2011 Missouri State Boy's Cross Country Rankings (Sept. 14th)
September 19, 2011Get In The Game Saint Louis Magazine
TOP 10 BOYS TEAMS
#1) ROCK BRIDGE- Going 2-6-10 through three at Forest Park brought us back to the days of Potosi's 2006 squad with Mathis, Thebeau and Swearingen. In fact, dare we say, these guys might be even better. Already ranked in the top 20 in the country look for them to prove themselves once again at the Palatine (IL) invite the last weekend in September.
#2) ROCKHURST- If there was any question about Rockhurst coming into the year it was how they would look at the four and five spots. After all, we knew they wouldn't have a problem up front. They answered that question in a very positive way at Forest Park with a 1:30 spread and a five man at 16:40. They've got reinforcements on the way as well with JV winner Curran Steck on the mend.
#3) SLUH- SLUH was a bit of a surprise to some at Forest Park, grabbing third ahead of Illinois powerhouse O'Fallon. The Jr. Bills put their top four runners within five seconds of each other at 30, 32, 33 and 34. Their fifth man was just a few spots back in 45th. Overall, their 22-second spread is frighteningly good but they will need a lower stick up front to catch Rockhurst and they'll need something else entirely to catch Rock Bridge.
#4) WEST PLAINS- The Zizzers won the Jim Marshall Capital City Classic in week one, as they typically do, but times were slow due to the heat. Tough to say what might have been but they're the Zizzers so they get the benefit of the doubt.
#5) EUREKA- Eureka appears to be as good as advertised with wins at Fleet Feet South and the Stan Nelson to open the season.
#6) FESTUS – Festus stepped up in a big way at Forest Park where they finished sixth led by the 1-2 punch of Drew White and Shane Brown. They will be tough to beat in Class 3.
#7) MARQUETTE- The Mustangs took a narrow loss at the hands of #5 Eureka in week one but then finished a very solid seventh at Forest Park without potential low scorer Jeff Orf. When Orf returns, which should be soon, they may climb up the rankings.
#8) PARKWAY WEST- The Longhorns have made a habit of winning the Parkway Quad to open the season which they did again this year. They followed it up with a runner-up finish at the Stan Nelson behind #5 Eureka.
#9) LEE'S SUMMIT NORTH- The boys from LSN won their home invite in week one but we don't think we've seen their top squad yet. When we do they may vault up the rankings.
#10 TIE) LIBERTY - Liberty may have lost at home to #1 Rock Bridge but that's nothing to hang your head about. Led by individual #6 Shannon Hall the Blue Jays appear headed for yet another solid year.
#10 TIE) PARKWAY CENTRAL - For many years it was the Parkway Central ladies that grabbed the headlines but the boys have the goods this year and they showed it with a runner-up finish at the Parkway Quad and a ninth-place finish at Forest Park.
TOP 15 BOYS
#1) Zach Herriott, SR, Rockhurst- Wow. In our six years of putting together the Big River Rankings Herriott's performance at Forest Park may very well have been the best regular-season race we've seen. The Rockhurst senior blitzed the first mile in 4:38, daring anyone to go with him and no one could. His 15:10 is a national level time that immediately makes him one of the best runners in the midwest.
#2) Caleb Wilfong, SR, Rock Bridge- Wilfong showed an awful lot of guts coming back to grab second over a determined Drew White in the final strides at Forest Park. His 15:18 may have been overshadowed a bit by Herriott's run but it was mighty impressive nonetheless.
#3) Drew White, SR, Festus- White ran a big PR at Forest Park, crossing the line in 15:19 for a close third.
#4) Drew Cargill, SR, West Plains– Cargill ran 16:32 on a tough course and a very hot day to win comfortably at the Jim Marshall Capital City Classic in week one.
#5) Brandon Shemonia, SR, Scott City– Shemonia is no longer a surprise and we figured the Scott City senior would run well at Forest Park but 15:26 was outstanding. His final mile may well have been the fastest in the field.
#6) Shannon Hall, SR, Liberty– Hall, just 70th at last year's State Meet, finished ahead of #7 Jordan Cook and #11 Nathan Keown from Rock Bridge at his home invite.
#7) Jordan Cook, SR, Rock Bridge– It is just frightening to think that Rock Bridge put two guys under 15:30 at Forest Park but that's exactly what happened. Cook's 15:28 makes him a contender for top three in Class 4.
#8) Noah Kauppila, SO, Marquette- The lone sophomore in the top ten at Forest Park, Kauppila laid down a school record 15:37 for seventh place overall.
#9) Kolton Sheldon, SR, Lee's Summit North– It doesn't look like Sheldon has raced yet. Let us know if we are wrong on that. Maybe they are saving him? Maybe he's still coming back from injury? We hope to find out soon.
#10) Shane Brown, SR, Festus- Completely off of our radar in the pre-season, Brown killed it at Forest Park with his ninth place finish in 15:44. He gives Festus a big 1-2 punch.
#11) Nathan Keown, JR, Rock Bridge- The third member of Rock Bridge's terrific trio Keown rolled a 15:45 at Forest Park and added just ten points to their amazingly low team score.
#12) Nicolas Stewart, JR, McCluer North- Stewart seems to be a bit under-appreciated but his 15:46 at Forest Park should wake everyone up to the fact that this kid is the real deal.
#13) Ethan Lambert, SR, Eureka– Lambert was second to Kauppila in week one at Fleet Feet and then took home top honors at the Stan Nelson in week two.
#14) Eric Sivill, SR, Parkway Central- Sivill had a big week finishing first at the Parkway Quad and then 13th at Forest Park four days later.
#15) Amos Bartelsmeyer, JR, MICDS– Beware all Class 3 runners. The former soccer player is only a few weeks into his first cross country season and he's already broken 16 minutes. His 15:54 for 14th at Forest Park may just have scratched the surface of what this guy can do.
Honorable Mention: Ian Fraizer, Billy Leighton, Kent Mastroianni, Ryan McAnany, Michael McCulloch