Friday, March 01, 2024

12 NCS athletes to watch this upcoming Track and Field season

 In alphabetical order...

Amirat Temi Aganju, Pittsburg (Sprints/Hurdles)
Pittsburg sophomore Amirat Temi Aganju is a threat in multiple events including hurdles, sprints, and relays. Last season, Temi Aganju finished in 2nd place in the 300m hurdles at the NCS MOC and recorded her best time of 45.08 at the state final prelims. She also anchored Pittsburg to victory in the 400 relay and her team just missed the final with the 11th fastest time in the prelims. Her points in multiple events helped Pittsburg finish 5th as a team at the section final.

Lucas Cohen, Albany (Distance)
You can check out my recent interview with Lucas Cohen at this LINK. Cohen is one of the top returning distance runners in the section and should make an impact at the state level in whatever he chooses to pursue toward the end of the season. Last year, Cohen recorded personal bests of 1:58.37, 4:09.97 and 9:00.24. He will have an opportunity to climb up the ranks in the section all-time lists which you can find at this LINK.

Amaya DeFlorimonte, Bishop O'Dowd (Sprints/Jumps)
Another multi-talented athlete is Bishop O'Dowd sophomore Amaya DeFlorimonte. During the 2023 season, DeFlorimonte finished in 3rd place in the 400 meters at the section final and recorded her best time of 57.66 at the state prelims. She also competed in the triple jump taking the section title with a best of 37'3" getting valuable state meet experience in another event as a freshman.

Eden Enoru, Heritage (Sprints)
As a sophomore, Heritage sprinter Eden Enoru qualified for the state meet in the 200 meters as she finished in 3rd place with a near-season best of 25.28. In the 400, Enoru was the section champion and recorded the best time of her season at the Nike Outdoor Nationals with a time of 56.58. She also anchored her team's 4 x 400 meters relay to a 3rd place finish helping Heritage finish in 6th place as a team.

Joaquin Foster, San Domenico (Mid-Distance)
Before 2008, Crystal Springs Uplands resided in the BCL West and in NCS. I know it's been a few years but it still gives me a double-take when I see San Domenico with male competitors. Last season, San Domenico junior Joaquin Foster finished in 2nd place in the 800 meters to qualify for the state meet where he posted his best time ever in the prelims with a time of 1:53.89.

Jaden Jefferson, De La Salle (Sprints)
De La Salle has had its share of quality sprinters in the past including former NFL player Maurice Jones-Drew II. Last season, DLS freshman Jaden Jefferson certainly joined the Spartan elite sprinter ranks with a most impressive high school rookie season. He qualified for both sprint finals at the NCS MOC meet finishing in 6th in the 200 meters with a time of 22.38 and qualified for the state meet in the 100 meters as he finished in 2nd place with a time of 10.71. Jefferson also led off for the 400 meters relay as the team finished in 2nd place at the section meet and 5th place at the state meet. De La Salle was the section team champion.

Trevor Rogers, Acalanes (Sprints/Jumps)
During the 2023 season, the Acalanes 400 meters relay team finished in 2nd place at the state meet with a time of 40.96. That time places Acalanes as the 4th fastest team in section history trailing only 2009 DLS 40.85, 1981 Berkeley 40.86 and 1984 Berkeley 40.93. Running 3rd for Acalanes last season was junior Trevor Rogers. Along with relay duty, Rogers was also 

Brandon Rush, Bishop O'Dowd (Hurdles/Jumps)
Brandon Rush competed in many events during the 2023 season including sprints, hurdles, relays and jumps. He was at his best in the jumps where he finished in 5th place in the long jump. His best leap of 22'2.25" was recorded at the Sacramento Meet of Champions. He qualified for the state meet in the triple jump with a 2nd place finish at the NCS MOC and qualified for the state final where he finished in 5th place with a jump of 46'2.75".

Ali Santia, Clayton Valley (Sprints/Jumps)
Santia was one of the premier triple jumpers in the state. She was the DAL and NCS Tri-Valley champion in her specialty. At the NCS MOC, Santia finished in 2nd place with a leap of 36'11.25". At the state meet, Santia advance to the finals where she finished in 8th place with a season-best of 37'7.25".

Pinkie Schnayer, Campolindo (Throws)
One of the top throwers in the section, Schnayor recorded a best in the discus with a throw of 116'1". It was in the shot put that Schnayor stood out as she won a section title with a mark of 39'7.75". Her points in both events helped Campolindo win the team title. Schnayor has come out of the gates on fire in the discus as she recorded a huge PR in the shot put with a throw of 45'7". She also threw the discus 124'8" which is another PR.

La'Rico Tezeno, Pittsburg (Hurdles)
Tezeno is one of the top returning hurdlers in the section following the 2023 season. At the NCS MOC, Tezeno finished in 2nd place in the 110 meters hurdles with a time of 14.74. He won the 300 meters hurdles with a mark of 39.50. He also led off the 400 meters relay for Pittsburg as they narrowly missed the state meet with a 4th place finish at the section final.

Hanne Thomsen, Montgomery (Distance)
Hanne Thomsen, one of the most dedicated distance runners in NCS history is only a junior and she just recently signed an NIL with New Balance. Last season, Thomsen, recorded bests of 2:12.47, 4:43.63 and 9:55.31. At the NCS MOC meet, Thomsen was a double winner in the 1600 and 3200 and helped rally her team to a 2nd place finish in the inaugural 4 x 800 meter relay. At the state meet, she finished in 4th place in the 1600 but was unable to finish in the 3200 due to an injury.

Saturday Invitational live results

Dan Gabor Invitational

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

12 CCS athletes to watch this upcoming Track and Field season

In alphabetical order.

Ashlyn Boothby Scotts Valley (Distance)

The Stanford-bound Boothby had quite a season in 2023 as she recorded bests of 2:09.03 and 10:26.12 but her true shining moment took place at the state meet as she finished in 2nd place in the 1600 with a new CCS record of 4:39.45 trailing only one of the all-time best runners in the state, Sadie Engelhardt.

Prince Buchango-Babalola Archbishop Mitty (Hurdles)
In 2023 as a freshman, Buchango-Babalola raced and hurdled nothing like an ordinary freshman by qualifying for the CCS finals in both events. In the 300 hurdles, he just missed his PR finishing in 5th in 40.51. In the 110 hurdles, he finished a more impressive 4th with a new best of 14.89.

Evan Gardner Homestead (Distance)
Unlike the previous season, the boys' 800 was a wide-open event. With many of the top 800 runners choosing the 4 x 800, enter sophomore Evan Gardner. In a few short weeks, Gardner made himself quite known in this event as he won the CCS finals and then recorded a best of 1:52.47 to qualify for the state final.

Christian Hauge Live Oak (Sprints)
The most impressive returning sprinter in the section is Live Oak senior Christian Hauge. Last season, Hauge was the surprise winner in the 100 meters at the CCS finals and just missed making the state finals as he had the 11th fastest time in the trials with a lifetime best time of 10.60. In the 200 meters, Hauge finished in 3rd place at the CCS finals, and ran a lifetime best time of 21.41 in the state meet trials which qualified him for the finals where he finished in 8th place.

Luke Lewis Serra (Throws)

Luke's dad Mike has been a throws coach at the College of San Mateo for a long time instructing some of the best throwers in this area. Luke had quite a breakthrough as a sophomore last year with bests of 57'8" in the shot put and 141'5" in the discus. Luke was the section champion in the shot put and qualified to the CIF finals in the event where he finished in 10th place.

Ellie McCuskey-Hay St. Ignatius (Sprints/Jumps)
In 2023, St. Ignatius freshman Ellie McCuskey-Hay had one of the most successful Track and Field seasons in CCS history. At the CCS finals, McCuskey-Hay won four events taking the 100, 200, 400 relay and long jump. At the state meet, McCuskey-Hay finished 2nd in the 100 meters with a lifetime best of 11.52. In the long jump, she qualified for the final and made it on the podium with a 6th place finish and 19'7.25 lifetime best.

Tatum Olesen Menlo Atherton (Distance)
Last year, Olesen was the SM Daily Journal Athlete of the Year following her accomplishments in cross country, soccer, and track and field. In track, Olesen had her best season to date recording best times of 2:09.28 and 4:47.61 (mile). She finished in 2nd place at CCS in the 800 meters and qualified to the state finals in the same event where she finished in 7th place.

Tiana Osuna Archbishop Mitty (Hurdles)
The Fresno State bound Osuna hurdled, jumped and participated on multiple relays for Archbishop Mitty in 2023. In the 100 meters hurdles, Osuna finished in 2nd place at the CCS finals and had a season best of 14.90. She finished in 4th place in the 300 meters hurdles at the CCS finals and had a season best of 44.89.

Hannah Rutherford Mountain View (Sprints)

The best 400 meters sprinter in the section continued her domination of the event during her second high school Track and Field Season. Rutherford finished 2nd at the Stanford Invitational, 4th at the Arcadia Invitational and won the CCS finals in her specialty. At the state finals, Rutherford qualified to the final and finished in 4th place recording her lifetime best time in the trials with a time of 54.55.

Aydon Stefanopoulos Los Gatos (Distance)
CCS has quite a group of junior boys currently who have definitely left their mark in both cross country and track and field. Last season, Los Gatos sophomore Aydon Stefanopoulos at the CCS finals finished in 2nd place in the 1600 meters and doubled back to take the 3200 meters title. At the state meet, Stefanopoulos was the only runner to race in both the 1600 meters and 3200 meters finals as he podiumed in both events.

Kenneth Tucker Bellarmine (Jumps)

The Bellarmine boys are always in the hunt for the section team championship with jumpers just like Kenneth Tucker. Last season, Tucker qualified to CCS in the long jump and had a best of 22'7". In the triple jumper, Tucker shined with a section title, a best of 46'3.5", and a 7th place finish at the State finals.

Sabrina Zanetto St. Francis, MV (Distance)
Over the past few seasons, the St. Francis, MV distance girls have stamped themselves among the best teams in the state. Last season, they were quite impressive in multiple relays including 3rd place finishes in the Distance Medley Relay at the Arcadia Invitational as well as the state finals in the 4 x 800 relay. Both teams were anchored by Zanetto who also won the individual 800 meters race over an impressive group of girls with a time of 2:10.35.

Sunday, February 04, 2024

Interview with Olympic Marathon Trials winner Fiona O'Keeffe

I did this interview with former Davis HS runner Fiona O'Keeffe in 2014 for California MileSplit. Yesterday, O'Keeffe set a new Olympic Trials record in the Marathon as she raced to victory with a time of 2:22:10. You can check out the interview at this LINK.

Friday, February 02, 2024

Olympic Marathon Trials on Saturday - 12 NorCal competitors

The following was shared by Archie William's coach Robyn Berry.

I think there are 8 (now 11!) NorCal runners in the Marathon Trials tomorrow.  The NorCal women are among the favorites!

Carrie Verdon, Campolindo HS
Fiona O’Keefe, Davis HS
Sara Hall, Montgomery HS, Santa Rosa
Kim Conley, Montgomery HS, Santa Rosa
Sara Mostatabi, Campolindo HS

Swarnjit Boyal, River Valley HS, Yuba City
Robert Miranda, Menlo HS
Aaron Davidson, Archie Williams HS (who?)
Ryan Cutter, Hercules HS
Tyler Sickler Will C Wood (just added)
Grayson Hough Davis (just added)
Jake Ritter Granite Bay (just added)

(Those are the ones that I could identify from the bios on the Trials site, but the bios do not contain all the qualifiers.,cntnt01,default,0&cntnt01group=Athlete&cntnt01prop=category&cntnt01propval=women&cntnt01returnid=34&cntnt01pagelimit=1000&cntnt01sortby=f%3Aqt&cntnt01sortorder=ASC&dir=ASC&filter=full 

Here is a great story about Aaron Davidson, Archie Williams Class of 2018, and DIII runner (Cornell College Class of ’22). Thought you would love this. 

He was a 6:00 minute miler as a HS freshman! 

Thursday, February 01, 2024

Donation to Cross Country Express

If you have enjoyed the Cross Country coverage on this website this past season, a kind donation would be appreciated.  You can do so with the link to the right.  

This site will remain a free service throughout the year but as you know, a lot of time, effort, and money go into the maintenance of a website.

Thank you to all of you who have contributed already.  It's very much appreciated.

2023 All-CCS Cross Country Team


FITCHEN-YOUNG, Eli11Santa Cruz
MORGENFELD, Grant12Palo Alto
HEDLUND, Carson11Pioneer
COOK, Miles11Sacred Heart Cathedral
BOUIE, Benjamin11Crystal
MURILLO, Alijah10Branham
GUZMAN, Joshua11Gilroy
HURST, Samuel10Los Altos
MOORE, Luke12Sacred Heart Cathedral
WRIGHT, Trey11St. Ignatius 
IYER, Adarsh12Lynbrook
DOHERTY, Aidan12Menlo Atherton
DALZIEL, Shane12Westmont
PARIKH, Tanay11Monta Vista
MULLANE, Matthew12St. Francis
CHETTIAR, Shrey11Bellarmine
FRAKE, Dylan11Cupertino
CRIBARI, Landon11Westmont
MCMAHON, Dominic11Santa Clara
BIDMEAD, Jensen12Los Gatos
BAKER, Tarik11Crystal
ROBERTS, Luciano11St. Ignatius
SEEFELDT, Andrew12Branham

FITCHEN-YOUNG, Eli11Santa CruzRunner of the Year
MORGENFELD, Grant12Palo AltoSenior of the Year
FITCHEN-YOUNG, Eli11Santa CruzJunior of the Year
MURILLO, Alijah10BranhamSophomore of the Year
AGRAWAL, Arnav9MilpitasFreshman of the Year

BOOTHBY, Ashlyn12Scotts Valley
MARHEINEKE, Evie11Archbishop Mitty
OLESEN, Tatum12Menlo Atherton
BHARADWAJ, Amaya10Palo Alto
SIDHU, Jasleen12Los Altos
PFLAUM, Annie12Menlo Atherton
CILLEY, Caitlin11St. Francis

CHEN, Ruby12Evergreen Valley
HOORNAERT, Kylie11Prospect
DECLEVE, Ava10Scotts Valley
PAN, Jacqueline12Mills
DRAPER, Lauren10St. Francis
ELMORE, Shea11Los Gatos
ZANETTO, Sabrina11St. Francis
BACKHOLM, Olivia12Mountain View
KAUSHEK, Ariya10Menlo
SALTER, Anna10Crystal
LEWIS, Emma10Los Altos
HOOPS, Rachel12Aptos
SOOBRIAN, Emily11Los Altos
CARINO, Nora9Evergreen Valley
KAELBER, Lillian12St. Francis
SOETAERT, Hannah10Branham
NEWMAN, Stella10Burlingame

OLESEN, Tatum12Menlo AthertonRunner of the Year
OLESEN, Tatum12Menlo AthertonSenior of the Year
MARHEINEKE, Evie11Archbishop MittyJunior of the Year
BHARADWAJ, Amaya10Palo AltoSophomore of the Year
CARINO, Nora9Evergreen ValleyFreshman of the Year

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