Photo courtesy of the Port Jefferson School District
The Port Jefferson School District girls and boys cross-country student-athletes participated in the Jim Smith Invitational on Sept. 10 at Sunken Meadow State Park. The meet is named after Port Jefferson’s legendary coach who led the Royals to state titles in 1974 and 1976. The first meet of the season was arranged so that each grade level is a separate race/division. A high finish in any of the races at Jim Smith is a good indication for later-season success as well as proving who put in quality work during the summer.
Eighth grader Blake Weaver finished the run at 8:08 minutes. Sophomore Gwen Connelly was Suffolk’s first finisher – a big breakthrough for Gwen, who now has to be considered for the Class D title with more improvement. Great efforts were evident from student-athlete Colin Veit, who ran under 18:34 – an excellent time for early-season sophomores. Senior Brendan Capodanno ran 17:55; he will look to lead Port Jefferson’s much-improved team to the Class D title in November. Brendan ran a huge Sunken Meadow Personal Record of 18:00 over the summer.