Bold Predictions for 2018

I’m in the prediction business. But I’m not like your typical prediction kinda guy who says things like “the Patriots will win the Super Bowl” or “Will Smith will star in a Netflix movie”. I’m not interested in picking obvious or even reasonable picks out here. These are called bold predictions, not italicized predictions!

The Bold Predictions posts have become a tale as old as time for this blog as my first edition was “Bold Predictions for 2014” which was 16 posts into the existence of this blog (we are now over 1,500 for those keeping track) and they’ve been run back every year since after the first edition’s wild success. This will be the 5th and final year of Bold Predictions so I’ve gotta make these ones count. I feel like I’m going to nail them.

So sit back and enjoy the latest work from the man, myth and legend that is Nostraindamus.

1. The PIAA will officially add a third classification for track

2. Etrain will be mad at that decision, but use the opportunity to remind everyone about 1) a Meet of Champions and 2) running the 3200 at night. Remember, these things must be mentioned at least once a month if my legacy is going to live on!

3. In 2016, there were no outdoor state distance champs from District One. In 2017, there were no XC state team champs from District One. Let’s say that indoors 2018 will have no state champs from District One.

4. Kendrick Lamar picks up the W for Album of the Year at the Grammys

5. Drake picks up the W for Album of the Year in my heart

6. The answer of how many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop will finally be answered thanks to a dog named Thomas. People won’t even appreciate Thomas’s achievement as they will just be angry that a person gave a dog a human name like Thomas or Stephen

7. My early picks for indoor state champs on the distance side? CB West, Hoey, Conway, Kujdych, CR North. Yes, I know. But trust me.

8. A few new writers will try out the blog, but then realize the job is not for them. Etrain will take it well.

9. And by take it well, I mean he will curl up in a ball on the ground and cry loudly while reenacting the “everybody leaves me” speech from Friday Night Lights

10. Downingtown West will win the 2018 edition of the XC State Championships

11. As etrain drifts toward retirement, the quality of the blog will continue to fall off. He will resort to increasingly drastic measures to make predictions. For Indoor States, he will throw darts at a dart board. For Outdoor States, he will use Stephen the magic dog.

12. Stephen will choose between a variety of dog bowls with different runners’ jerseys on it and will garner the nickname “Nostrain’sdogmus” and will be on a roll early. However, the plan falls apart when Etrain forgets which bowl is supposed to go with which Winchester Thurston runner in the AA 1600.

13. Ryan Reynolds. I’m not exactly sure what or when. But it’ll happen.

14. It will be revealed that etrain has secretly had a ghost writer helping him with content for the past few years. That causes a writing feud between Train and Penntrack’s own Dan Beck. Etrain tries to prove himself with back to back posts about the DMR, but Beck responds with a virtual met diss track that those who have a milesplit subscription are really pleased with

15. The final post of this blog will occur on July 31st, 2018. It will be titled “19 Years Later”

16. Josh Levin will win this year’s edition of American Ninja Warrior. I won’t give up on you Josh!

17. In a from the grave style move, Etrain correctly picks the 2018 XC State Championships right now in his Bold Predictions for 2018 post: Andrew Healey, Mitchell Rome and Tyler Wirth

18. Etrain may or may not have landed a job as the chairman of District 2.

19. There may or may not be a job called “chairman of District 2”.  

20. Once etrain retires from being a track blogger, he will officially commit full time to his newest hobby: being a blogger about other things. He will cycle through a lot of bad train related puns, starting with “No Train, No Gain.”

21. “Pinky and the Train”

22. “Insane in the Etrain”

23. “How to Etrain Your Dragon”

24. “No Train, No Train”

25. “In-Train in the Etrain”

26. Ultimately, he will settle on “If You’re Typing This, It’s Too Late”. A blog which may or may not already exist.

26.2. And finally, a prediction that we have to make come true in 2018: Let’s crack that 1 million view mark! I’ll definitely have an idea for what to do to celebrate! Except for the fact that I definitely won’t!

Etrain's Favorite Posts of 2017

12/29/2016 Before the Record: Henderson and O’Hara

Ok, so yes I’m immediately cheating on this list. However, this post didn’t come out until after my “Favorite Posts of 2016” list, so I feel like it’s OK to throw it up here. It ended up being a nice bit of foreshadowing for perhaps the moment in the year in Pennsylvania Distance Running.

1/4/2017 The Space Jam Spin Off

If Space Jam has a 38% on Rotten Tomatoes, I’d hate to see what Space Race would get on there. Also, who the heck is giving Space Jam below a 95% rating? Get out of here.

1/19/2017 A Harry Potter Running Post: Because That’s Something I Would Probably Do

Apparently, the creative juices were flowing in January because I had some really random posts going.

1/25/2017 Other Things That Need To Be “The Processed”

Exhibit “C” in the random posts of January case. Perhaps my strongest analysis of the 2017 season.

2/1/2017 #SaveHaven

This post will always hold a special spot in my memory of the blog. If I ever get it together to finish my fiction book, this post will have a big impact on the first chapter.

2/8/2018 Making of a Muder .. ous DMR

More DMR talk during the indoor season about that aforementioned biggest story of the indoor season. Plus a great title for a post. Half of the reason why these posts are my favorite posts are the titles.

3/14/2017 March Madness Comparisons

Unsurprisingly, people love player comparisons. That’s why my Backyard Football to Felix Bowl Football player comparisons got so many likes on Facebook (Yes, I am aware none of you reading this get this joke, sometimes I make jokes for my own amusement). It’s also why this post got a nice bid of buzz as I compared PA High School programs to their NCAA counterparts. O’Hara = Duke has to be my greatest realization in blog history.

5/22/2017 2017 State Posts

The state meet predictions always bring out the views and, much like people who like a long, sensitive Drake song, I tend to check out views from time to time. Plus, these ones are fun to write, fun to read the comments on and the culmination of months of work with recaps, rankings, etc. There’s a lot to like. Also, just a reminder, Isaac Kole in the 1600 – I had that. Also, just a reminder, State College second in the 4x8? I had them 5th. Look, I’m not perfect. I just pretend to be one on TV.

5/23/2017 All My Friends Are Runners: The Birth of Etrain

For those of you who like origin stories, this is a small chapter in mine. I put out a variety of autobiographical type posts over the last few years talking about some PA HS history as well as some of my own history. Hard to believe how old I am these days.

5/30/2017 2017 State Recaps: They’re Here!

If there’s a state meet, you have to recap it. I’m looking to offload my recap duties in the not so distant future, so maybe these will be the last track state recaps that I do … Although we haven’t even gotten a nibble on another writer on the staff so maybe I’ll be doing this for the next decade …

6/10/2017 The Etrain 11: Carlisle Transformed

The feature style posts from The Etrain 11 series are some of my favorites to write and usually make for some compelling reads. I did a bunch of them during the spring, but this one is probably my favorite. Carlisle was such an interesting team this past year and really provided us with a lot to appreciate.

6/15/2017 The Commit

Before my man Garrett Zatlin passed on to bigger and better things at The Stride Report, the man left us with one final Zatlin original style post. The Commit, a series of posts talking with high seniors about their college choices, to this day is still the most successful series of posts in the history of this blog. Shout out to Garrett and shout out to The Stride Report.

7/6/2017 The Etrain 11 Series XC Finale – Radio Broadcast

Mentioned this in my favorite XC posts but had to mention it again. Put a bunch of work into it so feel obligated to put it into as many post’s as possible …

7/11/2017 The Running Diaries: Chapter Thirty Six

I’m in the process of trying to rework this a bit to make reading it a bit more logical, straightforward and just overall better, but this is the last chapter I posted up on the site. Not sure how many people actually read it, but it’s always worth a throw in on these sort of lists.

7/13/2017 District One XC Returners Cheat Sheet

Arguably the best series of posts I made all summer. A good amount of research and got a lot of discussion going. Pretty funny seeing which names emerged from these lists to become stars.

9/28/2017 Carlisle & Paul Short: Bold Predictions

At the end of the day, it’s all about recaps, predictions and rankings in the Etrain blogosphere. This has some of most etrai-ish predictions I’ve ever made housed inside.

10/12/2017 Half Way State Qualifying Predictions: Part II

Continuing along the same line of thinking, this post combines those predictions in a ranking-ish style format. Plus, in classic etrain fashion, the predictions were almost immediately proven to be inaccurate.

11/1/2017 2017 PIAA XC State Previews: AAA Team Preview

Like I said in the XC posts post, this might have been my favorite preview I’ve taken the time to write. Had to be included here.


This has been talked about enough. I’ll just leave the link and leave it at that.

12/4 The Etrain 11: The Roman Empire

The feature posts have been fun for sure. They are a little better when I rope in some of the people involved for interviews and things, but I like how this one turned out even if it was a lot of me writing. In total, I’ve now done 40 posts in The Etrain 11 series, recapping some of the season defining stories from the past few years. Maybe after this track season is done I’ve finished The Etrain 11 collection, I’ll share my favorites from that list. If you get antsy, Check Out Sub 9 Revisited from July 9, 2015, Dream 800m from June 15, 2015, Everybody Loves a Sappey Ending from July 13, 2016 and It’s Never O’Ver from July 4, 2016. Those are near the top of list.

Spring Ford had a “The 11” post from 2016 as well, foreshadowing their rise to a top 5 team in the state for XC. LaSalle’s Army got one and we even had a video version for the WPIAL Vs. which is one of the more unique things we’ve done on the site.

So yeah, I basically just did that favorite The Etrain 11 posts within this post. Two for the price of one ladies and gents. Can’t get a much better deal than that.

Better Later Than Never?

Top 5 Takeaways from Indoors So Far

5. Everybody’s together indoors
After a fall filled with under appreciation for our friends outside the PIAA, the PTFCA welcomes them home with open arms. Malvern Prep’s Peter Borger threw down a strong 9:12 3k to win at TFCAofGP and move to the #2 spot on the adjusted state rankings. His independent rival, Elias Lindgren, was not far behind with a 9:17 mark. Both of these two strike me as sub 9 types before the year ends. But that’s no guarantee of a state birth in a notoriously cutthroat event (still capping it at 12 entries according to the website).

Beyond the independent league implications, it’s also important to remember that AA and A guys during XC are thrown head to head against the AAA boys. This is arguably most important when looking at the resume of Mr. Kamil Jihad. The senior (who holds a 1:52 outdoor best from 2016) has already run 1:59 for the victory at Ursinus. Jihad is a big talent who earned his first XC state medal this fall, speaking to his consistently increasing strength. However, he never really had the big breakthrough some were projecting for him last indoor track season. This could be the year. Jihad has also smoked a fast 600 meters in New York.

4. The sneaky DMR teams are at it again
CB East, Boyertown and Twin Valley have each had a habit of producing strong DMRs during the indoor season. They aren’t always at the very top of the competition, but they are strong medal contenders in a lot of years and are usually good bets to overachieve relative to expectations. Boyertown has already received some love for their DM potential and they’ve got two golds to show for it. However, Twin Valley picked up a nice result at the TFCAofGP meet with a time of 11:06 and is just behind Boyertown on the leaderboard. CB East is also under 11:10 after their strong debut. East put together an impressive 4x8 squad the past two indoor seasons as well so they could end up with some choices.

Don’t sleep on Penncrest. They had a nice XC season where they mixed it up in a loaded D1 (could they have been a top 10 team in the state had they qualified considering D1 had 5 of the top 7?) and Penncrest is notorious for putting together excellent middle-distance relays on the oval. Throw in Avery Lederer as a potential stud on the anchor and you have to like this squad’s sleeper potential. I could see this guys in the 10:30s by season’s end if things click.

3. Mitchell Etter emerges as a 3k contender
Before Etter was district champ in XC, he was an emerging star in the 3200 on the track. After running in the 9:20s last spring, Etter dropped a 9:40 for 3200 to start this winter. That’s a pretty fast mark for this early in the season, especially on a track like Dickinson’s which isn’t known for being fast. I think Etter could be a sub 8:50 guy by season’s end in the 3k which will put you in all state contention. I’m interested to see if he develops 800/Mile speed to help State College with their inevitable 4x8-DMR attempts that are sure to come during the winter. They lost everybody from last year’s squad, but as we’ve seen before, the Little Lions have a knack for reloading.

2. Sophomores finding their footing
By the end of XC season, the sophomores are usually starting to run with a lot more confidence and are finding their footing among the high schoolers. That’s already beginning to translate to the track. There’s the obvious standouts like Jonah Hoey (4:23-1:57), but there’s also a few less known names like Christian McComb, Noah Demis and Patrick Theveny who have impressed already. McComb and Demis were two of the biggest surprises at XC states as each cracked the top 50 overall. McComb has already run 4:32 in the mile and Demis just added a 9:21 3k to his resume. However, Patrick Theveny had one of the most impressive early runs this season. He mixed it up with Borger and Lindgren in the 3k at TFCAofGP and was rewarded with a 9:14. Remember, Borger and Lindgren were the top two XC guys from the independent league this fall and are sub 9:30 3200 types from outdoors. That’s good company for this sophomore to put himself in.

1. Josh Hoey and Bishop Shanahan
If you thought Josh got off to a fast start last year, take a look at his blazing 4:12.60 from the Armory this past weekend. Not only did he run one of the fastest PA mile times ever in December (and win the race), he also dropped splits of 2:15-1:57 with about a 55 second last lap. That’s incredible, polished championship style racing before Santa has even brought us presents. It’s astounding honestly. We could see times like 1:50 and 4:07 this indoor season from Hoey if he keeps this pace.

If that wasn’t enough, Hoey also added a solo 1:53 anchor split on the 4x8 for Shanahan’s PA #1 7:49 relay. I was really impressed with Pennsbury’s opening mark of 8:09 (which, not to brag, I did mention was a possibility in my first indoor post way, (way) back now), but Shanahan has floored me with a 7:49. Based on the results, it appears they were pretty uncontested after that first leg and still split 1:57-2:00-1:57-1:53. Keep in mind the state record is “only” 7:45 during the indoor and that came at the state championship meet. The list of PA schools that have even cracked 7:50 is probably pretty short. But 7:49 in December makes Rudolph’s nose look boring (yes, I’m in a festive mood).

Hopefully, the Shanahan squad can hold this form through this indoor (and outdoor) season. It will be interesting to see how they attack the year as the Hoey boys are already in good position to have 2 of the top 5 or so seeds in the mile and/or 800 meters. I don’t see them trying an Affolder-esque quadruple (they will be looking to extend their season well into June I’d guess) so they will have to make some decisions at the state meet. If they go for the relays, they could attack a couple meet records at states (one of which is an overall state record in the 4x8).

If the first two weeks are any indication, it’s going to be a fun indoor season. Get your popcorn ready. 

The Etrain 11: Wyomissing? More Like Wyo-making

After squeezing through the crowd, I reappeared on the opposite side of the final hill. I was a bit taller than the average spectator in my area so I opted to stand behind and utilize my tippy toes. The AA State Champion was about to be crowned and there was tension in the air. Over the loud speaker, they had just announced the standings at the 2 mile mark. Harbor Creek led the way, but just 4 points back was Dallas. A few of their supporters were waiting nervously not far in front of me. York Suburban, the runners up in 2016 and 2015, were in 4th place but were only 21 points out of the lead with a history of making a strong final surge. Their supporters were behind me as Isaac Davis rolled through the final hill and cruised to an individual state championship. A short while later, I could hear the cheers: “C’mon Bryce!” As I raised myself up to full height again, I saw York Suburban’s #1 runner come into view and take the first spot in team scoring.

No more than 10 seconds later was a Harbor Creek. Another Harbor Creek. Then a York Suburban. Two Dallas. A third Harbor Creek. It was hard to keep it all straight. Especially this far into the race. Every second a person was coming by, sometimes in waves of two to three. As Wyomissing’s first runner put on a sprint to the finish, a pack of four runners were closing in on the finish at the same time. Three of those were other team scorers. In the results, four runners crossed the line at the exact same time of 16:51. But the first of those finishers was Wyomissing’s Joe Cullen.


Cullen has been a team leader on Wyomissing long before his senior season. As a sophomore, he anchored his team’s 4x800 with a herculean anchor split. Less than a year later, he was a district champion in cross country and a state medalist. As a result of his leadership, Wyomissing finished 11th in the state in cross country. However, despite an excellent fall, they left 2016 wanting more.

“Last cross country season was a rollercoaster of ups and downs as it unfolded,” said Ben Kuhn, a then freshman on Wyomissing’s 11th place team, “But fluke or by burn-out, members of our team consistently had terrible races at states.”

On the track was where Wyomissing seemed to naturally excel. Cullen in particular shined in 2017. After anchoring his Wyomissing team to second in the state, he ran 4:13 in the 1600. He also added a 1:53 open 800 meter performance to his list of accomplishments. But could that success be duplicated on the trails?

“Knowing that we are perennial contenders in track gave us a lot of confidence that we could step up to be a state-caliber cross country program,” Joe said, “In trying to take our program to the next level, we sought to emulate the consistency with which we’ve achieved our success in the 4x800 and 4x400.”

After leading the team at Paul Short and Districts, Cullen finished the state championship for Wyomissing as their #1 guy for a second straight year and earned another state medal for his quickly expanding collection.


After Cullen sprinted past, there was a bit of a pause as we waited for another recognizable jersey in the team title race. Then, at about the 17 minute mark of the race, two more Wyomissing jerseys came streaking into view. Ben Kuhn and Matt Driben were sprinting hard toward the finish. Driben had been in 76th place at the mile, but had moved up some 40 spots since then. Of course, he had overcome much more than that to get to this point.


Although Cullen was a leader on the course and in the locker room, but the 2017 Wyomissing squad would not have been as lethal if it wasn’t for the emergence of their 2-3 punch: Ben Kuhn and Matt Driben. From the first invitational at Paul Short, these two had made a name for themselves with times of 16:04 and 16:12 respectively.

“Having my teammates step up was huge,” Cullen said about the rise of his closest teammates. The importance of this was perhaps clearest at the Berks County Championships. It was here that Kuhn and Driben stepped up to the #1 and #2 positions on the team, filling the low stick shoes in a moment of need on a difficult course. The pair doubled down on that success by finishing 3rd and 9th in the District, with Kuhn the top returner for the 2018 edition of the race.

It was unclear in the preseason how good either of these harriers would be. Kuhn was just a sophomore and, although he had shined as a rookie, it’s rare to see a sophomore who contributes as much as he did in his second year in high school. For Driben, a senior, the trepidation did not revolve around youth, but instead, ironically, from experience.

“My sophomore year, I had two high hamstring injuries that damaged my performances during XC postseason,” Driben recalls, “Then, I suffered a knee injury in August going into my junior year that prevented me from running the entire cross country season.”

This would have been crushing to an average running, but not to Driben. He cross trained feverishly, peaking at a 100 minute bike workout. The hours he put in away from the track made him that much stronger when he returned, resulting in some great performances in the spring of 2017. But perhaps the biggest breakthrough came at Paul Short with his 16:12.

“Our first and only invitational of the season, Paul Short, had fantastic conditions and it was awesome to roll on the long, flat straightaways at Lehigh. It’s not often that a high school senior gets a 50-second PR, and I was in disbelief with not only how I had performed, but also that we had our top 6 guys under 17 minutes.”


Soon after Kuhn and Driben crossed the finish line, a 3rd runner from Dallas and a 3rd runner from York Suburban came into view. That meant if Wyomising wanted to have any shot at the state title, they would need their 4-5 to come through quickly. Well, Josh Diehl and Thomas Foster did not make their teammates wait long. Diehl closed the gap on York Suburban’s #3 Josh Kerr, placing just one spot behind him in the standings. Then Foster, at 17:19, came across the line 6 seconds later. Foster was one spot ahead of Dallas’ #4 man Josh Wyandt and 3 spots ahead of Harbor Creek’s #4 Nate Dougan. Helping to push Foster and Diehl along was Ryan Vargo, Wyomissing 6th man and another reliable contributor who raced through 2 miles with his teammates and hung on for a top 100 finish, 46 seconds faster than he ran a year earlier.

If Wyomissing was going to sneak in and steal the state title, it would have been thanks to this back part of their varsity line up.


Josh Diehl, Thomas Foster and Ryan Vargo were the 4-5-6 guys on Wyomissing’s state qualifying squad in 2016. However, that season, none of these boys cracked 18 minutes on the Hershey course. As a result, Wyomissing was 11th in the team standings. Knowing how critical their improvement would be to the team’s success, this trio used the summer to get out and train hard. However, it would be a while before they got to taste the fruits of their labor.

“We intended to keep a low profile and not go hard until Paul Short and post season,” said Vargo, “My teammates and I were looking to be noticed by the state, but we did not want them to know what we were capable of.”


At Paul Short, Vargo led the way for the Wyomissing trio and ran 16:55 while Diehl and Foster followed closely behind, also cracking the 17 minute barrier. Wyomissing beat out two-time defending state champs Dallas and got their confidence going.

“With the incredible races that my teammates had, we realized we had a chance to win states, and that meet was one of the most important moments in the season.”

Building from that moment, the Wyomissing pack only became stronger. By the time their county and district meets concluded, the spread for this team had started to shrink significantly. And Wyomissing’s competition around the state was finding out just how much that impacted the results.

“At Paul Short we almost had 2 packs running, one of our top three up front and then a good distance behind them our 4 through 6 guys,” sophomore Thomas Foster explained. “We knew that we would need to close the gap between those two packs to compete at a high level, and the three of us worked hard to close it up. It all came together at states.”


“About 15 minutes after I crossed the finish line, I remember laying collapsed on the ground queasily as I watched another team start celebrating,” Joe Cullen remembers, “My teammates and I were hoping for a second place finish at that point; winning seemed out of the question.”

One of the trickiest things about being a fan of Cross Country is the fact that isn’t always obvious when watching a race which team won. It’s not like football or basketball where a scoreboard keeps the standings for you. It’s not until after the race is finished, results are verified and math is calculated that you actually know who came out on top.

So as fans from all sides waited, second guessing their races, trying to remember which jerseys were close by, the tension and excitement grew until finally it burst to the surface.

“The greatest part of this past season will always be winning states,” said Josh Diehl, perhaps the MVP of the season, “I can still remember the bitter taste of disappointment and then the explosion of excitement when we saw the results and realized the Wyo Boys Cross Country team had just taken their first state title ever in the history of the program. All the time and effort our coaches and team had put into finding results of our competitors, comparing time spreads and making sure our bodies had enough time and care to recover had paid off.”

There are no perfect days at the state championship, but Wyomissing’s guys ran hard for one another on state Saturday. When they needed someone to step up and make a play, that’s what they got.

“Although our top 3 were aiming for states medals, we knew our strength was our back end,” says Driben, “We figured if our #4 and #5 were close to our top 3, we would have a decent shot at winning. And they delivered- our #4 and #5 beat all other AA teams’ #4 runners. In fact, the only team in any classification that had a better #5 than Thomas was LaSalle which won in AAA.”

Thomas Foster, that critical number five man, had this to say about the golden moment: “Our team is a very tight knit group, and we spend a lot of the time throughout the year training together, so it seems fitting that any major victory like a state title should be won through the contribution of each member of that group.”

You cansee the full interview with the Wyomissing squad here. This group seems very professional and well-written. They are confident in their abilities, but also respectful of their opponents and incredibly appreciative of their coaching staff’s time and effort to get them to this point. Every one took the time to thank their coaches and praise their competition. Hard to believe there were only 2 seniors in this group! Everyone seemed mature (and fast) beyond their years! Congrats to a deserving group of state champions and good luck going forward!

Interview with Wyomissing XC

I’ve got a post in the Etrain 11 series recapping Wyomissing’s ride to the state championship this past fall, but the team gave such a good interview that I also wanted to share their full responses to all the questions I had for them. So without further ado, here’s a transcript of my interview with the boys of Wyomissing …
Etrain: Last XC season, you guys had a strong season, placing a convincing second at districts and then 11th at states. Talk about some of the highs and lows from that season and how they shaped this one.
Ben Kuhn, Sophomore: Last cross country season was a rollercoaster of ups and downs as it unfolded. We lost one of our leaders and captains in Matthew Driben to injury in the late summer, which threw a wrench in our team goals.  As the season continued, however, we found a rising talent in senior Chip Schroder, who gradually fought his way up the team’s rankings until he became our #2 guy.  We succeeded at invitationals of PTXC and Foundation before having excellent showings as at team at Berks County Championships and the District III Championship, thanks to our rising star in Chip, who took Driben’s role.  However, by fluke or by burn-out, members of our team consistently had terrible races at states.  Determined to come back in 2017 as a state powerhouse and redeem our state performance from 2016, we were very focused and disciplined in our summer training, as encouraged by our fantastic captains in Joe Cullen and Matthew Driben.
Etrain: You guys have always been a strong track program, especially in the 4x8. What elements from the track season did you carry through to XC? Any aspects of your mind set or training?
Joe Cullen, Senior: Knowing that we are perennial contenders in track gave us a lot of confidence that we could step up to be a state-caliber cross-country program. In trying to take our program to the next level, we sought to emulate the consistency with which we’ve achieved our success in the 4x800 and 4x400.
Etrain: You had 6 of your top 7 from last year returning (including some young pieces) plus you had a healthy Matt Driben in the mix as well. When do you guys first start to think a state championship was possible?
Ben: We knew we had a special group of guys going into the season, but it was hard to gauge going into the season how we would stack up to other state powerhouses in Dallas and York Suburban, especially as we had a Matt Driben who hadn’t run a cross country race since his sophomore year. We wanted to minimize burn-out that we experienced in 2016, so we decided on Paul Short as our first and only all-out performance at an invitation in the regular season.  After most on the team exceeded expectations and with our top six guys under 17:00 at Lehigh, we knew we had a shot at the state title.  With an excellent Paul Short race in which we surprisingly defeated Dallas, we revisited our team goals to refocus on how we wanted our season to conclude.
Etrain: Your team stayed relatively under the radar in the early part of the season with your first memorable invite appearance not coming until Paul Short. Was this part of the strategy or just the way things worked out? What was it like finally getting to race at Paul Short and match up with two time defending champions Dallas?
Ryan Vargo, Junior: We intended to keep a low profile and not go hard until Paul Short and post season. My teammates and I were looking to be noticed by the state, but we did not want them to know what we were capable of, yet. Paul Short was awesome for us because we finally got to run hard, as well as show the state that we were still a team this year. With the incredible races that my teammates had, we realized we had a chance to win states, and that meet was one of the most important moments in the season.
Etrain: Joe, after being the #1 guy on the team and carrying the weight of being a low stick, what was it like having breakthrough training partners around you in practice and in races? How did this change the dynamic of the team and the expectations for the post season?
Joe: Having my teammates step up was huge. As an underclassman, I remember being a part of top-heavy teams with Kyle Shinn and Jack DiCintio. But having a deeper and more talented team gave us more of a pack mentality and provided a greater sense of team purpose and unity. Furthermore, having fast teammates allowed us to succeed even though I had a disappointing season personally.
Etrain: Matt, after missing a couple years due to injury, how did you stay in shape and, perhaps more importantly, how did you stay mentally engaged and confident? When do you feel like you got your groove back racing and how did it feel to be back racing XC and dropping fast times?
Matthew Driben, Senior: My sophomore year, I had two high hamstring injuries that damaged my performances during XC postseason and kept me out of winter track and a month of spring track. Then, I suffered a knee injury in August going into my junior year that prevented me from running the entire cross country season as well as the beginning of winter track.
Although I couldn’t run, I spent a significant amount of time training on an elliptical and stationary bike, even trying to replicate the threshold, interval, and repeat workouts my team was doing. For easy workouts, I would keep my heart rate at 160 beats per minute and I would do two higher heart rate workouts per week. My volume peaked at 100 minutes for my longest bike workout and 75 minutes per day for my daily cross training average the fall of my junior year during my knee injury. When I was able to run again, I still built up to only 30 miles per week maintaining a heavy regimen of cross training in order to stay healthy. I plan to gradually increase my running volume to drop my times and to prepare for running at the collegiate level (hopefully).
Because track is more focused on individual performances than cross country, during my sophomore year my personal goals of improving from my freshman times and winning a district medal were what kept me mentally engaged. While I still had the same goals of improving during my junior year, coming back for my team was the focus my junior year during cross country. Although ultimately not being able to return in time to help my team in cross country was frustrating for everyone involved, I came back this year with a greater sense of purpose because I didn’t want to let my team down again. I have to thank my teammates and coaches for never giving up on me and helping me stay positive during the toughest moments.
I finally started racing again January 2017 and competed in three races that indoor season. My cross training made me mentally tougher in races and my indoor races made me more confident in my race strategy. I took that momentum into spring track and was ecstatic to improve my times and stay mostly healthy. However, I knew I would have to finally stay healthy in cross country in order to help my team because teams like Twin Valley in the county and York Suburban in the district and state would be tough to beat. Our first and only invitational of the season, Paul Short, had fantastic conditions and it was awesome to roll on the long, flat straightaways at Lehigh. It’s not often that a high school senior gets a 50-second PR, and I was in disbelief with not only how I had performed, but also that we had our top 6 guys under 17 minutes. On the hillier courses like Kutztown, Big Spring, and Hershey, being able to grind on the hills and pick off people as the race went on was rewarding because I was able to contribute when my team needed me the most.
Etrain: Talk about your rivalry with York Suburban. What was it like having to take on one of the top programs in the state just to win districts? How did that prepare you for states?
Thomas Foster, Sophomore: It's been great to compete with a team like York Suburban, they run a great program for which we have immense respect. We were not at all certain we would win districts going in, and didn't want to totally destroy ourselves, so we could fully compete at the state meet, but the race just worked out in our favor. That definitely solidified our belief that we could go head to head with programs of their caliber the next weekend.
Etrain: At districts, the score was tight with just 9 points separating the top teams. Josh and Thomas both stopped up and finished just ahead of York Suburban’s #4 to pick up the victory. When racing, are you aware of your positioning in the race relative to your team and the other? Do you race jerseys or just run blind and push yourself?
Josh Diehl, Junior: When I’m racing, I just go with the flow. I try to stay aware of my surroundings, listening to what other coaches are telling their runners and watching for which schools are around me. In most races our coach tries to keep us updated on our position and that of our team mates, but at Districts limited access kept us from being aware of our winning score until the last 400 meters. Coach Hetrich was there, telling us that if we kept our position we would win. I’m proud to say that my teammates and I decided not to settle for our place and took some heads in that last stretch to solidify the win.
Etrain: What was the game plan heading into states? Were they any specific goals or places you felt you as an individual had to meet to win as a team? What did you think it would take to beat the great teams against you like Harbor Creek, York Suburban, Grove City and Dallas? How did the Race stack up relative to your goals and expectations?
Matthew: Because there tends to be a lot of traffic in the first mile, we wanted to get off the line hard and find openings where we could, even if it meant taking some turns on the outside. Our coaches took us up to Hershey the day before the race to preview the course, which proved vital because the first mile was packed as we had expected. For the Aloha hills, we weren’t as focused on attacking the hills as much as attacking right after the hills so we would have more momentum on the downhills and flats. The last mile our plan was just to give everything we had left as the course transitioned to mostly flat before Poop-Out Hill.
Although our top 3 were aiming for state medals, we knew our strength was our back end. We figured if our #4 and #5 were close to our top 3 we would have a decent shot at winning. And they delivered—our #4 and #5, Josh Diehl and Thomas Foster, beat all other AA teams’ #4 runners. In fact, the only team in any classification that had a better #5 than Thomas was La Salle, which won in AAA.

Based on past performances, we were confident we could win: We had beaten Dallas at Paul Short, Twin Valley had beaten York Suburban and Grove City at Carlisle (and we beat Twin Valley), and we had beaten York Suburban head-to-head at districts. However, we knew that Dallas had a couple extra days’ rest after districts and always peaks well for states, York Suburban would be gunning to beat us after districts, Harbor Creek and Grove City had looked fantastic at the District 10 meet, and Etrain had ranked us third going into states, so we could take nothing for granted. At the end of the day, we couldn’t control how the other teams were going to perform so we knew we needed to give our best efforts no matter what.
The race proved even closer than we thought it would be, as we beat York Suburban by just two points and Harbor Creek by only six. Both teams exceeded our expectations and either of them could have taken the state title that day. Of course, the race was grueling as we had expected, but our fabulous coaching staff had prepared us well. The last two Sundays before the state championship our head coach held meetings in his classroom where we talked about how to face the other teams and the Hershey course. Paul Short helped us get out hard in a huge crowd, the steep hills in our own park system made usready for the Aloha hills, and a greater emphasis on speed this season made us better equipped for the flat last mile of the course.
Etrain: When the race finished, did you think you guys had won? When did you realize you pulled off that upset?
Joe: About 15 minutes after I crossed the finish line, I remember laying collapsed on the ground queasily as I watched another team start celebrating. My teammates and I were hoping for a second place finish at that point; winning seemed out of the question. So upon hearing we won, we were in a state of disbelief – all of our hard work culminating in a state title gave us an overwhelming sense of euphoria and shock!
Etrain: Talk about the pack mentality. Harbor Creek had 3 before your 1, Dallas and York Suburban had 2, but you had the clear best top 5. What did it mean to know each member of the varsity squad contributed so much? How did you drop from a 56 second spread at Paul Short to a 29 second spread at states?
Thomas: Our team is a very tight knit group, and we spend a lot of the time throughout the year training together, so it seems fitting that any major victory like a state title should be won through the contribution of each member of that group. At Paul Short we had almost 2 packs running, one of our top three up front and then a good distance behind them our 4 through 6 guys. We knew that we would need to close the gap between those two packs to compete at a high level, and the three of us worked hard to close it up. It all came together at states.
Etrain: What is your favorite memory from the season? What parts of your training do you think helped you achieve success? What moments do you think will define the season?
Josh: The greatest part of this past season will always be winning states. I can still remember the bitter taste of disappointment and then the explosion of excitement when we saw the results and realized the Wyo Boys Cross Country team had just taken their first state title ever in the history of the program. All the time and effort our coaches and team had put into finding results of our competitors, comparing time spreads, and making sure our bodies had enough time and care to recover had paid off. This season would not have been possible without the effort of our  coaches. They put in countless hours of work to find the data and create the practices that would prepare us for our races. Even during the summer they held practices, which I think had the greatest effect on our great season. The base we built in the summer prepared us for the intense workouts that would have us leaving sore and exhausted but prepared for the hard races that led us to our success.
Etrain: What goals do you have for the upcoming track season? How about next XC season? 5 guys from the varsity will back to defend the title.
Ryan: Next XC season, we believe we will still have a great team. We do lose Matt and Joe, but we are working to close the gap between our 4-5 runner. Our new 5 runner was number 7 on the team this year with a personal best under 18, with our number 6 runner just under 17. So if we could close that gap I think we could do some damage. We will not have as strong of a 6-7 as we did this year, but we hope to place top 5 in the state next year. With a district win and state runner up last year for track, we are looking to repeat the district title and go for the state win. The team only lost a few seniors last year, and the rest of the team is stepping up to make that goal realistic.

Dipping My Toe In the Indoor Waters

I know I’ve been loading up the blog with XC posts even though the majority of you guys are moving onto track mode, but I like to try and save some of the end of season stuff until literally the end of the season. I think I have one more XC post in the queue for you guys, but I’ll sprinkle in some indoor talk in a moment with this post. Just need to do some quick announcements.

I’ll be doing two special end of year posts that I like to do at the end of December. The first is my favorite posts of 2017 where I share links to all my favorite posts from the year (I know, another self-indulgent post that is just a list of posts! Your favorite!) and I’ll also be doing my Bold Predictions for 2018 post which is always a good time (well, I think so anyway).

Lastly, I’ll just add real quick that if anyone is planning to do anything with any specific post on here for like a scrapbook or a gift or something (I know, incredibly unlikely, but I’ll offer anyway), just let me know and I can edit it, clean it up, fix the errors and try and make it better for you. I know it’s incredibly unlikely that anyone would care that much about the posts, but I’m just throwing it out there in the spirit of the holidays on the very off chance it’s needed.

OK, now let’s talk track.

Now I could jump right in and recap every race from meet, but I’m not going to do that for a variety of reasons. 1) It’s a long season and I don’t want to burn myself out on recaps, 2) It’s December and so it’s still super early, 3) You can get that stuff from Penntrack pretty efficiently and easily and 4) I don’t find it particularly exciting to read.

So let’s talk about my favorite thing to talk about during the indoor season: relays. This year it looks like the PTFCA has given us 18 4x800 squads and 12 DMR squads for the state championship (last year we had 17 4x8s and 12 DMRs) so we should have a nice variety racing around the track (hopefully). Already some teams have emerged from the first weekend of racing that I’ll be keeping my eye on throughout the year to emerge as state medal contenders (and maybe even more).

The first squad to watch has gotta be Pennsbury. I’ll be honest, I haven’t done any sort of deep dive on the 4x8 competition for this upcoming winter, but based on my gut, I think Pennsbury has a shot to contend for a state title this year. The usual suspects will be really tough to surpass (especially CB West), but I think they have a scary strong top 3 that could put them in the mix with anyone.

Jed Scratchard was the star of week #1, running 4:30 and 2 flat at Ursinus, but Javier Linares had an awesome race as well with his own 2 flat mark. Linares has good speed and he was knocking on the door of making his team’s relay all last year and is probably amped to get his shot to contribute this season. Plus, they have Aidan Sauer (1:54 split last spring) who could be a game breaker in the right race. Sauer is coming off his best XC season to date where he snagged one of the individual qualifying spots in District One.

The second team worth mentioning is Boyertown. This program has a lot of depth. They had top guys all over the place this weekend with their most notable individuals being Josh Endy (2:02 800) and Christian McComb (4:32 mile). However, don’t sleep on someone like Dominic Derafelo who was a top 50 guy at states this past fall. I believe Derafelo was anchor on their DMR which won the race at Ursinus with an 11:06.

Historically, Boyertown has a really good record in the DMR. They tend to get their guys engaged in this relay and put up big splits. The Brett Kelly teams in the 2010-2012 range come to mind, but last year’s Boyertown DMR squad was pretty legit as well (plus they had a 4x8 that just missed out on states). They dropped marks of 10:51.49 and 8:17.11 and they’ve only improved since then. Christian McComb, who just missed a surprise medal at XC states, is looking he’s on the verge of becoming a star. Last year, he was better on the track than he was on the grass, so he may just be beginning to scratch the surface of his potential within the state.

The last team is Wyomissing. In recent years, these guys have been really fast on the outdoor oval, storming through the 4x8 at outdoor states. However, their indoor record isn’t as outstanding because, like many district three teams, they haven’t seemed to make the indoor season a real focus. But as we saw with Carlisle a year ago, if Wyomissing decides to use that state championship enthusiasm on the indoor track, they could be lethal. They were the deepest AA team in the state last year and they showcased that early on the track with a DMR win at Maroon and Gold (plus a runner up in the 3k and a win in the 16).

The difference maker here is Joe Cullen who has potential to a super star at the end of a 4x8 or DMR. He has run 1:53 and 4:13, plus he has proven himself as a successful indoor athlete with a state medal in the 800 last winter. However, if Wyomissing really wants to make noise (maybe take down another state gold) they will need other pieces to step up the way they did during XC. Sophomores Ben Kuhn and Thomas Foster as well as 400 specialist Austin Keim could all play a role this winter.

Other teams that are deeper sleepers include: Methacton (Michael Clark is a star, I like Varghese as a young up and comer), Bensalem (always finds a way to contend and took 1-2 at M&G), and Spring Ford (hard to doubt them after XC, just want to see who their speedsters are).

2017 XC Top 50: Final Rankings

Honorable mention (no particular order) – Tyler Rollins, Owen Isham, Andrew Foster, Jarrett Giannascoli, Ben Barnes, Mitchell Rome, Christian McComb, Christian Fitch, Bradden Koors, Jason Cornelison

50. Vincent Twomey, So LaSalle (12 AAA)
Districts Finish: 2nd 16:41

Key Invitationals
Briarwood (7th/5th 16:53)
Carlisle (14th/10th 15:58)
Manhattan (28th/5th 13:07)
PCLs (2nd 16:44)

49. Jarrett Raudensky, Jr York Suburban (3 AA)
States Finish: 10th 16:32
Districts Finish: 5th 16:39

Key Invitationals
Foundation (8th 17:11)
Carlisle (22nd/18th 16:07)

48. Kendall Branan, So Indiana (7 AA)
States Finish: 11th 16:35
Districts Finish: 2nd 16:47

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (9th 16:32)
Foundation (12th 17:23)
Indiana County (1st 16:57)

47. Jonah Hoey, So Bishop Shanahan (1 AAA)
States Finish: 31st 16:36
Districts Finish: 10th 15:54

Key Invitationals
Paul Short (24th/17th 15:57)
Manhattan (46th/8th 13:21)

46. Brendan Knepper, Jr Mechanicsburg (3 AAA)
States Finish: 32nd 16:37
Districts Finish: 3rd16:17

Key Invitationals
Carlisle (15th/11th 15:58)
Mid Penns (3rd 16:18)

45. Jack Zardecki, Sr Dallas (2 AA)
States Finish: 13th 16:41
Districts Finish: 1st 16:18

Key Invitationals
Paul Short (14th/9th 15:43)

44. Christian Groff, Sr Hempfield (3 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 49 (+5)
States Finish: 29th 16:34
Districts Finish: 6th 16:24

Key Invitationals
Kiski Cavalier (1st 15:49)
Paul Short (13th/8th 15:40)
Lebanon Lancaster (1st 16:05)
FL Regionals (51st/10th 16:46)

43. Sam Gatti, Sr Pittsburgh CC (7 AAA)
States Finish: 27th 16:32
Districts Finish: 4th 16:12

Key Invitationals
Sharpsville (2nd 16:28)
Mack Cooper (11th 16:43)

42. Brett Brady, Sr Butler (7 AAA)
States Finish: 24th 16:29
Districts Finish: 9th 16:24

Key Invitationals
Mack Cooper (7th 16:26)

41. Aiden Weber, Jr Harbor Creek (10 AA)
States Finish: 7th 16:29
Districts Finish: 3rd 16:00

Key Invitationals
Sharpsville (7th 16:44)
Harbor Creek (2nd 16:35)

40. Mark Brown, Jr Greensburg Salem (7 AA)
States Finish: 8th 16:30
Districts Finish: 3rd 16:48

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (5th 16:12)
Foundation (5th 16:57)
TSTCA (3rd 17:24)

39. Garrett Baublitz, So Juniata (6 AA)
States Finish: 9th 16:31
Districts Finish: 1st 16:03

Key Invitationals
Foundation (4th 16:53)
Carlisle (3rd/1st 16:03)
FL Regionals (49th/9th 16:44)

38. Brandon Curley, Sr Montrose (2 A)
States Finish: 5th 16:32
Districts Finish: 1st 16:16

Key Invitationals
McQuaid (32nd/3rd 15:27)

37. Brendan O’Toole, Sr North Penn (1 AAA)
States Finish: 25th 16:30
Districts Finish: 8th 15:44

Key Invitationals
Centaur (3rd 16:45)
Salesianum (2nd/1st 16:51)
Suburbans (1st 15:54)

36. Chayce Macknair, Jr Mifflin County (6 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 46 (+10)
States Finish: 18th16:24
Districts Finish: 3rd 16:18

Key Invitationals
Carlisle (27th/23rd 16:13)
Mid Penns (4th 16:25)

35. Jacob McKenna, Sr Spring Ford (1 AAA)
States Finish: 20th 16:26
Districts Finish: 23rd 16:08

Key Invitationals
PTXC  (9th/5th 16:28)
Foundation (9th 16:51)
Paul Short (19th/12th 15:48)
Pioneer (2nd 16:12)

34. Sam Owori, Jr Seneca Valley (7 AAA)
States Finish: 23rd 16:27
Districts Finish: 6th 16:13

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (4th 15:35)
Foundation (6th 16:41)
Mack Cooper (2nd 16:16)

33. Sam Early, Sr CR North (1 AAA)
States Finish: 16th 16:23
Districts Finish: 18th 16:03

Key Invitationals
Carlisle (18th/14th 16:03)
William Tennent (7th 16:14)
Suburbans (4th 16:14)

32. Czar Tarr, Sr Chartiers Valley (7 AAA)
States Finish: 15th 16:23
Districts Finish: 7th 16:21

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (3rd 15:33)
Grove City (2nd 16:49)
Mack Cooper (15th 16:59)

31. Patrick Anderson, So Mount Lebanon (7 AAA)
States Finish: 22nd 16:27
Districts Finish: 5th 16:13

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (9th 16:02)
Foundation (21st 17:06)
Mack Cooper (5th 16:23)

30. Payton Sewall, Jr DT West (1 AAA)
States Finish: 19th 16:25
Districts Finish: 11th 15:54

Key Invitationals
Paul Short (21st/14th 15:53)
William Tennent (6th 16:06)
Manhattan (30th/6th 13:08)
Ches-monts (2nd 16:32)
NXN Regionals (18th/4th 16:42)

29. Andrew Malmstrom, Sr Owen J Roberts (1 AAA)
States Finish: 17th 16:24
Districts Finish: 9th 15:48

Key Invitationals  
Centaur (6th 17:02)
Foundation (35th 17:27)
Paul Short (41st/30th 16:11)
Pioneer (5th 16:26)

28. Andrew Healey, So Holy Cross (2 A)
Preseason Rank: 51 (+23)
States Finish: 4th 16:30
Districts Finish: 2nd 16:29

Key Invitationals
Foundation (2nd 16:44)
Paul Short (3rd 15:54)
FL Regionals (43rd/8th 16:41)

27. Peter Borger, Sr Malvern Prep (Independent)
Preseason Rank: 35 (+8)
States Finish: 2nd 16:30
Leagues Finish: 2nd 16:40

Key Invitationals
Briarwood (3rd/2nd 16:43)
Paul Short (2nd 15:52)
FL Regionals (42nd/7th 16:41)

26. Elias Lindgren, Sr Episcopal (Independent)
Preseason Rank: 36 (+10)
States Finish: 1st 16:24
Leagues Finish: 1st 16:26

Key Invitationals
Briarwood (1st 16:35)

25. Nate Price, Jr General McLane (10 AA)
States Finish: 6th 16:28
Districts Finish: 1st 15:55

Key Invitationals
Lock Haven (1st)
McQuaid (20th/1st 15:14)
Mack Cooper (8th 16:31)

24. Ryan Stravaggi, Jr Harbor Creek (10 AA)
Preseason Rank: 37 (+13)
States Finish: 5th 16:24
Districts Finish: 2nd 15:58

Key Invitationals
Harbor Creek (1st 16:21)

23. Quinn Serfass, Sr Loyalsock (4 AA)
States Finish: 4th 16:23
Districts Finish: 2nd 16:15

Key Invitationals
Spiked Shoe (3rd/2nd 16:16)
Paul Short (20th/13th 15:51)

22. Jonah Powell, Jr Grove City (10 AA)
Preseason Rank: 25 (+3)
States Finish: 3rd 16:18
Districts Finish: 6th 16:17

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (2nd 15:39)
Sharpsville (1st 16:07)
Carlisle (8th/6th 15:48)

21. Jack Miller, Jr Jenkintown (1 A)
States Finish: 3rd 16:28
Districts Finish: 1st 16:29

Key Invitationals
Mill Street (2nd 15:40)
Foundation (3rd 16:52)
Paul Short (1st 15:48)
FL Regionals (41st/6th 16:41)

20. Carlos Shultz, So Phoenixville (1 AAA)
States Finish: 21st 16:26
Districts Finish: 5th 15:37

Key Invitationals
CR Invite (1st 15:59)
Paul Short (5th/4th 15:21)

19. Sam Snodgrass, Sr South Fayette (7 AA)
States Finish: 21st 16:49
Districts Finish: 1st 16:33

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (1st 15:30)
Foundation (2nd 16:38)
TSTCA (1st 16:57)
Mack Cooper (3rd 16:19)

18. Brendan Miller, Sr Upper Dauphin (3 A)
Preseason Rank: 20 (+2)
States Finish: 2nd 16:27
Districts Finish: 1st 16:21

Key Invitationals
Big Spring (1st 16:44)
Carlisle (5th 15:40)

17. Mitchell Etter, Sr State College (6 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 31 (+14)
States Finish: 14th 16:21
Districts Finish: 1st 15:43

Key Invitationals
Spiked Shoe (1st 15:51)
Foundation (4th 16:32)
Mid Penns (2nd 16:13)

16. Avery Lederer, Sr Penncrest (1 AAA)
States Finish: 12th 16:16
Districts Finish: 24th 16:09

Key Invitationals
PTXC (7th/3rd 16:10)
DELCOs (1st 16:27)
Central League (1st 16:13)

15. Bryce Ohl, Sr York Suburban (3 AA)
Preseason Rank: 23 (+8)
States Finish: 2nd 16:16
Districts Finish: 1st 16:14

Key Invitationals
Foundation (3rd 16:56)
Carlisle (21st/17th 16:07)

14. Ethan Koza, Sr CR North (1 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 32 (+18)
States Finish: 13th 16:17
Districts Finish: 6th 15:40

Key Invitationals
Briarwood (3rd 16:22)
CR Invitational (3rd 16:16)
Carlisle (4th 15:33)
William Tennent (3rd 15:52)
Suburbans (3rd 15:46)

13. Evan Addison, Sr LaSalle (12 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 19 (+6)
States Finish: 11th 16:12
Districts Finish: 1st 16:29

Key Invitationals
Briarwood (4th 16:30)
Carlisle (1st 15:21)
Manhattan (23rd/4th 13:03)
PCLs (1st 16:19)

12. Tristan Forsythe, Sr Winchester Thurston (7 A)
States Finish: 1st 16:12
Districts Finish: 1st 16:21

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (1st 15:33)
Foundation (1st 16:38)

11. Ryan Campbell, Sr CR North (1 AAA)
States Finish: 10th (16:09)
Districts Finish: 4th 15:29

Key Invitationals
Briarwood (2nd 16:19)
CR Invite (4th 16:30)
Carlisle (3rd 15:28)
William Tennent (2nd 15:36)
Suburbans (2nd 15:37)
NXN Regionals (9th/3rd 16:31)

10. Spencer Smucker, Sr Henderson (1 AAA)
States Finish: 9th 16:08
Districts Finish: 7th 15:44

Key Invitationals
Carlisle (11th/7th 15:54)
Manhattan (18th/3rd 12;56)
Ches-monts (1st 16:24)
NXN Regionals (5th/2nd 16:16)

9. Seth Ketler, Jr Seneca Valley (7 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 24 (+15)
States Finish: 6th 16:00
District Finish: 2nd 15:55

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (5th 15:44)
Foundation (7th 16:45)
Mack Cooper (6th 16:26)

8. Liam Conway, Sr Owen J Roberts (1 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 10 (+2)
States Finish: 8th 16:03
Districts Finish: 3rd 15:25

Key Invitationals
Centaur (1st 15:59)
Foundation (3rd 16:30)
Paul Short (3rd/2nd 15:08)
Pioneer (1st 16:07)
NXN Regionals (2nd/1st 16:02)

7. Josh Hoey, Sr Bishop Shanahan (1 AAA)
States Finish: 7th 16:01
Districts Finish: 2nd 15:12

Key Invitationals
Abington Invite (1st 16:11)
Paul Short (4th/3rd 15:16)
Manhattan (10th/2nd 12:46)
FL Regionals (15th/2nd 16:10)

6. Dan McGoey, So North Allegheny (7 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 27 (+21)
States Finish: 3rd 15:58
Districts Finish: 3rd 15:55

Key Invitationals
Red, White and Blue (2nd 15:30)
Boardman (5th/1st 16:10)
Foundation (2nd 16:27)
Mack Cooper (4th 16:19)

5. Tyler Wirth, Jr Wallenpaupack (2 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 41 (+36)
States Finish: 5th 15:59
Districts Finish: 1st 16:12

Key Invitationals
PTXC (6th/2nd 16:03)
Paul Short (6th/5th 15:24)
William Tennent (1st 15:30)
FL Regionals (22nd/3rd 16:24)

4. Morgan Cupp, Sr Mechanicsburg (3 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 7 (+3)
States Finish: 4th 15:58
Districts Finish: 1st 16:04

Key Invitationals
PTXC (8th/4th 16:21)
CR Invitational (2nd 16:08)
Carlisle (2nd 15:24)
Mid Penns (1st 15:58)
FL Regionals (25th/4th 16:26)

3. Isaac Davis, Sr Jersey Shore (4 AA)
Preseason Rank: 8 (+5)
States Finish: 1st 15:56
Districts Finish: 1st 15:58

Key Invitationals
Foundation (1st 16:01)
Shikellamy (1st 15:39)

2. Noah Beveridge, Sr Butler (7 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 2
States Finish: 2nd 15:57
Districts Finish; 1st 15:47

Key Invitationals
McDowell (1st)
Mack Cooper (1st 15:46)

1. Rusty Kujdych, Sr Neshaminy (1 AAA)
Preseason Rank: 1
States Finish: 1st 15:47
Districts Finish: 1st 15:11

Key Invitationals
PTXC (5th/1st 15:55)
Briarwood (1st 15:51)
Foundation (1st 16:14)
Paul Short (2nd/1st 15:01)
Manhattan (4th/1st 12:24)
Suburbans (1st 15:27)

FL Regionals (8th/1st 15:51)