Cheltenham doubles its pleasure

Cheltenham's anchor Christian Brissett crosses the finish line. His team qualified for the boys' 4x100 meters relay.
Cheltenham's anchor Christian Brissett crosses the finish line. His team qualified for the boys' 4x100 meters relay.
Posted: April 28, 2014

It was Cheltenham's day, and the Panthers runners knew it.

Fresh off finishing first in the boys' Suburban American 4x400-meter relay, the quartet of cousins Isaac and John Lewis, Kyle Davis, and Christian Brissett blew away the field and set an event record in the Philadelphia Area 4x400, crossing in 3 minutes, 16.99 seconds.

"We kind of knew we had it going in," Brissett said. "This was a great field, obviously. But in the back of our minds, we were just trying to race the clock from start to finish."

The result surpassed Chester's 1996 mark of 3:17.32 in the race.

"We didn't come in here expecting the record," John Lewis said. "I was just trying to run a good time. But, now, we're chasing that 3:13. We want the school record."

Not to be outdone, the Cheltenham girls' 4x100 relay knew it had the Tri-State race locked up before the sound of a blasting gun rang about Franklin Field.

"We expected to win," said freshman Chanel Brissett, Christian's sister. "We were pretty confident."

The Panthers quartet of Brissett, Ciara Leonard, Janiel Slowly, and Katelyn Jackson won the race in 47.11 seconds, the exact mark they put up Friday in the Championship of America showdown.

Unlike in Friday's race, in which they finished seventh out of eight title hopefuls, Cheltenham's Katelyn Jackson dashed down the stretch with nobody in front of her and a Tri-State title waiting in the wings.

"It's awesome," Jackson said. "I love the atmosphere. It showed me what track really was coming here, and it's awesome to be a local team and have so many people cheering for us."

In other girls' action, Central Bucks West won the 4x400 Philadelphia-area race, checking in at 3:51.61.

In the boys' 4x800 Championship of America, Pennridge's foursome of Alex Masgai, Dan Williams, Matt Schulberger, and Joey Logue finished 10th in the 12-team field in 7:51.42.

"[Friday], our preliminary field was pretty much the final," said Logue, a Penn State recruit. "Just to make it here into the final was huge for us, and we've been training all year to be able to double up the next day like [this weekend]. I think we just ran so out of our minds yesterday that it was hard to come back today."

While Logue likely will make it back to Franklin Field as a member of the Nittany Lions, the weekend's festivities had special meaning for a senior running in his fourth consecutive Penn Relays in a Pennridge jersey.

"Believe it or not, I was thinking that on the way here," Logue said. "That thought hit me on the bus, thinking, 'Wow, this is my last race at Penn Relays in a Pennridge uniform.' I just kind of put it in the back of my mind because I wanted to focus on today."

In other boys' action, Chris Stone of Springfield (Montco) tied for second place in the boys' high jump championship with a leap of 6 feet, 73/4 inches.


aparent@philly.com

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