Team by team outlooks
Coach: Geo Tam
The Scorecard: Boulder’s boys team has a lot to be excited for after placing 10th last fall. Lukas Haug is back after he finished 23rd in 5A, and the Panthers graduated only one senior from their top seven. Meaning guys like Carson McCue, Slaiman Hadi, Colter Oroke, Gavin Geer and Stefan Haug were all positioned to return and a few of them could round out the top-five scoring runners in 2020. Over on the girls’ side, Stella Vieth’s development will be intriguing to track after she finished 37th at the state meet. Bettina Burgess and Lindsay Cook will be two others to watch as they should help the Panthers’ chances at qualifying for state after narrowly missing the cut a year ago.
Coach: Greg Weich
The Scorecard: James Thomas could be a contender to win the boys’ Class 5A meet after taking 18th a year ago. As could Sierra Parks, who took 17th on the girls’ side. Last year, the Eagles finished seventh in girls but did not qualify a team for boys. Back on the girls’ side are Maelynn Higgins, Caroline Daugherty, Paisley Williamson and Norah Powers. The boys bring back Logan Stodden, who was 54th at state. “Girls will be a solid team with five of the state runners returning,” Weich said. “Their goal is to be a top-5 team in 5A. Boys will be much improved with the goal to get a state qualifying position.”
Coach: Alan Culpepper
The Scorecard: The boys return Henry Murphy, Eric Sankey, Oliver Wright and Christian Castellino from the state team that finished sixth. The girls bring back Amelia DiGiano, Devin Murphy and Monet Castellino from a team that took fifth. For the boys, look for senior Victor Lita to make a nice jump this season and watch out for the progression of freshmen Jack Brown and Holden Krizek. Looking to fill in on the varsity side for the girls are Josephine Atkinson, Imani Fernandez-Gorbea, Allison Kirby, Leslie Janecek and Maddie Shove.
Coach: DJ Hummel and Lauren Hummel
The Scorecard: Ryan Montera finished 29th at the state meet a year ago and leads the returnees for the boys, who finished 14th. Tyler Spradling, Ethan Carpenter and Liam Simmons also return from that team. “The boys team is looking strong,” coach DJ Hummel said. “They have been running all summer and most of the spring … We are hoping to qualify them for state again and improve on our team place from last year.” With the girls, Mia Mraz, Peyton Meier and Erica Sexton are back from a team that took 13th. Added coach Lauren Hummel: “We have a strong group of freshmen girls joining us this season along with some returning swing varsity runners.”
Coach: Kent Rieder
The Scorecard: Sam Kapner is back for Monarch, which graduated six of its top seven runners on the boys’ side. As a freshman, Kapner took 137th at the state meet — sixth on the team — as the Coyotes finished 12th. A talent like sophomore Santiago Saenz should help with the turnover on the boys’ side. With the girls, look for a laundry list of runners to try and help send the Coyotes back to the state meet after missing it in 2019. They include Arianna Le, Chloe Smith, Emily Cameron, Amanda Rampy, Avery Richardson, Waverly Fisher, Piper Phillips and Teah Roberts.
Coach: Devin Rourke
The Scorecard: The Warriors boys have a lot to look forward to after placing sixth in Class 4A last season. Led by senior James Overberg, who placed eighth overall in 2019, the Warriors return all seven of their runners from last year’s state team in Overberg, Max Heins, John McGill, Ben Handwerker, Kai Smith, Harrison Freis-Levy and Robert Marquez. With that type of experience coming back, the Warriors should contend for a state title. The Centaurus girls team, which was ninth in 4A last fall, also returns its top three runners in Maggie McCleskey, Audrey O’Malley and Bailey Snyder.
Coach: Brandon Havard
The Scorecard: The Erie boys won league and regional titles last fall but graduated five of the seven runners who competed at state. Junior Luke Fritsche and sophomore Evan Kraus are back to lead the Tigers into a new conference in 2020. Both the Erie boys and girls hope to send teams to state and finish higher than last year, which should be easier for a Tigers girls squad that returns five runners — Emma Osborn, Lily Meskers, Isabelle Sease, Anais Garcia and Alyssa Dale — who ran at state last season.
Coach: Michele Blanken
The Scorecard: The Frederick boys placed ninth at regionals last season and will be looking to finish higher this fall. Junior Alex Carillo will be a top runner for the Warriors as they look to continue building their program the same way they have for the past several seasons. Frederick has no returning state qualifiers on either the boys or girls teams so there will be plenty of opportunity for younger new runners to step up and claim spots on the varsity team.
Coach: Scott Dickinson
The Scorecard: Longmont’s boys team claimed 14th place at last year’s state meet and four of the runners who helped them accomplish that feat — Connor McCormick, Dominic Warner, Andreas O’Malley and Jose Guevara — are back in 2020 and shooting for a top 10 finish. Dickenson called this year’s boys squad the most experienced he has had during his short tenure at Longmont and is excited to see what they do. With no returning state runners, the Longmont girls have a lot of athletes who are new to the sport and the young and hopeful team is aiming for a top six finish at regionals.
Coach: Chris Reynolds
The Scorecard: Last year, the Mead boys were second in their league, runners-up at regionals and ninth at the state meet. The Mavericks return their top three runners — Keegan Caldwell, Nathan Hoffman and Nolan Hoffman — from their 2019 state team. Reynolds said the Mead girls are showing marked improvement and he’s looking to see what young runners like Frances Hudson and Lauren Caldwell can accomplish. The Mavericks are optimistic about the upcoming unusual season on both sides and the solid crop of young runners they have on the team.
Coach: Kelly Christensen
The Scorecard: Bringing home matching Class 4A championships, the Niwot boys and girls dominated the 2019 state meet. But star runners Cruz Culpepper and Samrawit Dishon have graduated so the Cougars will be looking for new runners to step up and lead the way in 2020. The boys return four state qualifiers in Zane Bergen, Graden Rauba, Joaquin Herrer and Joey Hendershot, while the girls bring back five in Amelia Philofsky, Madison Shults, Taylor James, Eva Klingbeil and Eva Lennert. Defending their state titles is the goal on both sides and the Cougars have plenty of talent back in the mix to make those goals possible.
Silver Creek Raptors
Coach: Roger Powley
The Scorecard: Silver Creek’s girls team was 14th in Class 4A last season and has a strong core of runners returning that includes Cruzie Dudley, Elle Murray, Olivia Hinklin, Taylor Weiss and Riley Crawford. Powley said the Raptors girls are looking to build on last year’s regional and state performances, while the boys are looking at a bit of a rebuilding year. Senior Patrick Ash is Silver Creek’s lone returning state qualifier on the boys side and after placing 80th at state in 2019 will play a key role in the team’s success. Freshmen Simon Murray and Kendall Madine are in positions to make an immediate impact.
Coach: Kyle Fujimoto
The Scorecard: Despite everything that has been going on, Fujimoto said the Falcons had a great summer of training and can’t wait to show off their progress and the results of their hard work. The Falcons didn’t send anyone to state in 2019 but believe they have a shot this fall. On the boys side, JJ Romero and Zach Lahr will be runners to watch. For the girls, Jaicey Stanich and Paola Rubi can be expected to lead the team as the Falcons approach what will definitely be a different and interesting season.
Holy Family Tigers
Coach: Charles Shapiro
The Scorecard: The Holy Family girls were sixth at last year’s state meet and the boys placed 11th overall, and the Tigers have a boatload of talent coming back. Returning boys state qualifiers Jack Culp, Andrew Descalzo, Micah Munoz, Luke Hixson, Anthony Haberkorn, Jacob Vigil and Patrick Cavanaugh are back. For the girls, Evelyn Boys, Alyssa Wells, Alyssa Jany, Maddie Tapp and Summer Norwell are back from last year’s state team. First-year head coach Charles Shapiro said the Tigers also have depth the bolster their experience and are expecting to put together some impressive performances at state in October.
Jefferson Academy Jaguars
Coach: Ben Hershelman and Terry Witkowski
The Scorecard: The Jefferson Academy boys team is reloaded after placing 10th at state in 2019 with returning state qualifiers like Jacob Crookston, who was fifth individually, and Evan Mills back to set the pace as one of the best one-two punches in Class 3A. The Jaguars girls also had a good season last fall and with five members of that state team returning — Jocey Farhar, Tessa Stadler, Asha Stephens, Kate Giblin and Laura Kohler — they have high expectations in 2020. Hershelman said the team is excited about the development of its veterans and the injection of some fresh talent from the younger classes and other fall sports that were postponed because of COVID-19.
Peak to Peak Pumas
Coach: Jesse Fassler
The Scorecard: Ryan Kuykendall, Thomas Liu, Isaac Langer, Aidan Graziano and Aneesh Movva are all back from a Peak to Peak boys team that placed 20th in Class 3A last season. With that in mind, Fassler said the Pumas are looking to make major improvements in team finish, especially since they’ve added some depth this year as well. The girls team was battling injuries to some of its top runners going into regionals last fall and expects to place at state in 2020. They will be led by senior Allison Beasley, who placed sixth at state in 2019 and will be looking to win an individual title.
Prospect Ridge Academy Miners
Coach: Mary Marr
The Scorecard: Isabella Rueda is the Miners’ lone returning state qualifier following a 2019 season in which the girls were fifth and the boys were ninth at regionals. For the Prospect Ridge boys, seniors Axel Fuentes and Matt Yoho will lead the way. On the girls side, sophomore Elise Wheeler and freshman Avery Marr should be two of the team’s top runners despite their young age. Head coach Mary Marr said the Miners are excited about the team’s prospects this year and has set the goal of qualifying its first girls team for state this season. The boys team, she said, has also made huge strides over the summer and hopes to qualify a runner or two for state.
Dawson School Mustangs
Coach: Katie Boyle
The Scorecard: The Mustangs finished 16th at the state meet in girls and graduated their top runner in Bridget Bell. In 2020, they return junior Helen Leon, senior Breck Dunbar and sophomore Julia Bozzay from that group. The boys, meanwhile, did not send anyone to Colorado Springs last year — but Boyle & Co. seem to be excited about the potential of freshman Patricio Carreon, a name to keep an eye on. Throughout both teams, Boyle said the Mustangs have a nice mix of talent and “are sure to be a strong force on any course.”
Coach: Mark Roberts
The Scorecard: Lyons owned the Class 2A podium last fall with both the boys and girls winning state titles. Quin Gregg will go for her second straight state individual title for the girls. Hannah Thomas and Katie Roberts, meanwhile, will help flush out a team hoping to three-peat. The boys, on the other hand, lost a lot. “Three all-state runners” a lot. Gone is Isaac Roberts, the 2019 individual champ, as well as Simon Stone and Jordan Shackelford. However, they do return rising talent Cole Thomas, who is just a sophomore, and Arjen Wyjna and Bode Shiver.
Coach: Kira Badyrka
The Scorecard: Sensational runner Helen Cross is gone. Bummer. But the Panthers do return Eirwen McClish, Annabel Ivey, Ely Nitsch and Ivy Brundedge from the girls team that finished 12th at the 2A state meet. Junior Ben Nichols, meanwhile, will lead on the boys’ side. “I am expecting to have a wonderful season this year,” first-year coach Badyrka said. “We have a great mix of veteran and new runners and we are such a close-knit team.”
Shining Mountain Lions
Coach: Caileigh Colo
The Scorecard: It’s a clean slate for the Lions this fall. Colo, in her third year as coach, said her only returning runner is senior Mira Saliman. Last fall, Saliman was one of two all-league athletes for the Lions and was the team’s lone state qualifier, finishing 81st in Colorado Springs. Among her teammates, junior Kalea Zeender should be interesting to watch as maybe she can give Saliman a nice secondary punch. Colo also said the boys’ team features just two freshmen. She sounds eager to see how it all shapes out: “I’m looking forward to just having our team get out, race, and see what our team can do.”
Twin Peaks Timberwolves
Coach: Jillian Robinson
The Scorecard: The Timberwolves have a nice returning group on the boys’ side. Back from the state team that finished 15th are Giorgio Spensieri, who finished 47th as a freshman, as well as Aaron Jenkins, Erick Sickau and Matthew Louie. Others to watch include John “Jack” Ulmer, who Robinson said has had a strong summer. “Overall, we are aiming to be state qualifiers again this year and looking to make some noise at the state meet,” she said.
Bringing it home: 2019 state results
5A team champions: Arapahoe (girls) and Dakota Ridge (boys)
5A individual champions: Riley Stewart, Cherry Creek, and Cole Sprout, Valor Christian
4A team: Niwot (girls) and Niwot (boys)
4A individual: Samrawit Dishon, Niwot, and Cruz Culpepper, Niwot
3A team: The Classical Academy (girls) and Frontier Academy (boys)
3A individual: Sierra Bower, Basalt, and Mason Norman, The Classical Academy
2A team: Lyons (girls) and Lyons (boys)
2A individual: Quin Gregg, Lyons and Isaac Roberts, Lyons
Cream of the crop: 2019 BoCoPreps.com All-region team
Boys First Team (Name, 2019-20 class, school )
Cruz Culpepper, Sr., Niwot; Lukas Haug, Jr., Boulder; Parker Lee, Sr., Legacy; Henry Little, Sr., Monarch; Henry Murphy, Jr., Fairview; James Overberg, Jr., Centaurus; Isaac Roberts, Sr., Lyons; James Thomas, Jr., Broomfield.
Boys honorable mention
Zane Bergen, So., Niwot; Keegan Caldwell, Jr., Mead; Avery Conaghan, Sr., Monarch; Jacob Crookston, Jr., Jefferson Academy; Wiley Feiger, Sr., Fairview; Max Heins, Fr., Centaurus; Joey Hendershot, So., Niwot; Joaquin Herrera, Jr., Niwot; Luke Johnson, Sr., Monarch; Josh Klaus, Sr., Fairview; William Ledden, Sr., Peak to Peak; Connor McCormick, So., Longmont; Ryan Montera, Jr., Legacy; Grayden Rauba, Jr., Niwot; Gabriel Rueda, Sr., Prospect Ridge Academy; Simon Stone, Sr., Lyons; Henry Terhaar, Sr., Silver Creek; Carson Williams, Sr., Boulder.
Girls First Team (Name, 2019-20 class, school )
Allison Beasley, Jr., Peak to Peak; Helen Cross, Sr., Nederland; Samrawit Dishon, Sr., Niwot; Quin Gregg, So., Lyons; Kinsey Hall, Sr., Fairview; Sierra Parks, So., Broomfield; Anna Wexler, Sr., Monarch.
Girls honorable mention
Evelyn Boyd, So., Holy Family; Aloha Churchill, Sr., Fairview; Amelia DiGiano, Jr., Fairview; Katie Fankhouser, Sr., Lyons; Lauren Felknor, Sr., Broomfield; Taylor James, Jr., Niwot; Abby Jones, Sr., Legacy; Eva Klingbeil, So., Niwot; Jamieson Legh, Fr., Lyons; Julia Mainland, Sr., Monarch; Maggie McCleskey, So., Centaurus; Joelle McDonald, Sr., Niwot; Mia Mraz, So., Legacy; Amelia Philofsky, So., Niwot; Madison Shults, Fr., Niwot; Brynn Siles, Sr., Legacy; Sydney Swanker, Sr., Broomfield; Stella Vieth, So., Boulder.