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Pre-Season XC 2011

GIRLS Teams - National 2011

Bill Meylan (August 9, 2011)

Girls - Potential National Contenders

My pre-season projection for National Girls Teams is listed below ... I do this each pre-season for my own interest.

Purpose ... There is one purpose ... Get a general idea where the NY State teams rank overall ... I am ONLY concerned about teams likely to compete in NXN (teams that have shown interest, have competed or may be expected to compete) ... I do NOT consider teams from States that can not compete in NXN (such as Michigan).

For the most part, the team listing below is an extension of the 2010 XC season into 2011 with a few modifications ... IF data for 5 runners on each team was not readily available (or guess-able), that team was probably NOT included ... This could exclude some good teams, but it does not matter because actual race results will identify those teams (and then I start including them and ignore the pre-season).

My first criteria for this pre-season list is to consider teams that competed in the NXN Regional races ... Performance in NXN (both Regional & National) plus State Meets is the major focus (plus a few other major meets) because I am considering "championship" performance.

Initially, I combined all potential teams in a single race scenario and began eliminating teams with the highest scores in an iterative process until I had about 25 teams remaining ... The scores are listed below along with the teams just behind the top 25 scoring teams.

Remember ... this list is just an informational starting point ... Real 2011 race results are what count - and the speed ratings I derive for them ...


 National GIRLS Teams

 Pre-Season Projection - Girls National Team Contenders - 2011

       School                 State   Score     NXN Region
       --------------------   -----   -----     ----------
   1   Fayetteville-Manlius    NY       60      New York
   2   Saratoga                NY      190      New York
   3   Tatnall                 DE      260      Southeast
   3   Saugus                  CA      260      California
   3   North Shore             NY      260      New York
   3   La Costa Canyon         CA      260      California
   7   Carmel                  IN      300      Midwest
   7   Fort Collins            CO      300      Southwest
   9   Great Oak               CA      325      California
   10  Wheaton-Warrenville S   IL      330      Midwest
   11  Green Hope              NC      355      Southeast
   12  Foothill                CA      375      California
   13  Redondo Union           CA      390      California
   14  New Tier                IL      415      Midwest
   14  Granada                 CA      415      California
   14  Ogden                   UT      415      Southwest
   14  Campolindo              CA      415      California
   14  Glacier Peak            WA      415      Northwest
   19  Burnt Hills             NY      420      New York
   20  Pennsbury               PA      425      Northeast
   21  Prospect                IL      435      Midwest
   22  Simi Valley             CA      445      California
   23  Bozeman                 MT      460      Northwest
   23  Southlake Carroll       TX      460      South
   25  Voorhees                NJ      470      Northeast
   25  Kingwood                TX      470      South
   25  The Woodlands           TX      470      South
   25  Xavier Prep             AZ      470      Southwest
   25  Woodbridge              CA      470      California

    The next group is basically in order following the
     list above ... Many are very close and the order 
      could be shuffled somewhat:

       Torrey Pines            CA         California
       Canandaigua             NY         New York
       Champlain Valley        VT         Northeast
       Barrington              IL         Midwest
       Palatine                IL         Midwest
       Bronxville              NY         New York
       Estero                  FL         Southeast
       East Aurora             NY         New York
       Dowling Catholic        IA         Heartland
       La Salle Academy        RI         Northeast
       Columbus North          IN         Midwest
       Glenbard West           IL         Midwest
       Midlothian              VA         Southeast
       Colonial Forge          VA         Southeast
       Tesoro                  CA         California
       Eden Prairie            MN         Heartland
       Mountain View           ID         Northwest
       York                    IL         Midwest
       Summit                  OR         Northwest
       Northport               NY         New York
       Crater                  OR         Northwest
       Cicero-North Syracuse   NY         New York
       Cypress Fairbanks       TX         South
       North Rockland          NY         New York
       Bishop Feehan           MA         Northeast
       Maggie L. Walker        VA         Southeast
       Guilderland             NY         New York
       Corona Del Mar          CA         California
       W Chester Henderson     PA         Northeast
       Vista Murrieta          CA         California
       Chiles                  FL         Southeast
       College Park            TX         South
         *** I may have missed a team or two going through
              my databases as quickly as I did

Where did the scores come from? ... In part, the scores are a composite of computer race simulations using 2010 seasonal speed ratings (sort of) ... a few speed rating ranges were altered based on track results ... I manually manipulated some numbers (because I had to and wanted to) ... Computer simulations require a decent sequential list of speed ratings for each runner - I have that for the NY and most CA runners, but others are a bit scarce at times (but so what, this is pre-season).


Fayetteville-Manlius ... FM returns five of their top six runners (including their top four) ... Plus FM returns other good runners (with perhaps some notable XC improvements  forthcoming) ... Add in some good new runners and ... Fayetteville-Manlius is the odds-on pre-season favorite to win NXN once again.

Saratoga ... Saratoga has excellent depth and talent ... As noted in my NY preview, I'm not certain of the status of some runners, but I expect Saratoga will field a team capable of making the podium at NXN (once again).

Overall, there is not much that separates Tatnall, Saugus, La Costa Canyon and North Shore in a Pre-season "Morning-Line" type of scoring which this exercise is ... Therefore, I see them as even-up entering the season ... That will change as real 2011 results become available.

Tatnall ... Tatnall typically fields a very strong team that races well at NXN ... they return several good runners including top runner Haley Pierce who beat Aisling Cuffe at the Penn Relays 3000 meter race.

Saugus ... Saugus lost some good runners to graduation, but the team is very deep ... some good outdoor track results plus proven ability at California XC caused me to raise the team to this pre-season status ... I believe in "Been There, Done That" as a handicapping factor in conjunction with proven performances.

North Shore and La Costa Canyon are similar in one respect ... Both teams have a strong top four ... and their placement at the national level could depend on the performance at the #5 position.

Fort Collins always seems to race better at NXN than I predict ... Somebody other than NY teams likes Portland Meadows.

I have a fair number of California teams in the top 25 above ... Obviously, I made a mistake (or not) ... But this is the pre-season and much of my "rating" of the California teams is based on what they accomplished in California, and I feel reasonably comfortable with my California ratings of past seasons ... I do not (and never have) used NXN Portland Meadows ratings to "back-calculate" California ratings based on performance at Portland Meadows ... California-based racing and Portland Meadows in December are two different animals and must be rated accordingly.

I really thought about placing FM, Saratoga and North Shore at 1-2-3 separately ... But I do not want to jinx them.