Monday, December 01, 2008

December 1, 2008 - Thoughts from Anonymous - Cross-Country

From Anonymous:

After coming back from the state meet I had many mixed feelings about the meet and high school cross country in hawaii in general. And it had to do with some of the players. The one incident that really got my attention was Seabury Hall coming in second after losing their number 2 and 5 runners.

Over the last three years or since hawaii moved from the two miles to the three miles some factors have become evident. Schools with large enrollment do have a distinct advantage over schools with small enrollments. That is a no brainer.

I just watched the California state meet from Fresno Woodward park.
California has 5 divisions based on school enrollment. For example if
Seabury Hall was in California they would be in division 5 with under
500 students, they have only around 300. Punahou would be in Division 2 or 3 with a much higher enrollment. If Hawaii had divisions 1 and 2 high school cross country, Seabury Hall would have just celebrated it's second girls cross country state championship.

I believe it is time to split into two divisions so as the smaller
schools can compete against schools in their enrollment division. I
believe Hawaii is the only state still without divisions in cross
country. My suggestions would be to hold four races on the same
course the same day so you can compare times. California runs ten
races starting early in the morning. Just like changing from two
miles to three miles it is time to split it up into two divisions. In
the long run it will encourage the kids and help the sport grow. See
you next season.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Road to HPA - Girls XC - 10/21/08 - by Anonymous

"I run to see who has the most guts" Steve Prefontaine

It all started some time in July. And now hundreds of miles later and a lot of sweat and a few tears we have arrived at the end of the season. And what a season it has been with the fastest of times ever recorded in the state since moving from two miles to three! It will all end on October 31st at HPA. Each week I have been ranking the 1-10 top girls and the 1-5 top teams. This week I'm going to give you my personal picks on who I think will come in the top 10, or as I would like to say the "Super Top Ten". Here we go.

1. Bailey Massenburg

Why: She is a senior, there is no tomorrow. She also is the reining state 800,1500 champ and 2nd in the 3000. The course is suited for her. She has the advantage of already raced on this course. Massenburg will use well timed surges to win this race.

2. Sara Clapp

Why: It will be tough to beat Massenburg on this course. She has not run on anything this hilly all season. Sara has great endurance but is she fast enough?. She will need to take it out fast and try to burn Massenburg off in order to have a chance and then be able to withstand the surges.

3. Hailey Grossman

Why: She races against Bailey Massenburg all the time. Is also the 2006 state 3000 champ. That would make anyone good. Grossman has been very consistent all season. Her latest outing at the Punahou invite resulted ina tied course record. If the above two falter, look for Grossman to win.

4. Tia Greenwell

Why: This is almost like her home course. She has probably trained on it every weekend all season long. Wouldn't you?. She also possesses the fastest time of the season, 18:18, but has never faced a group like this. Greenwell might try to run away from this group like she tried to do last year. It will be hard.

5. Kristin Ali Keith

Why: She is probably glad I put her at # 5. The last guy who did that probably inspired her to go on and win the state title. This year is no way like last year but she could dial it up and finish much higher or even win again.

6. Jenna Wong

Why: Jenna is coming off a disappointing 2007 cross country season where she ran well all season only to be injured right before States. This one is about redemption. Has run consistently well all season. She also has the ability to finish much higher.

7. Julie Besenbruch

Why: Julie has got to be called the "come back runner of the year." Has run mostly flat courses and has done very well. HPA is far from flat. She will need to dial it way up to be in the top ten.

8. Haley Abing

Why: She is also a senior. Always runs tough. Is very good at big meets. I believe she could run higher than 8th. It all depends on how fast the field goes out. I predict the first mile will be under a 6 minute pace.

9. Athena Oldfather

Why: I'm taking a chance here. She is Tia Greenwell's teammate. Also trains on HPA every-weekend.

10. Nicole Painter

Why: Has run great times all season. She is also Kristin Ali-Keith's teammate. She will have her hands full with this group. Again it comes down to how well she runs the hills.

I would like to take this time to thank all the runners, coaches and parents for a great season. I will see you all at HPA.

Yours truly, Anonymous

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Road To HPA - 10/19/08 by ANONYMOUS

A lot of people run to see who is fastest. I run to see who has the most guts, who can punish himself into exhausting pace, and then at the end, punish himself even more.

Steve Prefontaine

We are only two weeks away now from one of the most exciting girls cross country races in the history of the state of Hawaii. This week I'm going to talk about the HPA course itself. The first 1200 meters is relatively flat. Then you hit the hill. Gradual at first but then steep at the end. How steep? Very steep. It is right about now you will notice something else, the DUST. If you are at the front it will not be a problem, but in the back it will.

The second mile is not as bad as you traverse across the hill and then hit the downhill. For those of you who run the down hill well this will be a time to pass and make up ground as you prepare to start the final 3rd mile.

Here is the last bit of info on the HPA course. It sits at 3000 ft elevation. This will favor some runners who train all the time at this elevation. At 3000 ft there is only 18% Oxygen oncentration. Some runners it will not effect but others it will. Now you are heading up the hill the last time and across the hill again. It is almost over. As you head down the hill the last time you are heading toward the finish. Next week I'm going to give you my personal picks and why on what I call the "Super top ten".

Monday, October 13, 2008

Boys XC Ranking - 10/13/08 - by OBSERVER

Bryce is back! The defending state champion, Bryce Jenkins of Leilehua, ran 16:34 at the OIA Western Championships on Saturday. This puts him back in the hunt at HPA where it's unlikely he'll be walking the course on Halloween. At Punahou, Matthew Nakamoto, HBA, continued his domination of the ILH while the Kamehameha boys were outstanding as their first five ran between 17:46 and 17:56. On the Big Island Jake Shiraki, Honokaa, ran 16:27 and the Iolani boys team validated their number 1 ranking with a close victory over Hilo, HPA and Honokaa. Iolani's first 4 were 17:03 to 17:42. Hilo, HPA and Honokaa were not far behind and should be a factor at HPA. King Kekaulike's Reid Hunter has not raced for a couple weeks but he was seen training hard on the hills near Makawao on Maui. Here are the individual rankings and team rankings: 1. Iolani; 2. Kamehameha-Oahu; 3. Hilo; 4. HPA; 5. Leilehua; 6. Honokaa 1. Reid Hunter, King Kekaulike; 2. Jake Shiraki, Honokaa;  3. Matthew Nakamoto, HBA; 4. Bryce Jenkins, Leilehua; 5. Mark Turner, Hilo; 6. Margarito Martinez, Leilehua; 7. Tyler Mulloy, Iolani; 8. Chris Mosch, Honokaa; 9. Borys Pleskacz, Iolani; 10. Miura Tomoyuki, Roosevelt

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Road To HPA - 10/11/08

"You have to wonder at times what you're doing out there. Over the years, I've given myself a thousand reasons to keep running, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement."

Steve Prefontaine

With the Punahou invitational and the O.I.A. Western and Eastern championships in the record books and league championships only weeks away, it is time to look at each of the top 5 teams and their personnel heading toward
the state meet.

#1 Mililani: 6th at state meet last year.

The most improved team from last year. Led by Kristin Ali Keith, last year's state champ, and Nicole Painter. Pros: Kristin now has a supporting cast to back her up. Cons: Mililani is hard to beat on a flat course, but it will be interesting to see how they run on the very hilly HPA course.

#2 Kamehameha: 4th at last year's state meet

Lost to Mililani by one point at the Kaiser invite. Are led by Ashlee Jimenez and Noelani Mikami. Pros: They run in a tight pack, so far that has worked. Cons: Last year they started off the same way but in the end had trouble with injuries. Will they be able to hold it together till the end.

#3 Seabury Hall: 2nd at last years state meet.

I call this team the little giant. Why? Little because of their high school size, only 300 students. Giant, they have the most talented group of female runners in the state for the size of their school. Led by Hailey Grossman, 5th at states last year, and a much improved Lea Lundblad. Pros: They have the ability to dial it up at the state meet. Cons: Their 3,4 and 5 are question marks.

#4 Punahou: 1st at last year's state meet. Their coach, Duncan Macdonald, was an Olympic runner and broke Steve Prefontaine's 5k record, need I say more. Led by Julia Brand, a hurdler turned distance runner. Pros: Their coach. Cons: Lost their 1,2 and 5 from last year but have depth. Could surprise at sate meet.

#5 Pac-5

Even though they will not be running at states I'm giving Pac-5 the nod as the 5th best team in the state. They are led by Julie Besenbruch of Maryknoll.

Individual Rankings for this week for this week.

1. Bailey Massenburg
2. Sarah Clapp Kaiser
3. Hailey Grossman Seabury Hall
4. Jenna Wong Iolani
5. Tialana Greenwell Honokaa
6. Julie Besenbruch Pac-5
7. Haley Abing Pac-5
8. Nicole Painter Mililani
9. Kristin Ali Keith Mililani
10. Ashlee Jimenez Kamehameha

Monday, October 06, 2008

The Road To HPA by Anonymous

" What I want is to be number one"

Steve Prefontaine.

There has never been a year in Hawaii history where so many girls have recorded so many fast times as this year. The latest being Honoka'a Tialana Greenwell posting an 18:18 at Waiakea. It has been many years since Tia Ferguson of Seabury Hall or Lauren Ho of HBA posted times this fast. And not just one, there are around 10. With the next ten being not so far back. It will be a major achievement for any girl to break into the top ten at this year's state meet.

In the team Rankings, we still have Mililani firmly in the #1 position but with 4 teams all able to challenge. Again it will come down to who wants it more on October 31st. Here are this weeks' team rankings.

4.Seabury Hall

Individual Rankings for this week.

1. Bailey Massenburg
2 Sarah Clapp Kaiser
3. Tialana Greenwell Honokaa
4. Julie Besenbruch Pac-5
5. Haley Abing Pac-5
6. Jenna Wong Iolani
7. Kristin Ali-Keith Mililani
8. Hailey Grossman Seabury Hall
9. Ashlee Jimenez Kamehameha
10. Julia Brand Punahou

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Latest Boys XC Rankings from "observer"

Here are "one observer's" latest boys cross country rankings based on the Sept. 27 meets on the Big Island, Oahu and Molokai:


1. Reid Hunter, King Kekaulike; 2. Mark Turner, Hilo; 3. Matthew Nakamoto, HBA; 4. Jake Shiraki, Honokaa; 5. Scott Hunter, Hilo; 6. Shannon Cosey, Leilehua; 7. Eric Pak, Castle; 8. Margarito Martinez, Leilehua; 9. Borys Pleskacz, Iolani; 10. Jordan Lerma, Kamehameha HI.

Team Rankings:

1. Iolani; 2. Kamehameha Oahu; 3. Hilo; 4. Honokaa; 5. Maui High; 6. Leilehua

The Road to HPA - by Anonymous

"Somebody may beat me, but they are going to bleed to do it". - Steve Prefontaine

That is maybe what it will take to either win the individual or team championship at this year's Hawaii State Cross Country Championship with yet another #1 being beaten at the Kaiser Invitational at the CORP course.

Mililani High defeated Kamehameha by a mere 1 point, 54 to 55. On the individual front it will come down to who wants it the most and who can run the HPA course the best. At the moment it looks like either Kaiser's Sara Clapp or King Kekaulike's Bailey Massenburg. Both ran on hilly courses this past weekend. Massenburg recorded a 19:09 at the Ironwood hills golf course on Molokai. Clapp ran a 19:19 at CORP. This week the nod goes to Massenburg.

This week's team Ranking (Pac-5 will not run at the state meet as a team.)
  1. Mililani
  2. Kamehameha
  3. Punahou
  4. Seabury Hall
  5. 'Iolani
Individual Rankings for this week.

1. Bailey Massenburg
2. Sarah Clapp Kaiser
3. Julie Besenbruch Pac-5
4. Haley Abing Pac-5
5. Jenna Wong Iolani
6. Kristin Ali Keith Mililani
7. Hailey Grossman Seabury Hall
8. Ashlee Jimenez Kamehameha
9. Julia Brand Punahou
10. Noelani Mikami Kamehameha