Girls: How good can Reese be? They’ve been showing up on my lists on the strength of their top-5 spread. It’s good to run in a pack, but that pack needs to be near the front of a race to really make some headway. Allison Galsterer and Allison Hawken are two girls capable of getting there, having both run under 22:00 in their careers.
Boys: Port Huron Northern vs. Oxford. If anyone saw my twitter complaint yesterday, this is a meet that does the right thing. It may be early in the season, but you’re getting a regional preview if you’re in this region. Two teams in that region that are running here are PHN and Oxford. They’ll also be in contention for that third spot. Romeo and Stoney Creek are a given, and Lake Orion might be there as well. But Oxford handily beat Lake Orion in the OAA Red Jamboree this week.
Girls: Audrey DaDamio vs. the world. In her debut, she ran an uncontested 18:02 at the OAA Red Jamboree. That Troy course she ran it on was described as a “disaster” by a similarly obsessed XC fan who I work with. She’ll have a bit more competition this weekend, Jennifer Ohlsson is capable of some fast times as well. Here’s a list of what athleticnet deems to be the fastest times ever run on this notoriously difficult course.
Boys: Richland Gull Lake vs. Hastings. In the top-5 average, Gull Lake is ahead of Hastings, but that’s largely on the legs of Koby Fraaza and Read Knapp. They have a freshman in Wyatt McComb who ran 18:54 in his first invitational. They’ll need a few more to move up to contend in this region, but that’s a good start.
Girls: Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard vs. Milan vs. Grosse Ile. Tecumseh is looking strong, Divine Child always reloads no matter what, another team needs to come out of Region 18. My untrained eye saw a very composed Gabriel Richard team at A2 Early Bird. Early races tend to have kids get out much too fast and pay the price, their girls were under control the entire way. Milan and Grosse Ile faced off at their Puddle Jumpers meet, but I get the sense that they’re racing for real now.
Hill and Bale
Boys: We finally get to see Fremont. Nathan Walker has been hitting faster times than Riley Klingel (RIP) in their early season workouts. Riley was a 15:10-20 kid when it mattered, when he also seemed to shine. I really admired that guy.