High-SchoolTrack-and-XC: wyoming

Throw of the Week: Kevin Allen

May, 16, 2012
There are less than 100 students at Upton High School in the remote northeast corner of Wyoming, but that doesn't mean there isn't big-time track and field talent there.

Upton's Kevin Allen threw the discus 204 feet, 4 inches in his regional meet last weekend and will enter the WHSAA Championships this week in Casper looking to challenge John Godina's 1990 all-time state record of 210-4. It's one of Wyoming's most hallowed records.

Allen ranks US#3 with his throw from the Class 4A/2A/1A East Regional in Cheyenne, a nearly seven-foot improvement upon his previous best.
Earlier this week, the USTFCCCA (that's the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches' Association) recognized the NCAA Division I all-region teams, revealing cream of the college crop for 2011. It also offered a chance to examine where those athletes went to high school -- and which states are contributing the most Division I talent.

Making the all-region is a byproduct of placing in the top 25 in one of the nine regional meets across the country last Saturday.

That means 450 athletes make the all-region teams, a list that skims the cream off the top of Division I cross country. And while it may not be exactly the 450 best ( because not all of the regions are equal), there is information here that may be eye-opening for high school athletes and coaches thinking about the next level.

The West Regional produced the fastest winning times, the fastest 20th place finishes and fastest 50th place finishes. That could be an indication that it was held on the easiest course, but it also indicates the level of talent in the West. Six women's teams from the West are ranked in the Top 30 nationally as well as four men's teams.

The deepest region for women may be the Great Lakes, where the top 50 finished within 81 seconds. The region with the fewest spaces up front for the men was the Mid-Atlantic Region, where the first and 50th finisher were separated by 84 seconds.

So where do the 450 all-region runners come from? Where is the fertile recruiting ground?

It may not come as a surprise that there are more Kenyans on the list (35) than there are Texans (30) or Californians (27). Additionally, 40 of the runners (or close to one-tenth) come from European countries. And 25 more come from Australia, New Zealand or Canada.

Would you believe that Pennsylvania produced more men on the list (12) than New York (8) or Illinois (8)? It's true. The Keystone state trails only California (15) and Texas (15). Also, 10 come from Indiana and nine hail from Georgia.

The women's list doesn't follow the same pattern. Texas (15) produces the most, which may seem odd because the state only runs 3,200-meter races for high school girls. Twelve of the 15 go to universities within Texas.

Ohio, the source of three of the men on the list, produces the same number of women (12) as California.

After Ohio and California, New York (11) and Michigan (11) are next, followed by New Jersey (10).

Pennsylvania, represented by 12 men, has just five women on the list. Iowa has six women, no men.

Here is a combined (men and women) breakdown by state or country where the athlete went to high school. Five states that did not make this list are Hawaii, Vermont, Delaware, Arkansas and Montana.

Kenya 35, Texas 30, California 27, New York 19, Michigan 17, Pennsylvania 17, Indiana 16, Ohio 15, New Jersey 15, Illinois 15, England 13, Georgia 11, Colorado 10, Utah 10, Virginia 10, Canada 10, Arizona 9, Connecticut 9, Australia 8, Minnesota 8, New Zealand 8, Missouri 7, Massachusetts 7, Florida 7, Tennessee 6, North Carolina 6, Washington 6, Iowa 6, Wisconsin 5, Ireland 5, Maryland 5, New Mexico 4, New Hampshire 4, Alabama 4, Germany 3, Uganda 3, West Virginia 3, Nevada 3, Norway 3, Kansas 3, South Carolina 3, Oregon 3, Wyoming 3, Nebraska 3, Kentucky 3, France 2, Belgium 2, Sweden 2, Idaho 2, Oklahoma 2, South Dakota 2, Mississippi 2, The Netherlands 2, Scotland 1, Maine 1, Czech Rep. 1, Rhode Island 1, Ethiopia 1, Venezuela 1, Zambia 1, Alaska 1, North Dakota 1, Portugal 1, Louisiana 1, South Africa 1, Estonia 1, Serbia 1 , Switzerland 1.
The return of Sarah Baxter was one of the big storylines at the massive Mt. SAC Invitational on Saturday, but how about her Simi Valley teammates?

Simi Valley rose from 24th to 10th last week in the Powerade FAB 50 with Baxter back in the lineup and then put 51 points on the board to win the sweepstakes team title, finishing ahead of US#2 La Costa Canyon CA and US#6 Xavier Prep AZ.

Race recaps, results, photos and videos are all in from a meet that saw 16,000 runners take part. It was also another strong outing from Karlie Garcia, who ran 17:01 on the three-mile course on Friday.

Darren Fahy of La Costa Canyon and the US#4 Rancho Cucamonga boys were also big winners.

In state meet action on Saturday, the nationally ranked Bozeman Hawks dominated the Montana meet in Missoula, sweeping the boys and girls titles.

In North Dakota, Jake Leingang ran the fast 5K time in meet history, going 14:59.8 and leading US#12 Bismarck to a near-perfect 17-point victory.

In South Dakota, US#5 individual Tony Smoragiewicz repeated as individual champion, while sophomore Addison DeHaven (son of marathon great Rod DeHaven) continued to emerge as a future star.

In Nebraska, Lincoln North's standout freshman Jeralyn Poe ran the third-fastest time in state meet history over 4K (14:38.5).

Close team races were the highlight in Wyoming. Two of Oklahoma's small school classifications also vied for titles.

Further east, Bronxville star Mary Cain ran the 10th fastest time ever on the Bowdoin course in New York.