Wilberforce does not send a huge harvest of children to groups.

After all, it’s a tiny private school B with a 6: 1 student-teacher ratio, a middle class of 12 and a school that offers only football and cross-country in the fall, as well as lacrosse and track in the spring.

Of those who were on the 2nd Day of the Group Championship in Middletown, the 4×800 girls quartet showed their presence, setting a record of 9: 44.3 and beating 9: 46.45, which was run by Villa Walsh in 2016.

“It means so much,” said head coach Lois Sheliga. “We won the Non-Public B state cross country championship and it meant so much to the school. Having something that will last as a record of the meeting means a lot. “

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Senior Laura Protero, junior Sophia Park and freshmen Adeline Edwards and Gwen Mercero made up the top four to write the story. Sheliga learned a lot about his band after the cross country and is not surprised soon.

“We knew we had a great depth of 800 this season,” she said. “Everyone is a consistent performer. We have seniors and juniors who always perform well. We also have two fast freshmen, and we aspired to that. ”

Part of the way to that point for Prothero and Park was to guide the youth to keep the program moving.

That’s the part the duo enjoyed – especially when gold medals, meeting records and state titles come along with it.

“It was interesting to see the progress we have made over the last four years,” Protero said. “It’s so exciting to finally get the experience of wins. I am in the sixth graduating class of this school, and the school has only existed since 2005.

“I think I’ve learned so much from them,” Park added of Edwards and Mercero. “I learned about competition even in practice. We push ourselves every day. It was great to have them and it was an amazing year. ”

The gratitude of the girls, the coaching staff and the program since the fall has been overwhelming. That’s what it means for the Wilberforce community.

“Our state cross-country championship has caused a school frenzy,” Protero said.

“We don’t have a football team, so the track is our lights on Friday,” Sheliga added. “For this we have actions of cheerfulness. That’s a big deal. “

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Ryan Patty can be contacted at rpatti@njadvancemedia.com. Follow Ryan Patty on Twitter.

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