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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

NCS Pre-Season Division IV Rankings by Matt Duffy

The North Coast Section traditionally has a strong presence statewide in division four, and this year should be no exception. In 2007 Saint Mary’s of Berkeley won their second consecutive NCS title and this year they look to be the favorites for a third. However, when the CBEDs rolled out there was one change that should make the Panther’s nervous, and it was that Tamalpias HS has dropped from division three to four. However there seems to be an apparent lack of a number five runner for Tam which could cause major problems come championship season. Justin Sienna looks to be very strong as they return their entire seven from their 2007 squad; they will have John Masyczek lead them into the 2008 campaign looking for a state meet berth. A dangerous team will come from San Rafael HS, as they had two freshmen on their top five last year. Combine development with a strong leader in Brian Hernandez and this team could upset. One more team that could possibly be in Fresno thanksgiving weekend is Piedmont HS, they will have John Weber and Wyatt Alt leading the charge.

Individually the race is wide open, Alec Govi from Marin Catholic is the top returner from the 2007 race but Tony Levine from Saint Mary’s was just one second behind him. They will be joined by Cory Rand from Tamalpias HS and Daniel Maxwell from Saint Mary’s who sat out last fall due to an injury but ran a 9:42 3200m at MOC. The chase pack will include Kellen Asercion(SM), Micah Shaw-Henderson (El Molino), John Masyczek (JS) and Brian Hernandez (SR)

Boys’ Teams:
1. Saint Mary’s- Looking for third consecutive title.
2. Justin Sienna- Full squad from 2007 returns.
3. Tamalpias- Dangerous upfront, only need a number five and could take crown.
4. San Rafael- Talented and young.
5. Piedmont- Always a quiet yet dangerous team.

On the Bubble: Moreau Catholic, Arcata

Individuals returning: 5th Alec Govi Marin Catholic 16:16
6th Tony Levine St. Mary's College 16:17
8th Kellen Asercion St. Mary's College 16:26
9th Micah Shaw-Henderson El Molino,,, #1 16:28
10th John Masyczek Justin-Siena #1 16:31
From Div 3: 13th Cory Rand (11) Tamalpais 16:00

From Track: Daniel Maxwell 9:42 3200m

On the Girl’s side of things the 2007 state runner up Lady Panthers from Saint Mary’s are out looking for another NCS title. They return their top five and will be lead by Taylor Lawson who was the MOC Champion in the 300 Hurdles. The next best team on paper would have to be Piedmont assuming that Junior Jamie Kent will compete for the squad, as she opted not to run xc last fall but competed well on the oval in the spring. Piedmont is young but experienced and they have a tradition of success, the panthers and the highlanders will be able to see a lot of each other throughout the course of the season. The Mariners from Moreau Catholic HS will also field a stong team as six of last year’s top seven return, they could very well challenge Piedmont. Marin Catholic and Arcata seem to be in a dead lock for the next two positions as both teams have exceptional depth and impressive front running. Theresa Devine will lead Marin Catholic and the Arcata charge will be directed by Allie Maher.

Individually Taylor Lawson (SM) is the top returner from 2007 but expect Jamie Kent (P) and Theresa Devine (Marin C) to duke it out up front. Alex Choy (SM), Allie Maher(A), Margot Sullivan(SM), and Nochella Ozard from Fortuna will form an tenacious chase pack.

Girls’ Teams:
1. Saint Mary’s: Returning champs come back better than ever.
2. Piedmont- Talented team that will be finely coached and tuned.
3. Moreau Catholic- Big group back from 2007’s state meet squad.
4. Marin Catholic- Strong front runner in Devine.
5. Arcata- If the number five runner has a good day, they could be in Fresno.

On the Bubble: Terra Linda, Sir Francis Drake

Top Returners from 2007

Individuals: Taylor Lawson (11) St. Mary's College #1 18:43
Theresa Devine (11) Marin Catholic #1 18:49
Alex Choy (11) St. Mary's College #2 18:50
Margot Sullivan (12) St. Mary's College #3 19:15
Allie Maher (11) Arcata #1 19:21
Also Look out for: NCS 2006 Jamie Kent (9) Piedmont #1 18:56


Thank you to Matt Duffy for taking care of the Division IV rankings before he heads off to Brown to begin his college experience. Feel free to comment on the above rankings. CCS Division IV rankings will be up next followed by the Division V rankings for both CCS and NCS.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Oakland Section Preseason Rankings 2008

Boys
There could be some history made this year in the Oakland Section. Oakland High has won 14 Oakland Athletic League (OAL) titles and Skyline has won 30 since the OAL added cross country in 1964. None of the other four schools (Castlemont, Fremont, McClymonds or Oakland Technical) have won a boys team title. However, this might be the year that all changes. The rankings were based on individual personal records at Joaquin Miller Park since 2005.
1 – Oakland Technical
The Bulldogs definitely have the most talent of any of the teams coming back. Junior Ryan Potter returns as one of the prospects vying for the individual title. He was able to break up Skyline’s score for perfection at the Oakland Section Championships, taking 5th in 19:47 and beating the other top two returnees (Cameron Kohles from Skyline and Ryan Lok from Oakland High) in the process. The return to the team of senior Jacobo McGuire, who did not run cross country last fall, and sophomore sensations Michael Andemasyal and Larkin Sherrill should provide Oakland Technical enough depth up front to win their first league title ever. Key concerns: Who will be their 5th guy? Will the lack of a track season for Potter derail his title chances? Can McGuire return to his previous form?
2 – Skyline (2007 Champion)
Luckily for Skyline, races aren’t run on paper. They can take consolation in the fact that both themselves and Oakland High won their league titles in streaks, with the shortest being five in a row by Oakland High (1985-1989). The current streak for the Titans is two. The only returning varsity runner from their 2007 Joaquin Miller Park team time record team is senior Cameron Kohles, who will be in thick of it for the individual title. His ability to step up on the big stage was on display at the Arcadia Invitational, where he was a relay member of the 7th place 4 x mile team and 6th place distance medley team. Fellow senior Javier Panzar lost to Potter at the finish line during their dual meet last year. Key concerns: Will a successful junior varsity season in 2007 turn into a successful varsity season in 2008? Will the lack of championship experience be a factor? Can Skyline reload after an amazing 2007 season?
3 – Oakland High
Coach Dave Ponas’ Wildcats could be the dark horse in this battle. After injuries derailed most of his 2007 year, senior Ryan Lok will look to lead his team back to glory and for the individual title. He is the only returning boy who has run sub-19 at Joaquin Miller Park and he was on the OAL championship team in 2005, so experience will not be a factor. Juniors Robert Nguyen (brother of UC Davis runner Thomas Dileo) and Donaciano Mata-Silva will give Oakland High a tough trio. Coach Ponas knows how to get his teams ready for Joaquin Miller Park, exemplified by his nine consecutive OAL titles from 1997-2005. Key concerns: Can Lok return to his previous form? Can they find enough depth in their 4th-7th runners?
Top Returners
Rank Name School Grade Joaquin Miller PR
1 Ryan Lok Oakland High 12 18:56
2 Cameron Kohles Skyline 12 19:33
3 Ryan Potter Oakland Technical 11 19:47
4 Javier Panzar Skyline 12 20:13
Jacobo McGuire Oakland Technical 12 20:13
6 Michael Andemasyal Oakland Technical 10 20:24
7 Larkin Sherrill Oakland Technical 10 21:01
8 Robert Nguyen Oakland High 11 21:11
9 Donaciano Mata-Silva Oakland High 11 21:18
10 Excel Love Skyline 12 21:34

Girls
This championship could be a bit more interesting than most people think. Because our section is so small, having a great group up front doesn’t necessarily guarantee victory – there aren’t that many runners for displacing. A team with good depth could squeeze out a title without having an ace.
1 – Oakland Technical
Coach Noah Hinkston has the top three returners ready to roll for a championship run. Sophomore Amelia Dreyer is the going away favorite for the individual title. She has the fastest time of any returnee by a full minute, and her PR was after only a couple months of running. Fellow classmate Julia Eylar could give her a challenge and senior Shira Zingman-Daniels rounds out a talented 1-2-3 combination up front that any team in the OAL will have a tough time breaking up. Key concerns: Can Dreyer and Zingman-Daniels continue their success without quality track seasons? Can they find a 4th and 5th runner to break up Skyline’s depth? Can they challenge the league history similar to the boys (only 1 title in 1991)?
2 – Skyline (2007 Champion)
The Titans will have to flex their depth if they have a chance at repeating. They could possibly put all 7 runners in front of Oakland Technical’s 4th, led by junior Kim Bowen. Bowen has had success in beating Zingman-Daniels in the past and Skyline will need that to have a chance. Similar to the boys, history is on their side – 21 OAL titles since girls cross country was added to the OAL in 1978. Key concerns: Can anyone break up the big three from Oakland Technical? Can Bowen recover from a soccer injury? Will a lack of championship experience (only 3 returners) become a factor?
Top Returnees
Rank Name School Grade Joaquin Miller PR
1 Amelia Dreyer Oakland Technical 10 22:57
2 Julia Eylar Oakland Technical 10 23:57
3 Shira Zingman-Daniels Oakland Technical 12 24:03
4 Kim Bowen Skyline 11 24:27
5 Jade Cho Skyline 11 25:41
6 Adrienne Chen-Ok Skyline 12 25:43
7 Alana Ayasse Skyline 12 26:52
8 Lily Tsukayama Skyline 12 26:58
9 Madeleine Mountain Skyline 12 27:27
10 Chanel Harris Skyline 10 27:34

The Biggest Loser
It seems that, to break up the monotony of summer training, the coaches of the OAL have a silent battle going on as who is the biggest loser of weight, even if they don’t want to admit it. Oakland High coach Dave Ponas started the trend last year losing a tremendous amount of weight. Now, Oakland Technical coach Noah Hinkston has been spotted intensifying his training to shed a few and Skyline coach Christopher Luke Williams was questioned after he was noticed putting in a few miles of his own. Both Hinkston and Williams (cough – lost 20 pounds – cough) have been spying on each other the last couple of months, catching the other sneaking in that extra run or that extra mile. This all begs the question – who will be the biggest loser by seasons end?
Editor’s Note
I want to thank Albert Caruana for asking me to do these rankings. It is a great honor to have not only the Oakland Section recognized, but all of the sectional rankings that he puts on this site. Keep up the great work Albert!
Christopher Luke Williams
Skyline High School
Mathematics Teacher
Cross Country Head Coach
Track & Field Coach

Oakland Athletic League History of Champions
More to come including pictures-Albert

Saturday, July 26, 2008

SJS Girls' Pre-Season Rankings by Jason Jimenez


Girls pre-season rankings are a little easier because most teams return all of their scorers and you don't have to hunt down jv or frosh/soph stand-outs. In cases where a team didn't fill 5 scorers, those JV/Frosh/Soph times were checked and if needed 2-mile to 5k extrapolations were made. It appears to be a nice season coming up for the Girls across the top 3 divisions while Division 4 will be dominated by a single team (Bret Harte). Sorry smaller D5 schools - didn't add you to the equation. Divisions 1-3 should all be close and it will definitely be exciting come November.

Grace Davis (D1) and Beyer (D1) are out of contention at this point.

While 2 schools to watch out for are El Dorado (D3) and Del Campo (D2).

(Overall Rank/School/Returning Projected Team Time)

D1
1 Folsom 101:29
3 Davis 102:48
14 Galt 108:03
15 Modesto 109:45
18 Nevada Union 111:51
19 Rodriquez 115:06

D2
2 Oak Ridge 101:53
4 Ponderosa 102:48
5 Woodcreek 102:58
8 Granite Bay 105:34
9 St. Francis 105:44
11 Roseville 106:00
13 Buhach Colony 107:52
17 Rocklin 111:27

D3
6 Placer 105:08
7 Union Mine 105:15
10 Del Oro 105:58
16 El Camino 111:06

D4
12 Bret Hart 106:33

Remember these are just pre-season projections based solely off of returning times. A lot can change over the next month prior to the start of the season and then obviously once the big meets roll around it can all change again.

Enjoy!


--
Jason Jimenez
El Camino High School
English Teacher

Labor Day run and fun is coming up!!

Don't Miss the Mustang 5k &/or Youth Mile Fun-d Raiser for the San Marin
Cross Country Team.

YOU CAN HELP OUT BY PRE-REGISTERING!!! BY DOING SO, IT SAVES YOU MONEY AND
SAVES US TIME!!

When: Labor Day, Monday, September 1, 2008

Time: 5k starts at 8:30 am; Youth Mile starts at 10:00 am

WHAT AND WHERE: CHALLENGING TRAIL RUN--OPEN SPACE & TRAILS, HILLS AND HAY
BALES @ INDIAN VALLEY COLLEGE (SIGN UP NEAR SOCCER FIELDS) --at Indian
Valley College Open Space--beautiful, scenic trails to run on + a hay bale
to jump over!! Take Highway 101 through Marin County to southern Novato,
and exit at Ignacio Blvd. Go "west" on Ignacio Blvd as far as you can
until it ends at the Indian Valley college campus entrance. Follow campus
road to its end. Park in the parking lot. The race will begin and end on
the soccer fields.

TO SIGN UP ONLINE: [
http://www.active.com/page/Event_Details.htm?event_id=1575239&assetId=25614987-78e8-4f75-8884-e1aa81fb7f44
]http://www.active.com/page/Event_Details.htm?event_id=1575239&assetid=25614987-78e8-4f75-8884-e1aa81fb7f44


TO GET AP TO MAIL IN AND MORE INFO: [ http://www.eteamz.com/Mustang5k/
]http://www.eteamz.com/Mustang5k/



IF YOU CANNOT ATTEND, SIGN UP TO WIN A RAFFLE PRIZE—LAST YEAR’S MERCHANTS
DONATED $1,000+ IN GIFT CERTFICATES(need not be present to win!!)

AWARDS: Gift certificates provided for raffle. Finisher Medals to all
and Age-Group Awards!

EARLY REGISTRATION FEES (must be received by 8/25/08):

AFFORDABLE PRICES!! CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTION (TAX ID#:94-1356970).

$15 FOR 18 & OVER

$10-UNDER 18;

$5.00 Youth mile (must be received by 8/25/08).

RACE DAY FEES:

$20.00—18 AND OVER

$15.00 UNDER 18

$5-Youth Mile.

RACE DAY REGISTRATION: 5k: 7 AM TO 8:15 AM; Youth Mile: till 9:45 am.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

CCS Division III Pre-Season Rankings '08

Looking at the state meet results from the 2007 CA state meet, 2 CCS teams finished in the top 5 (out of all divisions, boys and girls) and they both resided in Division III. The Aptos boys finished in 3rd place last year as they made their first appearance on the podium (top 3) at the state meet. Willow Glen finished in 3rd place at the CCS final just one point behind the 2nd place St. Ignatius team (83-84) and 21 behind the Aptos boys. Showing the strength of this division, WG finished 4th at the state meet behind the top 10 finishes of Mohammed Abdalla and Nohe Lema.

For this coming season, both teams appear well armed to compete well again at the section and state meets. Aptos returns their #1 runner, Rylan Hunt, as well as 4 out of their top 6. As they have done in the past, Aptos might come out of the gates slowly but Coach Gruber will have them humming again during post season.

Willow Glen does lose their #1 runner from the previous four seasons, Abdalla, but return the rest of their formidable team. Lema, despite being a junior last year, was experiencing his first xc season which makes his 7th place finish at the state that much more impressive. According to www.dyestatcal.com in their latest ratings of the top boys' teams in the state, Aptos is ranked at #23 with Willow Glen right behind at #24.

The Central Coast Section has done quite well at state in this division which means they get rewarded with 4 state meet berths. Once you get past Aptos and Willow Glen, the rest of the contenders will include St. Ignatius which managed to just get past WG (83 to 84) last year to finish 2nd. Saratoga returns most of their 6th place team from last year and hope they can leap frog two teams devastated by graduation, North Monterey County and Terra Nova.

The individual battle will start with now seniors Hunt and Lema who finished in 4th and 5th last year respectively at the CCS meet. Hunt had a spectacular junior season on the track (4:13.38/9:21) as he qualified for the CA state meet in the 1600. Lema (4:18.60/9:32.48) was equally impressive as he finished 5th at the CCS 1600m. final.

The rest of the challengers will include Hunt's teammates, Dayne Gradone (4:22.63/9:37.06) and Mitch Moriarty (4:25.56/9:40.63), St. Ignatius' Greg Innis (4:22.23 to finish 7th at CCS), Monterey's Jake Arveson (1:55.62/4:23) who qualified for the ca state track meet in the 800 and Saratoga's Alan Menezes.

The girls' team favorite this coming season will be the defending champions, St. Ignatius. They return the whole kit and kaboodle (entire top 5) which includes the defending CCS individual champion (Rachel Hinds) and defending state champion (Katy Daly). Their main competition will once again be Aptos which finished a close 2nd to SI last year (56 to 62). They return 6 out of the top 7 including Marissa Ferrante (4:55.27/10:57.41) who had an outstanding track and field season finishing 2nd in both the 1600 and 3200 at the CCS finals.

The battle will be for the last state meet spot (3rd) will be between North Monterey County (qualifiers here last year as the 3rd place team), Sacred Heart Cathedral (4th place last year, just 10pts. out of the "money"), Saratoga which returns 6 out of their top 7 and Valley Christian SJ, 2nd placers last year in Division IV.

Hinds and Daly will once again battle for the individual title. Hinds has youth on her side but did not run track during the spring. Daly is an incredibly tough runner who rebounded from her 2nd place finish at CCS by winning state. Moving up to Division III will be Valley Christian SJ's Jennifer Bergman who ran the fastest time on the Crystal Springs course last season (17:25). Ferrante ran well on the track and appears ready to challenge the three runners above. NMC's Jovita Trujillo finished in 4th place last year at CCS and should not be counted out. Katie Nast of Saratoga, a 2nd generation runner on the Crystal Springs course, finished in 9th place last year and will look to move up this season.

Division III Boys (Top 4 teams advance to state)
1) Aptos-4 out of top 6 return for state podium team.
2) Willow Glen-Lema ready to step in as #1 runner.
3) St. Ignatius-4 sub 16:30 runners return.
4) Saratoga-Falcons looking to improve 6th place finish from '07.
5) Monterey-Individual hopeful Arveson leads the way.
On the bubble: North Monterey County, Pioneer, and Riordan

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 CCS meet time:
Rylan Hunt
(4) Aptos 15:22
Nohe Lema (5) Willow Glen 15:27
Jake Arveson (7) Monterey 15:47
Mitch Moriarty (10) Aptos 15:52
Greg Innes (12) St. Ignatius 16:08

Division III Girls (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1) St. Ignatius-Top 5 are back for state '07 state qualifying team.
2) Aptos-Will give Mt. View all they can handle.
3) Valley Christian SJ-Bergman is fastest returning runner from last year.
4) North Monterey County-State meet qualifiers last year.
5) Saratoga-Could have 2 runners in top 10.
On the bubble: Burlingame, Notre Dame Belmont, and Sacred Heart Cathedral

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 CCS meet time:
Rachel Hinds (1) St. Ignatius 17:41
Katy Daly (2) Gunn 17:45
Marissa Ferrante (4) Aptos 18:24
Jovita Trujillo (5) North Monterey County 18:31
Katie Nast (9) Saratoga 18:53

From Division IV
Jennifer Bergman (1) 17:33

Thank you to Gus Ibarra (NMC) and Walt Van Zant (Wilcox) for their help with the above rankings.

Feel free to comment on the above rankings. NCS and CCS Division IV rankings will be up next.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Catching up with Saugus coach Rene Paragas...

What school fielded the best girls' xc team in CA in 2007 (and 2006 for that matter)? The answer is a clear and definite one and that is Saugus HS. They broke 7 course records during the '07 season including the CA state meet team record by 32 seconds. Their lone loss was at the Nike Team Nationals (NTN) race as they finished 2nd to one of the best girls' team ever, Fayetteville-Manlius HS. They will once again be the favorites to win their 3rd consecutive CA state meet division I crown as they return 4 out of their top 5 girls from last season.

The following is an interview with their coach, Rene Paragas as he was gracious enough to answer my questions. Enjoy!


1) How did you get your start in distance running and tell us a little about your competitive time in the sport.

I started running in junior high school PE. I wanted to break 5:00 in the mile. Never did though. Got down to 5:11. In 1994 I graduated from Hart HS in Santa Clarita with a best of 1:55 for 800m. Then went on to El Camino CC where I made the state meet two years in the 1500m with a best of 3:55, before finally earning a degree at Cal Poly Pomona. I was pretty much injured my whole time at Cal Poly.

2) What led you to choose teaching and coaching as your profession?
In my early days of running I wanted to have good XC teams and I used to try to convince my friends to run, organize Saturday workouts, design training programs for myself. I guess that's where I first had the desire to coach. As I got older I realized that teaching would be the best profession for me and my degree (history) if I wanted to coach at the high school level.

3) What do you think are the biggest changes in the sport of cross country that you have seen between your competitive time and now?
People are training harder. Mostly running more miles. When I was running there was a big push for lower miles and cross-training. Now it seems to me, people have made it more simple and are simply running more. And then there are the year round club sports that are making it very difficult to get kids to run. Soccer, volleyball, etc. There were more multi-sport athletes back in the 80's and 90's.

4) Who are your coaching mentors that helped you become the coach that you are today?
My own coaches: Thom Lacie, Dave Klinger, Gene Blankenship and Dean Lofgren.
Plus I'm a big fan of Jack Daniels and Arthur Lydiard.

5) How long have you coached at Saugus HS and did you coach anywhere else before?
This will be my 5th season of coaching the boys at Saugus and 4th with the girls. Before that, I worked at a JHS where I coached a small group of middle school kids for 3 years.

6) What was the state of the program when you took over? What kind of changes did you make and what did you keep status quo?
When I took over the boys program, they had finished in the bottom two at league for 4 straight years, had only 13 boys on the team, and only one of them could break 5-minutes in the mile. We had 3 freshman recruits that first year. But the biggest problem was a culture of losing and apathy. That was my biggest challenge. Trying to get those kids to believe that they could compete with anyone. I tried to change everything I could to break away from the past. The same was true for the girls when I started coaching them the next spring in track. I wiped the slate clean and tried to build from the ground up. Many of the girls did not like that approach and we faced some difficult challenges.

7) Can you identify a runner(s) that helped elevate Saugus to the level that it has reached today.
Shannon Murakami's success during the 2005 track season really helped. She and her parents believed in me, allowing her to train at the level she needed to. Plus one of my first freshman boys was an awesome recruiter. He got his friends out the next year to run and they would go on to win two league titles.

8) What do you think attracts students from your school to come out for xc and track? What do you do personally to get students to come out for your sport?
It's extremely difficult to get kids to come out to run at Saugus. Saugus has long been known for its apathetic student body, not only in athletics, but in academics as well. My biggest role is trying to change the culture of the student body in my own class. Trying to get them to have their own opinions and care about something. Heck anything! In the 3 years that I have taught at Saugus, I've only been able to get 3 kids out of my class to run and it is not for a lack of trying either. I would say that one out of every hundred kids I talk to on campus even gives the sport a try with maybe half staying on the team.

9) What workouts do you consider as keys to the success of your program? What does a typical week look like for your team?
The key to our success is long term aerobic development. We don't mortgage our future with doing too much interval work. Every season is based on trying to increase our aerobic base for future years. The best way to do this is long runs and threshold work. Listed below is a late August/ early September week of training.
Sunday: 3-10 miles very easy OYO
Monday: 5-7x mile Cruise Intervals
Tuesday: 90-120 minute LSD with surges
Wednesday: 60-minute recovery run
Thursday: 20min Track Tempo with 200m Reps afterward.
Friday: 60-minute recovery run
Saturday: 8-10 miles on hilly trails at high aerobic pace

10) Describe the training area around Saugus. Positives and negatives?
Saugus is paved over. There is a branch of the Santa Clara river that runs through our town for flat running, but the rest of the area is hilly.
The positives of training in our area is that we have hills, a large grass park about a mile from our school, an all-weather track and a flat paved bike path with no signals that goes on for 5-miles.
The negatives is that it is hot, hot and hot! Just about everyday is over 90 degrees in our area until October with many days in the 100-105 degree range. It's also difficult to find runs that are not all pavement.

11) Tell us a little about your teams' NTN experience from the past two seasons. How do you get a team to compete well in the tough SS, the state meet and then NTN over a short span of time?
I'm not a big fan of NTN. If I could, we would skip that meet altogether. But the girls want to run there so we do. The main goal of our program is to win the state meet and it showed our first year at NTN. We were cooked and sick by the time we got to Portland and ran awful. Embarrassed by our performance, I changed a few things to make sure we ran respectable at NTN. But to answer your question, you don't. It's just too many hard weeks of racing in a row. I felt we ran sub-par at NTN again, but well enough to get second. We just tried to focus on being tough, because physically we were dead by the time we got there.

12) Anything else you would like to add.
Nah, I'm good.

Thank you very much for your time Rene!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Trail Challenge Run at Garin Park

See information below from Phil Wilder (Moreau Catholic HS coach).

2008 Garin Park Trail Challenges

Your browser may not support display of this image.

Where: Garin Park, Hayward

When: July 10 and July 29, 2008 at 7 p.m.

(Registration is from 6:15 p.m. until 6:55)

Courses: 1 mile (flat) , 2.1 miles, and 5 miles

Cost: $1

More information: Call (510) 881-4301 ext. 209 or email pwilder@moreaucatholic.org

Name____________________________________________________Age______Gender_____Distance__________

Address________________________________________City___________________State____ _Zip____________

Release form: I know that running a race is a potentially hazardous activity. I should not enter and participate unless I am medically able and properly trained. I agree to abide by any decision of a race official relative to my ability to safely complete the run. I assume all risks associated with running in this race, including but not limited to falls, contact with other participants, the effects of the weather, including high heat and/or humidity, and the conditions of the trails and meadows, all such risks being known and appreciated by me. Having read this waiver and knowing these facts and in consideration of your accepting my entry, I, for myself and anyone entitled to act on my behalf, waive and release all sponsors, their representatives and successors from all claims or liabilities of any kind arising out of my participation in this event.

Signature of Participant Date

If the participant is a minor, there must be an adult who is designated to approve, in the event it becomes necessary, medical treatment . In the event that I (parent/guardian) cannot be reached, I hereby authorize (please print) to consent to any x-ray examination, anesthetic, medical or surgical diagnosis or treatment and hospital care which is deemed advisable by and is to be rendered under the general or special supervision of any physician or surgeon licensed under the provision of the Medical Practice Act., whether such diagnosis or treatment be rendered at the office or at the hospital.

Parent/Guardian (please print) Date

              Parent’s signature (if entrant is under 18 years of age) Phone Number

Shannon Rowbury continues to impress...

4:00.33 Personal Best!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/18/AR2008071802865.html

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Olympic Coverage by HS athlete


From Kevin Liao, 12th grader at Evergreen Valley HS.

Since I'm going to be in Beijing for the Olympics, I've been putting together previews for the distance events. I've already finished the Men's 800, which I've posted here: http://track.flocasts.org/blogs/blogger/attackthehill

Feel free to post this on your blog or give the link.

Thanks,
Kevin

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

NCS Division III Pre-Season Rankings '08

While the announcement of the new CBEDs are usually met with the usual "oh, so and so school moved into so and so division...yawn!", this year's CBEDs dropped the best team in any division during the past two seasons (Petaluma) into the most competitive race, Division III. This will result in a GREAT match-up with arguably the best team going into the season, Campolindo HS. (ranked #22 in the latest dyestatcal top teams in CA poll).

At this point, the Division III team title will go to one of those schools as Campolindo returns everybody (1 through 7) from their winning NCS team while Petaluma has the Lockert twins (Sterling and Devin) once again leading the way with a crew of formidable runners still in tow. The next best team appears to be Las Lomas who despite losing their #1 runner ('06 NCS champion Greg Drosky) from the past two seasons return an array of talented juniors.

Maria Carrillo, which finished an agonizingly close 2nd last year (80 to 81 to Campolindo), lose their top 2 runners and will need some major improvement from their returning runners to contend. That means Redwood should be the next team behind the BIG TWO in line for a state meet berth as Peter Kissin (9:42.46) leads the way following a terrific junior season. With four teams going to Fresno, the competition is fierce in this division and the next tier of teams should include Acalanes, Alhambra, Eureka and Miramonte.

The individual battle should be equally competitive as many of the rising stars in NCS will be here chasing the individual crown. The favorite at this point has to be Petaluma's Sterling Lockert (4:16.07/9:29.04) who is the defending champion from Division II and returns with the fastest time on the Hayward course, 15:24. His brother Devin (1:56.24/4:24.05) finished 2nd in 15:33 and also had an excellent track season. The fastest returner from this division is Novato's Erik Olson with a 15:37 clocking as well as fine 9:25.62 at the NCS MOC. The rest of the lead pack should include Brandon Felipe-4:32.34/9:46.31 (Petaluma), Mark Blattler (Alhambra), Robert Pulford-9:32.78 and Ross Geiger-4:24.34/9:58.46 (Campolindo), Michael Jamieson (Las Lomas) and Peter Kissin (Redwood).

The girls team title should once again go through defending champion Campolindo, winners of 5 out of the past 8 championships. Their front runners will include Grace Orders, the always steady Lisa Rosenthal and Sara Mostatabi. They will need to find a way to fill the holes of departing seniors such as team leader Laurie Finnegan that could leave the door open for Maria Carrillo. The Curtin twins will lead the way for MC as the defending individual champion, Lauren, and sister Cara return the best one two punch to this division and will be hungry to unseat Campo.

As with most girls' races, most of the leading runners are back (from last year's NCS meet, 9 of top 10 and 18 of top 20). That means we could have a repeat of last year as Lauren Curtin (2:20.77/4:55.11) narrowly defeated Grace Orders (11:03.56) by a second (18:11 to 18:12). The rest of the contenders will include Cara Curtin-2:29.64/5:14.53 (Maria Carrillo), Lisa Rosenthal-5:18.2/11:54.0 (Campolindo), Damajeria DuBose (Bishop O'Dowd), Sara Mostatabi-5:30.4/11:48.5 (Campolindo), Jewelz Andrews (Alhambra) and the usual array of 9th graders that will make an impact (I just don't know who they are yet). Isabel Andrade of Petaluma who had a fine track season should also be considering she ran 5:07.75 to qualify for the NCS MOC final in the 1600.

Division III Boys (Top 4 Advance to state)
1) Campolindo-Defending champions return everybody.
2) Petaluma-Best overall team past two seasons
3) Las Lomas-Lose leader but return everybody else.
4) Redwood-Peter Kissin leads way for state meet hopefuls.
5) Maria Carrillo-Great tradition of great teams.
On the bubble: Acalanes, Alhambra, Eureka, Miramonte

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 NCS meet time:
Erik Olson (5) Novato 15:37Mark Blattler (6) Alhambra 15:37
Robert Pulford (8) Campolindo 15:45Ross Geiger (9) Campolindo 15:54
Michael Jamieson (10) Las Lomas 15:56

From Division II
Sterling Lockert (1) Petaluma 15:24
Devin Lockert (2) Petaluma 15:33
Brandon Felipe (6) Petaluma 15:48

Division III Girls (Top 4 Advance to state)
1) Campolindo-Scored 33 to win title last year.
2) Maria Carrillo-Curtin twins gives them tough combo.
3) Las Lomas-Veteran group looking to improve from last year's finish.
4) Redwood-Looking to qualify to 3rd straight state meet.
5) Acalanes-Coming off good track season.
One the bubble: Alhambra, Bishop O’Dowd, Miramonte

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 NCS meet time:
Lauren Curtin (1) Maria Carrillo 18:11
Grace Orders (2) Campolindo 18:12
Cara Curtin (3) Maria Carrillo 18:35
Lisa Rosenthal (4) Campolindo 18:42
Damajeria DuBose (5) Bishop O'Dowd 18:44

CCS Division III rankings will be posted next. Feel free to comment on above rankings.

NCS and CCS Division III rankings on the way...

They will be posted by Sunday. Feel free to offer your opinions on this division in both sections. Who are the team favorites? Individuals favorites? Surprises? Exciting new talent?

Stay tuned...

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Science of Sport

Check out the following link to a great blog (by two Ph.D.s) which covers the great rivalry between Ethiopia and Kenya in their latest entry. Prepare to be on the blog for a while.

http://www.sportsscientists.com/ (Scientific comment and analysis of sports and sporting performance)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

SJS Pre-Season XC Rankings


The following is by El Camino HS Cross Country coach Jason Jimenez.
Feel free to comment or add your thoughts in the comment box below.


I took the top teams with the top 5 returning runners from
Sections. If a team did not have a top 5 returning, I used JV times.
If they had no JV times, I used frosh/soph times for frosh/soph boys
who I think might be able to be a top 5 runner for their team. This
was easy because a lot of the best frosh/soph runners had run the 5k
course before so I could get an idea of what each team's top 5 would
end up being.

Obviously, we don't know about the surprises and my
rankings do leave out teams who could not field 5 runners. And some of
these teams will likely be a factor later in the year (see Woodcreek
D2, for example). Some ones I'm not sure about are Granite Bay (Walt
Lange from Jesuit says they will be good so...) and El Camino - who
might be moving up to Division 2. Ok here they are...

Boys D1-3
**Woodcreek, Fairfield and Grace Davis seem to be out of contention at
this point in the season but who knows what can happen this summer.

(Overall Rank/School/Predicted Returning Section Team Time)
D1
1 Davis 85:16
5 Modesto 89:01
7 Kennedy 89:29
11 Sheldon 91:47

D2
2 Oak Ridge 86:30
3 Jesuit 86:46
4 Del Campo 88:31
6 Pleasant Grove 89:01
9 Rocklin 90:07
10 Ponderosa 90:50
12 Granite Bay 91:56

D3
8 El Camino 89:37
13 Del Oro 92:42
14 Placer 93:20
15 Union Mine 93:41

--
Jason Jimenez
El Camino High School
Head Coach Cross Country and Track and Field

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Best Efforts by Kenny Moore

I am a big sports history buff including (of course), track and field history. I remember finding the book Best Efforts by Kenny Moore at the local library and just devouring it. It's a great compilation of articles that were written in Sports Illustrated about some of the best runners and races from the past. The book was first published in 1983 but is now once again available as you can see in the picture to the left. You can get a copy of the book at the website below for the low price of $14.95. Anybody who read Bowerman and the Men of Oregon can attest to the brilliance of Kenny Moore as a writer.

You can find further information about the book as well as how to order it at the following link:
http://www.kennymoore.us/thebooks.htm

Shannon Rowbury-By Andy Chan (her HS coach at SHC)

The following is from Shannon's HS coach, Andy Chan.

I thought I’d share some of the excitement we’re feeling at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory (SHCP) about Shannon Rowbury (class of 2002) not only qualifying for the 2008 Olympic team but winning the US Olympic Trials in the 1500 meters.

I was lucky enough to be a first year head coach at SHCP when Shannon came in as a freshmen. Almost 10 years later we are still very close. The last two months have just been filled with excitement. My wife, Malinda, and I got married last summer but didn’t take a honeymoon then, deciding to save money and vacation time for a big international trip should Shannon ever qualify for one. We realized in January of this year that we
couldn’t wait for the Trials to be over and just pick-up and head over to Beijing. So we rolled the dice and booked our trip to the Olympics seven months ago. We figured at the worst, we had a great honeymoon to China, and at the best….well, you can guess what the best case scenario was!

The month leading up to the Trials, Shannon was back in San Francisco.
Coach John Cook (with Shannon making a toast in the attached photo) sent
her workouts and I went out to the track with her to hold the stopwatch,
write things down, and give her someone to talk to so she wasn’t talking
to herself all afternoon.


The Trials in Eugene were superb! Everything everyone is saying about the
atmosphere is correct. It was also very enjoyable to spend time with
fellow coaches like, Pete Brewer (Castro Valley), Tony Kauke (former City
College SF), Chris Puppione (former UC Davis), and Chuck Woolridge
(Campolindo) on Villard St.

As Shannon took her victory lap around Hayward Field, I held up a sign
(see attached photo) that read:
Hotel in Beijing – 10,875 Yen
Tickets to the Olympic Track Meet - $520
WATCHING THE KID YOU COACHED IN HIGH SCHOOL RUN IN THE OLYMPICS – PRICELESS


That summarizes exactly how I feel.

See you all at the XC meets in the fall,
-Andy

P.S. We have a great link on the SHCP website with info about Shannon’s
high school career and we’ll be adding links to various things from the
school website, too.
http://www.shcp.edu/s/148/sacredheart.aspx?sid=148&gid=1&pgid=292&cid=5365&ecid=5365&crid=0&calpgid=408&calcid=5224

Sunday, July 06, 2008

CCS Division II Pre-Season Rankings '08

The following rankings are based on teams and individuals that competed in this division last year. The CBEDs are not out yet for CCS so there could be changes which will be dealt with later in the season. Thanks to former Palo Alto coach Jeff Billing with his help on the following rankings. Thank you also to Walt VanZant for his incredible compilation of all runners and teams in every CCS division which can be found at this link.

With my sabbatical from teaching and coaching last year, I was able to attend a LOT of cross country races and without a doubt, two of the most exciting races I witnessed last year involved Mt. View and Palo Alto High Schools, but more specifically Philip MacQuitty (Palo Alto) and Garrett Rowe (Mt. View). Fortunately for cross country fans, MacQuitty and Rowe were both sophomores last year so we will get to see those two battle once again for at least two more years.

Going into this season, it appears that Mt View and Palo Alto are going to lock horns again in a very tight battle during the league, section and state competition. The match-ups will be tight down the line starting from the #1s (Rowe vs. MacQuitty), #2s (Charlie Avis vs. Ian Myjer), and #3/4s (Parker Schuh/Neil Lingarker vs. Skyler Cummins/Henry Jordan). As with most close cross country races, the winner could be decided by the 5th and 6th runners as both teams displayed a lot of depth this past track and field season.

With 3 teams going to the state meet and with Mt. View and Palo Alto already spoken for, the next two teams are no strangers to CCS Championships. St. Francis, the defending Division II champions, have won 7 CCS titles ('91, '94, '97, '98, '02, '05 and '07) while Los Gatos, last year's 2nd place team, has won CCS titles in 4 separate decades ('78, '79, '80, '88, '92, '98, '99, '00, '05 and '06). While they both lose several key runners, it appears that St. Francis will have the edge returning 4 out of their top 7 from last year.

This is a clearly a very deep division that will result in several very good teams staying home during Thanksgiving weekend. The teams at this moment that appear to be on the cusp of state meet berths are Gunn with their 5 juniors, the Vince Rodriguez led Santa Clara squad who should have a very low number begin their team scoring.

The contest for the individual crown will be a repeat from last year as most of the top finishers are all back as well as Sobrato's Lance Wolfsmith who drops down from Division I. Last year's race had the first five runners separated by 5 seconds and this year's race could be just as competitive. Despite some setbacks during the just finished track and field season, the two favorites will be juniors Philip MacQuitty and Garrett Rowe. Rodriguez and Avis should be right there with those two as well as Daniel Filipcik of Woodside, Lance Wolfsmith of Sobrato and Myjer of Mt. View.

The girls' team race will be a battle between two teams returning their entire top five, league rivals Mt. View and Gunn. Both have tremendous front runners (Jackie Evans and Allegra Mayer for Gunn and Mary Reynolds and Alexandra Westbrook for Mt. View) and tremendous team depth. I am not sure how many times these teams will meet each other but the CCS race could be the tie breaker to determine the season champion.

While Gunn and Mt. View may have the two best teams, the team with the two best runners will be Leland as they return the individual section champion, Stephanie Barnett and her sister Claudia who finished in 4th place in the same race. The rest of their team included precocious 9th graders who should benefit from the experience. The next two teams should be one of the state meet qualifiers from last year, Presentation and Lynbrook which boasts two runners (Lauren Tang and Cindy Huang) with sub 19 Crystal Springs clockings.

As with most girls' races, the majority of last year's finishers are back. The favorite and rightfully so will be Stephanie Barnett of Leland. She won last year's race by 23 seconds in an impressive 17:32 but don't count out her sister Claudia, the Mt. View and Gunn runners who could all venture into the sub. 18 territory.

Division II Boys (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1) Mt View-Top 5 are back for state '07 state qualifying team.
2) Palo Alto-MacQuitty/Avis, tough 1/2 punch.
3) St. Francis-Can they repeat another stunning performance at CCS?
4) Gunn-Paul Summers will lead the way.
5) Los Gatos-New coaches/key losses but don't count them out.
On the bubble: Leland, Sobrato, and Santa Clara

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 CCS meet time:
Philip MacQuitty (1) Palo Alto 15:26
Garrett Rowe (2) Mt. View 15:27Vince Rodriguez (3) Santa Clara 15:27
Daniel Filipcik (8) Woodside 15:44
Charlie Avis (9) Palo Alto 15:47

Division II Girls (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1) Mt View-Top 5 are back for state '07 state qualifying team.
2) Gunn-Will give Mt. View all they can handle.
3) Leland-Barnett sisters lead the way.
4) Presentation-State meet qualifiers last year.
5) Lynbrook-Could have 2 runners in top 10.
On the bubble: Santa Clara, St. Francis and Palo Alto

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 CCS meet time:
Stephanie Barnett (1) Leland 17:32
Allegra Mayer (3) Gunn 18:19
Claudia Barnett (4) Leland 18:21
Mary Reynolds (5) Mt. View 18:29
Emma Dohner (7) Gunn 18:33

Feel free to comment on the above rankings. NCS and CCS Division III rankings will be up next.

Friday, July 04, 2008

NCS Division II Pre-Season Rankings '08

For all those teams hammering away the past few years to make the state meet, the road to Fresno got a little easier as perennial contenders (Eureka) dropped down to Division III for the '07 season and two time defending champions (Petaluma HS) dropped down this year. If you want to see a complete list of all the schools in each division for NCS, check out this link.

Since 1989, the De La Salle football team won 18 NCS championships (16 straight) and along the way won 151 straight games (national record)!!! At most campuses, those numbers would overshadow any other teams but at DLS, the football team is not the only fall sport with a running attack. Taking a gander at the same time period, the DLS cross country team won 11 NCS titles (5 straight in Division II from 1994-1998) and was ranked 3 times in the Harrier national rankings (5th in 1989, 11th in 1991 and 12th and 1996). They are still the only boys' team to be ranked in the top 25 in the nation from NCS.

Following their 3rd place finish in '06 and 2nd place finish last year, DLS will be the favorites to win the NCS title in '08 despite not returning the most fire power to this division. At this point, this is solely based on past history and the incredible depth they display each season. Since this division sends 3 teams to the state meet, the next few teams appear to be a toss up between Washington (return 1, 2, 3, 6 and 7), Santa Rosa (return 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, and 7), Montgomery (return 3, 5, 6, and 7) and Alameda (return 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and yes you guessed it, 7...wow!).

The battle for the individual title will be Lockert (Sterling and Devin) free as the top 2 finishers from last year will now compete with their teammates in Division III. That means that the individual favorite(s) will be 1600m. victor at the NCS Meet of Champions and 3rd place finish here last year, Clayton Valley's Nathanael Litwiller and 3200m. NCS MOC champion and 2nd placer in Division I, Liberty's Wyatt Landrum. Their closest pursuer appears to be Andrew Zellman of Ukiah HS who finished just 3 seconds behind Litwiller last year on the Hayward course. De La Salle's top returning runner Spencer Sheaff and Arroyo's Danny Thomas should also be part of the lead pack.

The girls' team title will once again go through DLS neighbor, Carondelet HS. They return their top 3 runners based on the results of the '07 NCS and state meets. Following their '06 state championship, Carondelet finished a surprising 5th at state but don't count them out of making the podium again in Fresno this year. Now, if Carondelet was to stumble at NCS, the team that appears best equipped to unseat them is Livermore HS which returns possibly the best #1 runner in this division (Diana George) and oh by the way, their entire top 7 from last year.

With 3 teams making state from this division, the favorite for the last spot appears to be Casa Grande which qualified for their first state meet last year. Jacque Taylor leads this group with most of their state qualifying team returning except for their #3 runner. Keeping CG honest will be Irvington HS (4th here last year) who return their top 5 and Santa Rosa who return their top 3 runners.

The individual title comes down once again to the defending champion (Carondelet's Nicole Hood), the '06 champion and 4:49.63 1600 runner (Casa Grande's Jacque Taylor) and 2 time defending NCS 1600/3200 champion (Livermore's Diana George). Kellie Houser, 3200m. state meet qualifier (11:01.83) appears to be the only runner that can touch the big three based on her success on the track.

Division II Boys (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1) De La Salle-Historically tough team no matter division.
2) Washington-Tough top 3 back this year after elusive Fresno spot.
3) Alameda-Top 5 are back from last year.
4) Santa Rosa-Rory McLeod leads way here.
5) Montgomery-State meet qualifiers last year.
On the bubble: Liberty, Arroyo

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 NCS meet time:
Nathanael Litwiller (3) Clayton Valley 15:35
Andrew Zellman (4) Ukiah 15:38
Spencer Sheaff (8) De La Salle 15:53
Rory McLeod (11) Santa Rosa 16:05
Bisrat Zerehaimanot (13) Hayward 16:13
From Division I-Wyatt Landrum (2) Liberty 15:09

Division II Girls (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1) Carondelet-Two-time defending champions.
2) Livermore-Will be closer to Carondelet this year.
3) Casa Grande-Looking to qualifying for 2nd state meet as a team.
4) Irvington-Top 5 return following 4th place finish.
5) Santa Rosa-Top 5 return after 5th place finish.
On the bubble: Alameda, Montgomery, Washington

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 NCS meet time:
Nicole Hood (1) Carondelet 17:08
Jacque Taylor (2) Casa Grande 17:21
Diana George (3) Livermore 17:52
Heather Cerney (5) Carondelet 18:25
Kellie Houser (6) Carondelet 18:33

Feel free to comment on the above rankings.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

NCS Pre-Season Division I Rankings '08

By Castro Valley Coach Peter Brewer.
=====================
2008 North Coast Section
Cross --CC-> Rankings
Division I

Marks in parantheses are ordered thusly: for cross country, the 1st time is the 2007 NCS-MOC Hayward HS time, and the 2nd is the 2007 State Meet Woodward Park time. For track times, they are the 2008 season PR’s as reported on the EPI database and are listed 800/1600/3200. If faster track times exist for the runners, they did not show up on the database, which combs the web.

Girls:
1. Castro Valley brings ‘em all back
2. College Park so do the Falcons
3. Granada they’'re all returning too
4. California good up front power
5. Monte Vista good track season bodes well

Castro Valley narrowly edged College Park last year for the top spot, and both squads return intact. As with all season, it is the small variables that seem to be the largest influences. Health, summer running, soccer camps ... it all factors into how the teams enter the season and how they show up at the end.

Castro Valley leads off with the trio of sophomore Kelsey Santisteban (18:47/19:14; 2:22/5:05/11:17), and juniors Chelsea Schneider (18:46/19:35; 2:15.95) and Pam MacLeod (18:49/19:19). The rest of team comes back, and the Trojans are looking to add newcomers senior Ayla Granados (2:21.75) and sophomore Marisa Matines (5:37/12:14) to the mix. Track discovery Elise Wummer (2:24.0/5:10.98/11:38.62) is opting for the musical this fall.

College Park have talented junior Alycia Cridenbring (17:55/18:29; 2:24.87/5:01.76/11:41.3) at the forefront. She is ably backed up by seniors Lauren Crawford (19:17/19:34; 5:15.34/11:25.00) and Rosie Smith (19:07/19:49; 5:17.65/11:32.75).

Granada also comes back with its entire team. The top runner for the Matadors is junior Lara Jansen (19:07/19:54; 2:28.08/5:47.23/12:03.88). Her main support comes from seniors Hayley Swanson (19:18; 5:26.59/12:04.41) and Emily Paddock (19:30; 2:23.45).

California boasts returning NCS individual champ junior Colleen Lillig (17:54/19:14; 5:17.61/11:42.17) to do the frontrunning chores for the Grizzlies. Senior Holly Babcock (19:30; 2:26.25/5:18.27/12:47.27) is an excellent runner. Sophomore Elaine McVay (20:13; 5:27/11:29.46) adds to the front.

Monte Vista returns several girls from last year’s 4th place NCS team. The top returnee for the Mustangs is junior Nicole Aha (19:31; 2:32.66/5:24.48/11:41.12) and judging by the track marks, will have a large supporting cast this fall.

Other individual runners of note include Newark Memorial’s junior Rachel Borg (19:01/20:09; 5:27.50/12:02.73) and junior Jamira Cox of Deer Valley (19:22; 2:18.72).

Boys:
1. Amador Valley state meet teambrings back 5 of 6
2. Granada youngsters are all back and older
3. Deer Valley solid 5 coming back
4. College Park returns #’s 2-5; can they regroup?
5. Castro Valley youth movement -- 5 sophs on var

Amador Valley appears to hold all the cards here. A real good returning group posted some very good track times as well. Junior Kellen Cole (15:57/16:39; 4:27.49/9:55.54) is the apparent top runner, but will be pushed by senior teammates Garrett Ward (16:00/16:40; 4:44.09/9:54.87) and MIke Marlin (15:58/16:43; 4:23.45/10:05).

Granada will be chasing the Dons all year in the EBAL. The Matadors have all top 5 coming back, led by junior Alex Summers (15:43; 4:31.34/9:30.65). He is joined by seniors Drew Callen (15:50; 2:05.17/4:31.34/9:59.77) and Nate Smauley (15:56; 4:32.17).

Deer Valley brings back to the fold their 2-3-4-5 runners. The Wolverines have the upfront tandem of junior Nathan Baker (16:13; 4:34.98/9:58.75) and senior Ryan DeVito (16:23; 1:57.36/4:34.06)

College Park is always a presence, and looks to continue that trend with a strong returning contingent. Senior Brian Cameron (16:04; 4:32.23/10:02.23) will be pushed by sophomore Jeff Bickert (4:40.82/9:58.88).

Castro Valley leads off with veteran junior Tom Ashby (16:13; 10:23.27/35:35 10K) and will be backed up by a horde of sophomores including Ben Eversole (16:16; 2:04.5/4:34.07/9:53.95) and Anthony Martore (17:02; 4:41.06).

An individual runner to watch is state veteran junior Danny Thomas of Arroyo (15:38/16:15). Injuries curtailed his track season, but when healthy he is a force. (Editor's note: Arroyo will be in Division II this coming season).

Thank you very much Peter. NCS and CCS Division II rankings will be coming up next. Feel free to comment on the above rankings in the comment section below.

CCS Division I Pre-Season Rankings

By Kevin Liao (Evergreen Valley HS) aka attack the hill on dyestatcal message board.

After winning the CCS Division I title the last three seasons, the Surh brothers and other top athletes at Carlmont High have moved on to the college ranks, leaving the door wide open for a number of quality squads vying for the top two spots advancing to the state meet. A quick glance at the rankings shows Bellarmine College Prep the heavy favorite for the team championship. The Bells have five of their top seven returning, led by seniors Lawrence Smith, Marcos Hinojosa, and Ben Kelly (4:30 miler on the track) and junior Dalton Guthrie. A young Carlmont squad headlined by senior Chris Pedro as well as Evergreen Valley, Serra, and San Benito look to have a strong chance of grabbing the second ticket to the state meet. The battle for the individual title is also very much up for grabs. Nick Oliver of Homestead is the only returning individual state meet qualifier, but Salinas's Robert Anderson and members of the Bellarmine crew are also poised to compete for the win.

Division I Boys (Top 2 advance to state):
1. Bellarmine – Return most of 2nd pace team
2. Carlmont – Three time defending champs lose 4 of top 6 from '07
3. Evergreen Valley – Lose top 2 but have young runners with potential
4. Serra – Padres have four sub-17 Crystal runners returning
5. San Benito – Young athletes had solid track seasons
On the bubble: Salinas, Homestead, Monta Vista

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 CCS meet time:
Nick Oliver (6) Homestead 15:53
Lawrence Smith (8) Bellarmine 16:00
Robert Anderson (9) Salinas 16:01
Dalton Guthrie (11) Bellarmine 16:04
Marcos Hinojosa (12) Bellarmine 16:13

Like their boys team, the Carlmont girls' squad is looking for their fourth consecutive CCS team championship. Led by defending champ Justine Ferdronic (CCS 800m runner-up) and CCS 3200m champion Jessie Petersen, the Scots took to be the presumptive favorite despite the unknown regarding often-injured star Hayley Pascale. Gilroy is looking strong for the second spot going to the state meet, returning all six of their top runners from 2007 squad that just missed a spot to Woodward Park. Salinas, Monta Vista, and Homestead could also challenge for those top two positions in the team competition. Several phenomenal athletes will be battling it out for the individual title at Toro Park on November 15. Fedronic is the two-time defending champ, but Petersen and a healthy Pascale, as well as Gilroy's Kathleen Miller could challenge for the top spot.

Division I Girls (Top 2 Advance to state)
1. Carlmont-3 time defending champions
2. Gilroy-Top 6 returning for 2nd spot they just missed last year
3. Salinas-Qualified to state last year with 6th runner tie-breaker
4. Monta Vista-Perennial contender in this division
5. Homestead-Top 5 are back and could move up rankings
On the bubble: San Benito, Piedmont Hills

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) & 2007 CCS meet time:
Justine Fedronic (1) Carlmont 18:04
Kathleen Miller (2) Gilroy 18:09
Jean Feng (5) Monta Vista 18:27
Jessie Petersen (6) Calrmont 18:40
Emily Evans (7) Homestead 18:45

Keep coming back for more rankings (CCS, NCS, SJS and more) in the next few weeks. Feel free to state your opinions about the above rankings. Who are the sleepers in this division? Any new hot shot freshmen?

I don't have pictures for all the runners above so if you have them for any of the runners above, please send them to this email.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The 1st Annual Novato 4th of July Run!

** The Mayor's Mile (walk/jog) for kids and families **

** Four on the 4th -- a Four mile road race **

Full event information here ... Please pass on to others who might be interested in participating!

http://www.theschedule.com/EventInfo.cfm?EventID=19309

There is also a breakfast and the famous parade following the race!

We are super excited to add this event and bring it to Novato prior to the big downtown parade!

There are no other big time races in Marin that day ... which is such a big traditional day for racing!

--Registration: 6:30 am

--4 Mile Road Race: 7:20 am

--1 Mile Family / Kids Race: 7:25 am

7th and Grant Street in Downtown Novato