A pair of South Jersey's top distance runners will not be ciompeting in the Penn Relays Thursday through Saturday at Franklin Field.
Kingsway's Chelsea Ley and Haddonfield's Jon "Boo" Vitez, both Meet of Champions in the 3,200, have been sidelined with injuries.
University of Virginia-bound Ley and Princeton-bound Vitez are expected to return to action soon.
Jim Mohan has been the Woodbury Relays' meet director for the last 31 years and if the previous 30 ran as smoothly as Saturday's meet, they were like clockwork.
Which brings to mind the Helbros wrist watches that go to winners. Mohan and his able workers had about 200 gold watches, whose dials were inscribed with the name of the relays, to give to the boys and girls.
He's been buying those watches for the meet since he started directing them, but no longer. The company is going out of business.
The Inquirer's softball rankings, which were based on Wednesday's results, have Kingsway as the No. 1 team in South Jersey with an 8-0 record.
Williamstown was the top team in the area the previous week.
Unfortunately, the two teams didn't play each other sooner. On Thursday, Williamstown edged the Dragons, 11-10, in a see-saw slugfest that ended in regulation when Jessica Martinez drove in the winning run.
The Hammonton tournament, scheduled for April 24-25, features the best softball teams in South Jersey, so the competition is fierce.
However, the tourney bumps heads with some schools' senior trips. One of those schools is Williamstown.
Braves' coach Fred Powell told me at te start of the season that his five seniors: Jess Martinez, Briana Molino, Justine Mattia, Jess Kane and Rachel Maiorano, will be in Florida at the start of the tournament.
Wrist watches awarded to winners in the Woodbury Relays are wildly popular with South Jersey track and field athletes. So I spoke with meet director Jim Mohan about them Monday.
Mohan said there will be enough gold, Helbros watches with Woodbury Relays inscribed on the dials to be given to every winner. In order to ensure that, anyone who wins more than one event will be awarded a gold medal.
The relays are scheduled to start at 9 a.m. Saturday and go until about 5 p.m.
Delsea's senior trip to Orlando is causing boys' track and field coach Ron Flaim to juggle his lineup for Saturday's Woodbury Relays.
Seniors Kyle Webb, Austin Medley and Avery Schofield, who make up the heart of the track lineup, are heading to Florida. Several throwers will join them.
"We can still put together some relays and do good, but we might taki it easy [and aim] for the Penn Relays," Flaim said.
Gloucester Catholic made a powerful statement in the Rancocas Valley Softball Tournament Saturday.
The Rams' clutch hitting in the first two rounds said they are the team to beat in South Jersey.
Colleen O'Donnell smashed a two-run triple to snap a 2-2 tie with Williamstown in the bottom of the sixth for a 4-2 lead. The Rams won, 4-3.
When I watched Rancocas Valley beat Mooreastown, 13-0, on April Fool's day, I thought that one team was ready and the other wasn't.
But after three games, RV is looking ready for anything and at all times. The Red Devils have won their first three by an aggregate score of 19-2.
Two of their wins were against Burlington County League Liberty Division rivals Moorestown, 13-0, and Northern Burlington, 1-0, which means that RV is off to a good start in a division that it won last year.
I just finished going through the brackets of this weekend's Rancocas Valley Softball tournament and it shakes out like this: Williamstown and Gloucester in the championship game at 2: 30 p.m. Sunday. That's right, two defending state champions going head to head for a tournament title.
Williamstown has the advantage because it's a Group 4 school. But Gloucester, the Group 1 state champ, has been pounding the ball behind pitcher Courtney Dolson, who has allowed two hits in two games.
This is a dream matchup.
I was looking over the brackets for the two-day Rancocas Valley Softball Tournament that starts Saturday (Ap. 10) when I got an e-mail from a coach about the Hammonton Softball Tournament scheduled for Ap. 24-25.
Now I know that we're in the throes of the softball season.