a PR of eighteen seconds.

Annika Villanueva ‘25 got a PR of twenty seconds and placed top sixty in the race.

Annalise Dantes ‘26 was seven seconds from meeting her season record in the same race.

Jessica Le ‘24, Rylee McEvoy ‘25, and Vamil Sreedharan ‘25 had great runs and learned much from it.

“The team did really well overall. With the lack of seniors, the underclassmen really stepped up to improve a lot throughout the season. Most of them set personal records in the 5K race and fought for every place!” said Le.

The Edison boys also had their fair share of accomplishments in the boys’ 5K run.

Abraham Johnson ‘26 surpassed his PR by forty seconds and made the top fifty. Mark Palladino ‘25, Joaquin Sanchez ‘26, Brett Bills ‘26, Aaron Johnson ‘26, and Matteo Pittenger ‘26 all had incredible runs close to their PRs.

To top it off, Paolo Pittenger ‘24 placed twelfth and advanced to the Group Championships, the only athlete from Edison to do so this season.

“I felt proud to be able to represent my school and town on a greater stage,” said Pittenger. “I was seeded seventeenth and knew I needed fifteenth in order to move on. I believed that I worked harder than my competitors and I knew that given how hot it was I could use the heat to my advantage. It was a difficult race for everyone but I knew that I was capable of placing where I needed to anyway.”

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As the fall season ends, many XC athletes are looking forward to winter track, another chance for track and cross country athletes to further improve their abilities and compete against other athletes across the state.

For the seniors, this would be their last run on Edison’s fall XC team, leaving behind their knowledge for the up-and-coming athletes of Edison High School.

Le added, “As a senior, I would encourage the underclassmen to run together because it makes training easier. It’s super important to be consistent in this sport. Especially training during winter track in the freezing cold and snow, and training in the summer in the scorching heat.”

Overall, the Edison XC team is satisfied with its performance and is ready for the upcoming seasons to prove themselves once again and surpass their expectations. With one of our very own athletes moving on to the next stage and many others either beating their PRs or keeping up with the top racers in the run, the Edison cross-country team’s efforts have paid off and will continue to do so in upcoming seasons.

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About the Contributors
ABHIRAM VEMULA '26, Staff Writer
Abhiram Vemula is a sophomore who is greatly interested in Volleyball, traveling, and all things medical. He plays on the volleyball team for EHS and is a member of many clubs. Outside of school, he loves to play basketball, listen to music, and traverse Edison with his friends.
KARINA HAWALDAR ’25, Staff Photographer
Karina is a photographer and staff writer for the EHS Film Club and The Eagle’s Eye. While she has been involved with photography for a few years, she has only been a part of the Film Club since her junior year. Besides photography, she is also a part of the EHS Track & Field team. Outside of EHS, her hobbies include taking pictures (and a love for analog/film photography), drawing, and indulging in true crime documentaries.
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