“Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp, or what's a heaven for?”


Robert Browning

The season is over and it is time to reflect.  How will you remember this year?  Will it be with disappointment over perceived failures? . . . or, will it be with pride and fondness over the individual goals achieved and the obstacles overcome?  It is our hope that, in reflection, you will see the positive.  Seniors, we trust that you will leave the program knowing that your contributions were invaluable and feeling that the effort was worth it.  Underclassmen, we hope that you will take the lessons learned from the season and use them to build for the future.  Take satisfaction in your accomplishments but keep the fire burning.  Look to next year and set your sights high once again.

Our goals were lofty and, while we may have fallen short of achieving some of them, we never stopped trying.  In the end, it is the process, not the result, that is most important.  The work that each of you put in, day in and day out, is what we are most proud of, and we thank you for that.

Freshmen . . . Freshman: 

Sankeerth (Sanky) Kondapalli:  Your progress from July to November was remarkable!  From your first summer runs, struggling to cover two miles in 25 minutes, to your 5K PR of 19:18 (6:11 per mile), your transformation into a runner was truly impressive.


First Year Runners:

Angus Endicott:  In your short time with us (only two races), you demonstrated that you have the potential to be a successful cross country runner.  We are anxious to see where you will be with a solid year of training behind you!

Bryan Kwok:  With no summer training and a late start to the season, we were impressed to see how well you were running by season’s end.  You ran your first race on October 9th and in less than three weeks you knocked over two and a half minutes off of that time.  Now that’s impressive!

Phillip Robert Cerria (PRC):  Another late starter.  You ran your first race on September 25th and, a month later, knocked over 3 minutes off of that time to PR at 19:11!  You have what it takes to be a varsity competitor on next year’s team.  Keep focused . . . stay determined . . . continue working hard . . . make it happen!

Danny Mintzer:  The patience and dedication you have shown are to be commended.  Before your injury, you were showing real potential.  We have no doubt that, when healthy, you will contribute at the varsity level.  Thanks for hanging in there and helping out at meets and practice!


Returning Runners:

Freddy Rasmussen:  After making improvements by leaps and bounds last year, you have continued to chip away at your times this year, knocking another minute off of your personal best.   Keep it up!

Matt Decker:  You have worked hard and the results show it.  Your 17:40 clocking at the Haddonfield Invitational knocked more than a minute off of your freshman PR and earned you a varsity letter in only your sophomore season.  With another year of training behind you, we’ll be looking forward to seeing what you achieve as a junior!


First Year Runners:

Vishnu Kadirisani:  Injury cut your season short but did not keep you from contributing.  Although we know you’d rather have been healthy and running, your assistance at meets and with workouts was greatly appreciated. 

Mike Lowinger:  After your fine track season, we were happy to have you join us for cross country.  Although injury kept you out of action for most of the season, your willingness to rehab and do alternative training was a great example of focus and determination.  Stay healthy and, next year, we know you will be a big part of our varsity success.

Returning Runners:

Matt Adams:  Although you struggled to find your form at times this season, you never quit trying and you never complained.  Keep working hard and the improvement will come.  Thanks for your dedication and hard work.

Jeremy Morgan:  You took a big step forward this year with two sub-18 minute clockings, earning your first varsity letter.  Next year you will be counted on to take another big step as you move into the top seven and contribute to the continued success of the Cherokee Cross Country Program!   

Matt Venanzi:  A lot was asked of you this year and you responded by working harder than ever.  We truly appreciate your effort and we’ll be looking forward to your leadership next year.  But first . . . get ready for a great track season!

Billy Hornung:  From the Division Meet on, you never finished out of our top five.  That kind of consistency is a tribute to your determination and focus.  Your dedication to the team is greatly appreciated.  Keep it up and your senior season will be even better!

Aiden Lynch:  You were really rounding into shape until hit by injury at the Conference Meet.  To your credit, you worked through it and came back to finish 2nd for the team at the State Meet.  That takes focus, determination and mental toughness and we are proud of you for that.  If you can keep the injury bug away, you’ll be one of New Jersey’s best next fall.


First Year Runners:

Jason Brockman:  It’s impressive to see a sprinter so determined to improve that he is willing to endure a season of cross country!  You not only endured it, you worked at it and, in the process, turned yourself into a very respectable distance runner.  More importantly, your positive attitude and your leadership helped make our program better.  Thanks, and enjoy all the success that is sure to come your way this track season.  You’ve earned it!

Ty Somers:  We sure wish you had started sooner!  You clearly have a lot of potential and, although you see yourself as a track guy, you are a very capable cross country runner.  Your sectional race, while still on the comeback from injury, is proof of that.  We appreciate how hard you worked and we look forward to watching it pay off – big time – on the track this winter and spring!

Returning Runners:

Lou DiGeambeardino:  After a late start you came on strong at the end of the season, capped by your PR run at the Haddonfield Invitational.  We appreciate your efforts over the last two years and we look forward to seeing what you can do on the track.  Stay focused and big improvements will come your way!

Eric Birkhead:  In only your second year of cross country you finished consistently among the varsity seven, successfully making that transition from sprinter to distance runner.  The combination of both of those disciplines will make you tough to beat on the track this year.  Thanks for all of your hard work and the positive attitude you brought to the program!

Greg Malloy:  It’s hard to believe that when the cross country season began in 2008, you were not yet running.  What you have achieved in the short two year span that you have been in the program is remarkable!  Your determination and focus is unmatched!  You set very challenging goals for the season . . . and then exceeded them.  You are a great example to your teammates, showing them that if they believe, and they are willing to work, there are no limits!  Congratulations on all that you have accomplished so far.  We are anxious to see what you do on the track!

Ryan Bobb:  Our only four year athlete!  It will not be the same without you next year.  We know how much this program means to you and we appreciate your commitment to the team.  Your dedication to Cherokee Cross Country is admirable and the void you leave will not be easily filled.  You have contributed both as an athlete and as a leader, and we respect you for both.  Thanks for four great years, Ryan.  But, you’re not done yet . . . let’s get ready for track!



To all of you . . . Thanks for all of your hard work.  We see what you do, day in and day out, and your efforts are greatly appreciated.  Seniors . . . best of luck in all of your future pursuits.  Thank you for your contributions to the Cherokee Program.  Please know that, whatever we accomplish in the coming years, you are, and will always be, a part of it.  Underclassmen . . . The future of the team is now in your hands.  Take what you have learned from this year’s seniors and use it.  Strive to be the best you can be.  Encourage your teammates . . . work together . . . help each other . . . do your part to make next year a success. 



Thank you:

Thanks to our new Athletic Director, Mr. Agnew.  Not many teams can say their A.D. came to watch sectionals and states.  We appreciate the support!

Thank you parents for all you do!

As always, our thanks to Mr. Smyth for taking all the pictures, running the website and, of course, providing pretzels on meet day!

Our biggest thank you goes to the members of the 2010 Cherokee Cross Country Team.  Thanks for making our “job” enjoyable.  You are a great group of young men.  We are proud to be your coaches.


Coaches Shak, Cal, Cuneo, Pelerin & Andes