Saturday, January 31, 2015

2015 Stanford Track and Field Invitational meet info now posted

Meet Info:
Tentative Friday Schedule:
Tentative Saturday Schedule:

Looks like the 4 x 800m. relay will not be contested at the Stanford Invite which is a real shame. They will have individual 800m. races now on Saturday.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Catching up with James Logan HS XC and TF coach, Lee Webb

Today we chat with one of the most successful coaches in California, James Logan XC and TF coach, Lee Webb. In his 31 years at James Logan, Lee has accumulated 26 NCS girls' Track and Field team championships and 24 NCS boys' Track and Field team championships. He has coached 24 individual state Track and Field champions as well as two state team titles. In Cross Country, James Logan has won 4 NCS team championships, 9 individual champions and one individual state champion. It would be very difficult to find a coach (in any state) that can surpass Lee's accomplishments. He has also done a lot of work with the Special Olympics and is truly one of the class acts in our field.

You can check out the TF school records for James Logan at this link:

1) What was your own experience in sports? What sports did you do in your youth? What did you do outside of your sports experiences that you feel helped you as an athlete? Highlights for you in sports in high school and college?
Did many sports growing up-Cross Country, Football, Basketball, Baseball, Golf and Track and Field. I was All-State in Basketball, Football and Track and Field. 4 Time State Champion. I Went to Southern Oregon State University-Football, Basketball, Track and Field. Finished @ Oregon State University. Drafted by Seattle Seahawks. Olympic Trials Decathlon and Javelin.

2) Who were the coaches that had the biggest impact on you? What did you learn from them that carries over to this day as a coach yourself?
Frank Morris, former Oregon State head Track and Field Coach. He taught the sport and showed the hard work needed to be a Head Coach.

3) How long have you been at James Logan? What was the state of the XC and TF programs when you first started? What changes did you have to make?
31 Years. When we came to James Logan there were 9 girls and 22 boys who were on the team the year before. Many changes were made. We brought enthusiasm to the sport. Made daily announcements, put up posters, encouraged students from all sports and put together a quality coaching staff. I established a track club right away. We had a clinic and camps during the year, went to middle schools and taught all the events in the sport of Track and Field including javelin, hammer, decathlon, steeplechase and race walking.

In Cross Country, there was maybe 15 students on the team when we got to Logan. We started a running club, put fun runs in place in the city, established the club Cross Country team and started a CYO Cross Country team. We do not have a great distance type running community but we seem to keep finding some gems through the programs that are set up.

4) What else do you do at James Logan aside from the coaching? How long have you been involved with that? Highlights?
I work a great deal with Special Olympics, help with parents on the farm in the summer , I have 2 grown-up children, one who had a baby.
I am brand new grandpa. Love to still do all sports.

5) During your time as the James Logan Track and Field coach, what are some of the standout accomplishments by your athletes and teams?
The 2 State Championship teams-boys-2006, Girls 2004, even though the teams that were second in 1995, 1996, and 2004 were better teams-the girls 2004 team was THE DREAM TEAM.

6) What do you feel has been some of the keys to success for your teams? What are absolute necessities that need to be in place for winning programs?
Dedication, promoting the sport every day at school and in the community. Exposing others to the sport with the news, clinics,camps, education of the sport and what the sport can do to help you in all sports.

7) How do you go about juggling all the events and putting a practice plan together for all the athletes and events?
I have learned over time to work with many athletes. For Track and Field, I have many good assistant coaches. but in the off-season and summer, I coach all the events. Doing the decathlon has prepared me to have knowledge in all the events.

8) How long have you coached the cross country team at James Logan? What are your expectations for your kids in the summer? Who have been some of the top distance runners and teams at James Logan?
I have coached Cross country 24 out of my 31 years at Logan. My expectations in the summer is they run. If you want a Good team obviously you have to train.
We have Camps in the summer at Logan and the Cross country team goes in the mountains for a week . They have established their own camp-the alumni and current runners. Here are a few:

Aaron Richberg-1.48.40/4.21 ran the 1600 one time in a dual meet in high school Had a 3.03 split for 1200 meters. 1.47 split on the Sprint Medley-ran down Obea Moore-Auburn
Ghebray Brothers-Giliat-4.12/9.07-Cal and Yosef-4.11/8.52-Cal
John Lockard-1.53-Purdue
Kim Wilkes--11.06-
Mei-Ling McNamara-5.00.25
Mason Hartwell-1.55 Idaho
Marcus Jones -1.53.
Scott McDonald -4.18/1.56-Brown
Jami Hardy-2.11-Howard
Thandi Stewart-2.10-Miami
Jennifer Bridgeman-2.12-Arizona state
Danielle Price-2.12-Arizona
Amihan Agustin-2.14/5.11 UC Riverside
Sarah Perrin-5/06-Cal State East Bay
Sky Baumbach-5.09/2.16 Reno
Bahati Bodden-2.14
Victoria Humphrey-2.14 Sacramento State
Tiffany Monslaud-St. Marys
Matt Cobette-4.19., 1.55 Cal Poly
Daniel Embaye-4.18 Chico St
Abraham Epinoza-4.25-Sac State
Alexandra Newsom-2.19/5.13/11.20 Current
Cristian Monslaud-1.56./4.24 6.22 Steeplechase Current

9) What changes do you feel need to be made for the benefit of cross country and track and field in California?
For the most part I like the way Cross Country works.

Track and Field, I think for our section, the many days of qualifying to get to the State Meet hurts us. Now, we have on 3 spots based on that fact.

10) Heading into another Track and Field season, what continues to motivate you to continue coaching?
I love to work with students. Love to see them improve. Love the challenges to put on events. Love competition and sport in general.

11) What advice would you give a new coach who has aspirations on competing at top level in either cross country and/or track and field?
Takes time takes work and the ultimate dedication.

12) Anything else you would like to add.
There are so many experiences and things that have happened to me and the school since I started coaching. Many athletes represent the US in international competitions, being on 3 USA staffs and currently have up to 300 students on our team for Track and Field and 125 in Cross Country.
We had 12 students from our school who qualified for the last Olympic Track and Field Trials.
I was selected to 2 USA teams

2004 Team NACAC Team
2011 Jumps Coach World Youth Team
2013 Head Coach World Youth Team

There are many many more athletes, experiences to mention-I would need a book!

Thank you very much for your time Lee! AJC

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Catching up with Placer High School coach, Randall Fee...

Today we chat with Placer High School Cross Country head coach (SJS), Randall Fee. This past season, Placer HS qualified both teams (boys and girls) to the CA state meet as their boys won the Division III race with the girls in 2nd behind Vista del Lago. The boys' victory was their 4th section championship in a row. The boys finished in 5th place at the CA state meet in their race and 2nd overall out of all Northern California teams, trailing only Bellarmine HS. Coach Fee has coached at Placer for 14 seasons, taking the helm of the team from Ron Hyatt, whose daughter Lindsay, won the CA state 800 title 4 years in a row. On a side note, Placer was established in 1897 which makes it one of the older public schools in California (117 years old!).

1) What was your own experience in sports? When did you start and what sports did you play? Proudest accomplishments?
My first experience in sports was little league baseball. I enjoyed playing baseball thru high school and finally at Oregon State University.

2) Who were the coaches that had the biggest impact on you and what important lessons did you learn from them? Who are the coaches that you lean on now for advice?
My first Little League Coach, Orville Taylor, had an impact on me. He demanded that we play hard and work on the fundamentals of baseball every game and every practice. Every practice had a purpose that was communicated to us. I try to do this with my teams so they know there is a plan in place.

Today I’m influenced by a couple of my fellow coaches who I believe run great programs and have for a long time. Bob King (Del Campo H.S.) always has the most disciplined teams that always stand out at a X-C Meet. Walt Lange from Jesuit H.S. in Sacramento prepares his teams for big meets like nobody else. Walt’s success in his career is legendary. More on a personal note I love doing battle with Peanut Harms (El Dorado H.S.) and Kevin Ostenberg (Del Oro H.S.). These two always compete hard with Placer on both the Girls and Boys teams. No matter what the outcome is at the end of the meet we always shake hands and can’t wait till we do battle again.

3) What led you into coaching? How long have you been at Placer HS? What else do you do besides coaching?
I have personally been running for 49 years. When I got married in the 80’s I was running marathons and ultra-marathons and racing every weekend. My profession was with P.G.&E. as a Lineman. When my children got older we started running as a family. Both my children, upon completion of high school received D-1 running scholarships. My son, Dustin, (Head track coach at Del Oro) graduated in 2002 and that Fall I was asked to become the Cross Country Coach at Placer. P.G.&E. was great about letting me start my day early so I could Coach in the afternoon. This will be my 14th year at Placer as the head Cross Country Coach.

4) What was that state of the team when you first started coaching at Placer HS? What are some of the advantages and challenges of coaching at that school?
I took over in 2002 after legendary Coach, Ron Hyatt, retired. The program was very strong and Coach Hyatt left me some very talented runners. Placer’s track is the finish line for the Western States 100 mile ultra run, which is held in June every year. We are so fortunate to have the Western States Trail in our backyard for out training runs. We never have to go far to run on hills and trails. Training in canyons does have it challenges. This year we ran into 5 or 6 rattlesnakes and two Mountain Lions.

5) Can you tell us a little about the progression of your seniors since they started with you?
We completed our 4-peat as Section Champions this year and two Runners were a part of all four teams. This group of seniors progressed every year they ran for Placer. Starting as freshman or sophomores running in the high 17’s to finishing their high school x-c career with pr’s at the state meet. Their times at State were from mid 15’s to very low 16’s.

6) What were the expectations of the team heading into the season? Who are the teams in your league and division in SJS that you feel have pushed your runners to better performances?
Our goal in 2013 was to 3-peat at Sections, which had never been done on the boys side at Placer. So naturally in 2014 the team was focused on that 4-peat. Our other goal was to improve our performance at the State meet with a top 10 finish. By far our main competition at the Section D-3 meet has been El Dorado and Del Oro high schools. As I mentioned earlier their coaches always prepare their teams well for the Sections meet.

7) Your boys' team won the SJS Division III race with 28 points. Where did you think they could finish at the state meet? How satisfying was it to finish 5th at the state meet?
In the State rankings they had us ranked 10th going into the State meet. I believe a turning point for us was winning the Clovis Invitational; it made us believe a top 5 placement was doable at the State meet. After the state meet race, they had us initially finishing 7th which we were very excited about. Then, the official results came out and we had actually finished in 5th place...boy, did the party begin then! What an honor it was to see those boys celebrate after all they had put into their running since June.

8) Your girls' team finished in 2nd place in SJS and also qualified for the state meet. What are the similarities and differences of coaching girls compared to boys? 
Right there with the boys 4-peat was the excitement of seeing this young girls team make it to the State meet. All the scorers at the State meet were freshmen or sophomores. We do a lot of team bonding during the season, carbo load dinners before every League Meet and a special dinner for those attending the Stanford Invitational. I believe these times together help to make for good chemistry on our team. We always have a lot of competition for our top 7 which makes for very few top runners ever missing practice. Competitive soccer on the girls side is challenging and something we face every year.

9) What does a typical training week look like for your runners? What changes as you get closer to the SJS meets and the state meet? Morning runs? Weights? What else do you think were keys to the success of your runners?
Our season starts in mid June and goes for 5 months so pacing our season is extremely important. We start the first part of our summer building our base mileage, then in the second half we start to build in hill workouts and long runs on the weekends. During early October, we quit the hill repeats and build more on long speed workouts (1000 meter repeats). Once our league championships are over we move to 600 meter repeats (on a flat grass course) and bring their mileage down. We also bring in Alumni for motivational talks. We do ice baths and use rollers after every hard run and I believe this really helps with a long season.

10) What do you feel have been some of the biggest changes for you as a coach and for the two sports (XC and TF) since you started coaching?
One of the biggest changes for me is having to be more flexible with the runner’s schedules. Students today are involved in more activities than when I first started coaching. Between band, club soccer, jobs, and AP classes my runners are maxed out and I want to work with them as much as possible.

11) Concerning the CA state XC meet, what changes do you think can take place which will make for a better meet?
I believe the CIF board needs to communicate with all-sections on what enrollment numbers we use in making out our divisional format. I believe when you get to the State level you should be on an even playing field. Currently the Sectional makeup for divisions is left up to each individual Section.

12) Anything else you would like to add.
Thanks for this opportunity to talk about my program.

Thank you for your time Randall! AJC

Monday, January 26, 2015

Track and Field 1st Official Practice dates

Northern Section-First Meet Date: Monday, February 23rd
North Coast Section-First Practice Date: Monday, February 9th
Sac Joaquin Section-First Practice Date: Monday, February 9th
Oakland Section-First Practice Date: Monday, January 26th
San Francisco Section-First Practice Date: Monday, January 26th
Central Coast Section-First Practice Date: Monday, February 2nd
Central Section-First Practice Date: Monday, February 2nd
Southern Section-First Practice Date: School Site Decision
San Diego Section-First Practice Date: Saturday, February 21st
Los Angeles Section-First Practice Date: Monday, February 2nd

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Steve Adams (Cardinal Newman HS) Thrives as a Runner Despite Epilepsy Diagnosis (1/21/15)

Cal All-Comers Results (Check out individual race/field results for familiar HS names)

Here are some of the more notable results. Feel free to include others in comment section.
Reonna Collier Piedmont Hills (CCS) 8.56 60m. Hurdles/57.25 400m.

Cristian Monsalud James Logan (NCS) finishes 2nd in 800m. with 1:57.04.

Cooper Teare St. Joseph Notre Dame (NCS) edges out Alexander Glavin of College Prep (NCS) 9:42.47 to 9:42.48 in the open 3200m.

Isaiah Holmes Oakmont (SJS)6'4.75" High Jump

Marshall Godsil Bellarmine (CCS) 52'1.75" Shot Put

Friday, January 23, 2015

Sacramento Running Association Hall of Fame Bio: Jesuit HS coach Walt Lange

(First in a series highlighting the six members of the Sacramento Running Association’s 2015 Hall of Fame class. Today: Walt Lange).
Walt Lange has mentored plenty of great running talents in his long, illustrious coaching career at Jesuit High School.
Michael Stember. Eric and Mark Mastalir. Matt Farley. Paul Thomas. David Welsh.
What really motivates Lange, though, is helping the lesser lights find a way to shine.
“You get noticed for the stars; they come along every few years,” said Lange, one of six inductees in the Sacramento Running Association’s 2015 Hall of Fame class.
“You’re working with more average talents every day. That’s really what it’s all about … it really is a privilege to be out there working with young people.
To read the rest, go to this link:

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Multi-sport athletes on Ohio St. Football team

This has been making the rounds the past couple of days so if you haven't seen it already, here you go. It's a great visual and message to share with current high school football players who may be on the fence about joining the Track and Field team in the spring.

Are football players encouraged to do Track in the spring at your school?

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

2015 Southern Section Distance Races State Meet Contenders

The top 6 qualify to the state meet from the Southern Section unless you can qualify by surpassing the 2015 At-Large Time Standards.  Additions?  Changes?  Comments?

Girls 800m.
The favorite:  Amber Gore Redondo Union,
Threats: Anevay Hiehle Redondo Union, Taylor Arco Mission Viejo
Wildcards: Sabrina Janes Saugus, Jacquelyn Hill Etiwanda, Cassie Durgy Huntington Beach, Annie Boos Claremont, Kaylie Grimes Beaumont

Boys 800m.
The favorite:  Jeremiah Bias Vista Del Lago
Threats: Sergio Rodriguez Redondo Union, Isaac Cortez Great Oak
Wildcards: Cooper Kossick Edison, Dillon Beckum Bonita, Thomas Heib Los Alamitos, Isaiah Jewitt Cathedral

Girls 1600m.
The favorite: Destiny Collins Great Oak
Threats: Amanda Gehrich Tesoro, Julia Sienski Edison
Wildcards:  Sabrina Janes Saugus, Claire Graves Citrus Valley, Kimberly Coscia South Torrance, Candela Fernandez Burbank, Talley Hill Arroyo Grande, Amber Gore Redondo Union, Kiyena Beatty Great Oak, Tahlia Adams Roosevelt

Boys 1600m.
The favorite:  Austin Tamagno Brea Olinda
Threats: Phillip Rocha Arcadia, Jake Ogden Dana Hills, George Gleason Huntington Beach
Wildcards: William Ernst San Luis Obispo, Nicholas Doan Great Oak, Caleb Webb Big Bear, Cobie Chavez Temescal Canyon, Millen Trujillo Walnut, Austin Shellito Brea Olinda, Mason Coppi Dana Hills

Girls 3200m.
The favorite:  Destiny Collins Great Oak
Threat: Samantha Ortega Saugus, Kimberly Coscia South Torrance, Caroline Pietryzk Malibu
Wildcards: Emily Beneduce Oak Park, Claire Graves Citrus Valley, Sabrina Hermann Trabuco Hills, Amanda Gehrich Tesoro, Kiyena Beatty Great Oak

Boys 3200m.
The favorite: Austin Tamagno Brea Olinda,
Threats: Caleb Webb Big Bear, Brian Zabilski Saugus, Jake Ogden Dana Hills
Wildcards: Michael Teran Jurupa Hills, Andres Barregan Warren, Benjamin Gonzalez Warren, Nicholas Doan Great Oak, Mason Coppi Dana Hills

Monday, January 19, 2015

Catching up with Bishop O'Dowd runner, Colin Burke

Today we chat with Bishop O'Dowd senior runner, Colin Burke. This past Cross Country season, Burke recorded his finest season to date. He won the Ed Sias Invitational (small school division), Stanford Invitational (Division III race) and Clovis Invitational (Division IV race). He finished in 3rd place at the California state meet Division III race in a lifetime best 15:23. He finished in 10th place the Footlocker West Regional race to qualify for the National meet where he finished in 32nd place. With all the above accomplishments, Burke was named 1st team All-NorCal.

1) How did you get your start in running? How old were you? What was the first success that you remember and made you excited to be a runner?

When I was in elementary school I used to go on runs with my Dad and brother just for fun. I was also very competitive in middle school with our weekly PE mile, but during the fall of my freshman year I actually decided to play water polo instead of run cross country, so I didn’t really start running until track season. The first success I had was at the Dan Gabor Invitational where I ran the 1600. It was after that race when I started to love running.

2) Tell us about your freshmen season in Track and Field? Highlights?

My freshman track season was a great learning experience for me. It was what really got me into running, and it was during that season where I caught the running bug. A performance highlight was breaking 5 minutes in the mile, but one thing I always look back on and laugh at is my best time for the 400m - 71 seconds. 

3) How much convincing did it take to get you to join the cross country team as a sophomore?

After track my freshman year, it didn’t take much convincing for me to join the cross country team as a sophomore. I knew that I liked running and that I was better at longer races, so stepping up to the 5k would be right up my alley. In the past I enjoyed playing team sports, and cross country feels like more of a team sport to me especially when I line up next to my teammates at the start of every race.

4) When do you feel you made the biggest jump during your high school career as a runner? What do you think led to that improvement?

I feel that my biggest jump was from my junior track season to my senior cross country season. We did have a coaching change that year, but I sat down with my current coach, Coach David Okikawa, in the summer and we planned out the entire season. It was something that really gave me a lot of confidence going forward. We decided to go up in mileage a little bit, but I believe that focusing on my strength work and nutrition really changed my performances. Sometimes the little things can go a long way, and I attribute that to a lot of my success this year. 

5) Looking back at your just completed cross country season, what do you feel were your best races and proudest achievements?

A race that was a turning point for me was this season was the Stanford Invitational because it gave me a lot of confidence. It was the first time I could see all the hard work I put in over the summer paying off. Ultimately, my proudest moment was when I qualified for Foot Locker Nationals. I spent the last three years watching that race on the webcast. To actually be able to take part in it was a dream come true. 

6) What did a typical week look like for you during cross country season in terms of training? How many workouts? Length of long run? Any morning runs? Weightlifting?

Monday: Medium mileage run at easy pace

Tuesday: Tempo workout (repeats of usually 1-4 miles)

Wednesday: Short mileage run at easy/recovery pace

Thursday: Workout that was usually strength based and a little quicker (hill repeats, 800s on the track, mile repeats on the trails for example)

Friday: Easy/recovery run

Saturday: Long run anywhere from 10-14 miles

We did some morning runs and weight training over the summer, about twice per week, but lightened up on both of those during the season. 

7) You have had several coaching changes during your time at Bishop O'Dowd. What did you learn from each coach and how did each coach help you get to your current level?

Coaching changes can definitely be difficult to deal with as an athlete because each coaching style is different. My advice to anyone going through a coaching change is to just trust your coach and be vocal about how you’re feeling on a day-to-day basis. I believe most of my success came from working with Coach David, and the most important lesson that I learned from him was when to push it and when to back off. Through learning this lesson I was better prepared for the end of the season than I was in years past, and I believe that is why I had so much success this postseason. 

8) Favorite XC course? Favorite XC invitational? Favorite XC workout? Favorite long run? Favorite Track and Field event? Favorite Track invitational? Favorite Track workout?

My favorite cross country course is Woodward Park (because it has a little bit of everything)

My favorite XC invitational is the Stanford Invitational (because of how exciting it was this year)

My favorite XC workout is long tempo (because I think that is what got me stronger)

My favorite long run is a run through the Oakland hills on a trail called the Sequoia Bayview Trail (because it is so scenic)

My favorite track and field event is 3200 (because it fits me the best)

My favorite track invitational Dublin Distance Fiesta (because of the great energy and how well the meet is run every year)

My favorite track workout is 1k repeats (because it’s fast but manageable)

9) Your brother Sean and Nick Downs make up a formidable trio of runners. How much of your running is with them and how often does it get competitive in practice?

Every practice we run in a group of four runners: my brother Sean, Nick Downs, Riley Cooke, and me. I’ve run with them since the beginning of my sophomore year, and it has been a great experience. There’s nobody I would rather train with day in and day out. It can get a little competitive at practice, but we always know we are on the same team working towards the same goals. I do however think the competitiveness is something that has taken us to the next level. 

10) What are you most looking forward to this coming Track and Field season?

I am really looking forward to improving my times as best as I can and seeing how far I can make it through the post season.

11) Have you made your decision on where you will attend college next year and if not, how much will running impact your decision?

I haven’t made my decision yet about where I will attend college, but running is definitely something that I would love to continue into my college years. 

12) Anything else you would like to add.

Just a huge shoutout to all of my teammates and training partners over the years, I could never have done it without you, and thank you Albert for running such a great site and giving me the opportunity to do this interview!

Thank you very much for your time Colin! AJC

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Sacramento Running Association 2015 Hall of Fame Class Includes Mastalir twins (Eric and Mark) as well as their high school coach, Walt Lange.

Here is my interview with Walt Lange in 2009.

Former NorCal High School runners rolling professionally this weekend

At the UW Indoor meet, former Sacred Heart Cathedral runner Shannon Rowbury won the 1000m. (2:40.25) and mile (4:27.86).

At this morning's USATF Half Marathon Championship, former Montgomery HS runner Kim Conley and former Alisal runner Diego Estrada both finished in 1st place with 1:09:44 and 1:00:51 respective times. Former Valley Christian SJ runner Jen Bergman ran personal best 1:14:03 to qualify for the Olympic Marathon trials.

Also at the UW Indoor meet, you had German Fernandez (Riverbank HS), Fred Huxham (Redwood HS) and JK Withers all competed in the same heat of the men's 3K. You can check out results here:

Any other performances worth mentioning?

Friday, January 16, 2015

Top 10 2014 NorCal Track and Field Performers

Just like David Letterman, we will count down from 10 to 1. Lots of contenders and it was really difficult to narrow this list down to 10 with so many great performances that took place last Track and Field season. I also took note of any historical performances as well as any outstanding performances throughout the season. Feel free to comment in the section below. Did I miss anybody?

10) Greta Wagner Los Gatos (State champion in PV as well as participant in 100 and 400 relay)
9) Destiny Smith-Barnett Skyline (2nd place in 100m. and 3rd place in 200m. at CA state meet)
8) Mecca McGlaston Dublin (State champion in 100m. Hurdles)
7) Reonna Collier Piedmont Hills (4th place in 100m. Hurdles and state champion in 300m. Hurdles)
6) Marquis Morris De La Salle (2nd place in 110m. Hurdles and state champion in 300m. Hurdles)
5) Sarah Robinson Gunn (State champion in 1600 and 2nd place in 3200)
4) Anna Maxwell San Lorenzo Valley (State 2nd place finisher in 800 and 4:42.14/10:04.81 PRs)
3) Fred Huxham Redwood (State champion in 3200 breaking up Blake Haney's double double)
2) Vacaville girls' hurdlers (National record at Arcadia Invitational in 4x100 shuttle hurdle relay)
1) Nate Moore Castro Valley (1st double LJ/TJ winner at CA state meet)

Honorable Mentions:
Madeline Price Menlo (2nd place 400m. and 5th place 200m. at CA state meet)
August Kiles Tamalpais (4th place in PV at CA state meet at 16'0")
Blair Hurlock De La Salle (4th place in 3200m. at CA state meet in 8:58.85)
Connor McKinnon Amador Valley (3rd place in 800m. at CA state meet and leg on 5th place 1600m. Relay team)
Hannah Chappell Oakdale (2nd place in Discus at CA state meet)

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Catching up with Cupertino HS freshman, Caroline Gee

Today we chat with one of the top freshmen girls in California, Cupertino HS runner, Caroline Gee (picture courtesy of Hank Lawson and This past Cross Country season, Gee made her presence felt early in the season with a victory at the Earlybird Invitational at Toro Park. Her next major statement came at the Stanford Invitational where Gee finished a narrow 2nd behind Gillian Meeks of Gunn HS in an impressive 17:43. She won the SCVAL El Camino race at the Crystal Springs course in 17:46 and followed that up with a 2nd place finish at the CCS Division I race, once again, behind Meeks. She finished an impressive 10th place at the California state meet to cap a very successful freshman Cross Country season. Following the season, Gee was voted the All NorCal Freshman of the Year.

1) How old were you and what led you into running?
I first ran track in 6th grade since I was always one of the faster girls in PE class, and I also loved running long distances in my free time. I wasn’t really committed to running until high school, since I was more focused on soccer. I don’t think I realized my potential until I placed second in County Finals in 8th grade. I felt that I could do better in the longer distances, so I decided to try XC in high school. I was a bit hesitant about this, though, since I knew that it would be difficult to balance XC practices with soccer.

2) What other sports have you participated in besides Cross Country and Track and Field?
When I was younger, I participated in gymnastics and swimming. I also used to ski a lot, but in middle school I focused mainly on soccer.

3) What were your track and field personal records before high school in 800, 1600 and 3200? Other running experience?
The only track event I ran in middle school was the 1600. My PR in the mile was 5:20, which I ran in eighth grade at County Finals. Last summer, I ran a few 5k races for fun with my mom.

4) Tell us a little about your Cupertino HS teammates and coaches and how they have helped you transition from middle school to high school?
My teammates at CHS are super nice and supportive. Practices with the team are really fun and I always look forward to them. Coach Armstrong (Paul) is a great coach and has helped me to take running more seriously. He’s motivated me to make goals and work hard for them.

5) Highlights from your just completed XC season? What did you learn from your race experiences? Proudest accomplishments?
I think I’m most proud of my Stanford Invitational time of 17:43. Even though I didn’t finish first in my section, I broke the freshmen record, and I think I exceeded everyone’s, and my own expectations. I’m also proud of my Crystal Springs results. I was also really excited to have qualified for state. I’ve learned to be mentally stronger near the end of my race, because that’s when I would sometimes lose focus.

6) What does a typical week look like for you in terms of training? What is the length of your longest run? What do you enjoy the most about practices?
Coach Armstrong mixes up the workouts with track workouts and long runs. We always have 7 AM runs on Saturdays and rest days on Sundays. My longest run is about six miles. Practice is always a lot of fun. I love talking to my teammates and sweating out during the workouts.

7) Favorite XC race? Favorite XC course? Favorite XC workout? Favorite track distance? Favorite long run? What do you enjoy doing during your free time?
My favorite course would definitely be Crystal Springs. The distance feels perfect, and it has a good amount of hills. It’s a fast and challenging course. My favorite XC workout is when we do a long road run. It always feels really good and relaxing after a long school day. My favorite track distance is the 1600, but I’m excited to try the 3200 because I have never raced it before. In my free time, I love reading, running long runs with my family, playing with my pets, and hanging out with friends.

8) What races are you looking forward to this upcoming Track and Field season? What do you feel will be your best race distance?
I’m looking forward to running the 3200 because I’ve never run that distance before on track. I think either the mile or the two-mile will be my best distance.

9) Looking back at your past XC season, what would be your advice for a freshman next season who may have similar type success?
My advice would be to don’t get injured! Injuries, even something as little as soreness, can set you back and can be extremely frustrating. Also, always work really hard and set big goals for yourself.

Thank you very much for your time! AJC

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Coming up...

More interviews and previews as we get close to the first official days of the Track and Field season.

If you have ideas of what you would like to see on this site, feel free to comment in the section below.

2015 California State Meet Pre-Season Girls' Distance Contenders

The always uber-competitive California State meet will once again feature some of the top distance runners in the nation. Here are the favorites for the three girls' distance races as well as all their main threats and wild card runners. Most of the runners listed are 10-12th graders so it's possible that a potential 9th grader who may contend is missing from the lists below. PRs for each runner are listed in parenthesis. Feel free to comment in the section below about runners you feel should be included or moved up.

Girls 800m.

Favorite: Mikaela Smith Clovis North CS (2-time defending champion 2:06.85)
Threats: Hannah Benoit Buchanan CS (2:08.75), Bianca Bryant Piedmont Hills CCS (2:09.12)
Wildcards: Juliana Mount Notre Dame, San Jose CCS (2:10.07), Taylor Arco Mission Viejo SS (2:10.38), Chloe Jenkins St. Mary's Berkeley NCS (2:11.31), Cassie Durgy Huntington Beach SS (2:11.54), Amber Gore Redondo Union SS (2:10.76), Jacquelyn Hill Etiwanda SS (2:10.43), Anevay Hiehle Redondo Union SS (2:09.19)

Girls 1600m.

Destiny Collins Great Oak SS (2nd place 2014 4:45.26)
Threats: Amanda Gehrich Tesoro SS (4:46.53), Kendall Derry Bella Vista SJS (4:52.00), Marissa Williams Palisades Charter LA (4:52.32)
Wildcards: Brooke Starn Monte Vista NCS (4:53.36), Kelly Bernd Canyon Crest Academy SDS (4:53.05), Brighie Leach Campolindo NCS (4:54.27), Chloe Hansel Las Lomas NCS (4:54.50), Megan McCandless Granada NCS (4:54.78), Lizzie Lacy Menlo CCS (NT), Rylee Bowen Sonoma Academy

Girls 3200m.

Destiny Collins Great Oak SS (4th Place 2014 10:14.33)
Threats: Fiona O'Keeffe Davis SJS (10:14.60), Kimberly Coscia South Torrance (10:18:57)
Wildcards: Emily Beneduce Oak Park SS (10:25.93), Caroline Pietrzyk Malibu SS (10:30.45), Megan McCandless Granada NCS (10:32.82), Marissa Williams Palisades Charter LA (10:25.02), Lizzie Lacy Menlo CCS (NT)

Running in a New Light: Rosa Gutierrez

Original interview is from B-Fit Newsletter in 2000. Updates intro as the original arcle is 15 years old…Posted by Josh Small, Valley Christian SJ coach about assistant coach Rosa Guiterrez.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

2015 SJS Distance State Meet Contenders

As with NCS and CCS, 3 qualify to the CA state Track and Field meet unless you make the 2015 At-Large Time Standards.  It's very possible I could have missed an athlete or two so please chime in below on those athletes.  Additional comments?

Girls 800m.
The favorite:  Ariane Arndt St. Francis Sac
Threats: Jeanne-Marie McPherson Davis, Madison Meade Roseville, Maddy Lyons Del Oro
Wildcards: Muna Alhamad Roseville, Erica Wolf Nevada Union, Kamra Newton Monterey Trail, Savannah Hill Whitney, Elisa McIsaac Davis,

Boys 800m.
The favorite:  Arturo Sotomayor Roseville
Threats:  Blake Croft Davis, Mark Baker Rio Americano, Steven Hill Bear Creek
Wildcards: Gonzalo Morales Lomeli Dixon, Thomas Kruetzfeldt Sonora, Braeden Kraft Del Campo, Willie Hall Davis

Girls 1600m.
The favorite:  Kendall Derry Bella Vista
Threats:  Sofia Castiglione Davis, Hannah Hull Calaveras
Wildcards: Fiona O'Keeffe Davis, Peyton Bilo St. Francis Sac, Kaitlin Derry Bella Vista, Angela Dipento Woodcreek, Jeanne-Marie McPherson Davis

Boys 1600m.
The favorite: Brian Song Davis
Threats: Ben Roberts Davis, Daniel Ambriz Merced, Andrew Clusserath Rocklin, Ross Walker
Wildcards: Arturo Sotomayor Roseville, Paul Zeiss Granite Bay, Alex Garcia Placer

Girls 3200m.
The favorite:  Fiona O'Keeffe Davis
Threats:  Angela Dipentino Woodcreek, Miranda Myers St. Francis Sac, Sarah Anderson Vista del Lago
Wildcards: Kathryn Loken Del Campo, Kendall Derry Bella Vista, Sofia Castiglioni Davis, Isabella Dobson Elk Grove, Nora Pizzella Nevada Union, Maggie McManis Davis, Cassi Land Sonora

Boys 3200m.
The favorite: Paul Zeiss Granite Bay
Threats: Drew Childs Bella Vista, Edward Chance Del Campo, Sean Kurdy Jesuit
Wildcards: Brian Song Davis, Remington Breeze Vista del Lago, Gregory Aitken Folsom, Moshe McCarter-Ribakoff, Kyle Chun Vista del Lago, Kellen Browning Davis

Cross‐Country Running in the Olympics: New Debate Has a Long Legacy

Monday, January 12, 2015

California College Decisions

If you are a high school senior and have picked the college where you will compete for the next four (or five) years and are not listed at the link below, please send me your updated information at

Sunday, January 11, 2015

2015 Northern Section Distance State Meet Contenders

Only the winners advance from the Northern Section to the state meet unless they qualify by surpassing the 2015 At-Large Time Standards.  Additions?  Changes?  Comments?

Girls 800m.
The favorite:  Alexa Flagg West Valley
Threats: Sydney Pruett Enterprise
Wildcards:  Sofia Evanoff Winters, Natalie Ulloa Enterprise

Boys 800m.
The favorite:  Zach Baldwin West Valley
Threats:  Jacob Graber Chico
Wildcards: Chris Morzenti Mt. Shasta

Girls 1600m.
The favorite:  Belle Moran Redding Christian
Threats:  Jenna Storms West Valley
Wildcards: Natalie Ullua Enterprise, Hanna Davis Shasta, Alexa Flagg West Valley, Meri Krier Yreka

Boys 1600m.
The favorite:  Chris Morzenti Mt. Shasta
Threats:  Ben Harper Trinity
Wildcards: Jacob Graber Chico, Tyler Younkins University Prep, Matt Jochim Yreka, Brenden Berry Yreka, Masen Becerrill Pleasant Valley

Girls 3200m.
The favorite:  Jenna Storms West Valley
Threat:  Natalie Ulloa Enterprise, Belle Moran Redding Christian
Wildcards:  Hannah Davis Shasta, Andrea Bader Foothill

Boys 3200m.
The favorite:  Ben Harper Trinity
Threats: Tyler Younkers University Prep, Chris Morzenti Mt. Shasta
Wildcards:  Matt Jochim Yreka, Riley Davis Shasta

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

2015 Northern California Track and Field Distance Preview

2014 State Champions from Northern California
The 2014 girls' state 1600m. race victor was another NorCal athlete as Sarah Robinson (Gunn) survived a rugged field and last lap to win in 4:44.25. Nikki Hiltz of Aptos and Anna Maxwell of San Lorenzo Valley won the 2012 and 2013 races respectively to begin the three consecutive NorCal victories. The fastest returning 1600m. NorCal runner is Kendall Derry of Bella Vista who ran 4:52.00 at the state prelims. She finished in 5th place in the final with two fellow then sophomores (Destiny Collins Great Oak and Amanda Gehrich Tesoro) ahead of her. The other NorCal winner was Fred Huxham (Dave Waco photo) of Redwood in the 3200m. He beat a tough field that included Blake Haney of Stockton who was attempting to become the 2nd California runner to record double victories in the 1600m./3200m. in consecutive seasons (Roman Gomez Belmont1984/1985). Huxham is now competing for the University of Washington with the fastest NorCal returner being Steven Sum of Saratoga at 9:10.23.

The "Rookies"

It's a little unusual to call two seniors rookies but that will definitely be the case for Lizzie Lacy (Keith Peters photo above left) of Menlo School and Toni Finnane (above right) of Campolindo. Lacy recorded the fastest time at Toro Park at the 2014 CCS XC final, finished in 3rd place at the State Meet in Division IV and continued to the Footlocker National Meet where she finished in 10th place. Finnane was a true XC rookie this past season as she joined the Campolindo team for the first time as a senior. She finished in 2nd place behind Chloe Hansel of Las Lomas at the NCS and state meets (she lost to teammate Brighie Leach at DFAL). She also qualified for the Footlocker National meet and ultimately finished in 22nd place. She may have been the only runner to qualify for the Footlocker national meet and not record one victory the entire season. Both will make their debut this coming Track and Field season and it will be very interesting what event they will both focus on come championship time in May and June. The other rookie will be Rylee Bowen (Christopher Chung photo below) of Sonoma Academy who as a freshman may have more racing experience than Lacy and Finnane combined. Bowen has been well known in the club running scene prior to her freshman XC season. She recorded an impressive 10:47.58 for the full 2 mile distance at the Night of 2-Mile Madness in November. Bowen will see if she can reclaim her status as the top freshman in Northern California after finishing behind Caroline Gee of Cupertino and Elana Kamas of Homestead in the All-Norcal XC team. Finally, watch out for Trevor Reinhart of Marin Academy this coming spring season. Although not a rookie, Reinhart ran Track for the first time as a junior but his season was cut short due to injury. He recovered nicely this past XC season as he won the BCL West, NCS and state meet races in dominating fashion. He qualified for the Footlocker National meet once again where he improved to 7th place after a 12th place finish as a junior. I am sure there are plenty of nervous NCS distance runners who will have to wonder what Reinhart's primary event will be this coming season.

The chase for a sub 9:00 3200m.
Last season, along with state champion Fred Huxham of Redwood, Blair Hurlock also dipped under the 9:00 barrier (8:58.28) making Huxham and Hurlock the 18th and 19th NorCal runners to achieve that feat in the last 11 years. Here is the complete list below.
2014-Fred Huxham Redwood 8:54.24, Blair Hurlock 8:58.28
2013-John Lawson Sir Francis Drake 8:58.19
2011-Trevor Halsted Davis 8:51.96, Luis Luna Piner 8:55.43, Ben Eversole Castro Valley 8:59.07, Chris Kigar El Camino 8:59.22, Dominic D'Acquisto Enterprise 8:59.58, Kevin Bishop Monta Vista 8:59.82
2010-Weston Strum Pioneer 8:56.42, Kurt Ruegg Napa 8:57.86, Erik Olson Novato 8:59.01, Reesey Byers Santa Rosa 8:59.89
2009-Erik Olson Novato 8:55.06, Garrett Rowe Mt. View 8:55.71, Dan Mitchell Del Campo 8:56.56
2008-German Fernandez Riverbank 8:34.23
2007-Brendan Gregg Davis 8:59.48
2006-Ben Sitler St. Francis 8:53.47
2004-Yosef Ghebray James Logan 8:52.42

So the question now is who are the NorCal runners aiming to join the above elite company.  Here are the fastest returning 3200m. runners and their personal records:
Steven Sum Saratoga (CCS) 9:10.23
Paul Zeiss Granite Bay (SJS) 9:11.62
Chris Foster Los Gatos (CCS) 9:16.12
Matthew Schumann De La Salle (NCS) 9:16.40
Edward Chance Del Campo (SJS) 9:20.49
Drew Childs Bella Vista (SJS) 9:22.98
Colin Burke Bishop O'Dowd (NCS) 9:23.36
Ben Haderle Los Gatos (CCS) 9:24.07
Jackson Crose Livermore (NCS) 9:24.30
Remington Breeze Vista del Lago (SJS) 9:24.95
Jose Pina Lincoln, San Jose (CCS) 9:26.20
Sean Kurdy Jesuit (SJS) 9:26.25
Daniel Hill Sacred Heart Prep (CCS) 9:26.75
Andy Ehrenberg Redwood (NCS) 9:26.97
Nolan Dozier Sobrato (CCS) 9:27.03
Justin Robison Lynbrook (CCS) 9:27.33
Samuel Blake Westmont (CCS) 9:28.21
Who from the above list will dip under 9:00?  Who else will join the chase that is not listed?

Top NorCal Boys under 16:00 at 2014 CA State Meet
2 Trevor Reinhart SR 95 5 Marin Academy NCS 14:58.5 4:50
12 Christopher Foster SR 82 2 Los Gatos CCS 15:16.4 4:55
13 Steve Sum SR 86 3 Saratoga CCS 15:16.7 4:56
15 Sean Kurdy JR 39 1 Jesuit SJS 15:17.9 4:56
20 Edward Chance SR 86 2 Del Campo SJS 15:19.5 4:56
23 Colin Burke SR 65 3 Bishop O'dowd NCS 15:22.4 4:57
24 Andy Ehrenberg JR 46 2 Redwood NCS 15:24.3 4:58
36 David Frisbie JR 45 3 Jfk - Fremont NCS 15:29.0 4:59
46 Sean Burke SR 66 3 Bishop O'dowd NCS 15:33.4 5:01
48 Jackson Crose SR 75 2 Livermore NCS 15:35.7 5:02
55 Hassen Hassen SR 29 2 Willow Glen CCS 15:36.8 5:02
57 Matt Schumann SR 26 1 De La Salle NCS 15:37.7 5:02
61 Moshe McCarter-Ribak SR 60 3 Placer SJS 15:38.9 5:03
77 Cooper Teare SO 98 5 St. Joe. Notre Dame NCS 15:43.1 5:04
82 Ross Walker SR 92 2 Del Campo SJS 15:45.0 5:05
88 Ben Osipow SR 14 3 St. Ignatius CCS 15:46.5 5:05
89 Jose Pina SR 1 2 Abraham Lincoln CCS 15:46.6 5:05
94 Drew Childs SR 44 1 Bella Vista SJS 15:48.3 5:06
97 Paul Zeiss SR 35 1 Granite Bay SJS 15:48.6 5:06
100 Edgar Bonilla SR 65 4 King City CCS 15:49.9 5:06
101 Johain Ounadjela SR 26 1 Carlmont CCS 15:49.9 5:06
106 Justin Robison JR 90 2 Lynbrook CCS 15:50.7 5:06
110 Alex Sasser SR 18 1 Bellarmine CCS 15:50.9 5:07
116 Moses Wolfe-Polgar SR 00 2 Del Oro SJS 15:52.6 5:07
118 Kevin Lehr JR 15 3 St. Ignatius CCS 15:52.9 5:07
120 Tucker Meijer SR 21 1 Bellarmine CCS 15:53.4 5:07
125 Peter Schlachte SR 31 1 Amador Valley NCS 15:54.4 5:08
127 John Ross JR 02 4 Scotts Valley CCS 15:54.4 5:08
129 Ben Zaeske JR 74 2 Los Altos CCS 15:55.2 5:08
130 Michael Bereket SR 28 1 Carlmont CCS 15:55.4 5:08
132 Roc Johnson SR 22 1 De La Salle NCS 15:55.7 5:08
135 Kellen Browning JR 73 1 Davis Sr. SJS 15:56.2 5:08
140 Alex Garcia SR 58 3 Placer SJS 15:57.4 5:09
142 Logan Taggart JR 48 2 Oakmont SJS 15:58.0 5:09
144 Revanth Nagurla SR 91 2 Lynbrook CCS 15:58.2 5:09
147 Jordan Scobey JR 86 2 Maria Carrillo NCS 15:58.7 5:09
149 Jacob Garrissere SR 85 1 Santa Teresa CCS 15:59.0 5:09

The 2015 "At-Large" Standards:  You can check out all the "At-Large" standards here.  Just as a reminder, the state meet qualifiers from each section is as follows:  CCS (3), NCS (3), SJS (3), NS (1), OAK (1) and SF (1).  The 2014 at-lark mark is noted in parentheses so you can compare the mark from the previous season.

Boys ("toughest" to "easiest")
1:52.84 (1:52.98)
4:14.78 (4:14.24)
9:07.38 (9:08.64)

Girls ("toughest" to "easiest")
2:12.15 (2:11.80)
4:55.89 (4:55.15)
10:36.17 (10:35.79)

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