Coach Hill's 2011 State Predictions
I like to do this just for fun. Coaches, athletes, parents, & fans, take it for what you will. It is one persons thoughts and
comments on the State XC outcomes and maybe you'll view them somewhat biased.  I am obsessive compulsive about the
sport of Cross-Country and can tell you the name and faces of the top 30 kids in each division so I think it is a pretty
accurate evaluation of  State XC. Here is last year results of my picks, I picked 5 of the 8 team champs,
and 5 of the 8
individual champs.  Well, have fun with it, use it to motivate yourself or your athletes or throw it in the trash.
2A Predictions
2A Girls
Teams: Soda led by a bunch of Freshman won their 5th State Title last year and those same girls with the addition of a
ex-volleyball player C. Simmons look unbeatable again this year
.  The only team that appears to have an outside shot at
upsetting Soda this year is the Firth girls (who I miss a great deal). They are very  solid and led by a great senior in Camille
Jolley.  Gooding has made some steps as of late and look like trophy contenders, and could possibly pull and upset if the
others were to falter.
I would have to say the smart money is on Soda.  They will be going after a their 6th straight State
Title only two other girls teams have accomplished this feat (Twin Falls 1974-1979) (Bear Lake 2003-2008).
We will see
Saturday!!  
My Trophy Picks: 1st Soda, 2nd Firth, 3rd Gooding., 4th New Plymouth
Individuals: Defending State Champion Butte's Carly Hansen is back and just a Junior.  An injury this summer has slowed
her a little, but never count her out, as she is one of the toughest runners around and always races great when it counts.
 
The f
avorite is senior Tylee Newman of West Jefferson.  She has dominated the 1A/2A ranks this year and ran a very fast
19:40 in the Elite race a Firman.  However, not too far behind her time in the Division 2 race was ex-volleyball player and
Soda's fastest Cierra Simmons and volleyballer, Gooding's Rachel Youren in 19:50 and 19:52 respectfully.  Both won their
District meets easily and have the talent to pull off the upset of the senior.  There are a few others that on the right day might
run to the win; Korbin Traughber (Butte) running very well lately, Cayla Smeltzer (Potlatch) an relative unknown much like
another Potlatch runner that went on to win 3 Titles Greta Johnson, Camille Jolley (Firth) ever so talented.  I'm sure o
ne of
these above should win, but there are alway some surprises
.
My Picks: 1. Tylee Newman (WJ)  2.Cierra Simmons  3. Carly Hansen (Butte)
2A Boys
Teams: There is really no clear favorite to win this Division this year. Generally studying the results and head-to-head races
one team will stand out as the best team on paper.  This season there just isn't one team that is really head and shoulders
above the rest. After Bob Firman the Soda boys grabbed the #1 ranking and look to be the best in the class, but there
were no northern schools in the race to really help in common opponent criteria.  Cd'A Charter looks good on paper and
had a good District meet as did Grangeville, but I don't think they have enough to win it all.  The team that I think could win
it all is 1A Greenleaf Friends, they have shown flashes of greatness and have depth which could play a big role in the race.  
Declo is another team that could surprise Saturday, they have a good front runner and solid squad.  Challis has the best 3
man team, but 3 or 4 is a lonely number in XC.
 This is a tough pick and could go a number of ways.
My Trophy Picks: 1st Soda, 2nd Greenleaf Friends, 3rd Declo, 4th Gooding.
Individuals: Can Dylan Crevelt (Cascade) defend his title?  He is running well and is one of the clear favorites, but not the
favorite
.  Ranked #1 is Tyler Jaszkowiak (Challis) and although he finished a meer 13th last year, he has not lost to a
1A/2A runner this year.  Tyler easily won Bob Firman (Crevelt ran in the Elite race) and has not been seriously challenged
since September 9th.  This may be a good thing for confidence or a bad thing for growth.  Watching him dominate the past
2 months I think he is the real deal and favorite to win.  There are a few others that could challenge these two; Tyler Olson
(West Side) a senior running very well, Trevor Anderson (Declo) a little unknown but a darkhorse.  This I think this the
short list of candidates for State Champ, but many others could win.

My Picks: 1. Tyler Jaszkowiak (Challis), 2. Dylan Crevelt (Cascade), 3. Tyler Olson (West Side)
3A Predictions
3A Girls
Teams: Timberlake has to be the favorite as they have now won two State Titles and returned almost everyone from last
years team
.  They beat Sugar-Salem the #2 ranked team by 15 points at Firman earlier this year.  They have a individual
title contender and a great pack, so it should be an easy pick here.
 The problem is I am now coaching  at Sugar-Salem
and my daughter runs for Sugar, so I have a difficult time picking them to win.  It really is a two team race for the blue
trophy, as no other team has shown they can contend with these two teams.  At Firman Timberlake's #5 bet Sugar's #5 by
about a minute and that is what made the difference there.  Each teams #5 has improved but on paper Sugar's #5 has
improved move and decreased the team 1-5 gap the most, so I feel it is going to be an incredible battle that may come
down to even their 6th woman.  I'm picking Timberlake since they have earned it with there body of work, but can't wait
for Saturday.

My Trophy Picks: 1st Timberlake, 2nd Sugar, 3rd Snake River, 4th Teton.
Individuals: Since her dominating win last year, Alice Keller (Salmon) has simply done a few amazing things like: 2nd at
Simplot in the Mile (5:09), tore it up at BYU Invite, Mile champ (5:05), 2nd in 3200 (10:57), 2nd in 800m (2:15), 4 Idaho
State gold medals in track and set a new State 800m record, and last but not least set a new record at BC-XC camp this
summer on the conquer yourself run. That is just a few of the amazing races she has strung together over the past year.  So
yes she is the Big Favorite.  If there is anyone that could possibly knock her off the list is short.  Marquita Palmer (Weiser)
2009 State Champ, Ashley George (Timberlake), and Katelyn Hill & Oliva Redd from Sugar.  They might surprise, if Alice
has an off day.

My Picks: 1. Alice Keller (Salmon), 2. Marquita Palmer (Weiser), 3. Ashley George (Timberlake), 4. Katelyn Hill (Sugar)
3A Boys
Teams: At the beginning of the year I predicted Teton and possibly Buhl would battle for the State Title, but Buhl hasn't
ran the way I thought they might with the addition of Lundgren as he spent the year working through an injury.  Snake River
is probably the biggest surprise of the year, but is no where good enough to challenge Teton.  Teton winning this one is
probably the easiest pick of the year.  They have up front guys and a great pack time.  Their top 5 should make the top 20
making them pretty much untouchable.  The one unknown team is Bonners Ferry, they look very strong against their
District schools, but didn't come south and race so all we have to go on is the common opponent of Timberlake.  Using that
common opponent Teton appears safe, but once again I love the underdog and their hunger to win.  

My Trophy Picks: 1. Teton, 2. Bonners Ferry, 3. Snake River, 4. Salmon
Individuals: As easy as the team pick was in this division the individual race may be the most open.  There is no one
standout, but a bunch of really good runners.
Caleb Moosman (Teton) is the top returner from last year, and a number of
underclassmen were right behind him.  
Brandon Garner (Sugar), Nathan Crane (BL), State Track Champ Wesley Kelly
(Kimberly), and
Micah Krmpotich (Bonners). This should be the group I choose from, but a new comer from Snake River
(James Withers) I think is the man to beat.  No one in this division has beat him yet this year.  He seems to have flown
under the radar so far, but he will have a big target on his back Saturday.  One other runner with a target is freshman Billy
Godfrey (Salmon), who last week simply took off and beat a loaded field at District VI. He has a shot of being the first
freshman boy to win a State Title, but I think one of the others above will simply be to strong.

My Pick: 1. James Withers (Snake River), 2. Brandon Garner (Sugar), 3. Caleb Moosman (Teton), 4. Cameron Bishoff
(Teton)
.
4A Predictions
4A Girls
Teams: This again appears to be an easy pick.  Bishop Kelly returns almost their entire squad that won State in 2010. They
put their top 5 in the top 17 at District III, which is without doubt the toughest District in the State in 4A. They really have no
weakness and the rest of the State is a ways back.  There are a few teams that maybe could win if BK falls apart: Mountain
Home
, Kuna, and Hillcrest.  Mountain Home has improved the most in the past weeks, but it would take a huge step to
knock off BK.  Hillcrest 1-2-3 at Districts, but they lack that 4-5 punch.  Kuna seems to always have great runners that
step-up at State, but it would take a small miracle for them to win, so my pick has to be.

My Trophy Picks: 1st Bishop Kelly  2. Hillcrest, 3. Kuna, 4. Mountain Home.
Individuals: If you remember I said last year that I would not pick anyone to beat Emily Nist again after having picked it
wrong when she was a freshman and sophomore.  Well last year I picked Nist and she had a rare off race losing to
Mackenzie Chojnacky (Jerome).  This year there seems to be no one that I think could threaten a run to her third State Title,
something very few have accomplished in Idaho History.  I will throw out a few that might make it a race: Sierra Manzer
(Kuna), Briana Tiffany (BK), and Mikesell Clegg (Jerome).  These are the next best runners and will work hard to chase Nist.

My Pick:  1. Emily Nist (BK), 2.Sierra Manzer (Kuna) 3. Mikesell Clegg (Jerome), 4. Briana Tiffany (BK).
4A Boys
Teams: Of all the year of doing predictions this has to be the most difficult one to pick ever.  There is just no team that has
been consistent enough to even give me a clue who to pick.  One week Jerome looked good, then Hillcrest ran great at
Firman, then Pocatello seemed to be the up and coming team, and now Rigby and Preston have incredible District meets.  
This is only 5 of about 7 or 8 teams that might pull off the win.  
Guessing who will win this is truly a guess.  Twin Falls,
Bishop Kelly, and Kuna are the other 3 teams.  Preston may be the team that has improved the most and looking like they
are peaking at the right time.  I really think
Hillcrest and Rigby have the best shot of winning it, but that is merely an opinion,
because non of their body of work prove they are consistent enough to pick them to win State.
 I'm here to pick a winner,
so here I go
, but it will most likely be completely wrong.
My Pick:  1. Hillcrest, 2. Rigby, 3. Preston, 4. Pocatello.
Individuals: This is just opposite of the 3A boys where the team pick was easy and the individual pick a sheer guess.  
Here the team pick is a sheer shot in the dark, but defending champ Erik Harris (Twin Falls) has shown
to be the best in the
State at almost any distance.  From 100 meters to 5k I would not want to race him (Oh wait I'm slow).  However there is
one small problem with my sure prediction and that is a little Freshman from Pocatello named Elijah Armstrong.  He is for
real, and has proved it with stellar times everywhere he has raced.  He hasn't had a bad race all year, and Harris barely
outkicked him at Bob Firman.  
He is another freshman with a shot to be the first freshman boys State Champ.  A couple
others that won there District Meets and look great Albert De Los Reyes (Caldwell)
and Jake Powell (Hillcrest).
My Picks: 1. Erik Harris (Twin Falls), 2. Elijah Armstrong (Pocatello) 3. Albert De Los Reyes (Caldwell), 4.Jake Powell
(Hillcrest).
5A Predictions
5A Girls
Teams: This is going to be the best race of the day!!  I'm glad I can sit back after watching my teams run and just watch
and enjoy.
 In Utah last week two nationally ranked team raced with American Fork beating Davis by 2 points.  
They each put their top 5 in the top 12 places, basically there was no one else even in the race.  
This could very well
be the case with Boise and Mountain View this year in 5A.  It probably won't be to the extent of the Utah race, but it will
be a point for point battle.  There is one other team that might break up this little party, that is Couer d'Alene.  They swept
their Region Meet, and have a top ranked runner with a small gap time and getting smaller.  It is going to be fun to watch
this race unfold.  Boise is probably the favorite with their win last week at District without one of their top girls, but I won't
be surprised if  MV was playing it cool until this week.  Time will tell, and it is just a few days away.  Based on the past few
weeks of races I pick this way.

My Trophy Picks: 1. Boise,  2. Mountain View, 3. Couer d'Alene, 4. Eagle.
Individuals: Once again Idaho has a great deal of talent in the 5A field.  This time a bunch of Freshman are stepping
forward to seize the spotlight.  Emily Hamlin (Boise) has gone on a tear with the best in 5A at Firman, Twin Falls, and
Districts. Right behind her was freshman Mikayla Malaspina (Vallivue) who also has proven to be a real threat. Another
great freshman and race favorite is Josie Brown (CDA).  She was out leaned at Firman by hundredths of a second by E.
Hamlin.  Freshman run dumb, which make them incredible at State, and one
of these 3 freshman could be the next star of
5A Cross Country.  A few others to never count out: Sam McKinnon(MV)
,  Jordan Mathes (MV), Victoria O'Neil.         
Good Luck to all.
My Pick:  1. Josie Brown (CDA), 2. Emily Hamlin (Boise), 3. Mikayla Malaspina (Vallivue), 4. Sam McKinnon(MV).
5A Boys
Teams: I usually say this is the hardest one to pick.  I've said year after year that you could draw a name out of a hat and
probably be as accurate as I have been.  But this year, there is a favorite and they have shown they are a step above the
rest of the field.  Eagle the defending State Champs have a very strong and deep team.  In fact their JV could beat 80% of
the teams in the state. CDA could surprise as they did sweep their Region and do look tough as the #2 ranked team in the
division, but I don't think they have enough to knock off Eagle.  However, they have stayed hidden in North Idaho slowly
getting better and not having to battle the Boise Valley schools each week.  This could be an advantage or a disadvantage,
we will see.  A few others that I like here is Boise, Rocky Mountain, Mountain View, and Skyline.  Each of these teams on
a given day could steal the coveted Blue Trophy.
My Trophy Pick: 1. Eagle, 2. Coeur d'Alene, 3. Boise, 4. Mt. View.
Individuals: We have a nationally ranked runner in this race, and he is a huge favorite to win a 2nd State Title.  I am sure
glad Dallin was not disqualified like the rest of his team from racing in the post-season, that would have been a crime.  
My
heart goes out to the Highland runners
.  Dallin Farnsworth (Highland) should win this race just like he won Bob Firman
a month ago.  At Firman he was with the leaders from the start, and with a mile to go was all alone.  I expect a similar race
this weekend.  I know a few will go with Dallin and make it a race early, but his strength I feel will put him alone late in the
race.  Justin Ross (RM), Thomas Rigby and Cody Curtis (CDA) will make it a close race for awhile, but I think Dallin has
just been through to many big race to be defeated.  
These are the only runners I see on the same radar screen of Dallin.     
Fastest race of the day for sure!!
My Pick: 1. Dallin Farnsworth (Highland), 2. Justin Ross (Rocky Mountain), 3. Thomas Rigby (Boise), 4. Cody Curtis
(CDA)
.
I hope you don't take any of this to seriously, since I've thrown out so much
nonsense, and am bias. Good Luck to all Teams!!!!
First, for those who do not know I made a move this year.  I left Firth this year
and have been helping coach at Sugar-Salem High this fall where my own
children are running.