Monday, October 22, 2018

2018 Mid-Season Northern California Top 10 Cross Country Teams (Boys and Girls)

Updates after this weekend?


1) Dublin (NCS) Division I
2) St. Francis, Mt. View (CCS) Division II
3) Bellarmine (CCS) Division I
4) Granada (NCS) Division II
5) Amador Valley (NCS) Division I
6) Davis (SJS) Division I
7) Jesuit (SJS) Division I
8) Maria Carrillo (NCS) Division III
9) Sir Francis Drake (NCS) Division IV
10) De La Salle (NCS) Division II
10) Campolindo (NCS) Division III
10) Placer (SJS) Division IV

1) St. Francis, Sacramento (SJS) Division II
2) Granada (NCS) Division II
3) Vista del Lago (SJS) Division III
4) Amador Valley (NCS) Division I
5) Davis (SJS) Division I
6) Monte Vista (NCS) Division II
7) Carlmont (CCS) Division I
8) Oakland Tech (OAK) Division I
9) Menlo (CCS) Division IV
10) San Ramon Valley (NCS) Division II
10) Maria Carrillo (NCS) Division III

Here are the CCS rankings as voted on by a select group of coaches:

Feel free to comment below. I tried my best to rank teams that haven't raced each other this season. If you feel like I left a team from the above list that belongs, go ahead and comment on their season below.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

College Commitments

Verbal commitments so far ...
Liam Anderson Redwood-Stanford University
Emily Perez St. Joseph Notre Dame-Oregon State
Gabrielle Peterson Healdsburg-Oregon State
Emma Tavella San Ramon Valley-UCLA

Please add others in the comment section below. 

Friday, October 19, 2018

Mt. SAC Invitational updates

Please feel free to add any updates for athletes and/or teams that are participating at the Mt. SAC Invitational this weekend. I saw that Riley Chamberlain won her heat today with a time of 17:42. Any other impressive efforts?

You can find the results of the meet at this link:

King rises again, this time at Chico State

Eddie King finished second to last in the 1600-meter run of the 2014 Central Coast Section Track and Field Championships. But out of all the runners in that race 4 ½ years ago, few—if any—have distinguished themselves in college as King has done. The Chico State senior is enjoying a terrific cross country season, a byproduct of staying healthy, great coaching and a determination and talent that was just waiting to be tapped.

To read the rest of this article, go to this LINK.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Northern California Invitational results

Jim Tracy Challenge (NEW)

BCL East 2 (NEW)

Bella Vista Bronco Cross Country Invitational (NEW)


Castro Valley Invitational

From Alhambra coach Peter Brewer:
Rich Parris brought his Clovis West team up, and snagged the varsity girls' team title.   

Madison Kackley of Gergori (Modesto) won the GV by over a minute with a 12th best All-Time time of 19:02.   She is coached by Loretta Fillpot, former Castro Valley runner 1983.    

Max Waechter of Heritage pulled away late in the race to win the boys' varsity run.   Casa Grande nipped College Park for the team title.  

Monterey Invitational

Rough Rider Invitational

If you know of other result links, please post them below.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Woodward Park All-Time Top 10 NorCal (boys and girls) times

1) German Fernandez Riverbank (SJS) 14:24 (course record) 2007
2) Jay Marden Mission San Jose (NCS) 14:42 1980
3) Calvin Gaziano Castro Valley (NCS) 14:49 1984
4) Luis Grijalva Armijo (SJS) 14:50 2016
5) Michael Vernau Davis (SJS) 14:52 2016
6) Mark Mastalir Jesuit (SJS) 14:53 1985
7) Matt Farley Jesuit (SJS) 14:57 1993
7) Eric Mastalir Jesuit (SJS) 14:57 1985
8) Liam Anderson Redwood (NCS) 14:58 2018 NEW
8) Jason Balkman Lynbrook (CCS) 14:58 1994
9) Cooper Teare St. Joseph Notre Dame (NCS) 14:59 2016
10) Trevor Reinhart Marin Academy (NCS) 14:59 2014

1) Julia Stamps Santa Rosa (NCS) 16:43 1996
2) Amber Trotter Ukiah (NCS) 16:55 2001
3) Fiona O'Keeffe Davis (SJS) 16:57 2014
4) Maddy Denner Oak Ridge (SJS) 16:59 2017 (NEW)
5) Kristen Gordon Carondelet (NCS) 17:01 1996
6) Cate Ratliff Santa Cruz (CCS) 17:04 2015
7) Morgin Coonfield McKinleyville (NCS) 17:08 2015
8) Anna Maxwell San Lorenzo Valley (CCS) 17:08 2013
9) Rebecca Chamberlain Leigh (CCS) 17:09 1984
10) Laurie Chapman Gunderson (CCS) 17:10 1985
Riley Chamberlain Del Oro (SJS) 17:13 2018 NEW
Sara Bei Montgomery (NCS) 17:13 2000 (Former #10)

Which is more impressive?

Redwood senior Liam Anderson winning the boys race with a 14:57.8 personal best?


Del Oro freshman Riley Chamberlain getting 2nd in girls' race with a time of 17:12.7?

Tuesday, October 09, 2018

American Fork HS

Some of you may be familiar with American Fork HS since they are frequent participants at NXN. They have also been Utah state team champions 8 out of the last 9 years. Two years ago, their 4 x 1600m relay team set a new National record at the Arcadia Invitational with a time of 16:41.30.
You can learn a bit about their program in an interview I did with their coach (Timo Mostert) at this link:

For those of you that enjoy listening to podcasts, you can check out an interview with Timo at this link which was just posted courtesy of the Ben Rosario podcast:

You can check out a workout wednesday below that features one of their famous workouts, The Grinder.

You can check out all of Coach Mostert's achievements at American Fork HS at the link above but his most impressive achievement may be that he has never had a cell phone!

Saturday, October 06, 2018

Northern California Invitationals taking place today

Serra Invitational live results:

Artichoke Invitational results (NEW)

Jackie Henderson Memorial Preview

Jackie Henderson Memorial Invitational results

Clovis Invitational live results:
Liam Anderson with 14:57.8 winner that is NCS #3 all-time. Del Oro frosh Riley Chamberlain finished 2nd overall with 17:12 scorcher that is frosh #4 all-time on the course. Any other outstanding marks for individuals and teams?

Aragon Center Meet #1 results:

Please feel free to comment on any results taking place today at any of the above meets or any other meets taking place.

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

North Coast Section Division IV update thanks to Piedmont assistant coach, Len Goldman

D4 - Girls
At this early juncture of the season, there is no heavy favorite on the girls' side as there is on the boys' side.  For the defending D-4 champion Piedmont, some of their top runners have been sidelined by injuries and only now have started to race and are still rounding into competitive shape.  At the Stanford Invite, most of the top female NCS D4 teams competed with the exception of Miramonte.

Although there are still limited results and some of their top runners have not run in every meet, Miramonte has posted some impressive results.  They are being spearheaded by a dynamic trio of 3 freshman runners who have gotten out of the starting gate very quickly, Jaime Say, Claire Nolet, and Kate Riley.  Providing veteran leadership for this group is Cassidy Haskell, a senior and a past NCS D4 champion and sophomore Audrey Allen who has the 3rd fastest 5K time thus far in D4, 18:42.  Based on results to date, this team is the early front-runner for the top seed.  One potential area of concern is depth among the varsity seven runners, but that is true of the other teams also.

Going into the season, O'Dowd, had two quality runners up front, Jeneva Toolajia and Isabella Brusco.  Both runners have 5K times that place them in the top 10 for the NCS-D4.  The question was who would be their supporting cast.  So far reviews are good as a freshman, Lillian Yu has been a solid #3, and their #4 and #5 runners have been good enough to place them in 2nd place in the rankings. However, in order to hold this place throughout the season, the back-end of their scoring team will have to continue to improve and race well.

Marin Catholic has been the early-season surprise team and their success has been due in part to the runner with the best time to date in the 5K for NCS D4 teams, Samantha Wallerstrom in 18:40.  She has a competent group of runners supporting her, all of whom are very closely matched time wise and if they continue to develop, could help secure a state meet place come to the NCS meet.

The two teams on the bubble, Piedmont and Arcata could possibly move up as the season progresses but at this point are chasing the teams ahead of them and have some catching up to do.  For Piedmont, it's a matter of getting several of their runners healthy and in competitive racing shape and keeping them there.  Stanford was the first meet this season where they had all their top runners racing.  Arcata has two very solid runners at the front-end of their squad, but after that there is a pretty big drop off.  If they can narrow the gap with their 3 through 5 runners, they could contend for one of the three state berth slots.

Projected Top Teams:  Miramonte, O'Dowd, Marin Catholic  
On the bubble: Piedmont, Arcata

Top Individuals:  Samantha Wallerstrom-Marin Catholic, Audrey Allen and Cassidy Haskell-Miramonte, Riley Martel-Phillips-Arcata
On the bubble:  Thea Norlund-Arcata, Jeneva Toolajian-O'Dowd

D4 - Boys
Even at this early stage, the overwhelming top team remains Sir Francis Drake, the 2017 NCS titleist and one of the favorites for the state D4 title this year.  
At the recent Woodbridge Classic, their top 5 runners Cooper Mccarthy, Nicco Pompili, Owen Wolford, Amir Barkan and Oliver Arnesson had a team time for the 3-mile course of 1:16:42 or an average of 15:20 per runner.  For comparison purposes, their winning time at last year's NCS meet was 1:19.00, granted the Woodbridge Course is a real speedway, still, it shows what kind of talent this team has.  This past weekend at the Stanford Meet they opted to run in the more competitive seeded section rather than the D4 race, and their team time was 1:21:42, an average of 16:20 per runner.  The winning time for the D4 boys race was, 1:23:07 by Scotts Valley so they could have easily won this race had they chosen to run in it.

Who the other contending NCS teams for a state berth might be is a bit more problematic at this early phase of the season, with just a few meets in the record books.  Marin CatholicPiner, Albany, Moreau Catholic, and O'Dowd have all posted respectable times.  However, all these teams are still a work in progress as they develop their team chemistry and talent.  It may be a few more weeks before things become a bit more defined. 

At this point, however, it appears that Marin Catholic would have the edge for the #2 ranking but they need to develop their 2 through 5 runners on the team to be a more serious contender.  They do currently have the runner with the top 5K time in D4, 15:45 for Lyle Rumon. After him, there is a pretty big time differential to their #2 runner, about a minute and a half.  The good news is that all their runners at the 2 through 5 positions have a 5K time under 18 minutes.   

In a close call for the #3 ranking is Piner.  There is not that big a separation between Piner and the other teams who are in the hunt for a state berth, the biggest difference being their top 5 runners are closely packed, just a 35-second difference between their #1 and #5 runners.  However while closely bunched, they lack a #1 runner who is in the very top echelon of the NCS D4 boys and this could perhaps be a deciding factor at the NCS meet when placings in the top ten are critical.  If Nathan Hayes can move to the front of their squad like he did last year, this would certainly help their chances.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention briefly the other teams on the bubble, any of them could move up when the next rankings are announced.  Moreau Catholic has very few races on their record so far, but they could definitely challenge for a state berth.  They have two runners near the top for the 5K, Michael Vickers, 16:57 and Cole Pineda, 17:02.  Plus the spread from their #1 to #5 runner is just 43.4 seconds.
Both O'Dowd and Albany are very closely matched.  They both have a top front-runner, Tommy Murphy for O'Dowd with a 16:23 5K time, and Calder Abbott for Albany with a 16:44.  It's at the #4 and 5 positions where both squads need to improve if they are to contend at the NCS meet.

Projected Top Teams:  Sir Francis Drake, Marin Catholic,  Piner
On the bubble: Moreau Catholic, Bishop O'Dowd and Albany

Top Individuals:  Lyle Rumon-Marin Catholic, Cooper McCarthy, Amir Barkan, and Nicco Pompili all from Sir Francis Drake
On the bubble:  Henry Denberg-San Rafael, Tommy Murphy-O'Dowd and Owen Wolford-Sir Francis Drake

Shadow Cliffs and Scott Bauhs All-Time Lists

Monday, October 01, 2018

Interviews with Claremont XC coach, Bill Reeves

This past Saturday, Claremont HS swept the varsity seeded divisions at the Stanford Invitational. Both teams will be among the favorites to win the California state team titles in Division II.

You can check out a couple of interviews with their coach, Bill Reeves at the links below.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Stanford and Capital Cross Invitationals

Stanford Invitational Seeded boys race video thanks to Jesuit coach, Walt Lange

Scott Bauhs Invitational results (NEW):

Westmoor Ram Invitational results (NEW):

Stanford Invitational results:

Stanford Invitational photos courtesy of Malcolm Slaney (NEW):

Capital Cross Invitational results:

Top individual performances at either Stanford or Capital Cross Challenge? Team performances? Surprises?

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Stanford Invitational Entries and live results link

Check out what teams will be in each race at Stanford Invite including the seeded races. (NEW)

Predictions for Stanford Invite?


Live Results link:

I will post a preview for the meet tomorrow. Feel free to comment below on the individuals and teams competing in the seeded races on Saturday. Who else should we be aware of that is ready to be world famous (at least in the cross country world)?

New course map for Saturday's meet

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Cross Country is...

Some of you have seen both these posts before but if you have not, here you go. Feel free to post your favorite lines below in the comment section.

Cross Country Greg Hall

Cross Country also Greg Hall

So your favorite? Can you come up with your own?

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Northern California Results (League and Invitationals)

Pacific Tiger Invitational Live Results:

PAL meet at Half Moon Bay HS (Tuesday, September 18th)

You can check out other league results at this link:

If you know of other results that are not posted yet, please email and he will add them to the results page.

Lastly, I posted a list of the top "10" California girls in cross country this season at the link below. Check out what NorCal girls made the list.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Catching up with former Casa Grande runner, Jacque Taylor

Today we chat with 2010 Casa Grande grad, Jacque Taylor. During her high school career, Taylor finished in the top 5 at the cross country state championship all four years (9th grade-5th, 10th grade-2nd, 11th grade-3rd and 12th grade-1st). On the track, Taylor finished with high school personal bests of 2:17.05, 4:49.63 and 10:34.39. She competed for the University of North Carolina and eventually transferred to Sacramento State. She started her coaching career at Ole Miss and eventually landed at St. Louis University where she coaches today.

1) How did you get your start in running and what was your experience prior to HS? Personal records before HS? 
From the age of 6 until my senior year of high school I played competitive soccer. It was in the 5th grade that a family friend started the “Sonoma Mountain Running Club,” which was running a mile after school every Friday. I raced every Friday after school (unless I had a soccer tournament) and was fueled by beating the boys and getting faster every week. I remember “promoting” from the 6th grade having run low 5:20 miles, and 8th grade racing to a 5:08 1600m. I also competed in USATF meets.

2) What were some of your highlights from your freshman year in hs in both XC and TF? Who were the runners that you looked up to as a freshman whether on your team or not? 
My big highlight from my freshmen year has to be placing 5th at the cross country state championships and placing 4th at CIF State Track in the 3200m with a time of 10:34. I would say I mostly looked up to Jordan Hasay, Christine Babcock and Alex Kosinski.

3) What were some of your highlights and proudest achievements from your HS career for both sports? 
Highlights and greatest achievements in high school would have to be breaking 4:50 in the 1600m, running 16:56 xc 5k, competing for Team USA (NACAC) and winning a cross country state title (below in 2009).
4) Looking back at your high school training, what do you feel worked for you and what do you wish you did differently?
Looking back on my high school career the two things I would change or do differently would be running more miles and adding some strength into my routine. I graduated high school with 30mpw at my highest and not able to do a single push-up... whoa!

5) You chose the University of North Carolina after Casa Grande HS. What led to that decision and how many other colleges were considered as well? 
I did choose the UNC for college. Truthfully, I had no intention of going to UNC. It was my very first official visit and I knew immediately that I wanted to be a Tar Heel. The atmosphere in Chapel Hill is amazing; intoxicating. I was also offered a full athletic scholarship (see Q12). The following week I took a visit to University of Washington but didn’t believe it to be the right fit. Right when I got back from Seattle, I verbally committed to UNC.
6) What was your experience at UNC and why did you end up transferring to Sacramento State?
I spent a year and a half in Chapel Hill and loved every moment. Chapel Hill still holds a very large place in my heart—it is where met my lifelong friends. However, as much as I loved UNC, I needed to transfer to a school closer to home.

Going into college I found out that I had Tuberculosis. I had to take medicine for close to 6 months. The medicine was very harsh and caused multiple health concerns, for example, peripheral neuropathy, anemia, trouble breathing turning my lips blue and strange food allergies (I had a Hitch moment chugging Benadryl in the grocery store) etc. The neuropathy got to the point where I remember spilling soup on an electric stove and I grabbed a regular towel to clean up and I didn’t feel a thing. I didn’t have much feeling in my hands and feet for about 3 years after taking the medicine.

On top of that, my mileage was bumped up significantly where for 3 weeks I was running 100mpw. I ended up getting 2 stress fractures at the same time. Between getting sick, injured and mentally not in it anymore it was time for me to focus on me and transfer.

7) Highlights and proudest achievements at Sac State?
After transferring from UNC in the winter I didn’t attend Sacramento State until the fall of 2013. After my transfer, I didn’t start training again until April. First off, I still wasn’t 100% cleared and was told I could run at my own risk. Secondly, I needed time to fall in love with the sport again. Unfortunately, when I did decide to get back into training to prepare for xc , I broke my foot. Immediately after it happened I went to get an x-ray where I was told that it was too swollen for a clear x-ray and I was cleared to run once the swelling goes down. So I kept running on it for a couple months but it was never getting better so I went back in for an x-ray where they told me it was broken and I was put in a boot for a month and a half. However, after that month and a half, my foot healed incorrectly and required surgery. I went through with the surgery and things were good for a while until I came to the conclusion that surgery didn’t fix it like I had hoped. My foot was always bruised, swollen and painful to walk. The entire time at Sac State I was dealing with the side effects from the tuberculosis medicine.  To this day my foot is covered in arthritis and I need a joint fusion in my foot. So very long story short, I didn’t run much at Sacramento State because I was always rehabbing or trying to get my body healthy. I do have to give a special shout-out to Kathleen Raske, Scott Abbott and Joe Eby for believing in me, knowing my past and making me love the sport again.

Not many highlights and achievements at Sac State that I am super proud of but it is the place I found out I wanted to get into coaching.

8) What led you to coaching and how did you end up at Ole Miss and now St. Louis?
I’ve had many coaches in my time whether it was skiing, soccer or running. I’ve had amazing coaches and I’ve had coaches who I hope I never see/hear from again--they are the reason I want to get into coaching. The soccer coaches who would call me after a big race or would pick my brain for their upcoming 10k, the running coaches who supported me in all my good or bad decisions, the coach who scolded me after conference in front of everyone or made me cry in their office. I have been able to experience the best of both worlds and I have learned what I believe works best and what doesn’t. How you treat your athletes will affect them years after graduating and leaving the sport behind.

9) Who were the coaches that had the biggest influences for you and what were the most important lessons you learned from them?
The coaches that have influenced me the most have been Connie Price-Smith, Head Coach at Ole Miss and Ryan Vanhoy, Head Women's and Mens Distance Coach at Ole Miss. For those who don’t know, Connie served as Team USA Women’s Track and Field coach at the 2016 Rio Olympics, was elected to the USA Track & Field Hall of Fame in 2016, currently serves as the President of the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association, and is a four-time Olympian. She is the reason why I want to be a Head Coach at a Power 5 school. She is a quiet lady but at the same time speaks volumes. Ryan Vanhoy is the reason why I ended up at Ole Miss. I knew him back at UNC where he was the Graduate Assistant. I consider Vanhoy as my family, as he has always been there for me no matter what. He probably taught me 20 things a day and is still teaching me from another state. He taught me a lot about the sport but a lot about myself as well. He is a big-time mentor for me whether he realizes it or not.

10) Now that you have the perspective of a high school and college athlete as well as a college coach, what do you feel are the keys to being a successful high school runner? What about the collegiate runner?
I think the key to be a successful high school and collegiate runner is to be consistent in training. Make sure you are constantly doing the little things, listening to your body, staying healthy. Know how to push the boundaries within yourself and do not compare your training to anyone else. Runners are notoriously known to be in their own heads and you need to stay out of it as much as possible.

11) What would your advice be for a high school coach who interested in coaching at the collegiate level? 
For a high school coach looking to get into college coaching the biggest thing I would say would be not to limit your opportunities. Go to your local college and ask if you can start as a volunteer. An opportunity is an opportunity and you have to attack it. The college coaching community is a tight one so once you get in you need to make the best of it.

12) Anything else you would like to add.
Anything I might add, I have things!  Having gone from a college athlete to a college coach I believe I hold some quality insight for high school athletes looking to run in college. First off, take 5 official visits!! It will be one of the smartest things you will do during your senior year of high school. You need to keep your options open because you never know what is out there. Don’t be blinded by scholarship money. Whether it is a small offer or a larger offer, coaches can always increase and decrease. Being a college athlete is a big deal, it is fun and you meet many amazing people but you have to remember it is a job and it comes with expectations, especially if you are on scholarship.

Jacque Taylor

SLU assistant cross country/track coach

Thank you very much for your time, Jacque! AJC

Monday, September 17, 2018

Coming up this week...

You can check out the workout week that has done with Great Oak that will be posted throughout the week. The first installment can be found at this link:

I will also have interviews with former Casa Grande runner Jacque Taylor and current Las Lomas senior Preston Norris.

If there are other athletes and/or coaches that you would like to see interviewed, please feel free to add their name in the comment section below.

If there is something else that you would like to see on this site, feel free to add in the comment section below as well.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Colleen Quigley in San Francisco Sept. 28th

From former San Rafael coach, Jason Jacobson. Please help spread the word.

Hi folks - greeting from Oregon.
A quick note to you awesome high school coaches - We are having Colleen Quigley on site at the Sports Basement in the Presidio on Friday, September 28th as part of our Tiburon Half Marathon event.
She is going to do her #fastbraidfriday event - sign autographs - and even a short 2-mile run.
All of your high school girls are invited - no-cost - chance to meet a great female runner.
See her post below - feel free to share widely as would love to get great attendance!

steeple_squigsI had SO much fun at last week's pop-up braid bar in NYC.🗽It got me thinking about other opportunities to do it again and again! Soooo I'm headed to the West Coast! 🌁Who is in San Francisco on Friday Sept 28th?? I will be set up at the Sports Basement in the Presidio from 5-7pm signing autographs and doing braids for #FastBraidFriday with a short shakeout run at 7pm in conjunction with packet pick-up for the Tiburon Half Marathon. Are there any braiders in San Francisco who would be interested in volunteering to help out and braid some hair?
I'd love to see my Cali fans, hear about your ambitious goals that you will take on in your braids, and go for a short run together.
Stay tuned in the weeks to come for more details!

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Earlybird Summary Story

2018 Earlybird Summary by Coach Gustavo Ibarra
Well, we want to thank everyone for a wonderful 23 years of great memories. From the handful of teams that started the meet at North Monterey County to the 70 plus that graced the course today at Toro Park, we hope you enjoyed the meets over the years. With all of the celebratory details of the meets, it has always been the athletes and coaches who have made it one-of-a-kind. Thank you. On to the details!

The day kicked off with the traditional open race and middle school races which bring a different touch and spirit to the event. Special thanks to the coaches who have ran over the years and have shown their athletes the way.  The middle school races were packed and the future is bright!

The 9th grade girls started off the showcase races and it was Grace Lathrop (Whitney) who got out early and never looked back cruising to a very fine 19:18 win and helped her team to victory as well. Madison Galetti (Clovis West-19:37) made it two from outside the area ready to spoil the CCS party. Christel Elkins (St. Francis-19:50) began what would be a very historic day for the Lancers of both genders! Los Gatos (3rd-105 pts.), Mitty (2nd-98 pts.), and Whitney (1st- 93 pts.) had a nice team battle to start the day.

The 9th grade boys had some hype with a world record holder gracing the course. That doesn’t happen very often in high school meets! Jeremy Kain (Scotts Valley) set the world record in the mile (4:36) for 12 year olds and kicked off his high school career with a nice win in 16:38. He smartly took his time early on and used his middle distance speed to kick past Cash Ebright (SLV-16:40) down the stretch. Those two will lock horns for years to come in their league races. Benjamin Reyes (Clovis West-17:11) settled for a distant 3rd. Jeremy helped Scotts Valley to place 3rd (232 pts) while Prospect (2nd-182 pts.) and Bellarmine (1st-97 pts) took top honors. I can’t remember an Earlybird when Bellarmine didn’t win a team race. The cupboard continues to fill for the Bells.

The sophomore girls had 8 girls under 20:00 last year and they upped that to 11 today. Melissa Chicon was coming off a nice win last week at Chieftain and as predicted, she surprised the field with back to back wins at Toro in 18:53. After a conservative opening 6:18 first mile she bolted holding off defending champ Audrey Reed from Live Oak (2nd-19:01) and rising star Layla Ruiz from Watsonville (3rd-19:11).  St. Francis (1st-46 pts) got their team wins going with Whitney (2nd-61 pts.) snagging some more hardware. Gunn (3rd-76 pts.) took the last coveted Earlybird medals.

The sophomore boys had a newcomer run solo for his 2nd big invitational wins in as many weeks among the biggest field of the day. Collin Peattie (Bellarmine) was on everyone’s radar after his stellar 4:16 mile as a 9th grader and after an opening 5:00 mile today he dusted everyone to a very fine 15:42 time making him the 2nd fastest Bellarmine Bell ever, and that’s saying something with their tradition rich program. Nolan Topper (2nd-16:18) and Galen Topper (3rd-about 16:23 due to timing malfunction), made it a clean sweep for the Bells and sealed this team as the best underclass team we have ever seen at Earlybird. The Bells scored only 24 points in a massive field for their 2nd win of the day. Los Altos (142 pts.) and St. Francis (168 pts.) were a distant 2nd and 3rd.

The junior girls had local star Angela Leavitt (Notre Dame-Salinas) sprint past the leaders in the last 100 meters to seal the win in 19:53. Clara Chirila-Rus from Leland (2nd-19:58) and Hermela Abrha from Willow Glen (3rd-20:02) timed their kicks just a bit too soon but will learn as the season goes on. Hermela spear-headed a nice Willow Glen (1st-41 pts.) team for the win with Leland (2nd-47 pts.) and St Francis (3rd-62pts.) next.

The junior boys had Adam Sage (Los Altos) surge late in the race for the win in 15:47 after a pack hit the mile in 5:05. In the closest race of the day, Ethan Dodge (Whitney) was 2nd in 15:48 with his teammate Austin Vasquez 3rd with the same 15:48 time. St. Francis (1st-73 pts.) started to flex their muscles with Los Altos (2nd-84 pts.) and Clovis West (3rd-111 pts.) showing very well.

The senior girls got a nice touch as the Earlybird founder, Coach Bruce White, was the honorary starter. Quinn Hagerman (Merced) was our heavy favorite and she didn’t disappoint. After an opening 5:48 mile we knew she was ready to roll. The hills didn’t slow her much as she stopped the clock at 17:52. That was fastest of the day and moves her to #12 All-Time at Toro Park beating some California legends. Her 40 second improvement from last year was quite impressive and sets her up as one of the top girls in California for this fall. Lila Roake (2nd-18:19) from Santa Cruz and Jessica Kain (3rd-19:02) made the front of this race look like solo time trials as Quinn spread the field out. San Benito (1st-35pts.), Alvarez (2nd-63 pts.), and Alisal (3rd-65 pts.) made it a clean sweep for the newly formed 30 school Pacific Coast Athletic League.

The senior boys were also sent off by Coach White and we new with the entry list that this would be the best grade level team we ever saw at Earlybird and that the individual battle would be fierce. That’s exactly what it was. Colton Colonna (St. Francis) and his teammate Eric Eng battled our defending champ Owen Mackenzie (Los Altos) throughout the race after an opening 4:58 mile. The see-saw action was impressive as they each took turns surging. Owen surged with 800 meters to go only to be over-taken late. As we thought he would, Colton sealed the win late in 15:21, fastest of the day. That time moves him to just outside the top 10 at  #11 All-Time at Toro Park. Eric was close at 15:24 and is now #17 at Toro. Quite the 1-2 punch for the Lancers! Owen settled for a hard-fought 3rd in 15:36. St. Francis stormed as the best grade level team ever with 33 pts. Bellarmine (2nd-50 pts.) made two truly outstanding grade level teams. Los Gatos (154 pts.) was 3rd as the senior boys made the last Earlybird race truly memorable.

Overall, St. Francis boys and girls made their Earlybird return a memorable one.
St. Francis girls had the fastest combined team time (99:32) while Whitney (101:39) and Clovis West (102:03) made it two out of the area teams in the top three. Saint Francis was only 2:18 off their school record run of 2014.

The St. Francis boys came in ranked 1st in CCS, 2nd Overall in California, and 5th in the United States and walked away with a team time of 79:02, good for the 2nd fastest All-Time at Toro Park behind their very own 78:41 park record set last year. The Lancers have all the tools in the shed to make their 2018 run a very memorable one with that type of early season effort. If their 5th man can shore up the back-end (66 second spread) the crew could be very, very dangerous.  Bellarmine was dismissed by some coming in but we knew they would be a solid 2nd with their new addition up-front. Their 80:47 team time is just off their school record 80:09 from three years ago putting them right back into the state’s elite once again and only 1:45 behind the Lancers. Don’t discount the Bells! Los Altos (81:17) just missed their school record by 12 seconds and was just outside the top 10 all-time and will also mix it up with anyone.
When all races were combined and scored, St. Francis walked away with the overall plaque breaking a long held streak by Bellarmine.

Once again, from everyone at North Monterey County High School, we want to thank everyone for a memorable 23 years and we hope you enjoyed the last one!

Coach Gustavo Ibarra
Earlybird Meet Director
Full results on event website;

Northern California Invitational Results

De La Salle Invitational Live Results:

Farmer Invitational Results (winning Alameda girls' varsity team):

Woodbridge Invitational Results:

Earlybird Invitational Results (try this link):

Nevada Union Invitational Results:

Viking Opener Results:

In the meantime, feel free to comment below on any awesome performances that take place today. I will update the links as soon as I find them.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Now this is how you celebrate your 62nd birthday

The photo below courtesy of Sonoma Academy coach Danny Aldridge. For those of you that may not be familiar with Danny, he was just inducted in the Cal Poly SLO hall of fame and you can check out his accolades at this LINK. You can also check out more accolades about Danny at this LINK.

So below, he decided to run 62 x 200 for his 62nd birthday with 1-minute rest between each 200 and a 200 jog between sets. Danny was also paced by San Francisco State 10k record holder, Mike Fanelli. You can check out the times for all his 200s below. Color me impressed!

De La Salle Invitational Meet Preview

You can check out that preview at this link:

If you and your team are competing at the meet, please let us know in the comment section below. If there are other runners and teams that deserve mention as well, feel free to include those in the comment section as well.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

California's Early Season Top 10 Individual Boys

You can check out my article at at the link below which includes several Northern California runners. If you think there are other runners that deserve mention like Las Lomas senior Preston Norris, please feel free to list them in the comment section.

Monday, September 10, 2018


For those of you that didn't know Sarah Sumpter, you should take the time to read the article at the link below courtesy of one of her college coaches, Chris Puppione. Sumpter passed away at the age of 25 on September 21, 2015. While she was at UC Davis, September 10th  became known as "Stump Day" (Sumpter was affectionately known as Stump) as that was the date that she was initially diagnosed with cancer. She fought valiantly for the next few years and will forever be known for her courage despite dealing with the toughest challenge of her life.

Northern California Invitational Results

Chieftain Invitational (Unofficial)

Kim Duyst Invitational

Ed Sias Invitational

Lowell Invitational
Review of yesterday's meet:
Photos by Malcolm Slaney

Monte Vista Invitational (September 4th)
NEW COURSE RECORD for Preston Norris of Las Lomas at 10:29.6. Russell Sullivan also dipped under the old mark of Danny Stalters of Northgate (10:37.1) with a time of 10:36.0.

The girls' course record is held by Chloe Hansel of Las Lomas when she ran 11:55.8 as a junior in 2014. The fastest time for the girls today belonged to San Ramon Valley senior Kate Tavella who ran 12:20.2

College Prep Invitational

Stinson Relays

Newspaper article:

Bob Shor Invitational

WBAL #1 at Bayfront Park:

Other standout highlights?

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