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Cross Country 1999

National Boys Rankings 10/1

194 boys now listed

by John Molvar

1999 Footlocker Updated Preview

Donnie Sage isn’t afraid of mileage. After all he
runs for Joe Newton’s famed York High School program
in Illinois. In his first 3 years of high school he
has logged more than 3 times as many miles as the 6
other runners who have a shot at the Footlocker
National High School Cross Country title. He has done
it for so long that 100 mile weeks are routine for
him. That is more than most of the top US Marathoners
of the 1990s run. It is the type of training that
scares most college runners. It does not scare most
high school runners, for them it is simply
inconceivable. He may be the only American that
trains as hard as Kenyans at this age. It is ironic
that many experts rail against high schoolers training
at this level, yet some of the same experts are
constantly raving about the latest Kenyan teen
sensation. Sage has never run in the Footlocker meet
because Newton forbids his runners from running in it
until their senior year. This is Newton’s last year
as coach and he would love to go out with an
individual national champion. Newton’s XC program has
been winning for so long that most of his opposition
has long given up trying to beat him and resorted to
criticism of his “draconian” methods. Obviously his
pupils think otherwise and he has 50-100 kids go out
for the XC team every year. This year he has nearly
150 boys on the final team of the Newton era which is
favored to win yet another state title. Sage has been
in many big meets because he has had to deal with the
Torres brothers his entire career. Last year at the
Illinois state meet he was second behind George, who
went on to win the Footlocker title and just ahead of
Ed who went on to take fifth in the Footlocker Final. 
Outdoors he finished second to Andy Powell in the
Golden West mile in 4:09. While he may be my pick to
win, he certainly is not a clear favorite and there
are 6 other runners who could win the title. 
In early action Sage confirmed his conditioning
and ranking by destroying his own course record by
over 20 seconds.
When junior Al Webb’s name is mentioned to an
informed fan of the sport, that fan immediately thinks
of the great Jim Ryun and for good reason. Webb
shocked the high school scene when he smashed Jim
Ryun’s sophomore class mile record by running 4:06. 
Even more impressive is the fact that Jim Ryan trained
like a man possessed with both mega mileage and 2 hour
torturous track workouts whereas Webb got there,
according to his coach, with comparatively minimal
effort. Obviously he is one of the favorites. 
Webb was pushed to the limit at the Great American
invitational by fellow miler Ricky Brookshire of North
Carolina. Brookshire, who has run the equivalent of a
4.11 mile, quickly established himself as one of the
top ten XC runners in the country.
Junior Dathan Ritzenhein of Michigan also had a
great sophomore year finishing 7th in the Footlocker
Final and 3rd in the Midwest region. He confirmed
those performances with a 9.02 2 mile outdoors. If he
improves a little this year, he could win. Last year
he had his teammate and fellow Footlocker Finalist
Jason Hartmann to train with but this year he will
have to prove he can do it on his own. 
In early season action, Dathan has dominated all
races he has contested.
Josh Rohatinsky of Utah is probably the pick to win by
most experts. He is the highest returning placer
(4th) from last year and ran an 8:59 (equivalent) 2
mile outdoors. He would be my favorite also if not
for the spectacular rates of improvement over the last
10 months or less by 4 of his 6 chief rivals.
In early season action, Josh has already won 2
large invitationals in impressive fashion.
Brian Turner of Nebraska has run 4:09, 1:53 and a
48 relay leg in the quarter. Of the top 7 only Webb
can match his speed. He is also a proven XC runner
having finished 3rd in the Footlocker Midwest region
as a sophomore. Last year he had one of those dreaded
off days that occasionally happens to runners. He will
be looking for redemption this year. 
Brian came down with the flu in late September and
will have to fight his way back. 
Californians Josh Spiker and Augie Escobar are the 2
remaining runners with a shot at the title. Spiker
was 13th last year and ran a 9:00 equivalent 2 mile
outdoors. This year’s darkhorse is Escobar. He has
done nothing significant in XC but exploded on the
scene outdoors with consecutive sub 9 equivalent 2
miles in big meets. Despite his lack of big time XC
experience and credentials, he cannot be overlooked. 
Other possible darkhourses include Ben Morales of
CA and Dan Covel of PA, both of whom have repeatedly
buried local competition in early season action.
Although no sophomores are threatening to be in the
top 20 as in past years there are several to keep an
eye on including Catlett (NY), Lockhardt (VA), Loftin
(KS) and Rolf Steier of Florida. 
As far as regions go, the West will be by far the
strongest region and many top runners from the West
won’t make it to the Final. Such is life. The
Midwest will be the next strongest region followed by
the Northeast and the South. California will be the
strongest state by far. Long time powers Washington
and Illinois will be among the strongest, but weaker
than they have been in the past. Massachusetts has
had potential winners for about 5 years in a row, but
will not be as strong this year. It is too bad
because us Mass fans have become spoiled by the great
success of Mohamed, Riley, Powell and Sanchez. We
must lower our expectations keeping in mind that none
of the 4 were born in Mass and before them, Mass HS
distance running was quite weak compared to the rest
of the nation. New Jersey will likely be weaker than
in recent years. New York will be the strongest state
in the Northeast. Several other states however are on
the rise. Oregon, led by Ian Dobson will have its
best XC runners in years and could be stronger than
neighbor Washington for the first time in a long time.
Recent powers Utah and Montana should be strong and
the perennial strength of Ohio should be there also. 
Indiana and Georgia are both shaping up to have their
toughest competition in many years. Good luck to all
and have a great XC season.

Notes:

FF-place in last year’s Footlocker Final
M,NE,S,W-place in last years Footlocker Region
all times have been converted to 800,mile and 2 mile
times plus or minus 1 second
*-Junior
**-Soph
Banned-runs in a state in which they are not allowed
to run in the Footlocker Meets. Note that seniors
from PA probably will run the Footlocker since they
will be banned but since their HS XC career is over
the ban is meaningless. 

1 Donnie Sage, IL (9.06,4.09)
2 *Al Webb, VA (10S,4.06,9.15,1.53)
3 *Dathan Ritzenhein, MI (7FF,3M,9.02,4.16)
4 Josh Rohatinsky, UT (4FF,1W,8.59,4.23,1.57)
5 Josh Spiker, CA (13FF,3W,9.00,4.13)
6 Augie Escobar, CA (8.59)
7 Brian Turner, NE (28M,4.09,1.53,9.25,48r)
8 Ricky Brookshire, NC (4.11,9.30,1.58)
9 Ian Dobson, OR (6FF,6W,9.15,4.18)
10 Juan Reyes, AZ (19FF,8W,9.09,4.19)
11 Jake Flynn, MI (26FF,7M,4.26,9.36)
12 Golden Harper, UT (25W,9.14,4.26)
13 Ben Morales, CA (43W,9.16,4.23)
14 Dan Coval, PA (Banned,9.14)
15 *Dave Vidal, MT (20W,4.18,9.24,1.59)
16 Fernando Cabada, CA (28W,9.02,4.20)
17 Jared Scott, CO (10M)
18 Matt McInvale, CA (38W,9.09,4.17)
19 Noel Paulson, OR (12W,4.17)
20 Tristan Colangelo, MA (14N,9.17,4.17)
21 *Said Ahmed, MA (19N,1.52,4.18)
22 *J.J. Duke, CA (9.22)
23 Steve Padgett OH, (14M)
24 *Ossy Pina, CA (9.09)
25 Kevin Clarey, MT (40W,4.18,9.11,1.57)
26 Jason Jabault, NY (4.11,1.55)
27 Matt Tegenkamp, MO (19M,9.17,4.19)
28 John Huber, NY (15N,9.30,4.25)
29 Dustin Bybee, UT
30 Aaron Emery, NY (25FF,3N,9.21,4.26) (inj)
31 *Nick Schnieder, MN (44M,4.21,9.27)
32 Brock Call, UT (4.27,9.26)
33 *Tom Kubler, CA (9.21)
34 Renny Provey, CT (36N,4.19,9.28)
35 **Kevin Catlett, NY (63N)
36 Brett Andrus, UT (26W,9.29)
37 John Hughes, MI (4.12,1.58)
38 Mason Ward, OH (58M,4.13)
39 Brian Kerwin, NJ
40 Kurt George, IN (15M,9.26)
41 *Josh Palazola, MA (27N,9.40,4.29,2.00)
42 Jon Severy, CO (16M)
43 Neil Davis, CA (35W,9.26,4.25)
44 *Rob Koborski, TX (9.17)
45 *Aaron Fisher, IN (20M,4.20)
46 Ryan Cole, MI (17M,9.50)
47 Al Bosmenier, FL
48 Hendrik Gerrits, WY (30W,4.31)
49 Chris Emme, TX (11S, 9.16,4.21)
50 **Bobby Lockhardt, VA (4.22,9.50)
51 *Sean Jefferson, FL (9.17,4.17,1.54)
52 *Andy Ice, WA (9.21)
53 *Erik Heinonen, OR,(24W,9.13,4.20)
54 Ian Dickinson, GA (18S,9.50)
55 Neil McDonagh, CA, (29W,4.20,9.49,1.57)
56 *Luis Bordes, TX
57 Steve Laurie, CA (9.18,4.23)
58 Scott Wietcha, SC
59 *John Jefferson, FL (4.14,9.16,1.53)
60 Pete Furia, WA, (9.22,4.26)
61 Ryan Fennelly ?
62 Scott Munro, PA (Banned,4.18,9.37)
63 Chan Goodwin, UT
64 Austin Smith, VA (24S)
65 Colin Ingram, NH (96N, 1.56,9.56)
66 *Brian McGovern, CT (51N,9.26,4.20)
67 Dave Altmaier,KY
68 Tyler Weaver, WY
69 Evan Fox, CA (4.13,1.54,9.57)
70 Derrick Wyatt, SC (12S,1.55,4.21,9.58)
71 Mosie Joseph, FL (59S,4.15,9.28,1.54)
72 Hendrick Kok, WA (4.18,1.57)
73 Jerry Claunch, OH (25M,4.17,9.25,1.56))
74 Brian Greer, NC
75 Justin Neuroth, CA (4.17,1.59)
76 Ryan Bosquette, CA (4.19,9.36)
77 *Joe Kaufman, CA (73W,4.29,4.17,1.59)
78 Jeff Dichiara, NJ
79 Ryan Teising, IL (9.34)
80 Aaron Durham, CA
81 Dan Mejia, CA (72W,4.19)
82 Justin Rempel, KS (1.54,4.18)
83 Geddy Ege, GA (17S,9.54)
84 Jeff Bullock, UT 
85 Chris Lanese, CA (4.17,9.23)
86 Darrel Andruski, NY (44N,9.40)
87 Mike Taylor, IN (40M,1.52)
88 Corey Duquette, CA (9.23)
89 Eric Logsdon, OR (34W,9.13,4.21)
90 Justin Schuelke, TX (4.18)
91 Leon Ardell, CA (4.20)
92 *Luis Brodey, TX (9.28)
93 Vic Moreno, CA (4.22)
94 Tyler Cardinal, CT
95 Matt Emond, MA (9.23)
96 John Leroy, WI, (9.24)
97 Dave Alber, OH (27M,9.26)
98 Justin Amason, IL (4.18)
99 *Vance Twitchell, MT (69W,9.56)
100 Joe Iatauro, NY (35N,4.21,9.54)
101 Andy Carlson, ND (35M,9.34,4.26)
102 Andy Jackman, NH (37N,4.28,1.59)
103 Christian Lyndon ?
104 Tony Loanzo, CA
105 Chris Andrew, CT (31N,9.46)
106 Ben Ortega, NM (39W,9.31,4.28)
107 Eric Rasmussen, NE (39M,9.32,4.26)
108 Navac More, CA (44W)
109 *Justin Romaniuk, NY (39N)
110 Jason Gould, TX (22S)
111 Walt Kingsbury, NJ (40N, 9.27,4.24)
112 Nate Peffley, IN 4.18)
113 Carlos Arizon, AR (9.43) 
114 Joe Allen, AR (4.24,9.54)
115 Jim Doaty, KY (1.50)
116 Brad Barker, NE (4.19,9.39)
117 Ryan Hall, CA
118 Geoff Atkinson, MA (53N)
119 Pat Beattie, AZ? (51W)
120 Vic Thillet, MO (4.18,9.40)
121 Jordan Millam, AR
122 Matt Rodrique, ME (123N)
123 *Arturo Garcia, CA (4.22)
124 Mike Hutsel, MO (1.54)
125 *Bob Dunphy, TX (32S,4.20)
126 Dan Pessing, TX (1.52)
127 Tom Greenless, MI
128 *Erik Grumstrup, SD (4.26,9.43)
129 **Oscar Mendez, CA
130 *Tim Scarpanato, NY (76N)
131 *Nick Cowan, GA, (31S,9.49)
132 **Scott Loftin, KS (4.22,9.39)
133 **Rolf Steier, FL (45S,9.36)
134 Charlie Millioen, NY
135 Jarrett Van Tine, MD (62N,4.26, 9.38, 2.00)
136 Cory Jeffers, NV (56W,4.24,9.27)
137 Ed Umansky, IL (9.25)
138 Kyle Rabbitt, GA (46S,4.20,1.58)
139 Denny Torrey ?
140 Pete Cioni, IL (4.22,9.26)
141 Dale Fox, WA (4.20, 10.02)
142 Brendan O’Keefe, ME (46N,4.18)
143 Adam Palumbo, IL
144 Brian Hoffman, NJ
145 *Charlie Koeppen, IN (61M, 9.48)
146 Dave Lantz, ME (9.44)
147 *Tony Rakaric, IL 
148 Ryan Fenton, ME (50N)
149 Jason Stover, MI
150 Jerry Bonner, RI (61N,4.28)
151 Jeff Gaudette, ME (9.44)
152 **Andy Baska, TN (9.40,4.29)
153 *Eric Gross, AR (4.22,9.50)
154 Erik Eckstrand, DE (41N,4.30)
155 *Raymon Laboy, CT (9.38)
156 Cory Presnick, FL
157 155 Andy Caron, ME (9.44)
158 Blake Jorgensen, GA (30S,9.43) 
159 Chris Williams, KS
160 Joey Lanzillotti, LA (36S,4.25,9.50)
161 Raleigh Green, TX (39S)
162 *Salem Bush, VA
163 Ryan Hampton, MO (4.18,9.42)
164 Matt Kalish, NH (23N,4.30,9.50)
165 **Justin Corelli, NY (98N)
166 Jessie Hodges, CA (47W,9.36,4.28)
167 Steve Martella, MA 
168 Adrian Proietti, CT
169 Marc Sylvester, OH (1.51)
170 Julio German, NY (30N,9.46 st)(inj)
171 Joe Halin, NJ (9.33)
172 Sean Ricketts, CA (1.53,4.20)
173 Eugene Roberts, OR (4.17,9.21)
174 Chris Acs, OH (4.17,9.28)
175 Brian Benham, AL
176 Dave Barrett, NH
177 Parker Low, UT
178 Marshall Green, WA
179 Andy Marsh, MI
180 Ryan Black, NE
181 Matt Harriman, WA
182 Corey Elias, NH
183 Dave King, UT
184 Devan Lomayoma, CA
185 Steve Sundell, ND
186 Tyler McCollum, TX
187 Bryan Skelly, NJ
188 *Braxton Collier, DC (4.24,2.00)
189 Sean Stevens, TN (9.37,4.28)
190 Craig Swisher, OH (9.38)
191 *Matt Penza, OH (9.47, 4.34)

John Molvar
[email protected]


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