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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

2010 NCS Division II Pre-Season Rankings...

2010 will have a different look to it in this division as some of the familiar faces will be competing collegiately.  NCS will crown new Division II champions in both races (boys and girls) as the defending champions (College Park) will now wade in the more turbulent Division I waters.  The top five individual boys from the '09 race are also gone from this division.  Jacque Taylor has finally graduated after what seemed like 7 years at Casa Grande (always seems that way when a runner is very competitive as a freshman).  

Taking a look at the boys' field first, the favorite going into next season will be San Ramon Valley which won the ultra competitive Division I race last year.  They lose the majority of that juggernaut team but return junior to be Parker Deuel who will battle for the individual crown.  They also return #6 man Matt Devries who participated on one of the top teams in Northern CA as a freshman and they did field one of the better Junior Varsity teams in this area.  Nipping at their heels will be Santa Rosa (last year's 2nd place team).  They lose their #1 superstar runner, Reesey Byers but return runners #2 through #5 (Kurt Wendler, Jonathan Peck, Jordan Guerrero and Michael Tomasi).

If the two teams above aren't able to live up to their pre-season rankings, then the next team in line will be Casa Grande.  Following a highly successful Track and Field season, Casa will be hungry to improve their 4th place finish from last year's MOC race as they will be led by senior Austin Minnick.  Mt. Eden, last year's 5th place team, returns the whole kit and kaboodle and will be in the mix as well with senior Marvin Nugal.

The race for the individual title will go through Parker Deuel of San Ramon Valley.  Anyway you look at it, he has to be the favorite.  In the Division I final last year, Deuel finished in 5th place running 15:43.  During the Track and Field season, he recorded a 1:57.02 800, 4:17.30 1600 and 9:22.43 3200.  The fastest returning runner in this division will be David Brody of American HS who finished in 6th place here last year running 15:57.  Also in the hunt will be Jamie Goldfield of Montgomery (16:11), Marvin Nugal of Mt. Eden (16:23), and Eric Morford of Heritage (16:27).

Picking the top teams on the girls side is a bit more difficult as freshmen girls tend to make more of an impact.  With that in mind, my picks for this coming season are based on what happened last year and what teams return the most fire power this coming season.  Last year, the San Ramon Valley girls missed a state meet berth in Division I by a mere 4 points to Castro Valley (101 to 105).  They return every runner from a team that will certainly be hungry to match the NCS championship won by the SRV boys last year.  A title this year would give the SRV girls their first NCS title since 1992.

Who has been one of most consistent team in this division over the last 6 years?  That would be Carondelet which has had the following finishes (2004-2nd, 2005-3rd, 2006-1st, 2007-1st, 2008-2nd and 2009-3rd).  Despite losing #1 runner Heather Cerney, Carondelet returns runners #2, #3, #4 and #6.  Based on history and the likelihood that an impact freshman or two will contribute to their team, Carondelet will be a threat.

Next in line will be usual suspects in this division, Santa Rosa and Montgomery.  Santa Rosa returns the majority of their team (#2 Kelly Brooks, #3 Sadia Ibrahim, #4 Eva Herbst, #5 Emily Rozga, #6 Carly Miller and #7 Marina Lecoeuche) but Montgomery returns the #1 runner in this division, defending champion Julie Nacouzi.  Casa Grande edged out Carondelet by a mere point for 2nd place (68 to 69) last season and although they lose Taylor and Dominique Ratto, I suspect they will contend once again this year.

The favorite for the individual title for the girls will be defending champion Julie Nacouzi of Montgomery.  She recorded the fastest time in all divisions running 17:02 and defeated eventual state champion, Jacque Taylor by a convincing margin on the Hayward HS course.  If she runs anywhere close to last year's form, the race will be for second place and will be between the following runners:  Amber Piersol of Windsor (18:31), Alexandra Tate of Clayton Valley (18:35), Liz Hebel of San Ramon Valley (18:35), Megan Beck and Emily Balcewski of Carondelet (19:09 and 19:10).

Division II Boys (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1)  San Ramon Valley-Parker Deuel leads the way here.
2)  Santa Rosa-How well will they run without Reesey?
3)  Casa Grande-4th here last year, 3rd this year?
4)  Mt. Eden-Everybody back and ready to break into top 3.
5)  Montgomery-Jamie Goldfield strong #1 for team always in the hunt.
On the bubble:  Alameda, Washington

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) and 2009 NCS meet time:
David Brody (6) American 15:57
Jamie Goldfield (11) Montgomery 16:11
Marvin Nugal (15) Mt. Eden 16:23
Eric Morford (16) Heritage 16:27
Austin Minnick (17) Casa Grande 16:33
From Division I-Parker Deuel (5) San Ramon Valley 15:43

Division II Girls (Top 3 teams advance to state)
1)  San Ramon Valley-Strong team ready to challenge for team crown.
2) Carondelet-Consistent top program in this division.
3) Montgomery-It doesn't hurt to start the team score with 1.
4) Santa Rosa-Can they break into top 3 and reserve their ticket to Fresno?
5) Casa Grande-Can they rebound from losing strong senior class?

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) and 2009 NCS meet time:
Julie Nacouzi (1) Montgomery 17:02
Amber Piersol (5) Windsor 18:31
Alexandra Tate (6) Clayton Valley 18:35
Megan Beck (9) Carondelet 19:09
Emily Balcewski (10) Carondelet 19:10
From Division I-Liz Hebel (6) San Ramon Valley 18:35

Feel free to comment on the above rankings.  This division has a lot of teams rebuilding with the departure of some very good runners. Did I miss anybody? Any surprises? Freshmen studs and studettes?

Also, if you have a link to pictures of any of the above runners, please send them to albertjcaruana@gmail.com.  If your team website has been updated or you have a new link, send it my way as well and I will update the link.

58 comments:

Anonymous said...

SRV freshman from last year is -matt- devries

Albert Caruana said...

Correct you are. Fixed.

Anonymous said...

DeVries is just a sophomore???

Anonymous said...

Washington dropped to D-2 this year and may be strong on the boys and girls side. Freshman Nolan Petersen ran a 9:58 3200 and Jesse Chestnut was 16th with a 16:04 at NCS. Jessica Gerards and Rachael Gerards were 7th and 16th in NCS and lead a strong team that is returning.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for adding Washington to the team mix. How about Jessica Gerards 18:40 at NCS and Jesse Chestnut 16:04 at NCS last year. Both had strong track season's this spring. They should not be left out of the rankings because they ran in D-1 last year.

Anonymous said...

On the boys side who does Alameda have returning?

Anonymous said...

I believe the picture you have for Megan Beck is actually Emily Balcewski.

Anonymous said...

First of all, Casa Grande is totally overrated. Yes, they might have had a great track season, but 3/4 of their 4x800 and DMR team graduated. The only great runner left on that team is Ben Tarango who ran some great times throughout the track season.

Santa Rosa looks good on paper, but considering Kurt Wendler most likely isn't going to run again hurts their chances tremendously. With Jonathan Peck (4:40/10:06), Matt Taylor (2:05/4:36), and Michael Tomasi (4:43/10:29) as the top 3 for Santa Rosa, it looks like other teams in team division have a easier chance then expected to beat this time.

Washington does have two great runners in Jesse Chestnut and Nolan Petersen, but that's it. No one else returns from their NCS lineup.

Anonymous said...

Alameda doesn't have anyone coming back. Their whole varsity squad graduated.

Who are the top runners for SRV besides Parker Deuel and Matt DeVries?

EBAL Fan said...

Well, that's the big question. Trevor Holmgreen ran sub 2 in the 800 I believe. And I think they may have some good incoming history, but beyond that its hard to say, so many graduated.

Anonymous said...

I would say that this division is wide open and ripe for the picking. The teams and individuals who put in the most work this summer will rise to the top. Watch out for Mt.Eden.

Anonymous said...

Matt Taylor for Santa Rosa graduated so actually it looks like Jonathan Peck will be the number one unless Kurt Wendler is running. Also did College Park stay in D1 or did they drop back down to D2?

Anonymous said...

College Park switched back to D1.

Anonymous said...

Whew!

Anonymous said...

I know Kurt Wendler personally, and he definitely is running.

Anonymous said...

Kurt Wendler is running eh? This Facebook page doesn't think so.

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Kurt-Wendler-is-awesome-and-needs-to-do-cross-country-senior-year/208755942249?ref=ts

LOL!

Anonymous said...

Get a life Grant.

Albert Caruana said...

Alright guys. Point has been made. No need to drag this any further.

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

The top returning runner from last years NCS D-2 race, David Brody from American HS, did not compete in track at all last spring. Has he been running and is he going to run xcc this fall?

Anonymous said...

David Brody has been running and is most likely going to compete this season. Although he doesn't look as strong as he should be, he will still be a tough competitor to beat.

Marty said...

"Alameda doesn't have anyone coming back. Their whole varsity squad graduated."

Actually, that isn't true. The guys that graduated were the top 4 guys. The other three from last year's NCS 3rd place team will be seniors this year.

Anonymous said...

Alameda's 3 returning runners finished 55th,59th and 60th at last years NCS meet. I do not rate them with the top returning teams this year as they graduated the heart of there team.

Anonymous said...

the three returners from alameda who are all around the 18:00 minute range from last years ncs meet wouldnt even be scoring members on one of the top teams... just sayin

Marty said...

"Alameda's 3 returning runners finished 55th,59th and 60th at last years NCS meet."

"The three returners from alameda who are all around the 18:00 minute range from last years ncs meet wouldnt even be scoring members on one of the top teams."

Both of those statements are mostly true, and it does make sense to not list them as a "top" team. "Anonymous" makes an accurate comment about where last year's #5, 6, & 7 runners finished, but is slightly incorrect because last year's #5 runner (a senior now) was indeed a scoring member of a 3rd place team, as the top 5 runners on a team constitute the scoring members.

The person commenting seems to imply that because the top 4 guys from last year's team graduated and the next 3 guys were not in the top 50, that they will have a weak team this year. However, we all know that teenage boys usually improve from year to year, and sometimes make huge leaps in performance from one year to the next. So we really don't know whether they will be a strong team or not.

I would agree that if everyone remaining from last year's team ran times that were no better than last year, then they would be resigned to having a rebuilding year. But we all know that never happens. What will be interesting with this and many other teams is the extent to which the runners improve from the previous year. Personally, this is one of the most fun characteristics of watching high school running - the sometimes rapid improvement of some individuals and how that can become contagious with other team members.

Anonymous said...

Marty, I understand that most runners improve each year and I agree with you that it's this unknown element that makes xcc so fun and exciting. However, I am a realist and when ranking the top returning individuals and teams I use tangible facts like last years xcc and track results. Alameda had a great team last year. Their top runners all graduated. In order for them to be competitive at this years NCS meet their returning runners will need to improve their times by about 2 minutes each. I wish them the best of luck and hope they prove themselves a contender.

Anonymous said...

So it looks like Montgomery already upset Casa Grande at the Rancho Cotate Invitational.

Also, Washington easily beat Montgomery this past weekend at the Ed Sias Invitational.

My Predictions are:
1. San Ramon Valley
2. Santa Rosa
3. Washington
4. Montgomery
5. Mt. Eden

Anonymous said...

I definately agree with your top 5 teams, however this division is just far too close to call at this point. The season is 2 weeks old and much can happen in the next 2 months. The NCS meet will be a great race between your top 5 teams and scoring will be very tight.

Anonymous said...

" I know Kurt Wendler personally, and he is definately running." So... where is he?

Anonymous said...

From a recent scrimmage against American High School, I've heard news that David Brody has fractured his foot. Most likely, he will miss the remainder of the crosscountry season.

Anonymous said...

Sophomore Nolan Petersen from Washington ran an outstanding race at Ed Sias placing 7th in the large school varsity race. Washington will be a team to keep an eye on this season.

Anonymous said...

Have the Alameda boys competed yet and if so how did they do?

Anonymous said...

Nolan Petersen has been improving greatly and he will definitely be a top individual at the NCS meet.

One thing this division has in common is a solid 1-2 punch with the 3-4-5 lacking. Some examples are Washington (Petersen/Chestnut), Montgomery (Mendoza/Goldfield), and Santa Rosa (Peck/Tomasi). Santa Rosa still has an advantage over the other schools due to a much stronger third runner. Taking second place in this division will be based on who can get their 3-4-5 to rise to the challenge.

Alameda ran this past weekend at the Lowell Invite. From what it looks like, this will not be a good year for them.

Anonymous said...

Nolan Peterson looks like he is off to a great start.

It doesn't appear that anyone in D2 has the depth of last years teams.

San Ramon seem to have a potentially strong but very young squad with Ryan Pierce (12), Brian Hardy (11), Carl Wilke (10), Zach Hanze(10), Jake Pisenti (10), Dylan Rogers (11), Nico Bauman (11) and Brent Moore(12) all in the mix to join Deuel and DeVries in the top 5.

Anonymous said...

Based on the early results this looks to be a rebuilding year for Alameda.

Anonymous said...

Washington soph, Nolan Petersen continues to show the rest of the running world that he is for real as he had an outstanding day at last weekends Stanford Invite with a strong 3rd plave finish in the boys Div.II race. The Washington boys were the top Div.II team at Stanford beating NCS rivals Montgomery and Santa Rosa.

Anonymous said...

I meant to say the Washington boys were the top NCS Div II team at Stanford.

Anonymous said...

I don't disagree that Alameda will not be as good of team as last year. Their top3-4 guys arn't even their last years returning Varsity.I'd keep an eye out for the years to come.

Anonymous said...

alameda is legit you will be suprised

Anonymous said...

ALAMEDA FROSH-SOPH KICKS ASS

Anonymous said...

When they start having NCS Frosh Soph Championships that will be impressive. The majority of the top frosh-soph runners run varsity unless they cannot crack into their schools top seven.

Anonymous said...

yeah but those frosh-soph runners who are winning all those younger races are alamedas top 7

Anonymous said...

What happened to Santa Rosa? I haven't seen them run in a while. Why didn't their varsity run at the Trojan Invite?

By the way, let's stop with the hype about Alameda's frosh-soph. They might be a treat in the years to come, but definitely not this year.

Anonymous said...

"By the way, let's stop with the hype about Alameda's frosh-soph. They might be a treat in the years to come, but definitely not this year."

I was wrong. Alameda ran great at the Mt. Sac Invitational and really proved me wrong as well as everyone else.

Casa Grande (1:26:34)
#1 16:31 Ben Tarango
#2 16:34 Austin Minnick
#3 16:58 Daryn Cubba
#4 17:54 Brian Baird
#5 18:27 AJ Salazar
#6 18:45 Adam Lundquist

Alameda (1:25:10)
#1 16:35 Duc Nguyen
#2 16:40 Steven Carlson
#3 17:15 Emann Boquieren
#4 17:17 Daniel Arnstein
#5 17:23 Michael Moler
#6 17:26 Cameron Tu
#7 17:31 Taylor Hadidian

My NCS D2 Predictions:
1. San Ramon Valley
2. Mt. Eden
3. Alameda
4. Santa Rosa
5. Casa Grande
6. Washington
7. Montgomery

But as we seen over these past few weeks, anything can happen. 4 weeks til NCS!

Anonymous said...

Alameda girls varsity has their #1 girl Kelly Hosokawa returning, as well #2 runner irene Xu, and # 4 runner Lindsi Tu from last year. Though 4 freshmen have been added to the top 7, Mariko Stenstedt, Sonia Xu, Polly Fong, and Andie Nguyen. Alameda's incredibly young team has been exceeding expectations within the past few meets. As a team they placed 8 out of 31 at the Fresno invite(dropping 12 minutes from last years overall time), and 7 out of 20 at mt. SAC(dropping 8:30 from last year). They have improved significantly from last year, and though they may not be attending state this year, they are a team to look out for. With such young talent, alameda girl will be sure to make a statement by next year.

Anonymous said...

Always next year with Alameda, why don't you give it a rest.

Anonymous said...

Why is Alameda the only school talking about their frosh-soph runners and how good their boys and girls teams will be next year? Lots of teams have young promising runners but they do not continually put their names, times and future years accomplishments on this site.

Anonymous said...

with Nolan Petersen of Washington, they are a solid 6th. Watch out for washington next year, state is guarenteed.

Anonymous said...

"With Nolan Petersen of Washington, they are a solid 6th." You Alameda guys never stop talking. San Ramon and Mt.Eden are the top 2 teams in Div II and the rest is up for grabs.

Anonymous said...

^ What does Washington have to do with Alameda?

Henry said...

I think we should just wait and see what happens at NCS.

Anonymous said...

"with Nolan Petersen of Washington, they are a solid 6th. Watch out for washington next year, state is guarenteed."

How is state guaranteed for a team who has only one good runner? When Jesse Chestnut graduates, this team will look even weaker than this year. We all know one person can't bring a whole team to the state meet.

Anonymous said...

I would think the statements that "washington is a solid 6th" and "watch out for state next year" is obviously made by a team other than washington. They would not be picking themselves to finish 6th this year as they like the other schools in this division are striving to qualify for state this year and that talking about next year is premature as well as a total waste of everyones time. The NCS meet is where who is a solid 6th will be decided and not on a website.

R.G. said...

I just wanna say..... Prediction: Alameda's Frosh/Soph to upset Arcadia and win NXN. You heard it here first folks.

Anonymous said...

As a runner i would have to say for at least the majority of us, will do the real talking November 20th when we cross the finish line.

Anonymous said...

I don't think Julie Nacouzi is racing this year- I'm in NBL and she's been absent from every race and I've heard rumors that she was kicked off of Montgomery's team... food for thought....

Anonymous said...

to the poster with the casa times, notice that Jamie Goldfield wasn't present? if he was included in the results, im sure that casa would have had a faster team time

Anonymous said...

oh crap sorry i just sounded really stupid, jamie goldfield doesn't go to casa grande. sorry everyone

Anonymous said...

MY. EDEN tremendous pack running! You can't get any better than that. Surpassing my predictions 2nd place, not bad. Mt Eden has indeed "rise[n] to the top"

ALSO CONGRATS SRV, it looked like they were taking candy from babies. And no competition for Parker deuel?? What's up with that? Overall outstanding athletes! There is no messing with SRV, and if I was not mistaken, 5 runners in the top ten? PHENOMENAL

ALAMEDA so it looks like they can do their talking on this site and on the course. For any one who doubted their frosh soph, well I guess they can shut up now.. State 2 years in a row, who saw that coming?

Over all, fantastic jobs to all 3 teams, especially in these conditions. SEE YOU ALL AT STATE SATURDAY