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Pre-Season XC 2014

GIRLS Teams - National 2014

Bill Meylan (August 1, 2014)

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 primarily concerned about teams likely to compete in NXN (teams that have shown interest, have competed or may be expected to compete).

To a large extent, the team listing below is an extension of the 2013 XC season into 2014 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 in 2014 will identify those teams ... Once the real season starts, I tend to 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 30 teams remaining ... The scores are listed below along with the teams just behind the top 30 scoring teams.

Remember ... this list is just an informational starting point ... Real 2014 race results are what count.


 National GIRLS Teams 2014

 Pre-Season Projection - Girls National Team Contenders - 2014

      School                 State   Score      Region
      --------------------   -----   -----      ------
  1   Fayetteville-Manlius    NY       260      New York
  2   Great Oak               CA       290      California
  3   Fort Collins            CO       310      Southwest
  4   Saratoga                NY       320      New York
  5   Cherry Creek            CO       335      Southwest
  6   Glenbard West           IL       340      Midwest
  7   Pennsbury               PA       360      Northeast
  8   Unionville              PA       361      Northeast
  9   Wayzata                 MN       375      Heartland
  10  Davis                   UT       380      Southwest
  11  Saugus                  CA       390      California
  12  Redondo Union           CA       391      California
  13  Trabuco Hills           CA       392      California
  14  Elmira District         NY       393      New York
  15  La Salle                RI       395      Northeast
  16  Capistrano Valley       CA       400      California
  17  Naperville North        IL       410      Midwest
  18  Davis Senior            CA       411      California
  19  Coeur D'Alene           ID       412      Northwest
  20  Desert Vista            AZ       420      Southwest
  21  Oakton                  VA       425      Southeast
  22  Simi Valley             CA       430      California
  23  Summit                  OR       435      Northwest
  24  Blacksburg              VA       440      Southeast
  25  Green Hope              NC       445      Southeast
  26  Carmel                  IN       450      Midwest
  27  New Trier               IL       455      Midwest
  28  Birmingham Seaholm      MI       460      Midwest
  29  Mountain Brook          AL       465      Southeast
  30  Bozeman                 MT       470      Northwest

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

     Coe-Brown               NH         Northeast
     Campolindo              CA         California
     Vista Murrieta          CA         California
     Bella Vista             CA         California
     Suffern                 NY         New York
     Arroyo Grande           CA         California
     Buchanan                CA         California
     Burnt Hills             NY         New York
     American Fork           UT         Southwest
     Mason                   OH         Midwest
     Lincoln-Sudbury         MA         Northeast
     Shenendehowa            NY         New York
     Holy Trinity            FL         Southeast
     West Lafayette          IN         Midwest
     Xavier College Prep     AZ         Southwest
     Willmar                 MN         Heartland
     Red Bank Catholic       NJ         Northeast
     Tatnall                 DE         Southeast
     Southlake Carroll       TX         South
     San Clemente            CA         California
     Serrano                 CA         California
     Mira Costa              CA         California
     La Costa Canyon         CA         California
     Needham                 MA         Northeast
     Naperville (Central)    IL         Midwest
     Columbus North          IN         Midwest
     Hamilton Southeastern   IN         Midwest
     Monarch                 CO         Southwest
     Ames                    IA         Heartland
     Bismarck Century        ND         Heartland
     College Park            TX         South
     Randolph                NJ         Northeast
     Hinsdale                IL         Midwest
     Tahoma                  WA         Northwest
     Lakeville South         MN         Heartland
     Bellarmine Prep         WA         Northwest
     Palatine                IL         Midwest
     Tolland                 CT         Northeast
     Hamilton-Wenham         MA         Northeast
     South Eugene            OR         Northwest
     Saline                  MI         Midwest
     Los Alamos              NM         Southwest
     Ridgewood               NJ         Northeast
     Bethesda-Chevy          MD         Southeast
     Flower Mound            TX         South
     The Woodlands           TX         South (added Aug 21 based on a transfer)

         *** 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 2013 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) ... Speed ratings were scarce for some teams, so I used my imagination (but so what, this is pre-season).


Hopefully, the girl's list above identifies many of the top teams entering the 2014 XC season in a reasonable order ... As a point of reference for last year, my 2013 pre-season projections with corresponding results from NXN 2013 are shown in a table below... Of the 22 teams at NXN 2013, I did not identify 5 teams (they were unranked in the top 30 teams and not listed in the extra team list) ... 13 of the top 17 teams at NXN 2013 were ranked in my pre-season top 22 teams.

General Comments for the Coming Season:

Fayetteville-Manlius NY ... FM finished 2nd at NXN last year and return 6 of their 7 runners, including top runner Annika Avery ... FM won NXN the previous 7 years ... Making Fayetteville-Manlius the favorite to win NXN in 2014 is pretty straight-forward .... More info about FM is available from my NY Pre-season Team Projections, and detailed info on the top five FM runners entering the season is available from my Top NY Girls Profiles.

Saratoga ...  I have a bias for teams with proven ability in the past ... Saratoga has competed at NXN Nationals in 9 of the 10 years that NXN has operated (they should have been invited in 2006, but were not invited) ... At NXN, Saratoga has won once, been 2nd four times, been 3rd once, and in the top 5 eight times .... Last year was a "rebuilding" year due to graduations and transfers, but the young Saratoga squad still qualified for NXN and finished 15th ...They return 6 of their 7 NXN runners, including the top 3 from NXN ... In addition, Saratoga has other runners likely to be competitive for the scoring positions ... see my NY Pre-season Team Projections for additional information.

The only factor preventing me from projecting Saratoga one or two spots higher above is the lack of one or two runners performing at a consistent higher level (meaning a speed rating in the mid-130s or higher) ... Top teams typically need a top #1 runner.

Great Oak CA ... was the top California team last year and they finished 8th at NXN ... Great Oak loses 3 NXN runners to graduation, but they return top (elite) runner Destiny Collins and a solid core of runners from a deep team ... In addition, they may be getting some incoming freshmen capable of making the scoring positions ... But as noted in past years, Portland Meadows in December is not the "best" course for Great Oak in December.

Fort Collins CO ... is one of the "perennial" good teams at NXN ... Fort Collins has competed at NXN Nationals the last 7 years and never finished lower than 8th ... Last year, Fort Collins finished 6th at NXN and return 3 of their top 4 runners, including top (elite) runner Lauren Gregory.

Cherry Creek CO ... could provide some stiff competition for Fort Collins within Colorado ... Cherry Creek has a top elite runner (Jordyn Colter) and a talented returning team ... They have never competed at NXN Nationals.

Glenbard West IL ... was the Illinois State 3A champion last year ... Glenbard West would have been a favorite to qualify at the NXN Midwest Regional, but they chose not to compete (Naperville North, a team Glenbard West beat at States, won the 2nd qualifying spot at the NXN regional) ... Glenbard West returns 6 of their 7 runners from States.

Pennsbury PA and Unionville PA ... finished 7th and 11th, respectively, at NXN last year ... Pennsbury returns 6 of 7 and Unionville returns 5 of 7.

Wayzata MN ... won NXN last year with an excellent team performance ... Wayzata returns 3 of their top 4 scorers from NXN including top (elite) runner Anna French ... I had some uncertainty in projecting the level of their #4 and #5 scoring positions ... But an NXN champion that returns 3 of their top 4 scorers from NXN deserves the benefit-of-the-doubt and a top 10 team projection (and they could be better than that).

Davis UT ... finished a very good 3rd at NXN last year ... Davis loses 5 of their NXN runners to graduation, but Davis also lost 5 runners to graduation from NXN 2012 (where they finished 12th), and they "re-loaded" to finish 3rd in 2013 ... The Utah runners are good, so I'm giving them the benefit-of-the-doubt.

Elmira District NY ... Elmira has a top runner in Abbey Wheeler, who finished 17th at NXN Nationals last year, and several girls who appear to be improving ... Elmira finished 4th at the NXN-New York Regional (only 1 point behind 3rd-place East Aurora).



  Last Year's (2013) Girl's Pre-Season Projections ... and corresponding results with NXN Nationals

                                                 NXN                    Finish Order at              Last Year's
      School                 State   Score      Region                     NXN 2013                Pre-Season Projection
      --------------------   -----   -----      ------            ----------------------------     ---------------------
  1   Fayetteville-Manlius    NY      200       New York          1    Wayzata              MN  -  #7  pre-season
  2   Assumption              KY      220       Southeast         2    Fayetteville-Manlius NY  -  #1  pre-season
  3   Carmel                  IN      235       Midwest           3    Davis                UT  -  #30+ group pre-season
  4   Great Oak               CA      240       California        4    Carmel               IN  -  #3  pre-season
  5   Simi Valley             CA      250       California        5    Monarch              CO  -  #21 pre-season
  6   Holy Names              NY      255       New York          6    Fort Collins         CO  -  #11 pre-season
  7   Wayzata                 MN      270       Heartland         7    Unionville           PA  -  #17 pre-season
  8   Pennsbury               PA      300       Northeast         8    Great Oak            CA  -  #4  pre-season
  9   Naperville North        IL      330       Midwest           9    Simi Valley          CA  -  #5  pre-season
  10  Coeur D'Alene           ID      335       Northwest         10   Bozeman              MT  -  unranked
  11  Fort Collins            CO      355       Southwest         11   Pennsbury            PA  -  #6  pre-season
  12  Glenbard West           IL      375       Midwest           12   Davis Senior         CA  -  #30+ group pre-season
  13  Saline                  MI      390       Midwest           13   Naperville North     IL  -  #9  pre-season
  14  Pleasant Valley         IA      395       Heartland         14   New Braunfels        TX  -  unranked
  15  St. Francis (sac)       CA      400       California        15   Saratoga Springs     NY  -  #20 pre-season
  16  Lake Braddock           VA      410       Southeast         16   Assumption           KY  -  #2  pre-season
  17  Unionville              PA      415       Northeast         17   Southlake Carroll    TX  -  #22 pre-season
  18  Burnt Hills             NY      420       New York          18   Coe-Brown            NH  -  #30+ group pre-season
  19  Xavier College Prep     AZ      425       Southwest         19   East Ridge           NM  -  unranked
  20  Saratoga                NY      430       New York          20   The Woodlands        TX  -  #30+ group pre-season
  21  Monarch                 CO      435       Southwest         21   Blacksburg           VA  -  unranked
  22  Southlake Carroll       TX      440       South             22   Bellarmine Prep      WA  -  unranked
  23  Saugus                  CA      450       California
  24  Linn-Mar                IA      455       Heartland
  25  Arrowhead               WI      460       Heartland
  26  Providence              NC      465       Southeast
  27  Barrington              RI      470       Northeast
  28  Pine Creek              CO      480       Southwest
  29  Geneva                  IL      485       Midwest
  30  American Fork           UT      490       Southwest