Four Washington Township athletes - Tim Carey, Nick Krauss, Steve Morrone and Xavier Fraction - are scheduled to run in the 4x800-meter relay tomorrow in the Millrose Games at Madison Square Garden.
The race, which includes the two fastest high school 4x800 relay teams in the nation, is scheduled to be televised by ESPN2 at 7:24 p.m.
The Township quartet made headlines last Saturday by winning the 1,600-meter sprint medley relay at the New Balance Games at the Armory Track and Field Center in New York in 3 minutes, 30.8 seconds, the fastest time in the nation.
The sprint medley is not part of the program at Millrose.
The same foursome from Sewell won the 4x800 last year in the New Balance Games at the Armory in 7:55. They qualified for Millrose this year with a 7:56. But the competition will be much faster this time.
Morris Hills of Rockaway (N.J.) enters the race with the best time in the nation: 7:46.54. Albemarle (Va.) has the second-fastest time in 7:49.88.
The eight-team field also includes Pleasantville.
Half Hollow Hills West, Northport, Pine Bush, Pleasantville and Warwick Valley are from New York.
"We're out for vengeance," said Morrone, a junior. "We're trying to redeem ourselves from last year, when we had the best time [7:55] going in and came in fourth at Millrose.
"We'll definitely have to run a perfect race."
The Minutemen demonstrated that they could rise to the occasion when they won the sprint medley at the Armory last weekend. Motivated by Springfield Gardens, which had the best time in the country (3:33.16), an impressive field, and a 200-meter track that was fast and banked, the boys ran their best race.
"We were shocked at the 3:30.84," said Carey, a senior who led off the race in the 400. "I honestly didn't think that we could run that fast."
Carey has been starting fast and giving the team a lead this year. His split was clocked in 48.1 seconds at the Armory. At the Bennett Athletic Center in Toms River on Jan. 17, Carey's starts were instrumental in leading the Minutemen to the Group 4 state indoor relay championship.
"Carey got us off to a great start in the sprint medley [at the state meet] and we held the lead all the way," said Fraction, one of the best anchors in South Jersey. "If he can run the way he always does [at Millrose] we will have a good shot at winning."
Carey and Fraction, the South Jersey Group 4 indoor and outdoor champion in the 800 and 1,600, are the keys to the success of Township's relays.
"They know that if they can get on with Carey and Fraction it will be a win," Township coach Rich Bostwick said about his runners.
"Krauss is outstanding with stick work; in tight quarters he always comes up with the baton. Morrone is consistent and versatile. He has speed and endurance.
"We ran against Morris Hills in the 4 by 8 this year, and they beat us by five seconds. But Xavier had to run the mile that day."
This time the Minutemen will be running one race at Millrose and the shorter-banked track - 11 laps to a mile - is not conducive to record-breaking times.
"It's a huge stadium and being on TV always makes you nervous, but we did it last year," Morrone said.