EGG HARBOR CITY — There were nearly 150 runners in the boys race at the Atlantic Cape Junior High School Cross Country Championships held Wednesday afternoon at Cedar Creek High School.
A runner from Wildwood was better than all of them.
Wildwood’s Jorge Cruz took the lead for good with about a quarter-mile to go to win the inaugural 2400-meter race, which included most junior high school cross country teams from across Cape May and Atlantic counties.
Cruz pulled away from second-place Matthew Winterbottom from Mullica Township over the final 200 meters to win the race in 8 minutes, 2.82 seconds. Winterbottom’s time was 8:06.24. Bishop McHugh’s Zachary Marks was third in 8:18.61.
Ethan Mitnick of Belhaven placed fourth in 8:22.26 and Reid Baynes of Ocean City finished fifth in 8:40.83. Crest Memorial’s Lukas Basile was sixth in 8:46.76.
Macie McCracken of Margaret Mace (North Wildwood) was second in the girls race with a time of 9:22.88. She finished behind Belhaven’s Sofia Day, who beat the field by more than 30 seconds with a time of 8:50.21.
Ocean City’s Sophia Petrov was third in 9:23.21, Claudia Booth of Belhaven placed fourth in 9:24.32 and Ocean City’s Chloe Care rounded out the top five in 9:25.23.
Belhaven Middle School was the team champion in both races.