|Coach Hill's 2013 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 a little obsessive compulsive
about the sport of Cross-Country and can tell you the name and faces of most of the top 30 kids in each division so I think
it is a pretty accurate evaluation of State XC. Here is how well I did last year with my picks, I picked 6 of the 8 team
champs, and 6 of the 8 individual champs. Well, have fun with it, use it to motivate yourself or your athletes or throw it in
|Teams: Soda Springs won their 7th straight State Title last year in Lewiston last year. They have now won more
consecutive titles than any other girls team in Idaho History, and are approaching the overall streaks set by Jerome and
Firth of 9 consecutive titles. This senior class of Soda girls might be the best ever and I will predict on Saturday nobody
comes close. On a good day they will put all 7 in the top 20, on a bad day they will still likely put 5 in the top 20. They are
led by Senior and favorite Kelsey Yamauchi and a very large pack of strong runners close behind like seniors H. Call and
the Nielsen twins. Teams that will challenge Soda are Firth led by K. Gardner, Melba led by the Manzer sisters, and a
young but talented Salmon team. We will see Saturday if Soda can extend their streak!!
My Trophy Picks: 1st Soda, 2nd Firth, 3rd Melba, 4th Salmon.
|Individuals: Here is one I missed last year as I picked Cierra Simmons from Soda over Sierra Manzer who moved down
from the 4A division running for Melba. Sierra Manzer ran a great race as the pressure seemed to be a little too much for
Simmons as she dropped back when the pace got going. Sierra Manzer is back and the other pre-race favorite, along with
2012 runner-up Kelsey Yamauchi (Soda). I could see Manzer & Yamauchi going out fast again and separating themselves
from the field but I think neither will falter and we will witness a great battle. There are a few others that on the right day
might stick with them and run to the win; a few freshman that are darkhores like Morgan Smith (Salmon), Sophie
McPhilomy (CDA) the rest are Soda girls like H. Call or J. Nielsen (I put J. since there is a Jamie and Jennifer and it might
be one or both of them) . I believe this is the short list of possible winners. I'm sure one of these above will win, but there
are alway some surprises, and I have been wrong before.
My Picks: 1. Kelsey Yamauchi (Soda) 2. Sierra Manzer (Melba) 3. Hailey Call (Soda)
4. Morgan Smith (Salmon)
|Teams: Last year I picked Soda and they did disappoint, another one of my wrong guesses. Logos High (New Idhsaa
Member) had an incredible race and pulled off the upset of Soda with stronger up front running. Logos returns most of
their team in 2013 but have not really shined this year, in fact CDA Charter has been consistently beating them this year and
has to be one of this years favorite. However I still think I will have to chose Soda again this year, they just look too strong
1-7 and a little better up front this year. Logos does have one of the race favorite Paul Ryan who is just returning to race
shape and could lead them back, but likewise CDA Charter has Leif Fredericks who could also win Saturday. Soda don't
really have a potential champ but their team pack is just too good. So I think I will pick Soda as favorite, and they
shouldn't disappoint. Another team that may surprise is Salmon led by Billy Godfrey.
My Trophy Picks: 1. Soda, 2. CDA Charter, 3. Logos, 4. Salmon.
|Individuals: Last year I said there was a clear favorite in Sophomore Paul Ryan (Logos), but Conrad Larson (VC) ran a
smarter race by just tacking onto Ryan and then beating him down the stretch. This year Ryan has been out and not racing
until the past couple weeks. So I thought L. Fredericks (CDA) was the favorite until last week at District when P. Ryan
knocked him off and put the bullseye back on him as favorite. I think now Ryan will win, but a few spoilers are of course
L. Fredericks (CDA), Billy Godfrey (Salmon), Jacob Dalton (Dietrich) and Joshua Ball (Soda). These runners look
closest on paper, and one might step-up and really prove me wrong. That is why we run the race.
My Picks: 1. Paul Ryan (Logos), 2. Leif Fredericks (CDA-C), 3. Josh Dalton (Dietrich),
4. Billy Godfrey (Salmon).
|Teams: Last year Sugar-Salem ended Timberlake's streak at 3. They put their top 5 in the top 20 and their top 7 in the
top 25, and only lost one to graduation. New freshman Shaylee Hill has stepped in and filled those shoes well, so they are
even stronger this year. So Sugar-Salem is the clear favorite in 3A this year. The teams that will be chasing Sugar and
could pull off the upset if they falter are Snake River, Timberlake, or Shelley. All three teams have a strong group with top
runner leading the way. It will all come down to their 5th girl, each have a bit of a gap. The team that can close the gap the
best Saturday will have the best shot of knock Sugar off . They are all solid but would really have to step-up big to
challenge for the Blue trophy.
My Trophy Picks: 1. Sugar-Salem, 2. Snake River, 3. Timberlake, 4. Shelley.
|Individuals: Defending champ Olivia Redd (Sugar) after an incredible tarck season has not been beat by a 3A girl this
year. In the spring she broke a 30 year old mile record set by Idaho XC legend Ellen Lyon (1st Footlocker Champion) so
she should have all the confidence in the world and is the big favorite. If I were to pick another with a shot it is definitely
Rachel Youren (Good) she is a real competitor and a threat. These two are the favorites, but a couple other girls look to
threaten the dominance. Snake River's Quincy VanOrden, Parma's Harlie Sorrell and newcomer from Montana who ran
her first race for Shelley just a month ago, Cambria Hassell are all running very well. One of these could be a strong threat
on Saturday, but Redd is the clear favorite.
My Picks: 1. Olivia Redd (Sugar), 2. Rachel Youren (Gooding), 3. Quincy Van Orden (SR),
4. Harlie Sorrell (Parma) 5. Cambria Hassell (Shelley).
|Teams: Teton has won 4 straight and are strong again having survived a tough District battle, but Shelley has come out of
nowhere to grab the #1 ranking and appear as the favorite this year. Their one weakness is they are only 5 deep, if one of
them falter on Saturday they will be in trouble. They are led by race favorite Austin Stewart who I doubt will have an off
day as he has been solid all year and a big reason they are running as well as they have this year. I can see a few other
teams that are equally strong and have a little more depth, Snake River has a ton of talent in Joseph Van Orden, the
Thomas brothers and Whitter. Their weakness has been a little inconsistency and a 5th man. If they are on and their 5th
man steps up as he has the past couple weeks, Watch Out!!! The unknown is Timberlake as they have only one
head-to-head at Bob Firman. They didn't run real well there and were close to Snake River, so they likewise could really
mix things up Saturday. Teton has improved a great deal and is the other threat. Who will win depends on who's #5 has
the best day as none of these teams are very deep.
My Trophy Picks: 1. Shelley, 2. Snake River, 3. Teton, 4. Timberlake.
|Individuals: I said this was locked up last year and J. Whithers (SR) would dominate, which he did for the first 4980
meters before the wheels came off. I'm not sure if the pressure of favorite got to him or what, but he was crushing the field
and just couldn't run the last few meters. Caleb Moosman (Tet) and J. Van Orden (SR) both amazingly passed a staggering
Whithers with Moosman winning the title. This year Austin Stewart (Shelley) might be as big a favorite as Whithers was
last year, but I think there are a few a little closer to him this year. J. Van Orden (SR) is the next best and has been running
incredible as of late, Gabe Moore (Filer) is likewise an incredible runner and dominated all these guys on the track. I think
these two have the best shot of upsetting Stewart if he falters.
My Picks: 1. Austin Stewart (Shelley), 2. Joseph Van Orden (SR), 3. Gabe Moore (Filer) 4. E. Garcia (Good)
|Teams: I stated this was wide open and almost impossible to pick a favorite last year. This year is even worse. I really
don't see a standout team and have had a real hard time ranking 4A girls this year. Pocatello, I guess is the team that looks
best on paper right now. Bishop Kelley has stepped up in the past weeks and might be the darkhorse of the year. With the
diversity of the our State from north to south I don't know how Sandpoint and Moscow compare with these two. I'm sure
that like last year I will probably pick this one wrong. Middleton surprised us all and ran great. Which team will step-up this
year. I think Pocatello even without the injured defending champ R. McGovern will win the coveted Blue Trophy.
My Trophy Picks: 1. Pocatello, 2. Bishop Kelly, 3. Preston, 4. Sandpoint.
|Individuals: Just like the team battle I can't find a girl that has just dominated this Division this year. In fact every girl on last
years predictions are gone or injured so who do I pick? McGovern (Poc) is injured, the Schell sisters are gone which makes
the top returner Caitlyn Elgan (Preston). She is one of the favorites along with Molly Vitale-Sullivan (Poc). These two have
battled all year in the south and will surely battle Saturday. Jocelyn Barber (Skyview) has dominated the Treasure Valley
and is a top contender. Katherine Ruck (Moscow) and Mikhaela Woodward (Sandpoint) are the best up north and should
mix it up Saturday. One of these runners above should win it all. So here is how I think it will go!!
My Pick: 1. Caitlyn Elgan (Preston), 2.K. Ruck (Moscow) 3. M. Vitale-Sullivan (Poc), 4. J. Barber (Skyview).
|Teams: I can go to the bank on pick. Pocatello has 5 guys that could be in the top 20. In fact I believe they are the best
team in the State in any classification. They have won the last two titles and will win their 3rd this week. There is not
another 4A boys team that will even be close. Bishop Kelly should be the closest with Jerome and Twin Falls battling for
the other trophies. Nampa could also fight for a trophy if they have a good day.
My Pick: 1. Pocatello, 2. Kuna, 3. Bishop Kelly, 4. Moscow.
|Individuals: Just as big a favorite as Pocatello is to win the team title, Pocatello's defending state champ Elijah Armstrong
is even a bigger favorite to win and will probably run the fastest time of the day. He is on track to do something that has
never been done in Idaho history, a four time champ. Probably the best chance of anyone to outrun Armstrong is
Sandpoint's Sam Levora, he was within 15 seconds of Armstrong at Pre National in Portland a month ago. I think he has
the ability to stay close but Armstrong is a strong runner and this is a strength type course at elevation, so Armstrong should
win. I have seen stranger things happen, but I'm putting my money on Armstrong. A couple other guys that could battle are
M. Schenk (TF), E. Nordquist (Jerome), C. Biedenbach (TF) and A. De Los Reyes (Nampa).
My Picks: 1. Elijah Armstrong (Pocatello) 2. Sam Levora (Sandpoint), 3. M. Schenk (Twin Falls), 4. A. De Los
|Teams: Couer d' Alene had a dream season in 2012. They dominated their District, then the 5A State, and then the NXN
Regional meet and earned the coveted trip to Portland. They lost one of their top 5, but they have filled her shoes with a
new freshman and look great once again to do it is year. I pick them to dominate again. The next best team seems to be
Idaho Falls out of the 6th District and Hillcrest ran well last week and could also contend for a trophy. Usually District 3
has a few standout teams but this year have just not been real dominate. Boise, Mountain View and Rocky Mountain are
the best of the Treasure Valley and could really surprise and surely will. If CDA falters anyone of these could pull off the
upset. So I'm here to pick so I think it will go this way Saturday.
My Trophy Picks: 1. Couer d'Alene, 2. Idaho Falls, 3. Boise, 4. Rocky Mountain.
|Individuals: The big 3 from 2011 and 2012 are now Juniors (Hamlin-Boise, Malaspina-Vallivue, Brown-CdA) and those
same three girls look great again this year and should be in the top 5 in 2013. However, none of these are the favorites as
Sam McKinnon (MV) has just been incredible all year. She dominated the Tiger-Grizz meet earlier this year and every
meet she has run this year except Pre Nationals where she was 3rd. I'm picking her to win again by 20+ seconds. I'm not
counting out Emily Hamlin (Boise) as see has won the last two State titles and always runs great when it counts. There are
a couple others that should also be fighting to make top 5 besides the big 3 and McKinnon. Freshman Emily Callahan
(CdA) won the District I-II title over Josie Brown, and Page Dilmore (RM) could also prove a threat.
My Pick: 1. Sam McKinnon (MV), 2. Emily Hamlin (Boise), 3. Mikayla Malaspina (Vallivue),
4. Emily Callahan (CdA).
|Teams: I always say this is the hardest one to pick. Again this could be the case. Mountain View has proved the best so
far in the State and given me no reason to doubt that they will get it done Saturday. However, there are just too many
good teams and too many variables that play into a title. Capital, Rocky Mountain, Hillcrest, Vallivue, Boise and Idaho
Falls all could have the race of their lives and pull off the upset. Well, I am going to pick the favorite Mountain View with
Capital a close second, after that it could be anybody. Hillcrest, Idaho Falls and Madison have also really stepped-up and
could be the darkhorses here. I will now try picking this one.
My Trophy Pick: 1. Mountain View, 2. Capital, 3. Rocky Mountain, 4. Hillcrest, 5. Idaho Falls.
|Individuals: Defending Champ Dwain Stucker (Mer) is back and one of the favorites. But the clear favorite is Andrew
Rafla (Timberline) who didn't even compete at State last year. He did have a crazy good track season and has looked the
best this fall. I pick Rafla, after him Stucker, Capell (MV), Wiberg (Capital), Little (LC) or Kilgore (Highland) have the
best shot to make top 5. This is not as tough to pick as the past . So I will try and put them in order.
My Pick: 1. Andrew Rafla (Tim), 2. Dwain Stucker (Mer), 2. Zach Wiberg (Cap), 3. Jared Capell (MV),
4. Kyler Little (LC).
|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!!!!