Thursday, August 15, 2019

2019 NCS Division V pre-season Cross Country rankings (boys and girls)

You can check out the divisions for the upcoming season at this LINK. The lone team that dropped down from Division IV is Cardinal Newman.

Due to the air quality last year, this division's races were not contested. At the state meet, the Lick-Wilmerding boys finished in 2nd place followed by Rincon Valley Christian in 4th, University in 8th and Head-Royce in 10th place. For the girls, the Lick-Wilmerding team won their first state title followed by University in 5th place, Branson in 8th place, Head-Royce in 9th place and St. Joseph Notre Dame in 10th place. It was a great showing once again for the section despite many teams not having the opportunity to race for several weeks.

For this coming season, the race for the team title appears to be wide open. Multiple teams will have an opportunity at the section title provided they did their summer running and are able to add depth to their strong front runners.

Lick-Wilmerding scored a 2nd place finish at the state meet and return potentially one of the best runners in this division in rising sophomore Alex Mader (4:28.76/9:29.63). They return 4 from last year's state meet and have displayed excellent depth as one of the largest division V teams in this section.

Head-Royce had an excellent 2018 season and had one of the tightest packs in this division. They finished in 10th place at the state and will return 5 members from that team.

The University boys won their first state championship in 2017. They battled through injury issues last year and finished in 8th place at the state meet. Lead runner Charlie Kennedy (1:56.40/4:26.54) made a spectacular return in the spring and performed extremely well during this past Track and Field season.

Rincon Valley Christian had their best season ever under the leadership of veteran coach, Harry Skandera. They finished in 4th place at the state meet and return some very strong runners (Brady English and Simon Peterson) from that team. Last spring, Rincon Valley Christian closed it's doors after four decades as they graduated their final class of seniors. It looks like another school (Victory Christian Academy) has taken it's place but we where those RVC runners attend this fall is still a mystery.

Other teams that will be in the mix are Stuart HallCollege Prep and St. Joseph Notre Dame. All three schools have done well in the past and shouldn't be counted out as contenders for the state meet.

The race for the individual title should come down to a battle between College Prep senior Jacob Lehmann-Duke (4:27.56/9:28.22), Lick-Wilmerding sophomore Alex Mader (4:28.76/9:29.63) and Rincon Valley Christian junior Brady English (4:32.27/9:53.00). University senior Charlie Kennedy will also be in contention and would be quite a threat if there is a sprint for the individual title.

Division V Boys (Top 5 Advance to State)
1) Lick-Wilmerding-Strong 2nd place finish at last year's state meet.
2) Head Royce-Very solid team that will be looking to improve their state meet finish from '18.
3) University-Some heavy losses due to graduation but do not count them out.
4) Rincon Valley Christian-Actually this school is closed but don't count them out just yet.
5) Stuart Hall-Sold team in BCL West will be looking to qualify to another state meet.
On the bubble: Branson, College PrepSt. Joseph ND

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) and 2018 state meet time:

Jacob Lehmann-Duke (8) College Prep 16:16.0
Alex Mader (12) Lick-Wilmerding 16.21.6
Brady English (17) Rincon Valley Christian 16:29.5
Simon Peterson (16) Rincon Valley Christian 16:45.9
Jack Vanden Heuvel (27) Healdsburg 16:50.1

Despite not racing for a few weeks, the Lick-Wilmerding girls won their first state XC title in 2018 They edged out St. Margarets by 6 points (97 to 103) as the Tartans just missed winning two state titles following their boy's victorious effort.

This coming season, L-W will return 7 of their 8 top runners and should be considered as the favorites. They will be led by Mira Terdiman (2:23.39/5:08.39) and Maya Lacamp (2:16.53/5:09.70).

Their main competition should come from the top team out of the BCL East, the Head-Royce Jayhawks. They have one advantage over the Lick-Wilmerding Tigers in that they return their top 8 runners. They also have a strong duo upfront with Kaya Hano (2:26.77/5:09.69/11:29.98) and Ona Ortiz-Guteman (2:24.63/5:12.90/11:17.01).

University will more than keep Lick-Wilmerding and Head-Royce honest as they have been one of the strongest teams in the state. Coach Carin Marrs has maintained and built on the success established by past coach Jim Tracy. They finished in 5th place at the state meet last year and will be looking to improve on that finish.

The rest of the contending teams should include St. Joseph Notre Dame (10th at 2018 state meet), Marin Academy, Urban and Branson (8th at 2018 state meet). 

Individually, all the girls mentioned above will be vying for a top finish but the individual favorite should be St. Helena junior, Harper McClain (2:24.79/5:01.04/10:29.68). She has not competed in Cross Country so far in high school but considering her track success this past spring, I think it's pretty clear that she will be tearing it up this fall.

Division V Girls (Top 6 Advance to State)
1) Lick-Wilmerding-Defending their first-ever state XC title.
2) Head Royce-Return their top 8 runners from 2018 season.
3) University-Solid top 3 team that will be in contention once again.
4) St. Joseph ND-Solid competitive program led by veteran coach, Tony Fong
5) Marin Academy-One of the surprises from the 2018 season that will be in the hunt once again.
6) Urban-Resides in the always tough BCL West which may elevate their girls to contention.
On the bubble: Branson, Convent & Stuart Hall

Top 5 returning individuals, (place) and 2018 state meet time:

Mira Terdiman (12) Lick-Wilmerding 19:17.3
Kaya Hano (16) Head-Royce 19:36.8
Ona Ortiz (21) Head-Royce 19:42.2
Caitlin Evers (29) Branson 19:51.6
Maya Lacamp (30) Lick-Wilmerding 19:55.9


Anonymous said...


Albert Caruana said...

Coming up

Anonymous said...

When do you think the sac Joaquin section divisions by enrollment are going to be posted for 2019 cross country??

Albert Caruana said...

Any day now.

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