Heart in Sole Santa Rosa, CA
Saucony/Heart and Sole Redwood Empire Runners of the Week!


Runner of the Week!


In an effort to recognize the hard work and achievements of the cross country runners throughout the Redwood Empire,
we have joined with Saucony for the Redwood Empire Runner of the Week award!
Each week, one boy and one girl will be awarded a custom silk-screened tech shirt in recognition of that week's accomplishments.
Stay tuned here and on our Facebook page for the winners each week

Runners of the Year

Brian Schulz, El Molino, senior

Brian Schulz - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

From the season-opening Rancho Invite to his final CIF State Championships, Schulz had a season for the record-books. It all began with the 2nd fastest time ever on the new Rancho Invite course, just 7 seconds off the 7-year-old record. Additionally, he defeated co-Runner of the Year Mazzanti by ten seconds in their first meeting of the season. The tables were turned, however, at the Viking Invite, where Schulz came in a mere two seconds back of Mazzanti. This would be the only time he lost to a Redwood Empire athlete on the year. That said, his 9:53 is tied for 4th on the all-time list.

While there were other local wins throughout the year, the big mid-season highlight was his blistering run at the Stanford Invite. There, competing against the best runners in the state regardless of division, he crossed the line in 10th in a scintillating 15:07. That time is the fastest ever cross country 5K run by a Redwood Empire athlete. Given this, it was no surprise when he handily won his third straight SCL title, clocking 15:26 on the Spring Lake Course. However, victory was not to come again this season, as even though he competed in the small school D5 race at the NCS Championships, he had to race the Cooper Teare, the reigning state 3,200m and XC champ (who'd win yet again one week later). Still, he was 10 seconds up on anyone else in the race, and had the fastest time of the day for an Empire athlete. The big test would be the following week, at the CIF State Championships. While Teare was a run-away winner, Schulz had a hard-fought battle in the chase pack, where he ultimately finished third in 15:39.3. It was the 50th best time of the day between all divisions.

With XC season now in the rear-view mirror, Schulz's attention will go back to the track. He unsurprisingly won the November this year, and should be a favorite to do something big in the NorCal scene for the 8-lapper. And keep an eye on the all-time list; currently 8th fastest in Empire history, you better believe he'll jump some spots in the next 6 months!

Rylee Bowen, Sonoma Academy, sophomore

Rylee Bowen - photo credit Michael Lucid

When you're a two-time state champ, even a personally "meh" season can makes wave. Bowen's season began how it left off, with a win. She handily won her race at the SF Lowell Invite, clocking 17:03.5 in Golden Gate Park. She followed that up by taking a trip to the nationally competetive Woodbridge Invite, where she clocked 17:28. The invitationals kept rolling with a 2nd place finish at the Scotty Bauhs invite, before she torched the field at the Mariner Invite. Her 17:18 didn't only get her the win by just over 10 seconds, but was also the 10th fastest 3-mile run by an Empire runner.

It should come as no surprise that Bowen easily won her third straight CMC Championships, though it's worth noting that she also led her Coyotes to the team title. Her big challenge came two weeks later. Facing off against the girl who twice finished 2nd in the state champs, Bowen finished in a hardfought silver position at the NCS D5 race. Additionally, she was able to lead her team to a State Championships berth, the first time both girls and boys from Sonoma Academy earned a trip. Unfortunately for Bowen, the State Championships wasn't the highlight of her individual racing. Though she was unable to defend her back-to-back titles, she ran a gutsy race - including leading at the mile - before finishing 6th in 18:35. To be fair, that was one second faster than her winning time two years ago, showing just how tough this year's field was. With her sister Kate just behind her, Rylee was able to lead her Coyotes to a 7th place team finish, the best by an Empire team this year.

Bowen's attention will now turn to the oval, where she'll again look to make waves at the state level. Already the 3rd fastest 3,200m runner and 2nd fastest 1,600m runner the Empire has ever seen, expect to see Bowen at the head of the pack again this spring!

Luca Mazzanti, Santa Rosa, senior

>Luca Mazzanti - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Despite a mid-season injury, Mazzanti put together a solid season on the bookends to earn co-Runner of the Year honors with El Molino's Schulz. While the season started with a loss to Schulz - the only Empire athlete to defeat him on the year - his 15:17 at Rancho was a school record and the 7th fastest ever on the course. Mazzanti would turn the tables on Schulz in their next head-to-head, as the two fought neck and neck nearly the entire way at the Viking Invitational. This time, Mazzanti was able to unleash his mid-distance speed to take the win in 9:51. That time is the third fastest in meet history, behind only a State Champ from Novato and a local legend Luis Luna.

The highlight of the mid-season was undoubtedly the Stanford Invite. While perhaps not quite the result he would have wanted, Mazzanti clocked 15:30.8 for 25th in the elite Seeded race. That time was also the 13th fastest ever for an Empire athlete over 5K. However, shortly thereafter he suffered a small injury, causing him to miss the first NBL Center Meet, and only finish 3rd in the second meet. However, there were a few weeks between then and the North Bay League Champs, and Mazzanti made the most of them, winning the NBL Championships by 9 seconds. Following a week off, Mazzanti faced a very challenging NCS D2 race, where he secured a state berth by finishing in 15:20.3 for 5th place. But a 5th-place finish in the section, while solid, wouldn't define the season. In his final prep XC race, Mazzanti faced a deep D2 race at the California State Championships. Running a smart race, Mazzanti found himself mixing it up with the leaders in the last kilometer, before ultimately finishing in 5th. His time of 15:24.3 was the 22nd fastest of the day when you take all division into account, and ties him for 4th in Empire history for the Woodward Park course.

Come spring, expect to see Mazzanti up front in the distance races on the oval, especially in the 1,600m. The reigning NBL Champ in that event has his sights set high, so keep the all-time list bookmarked, as it'll be changing a lot this spring!


Karen Buenrostro, Maria Carrillo, senior

Karen Buenrostro - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

In the final race of her HS career, Buenrostro was a key number 4 runner for Maria Carrillo, as they placed 14th in California for Division 3. With three teammates off the front in most races, Bunrostro hasn't been getting the attention deserved by one of the Empire's top athletes. Her time of 20:17.1 was the 9th fastest by an Empire runner at the State Championships. While there will be no more HS XC races in her future, she's certainly on track to have a solid spring around the oval!

Scott Kreutzfeldt, Maria Carrillo, junior

Scott Kruetzfeldt

It's been a rough season for the reigning NBL 3,200m champ. Hip injuries kept him from training or racing as hoped, including basically no running for two of the last three weeks of the season. But he was able to hang tough for the final meet of the year, helping his Pumas to a 15th place finish in the D3 race at the State Championships. Individually, Scott was the third Puma across the line in 16:54.9, which was the 11th fastest of the day for the Redwood Empire. If Scott can stay healthy, there's a very bright future ahead for the MCHS junior!


Brendon Loftus, Sonoma Academy, junior

Brendon Loftus - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

He might have just missed the 16-minute barrier at NCS, but Loftus did something far more important: he helped his Coyote teammates to their 3rd ever State Championships. Individually, Loftus finished 12th with a time of 16:04.4, just over 20 seconds back of team leader Joey Johnson. That's about 10 seconds closer than he was at the CMC Champs a week prior, suggesting he's preparing for the perfect peak at the State Championships. The Coyotes will certainly be counting on it!

Emma Baswell, Casa Grande, Freshman

Emma Baswell - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Baswell completed her freshman season in fine fashion, holding strong against some of NorCal's top runners. Her final result was a 36th place finish in the D3 race at the North Coast Section Championships. Also battling some muddy terrain, Baswell crossed the line in 19:31.5, less than 10 seconds behind her Gaucho team leader Wiena Wigert. Not only was she so close to her teammate, but Baswell ran the 2nd fastest time by an Empire freshman at the meet, and ran significantly faster than the three girls ahead of her at NBL's. All of this is to say that Baswell is on pace to be a real factor in NBL, and perhaps NCS, competition in the three years to come.

Paden Collard, Cloverdale, freshman

Paden Collard - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

What a way to end your freshman season! Collard capped his cross country campaign with an impressive 13th place finish in the D5 race at the NCS Championships, giving him great post-season experience for years to come. But it isn't just fellow small-school athletes that should be impressed by Collard; his time of 16:06.1 was the 2nd fastest by a freshman in any division! With no local freshman within 40 seconds, Collard has made it clear that the Redwood Empire will have to pay close attention to Cloverdale for some years to come!

Coastal Mountain Conference Championships

Amelia Wirt, Ft. Bragg, senior

Amelia Wirt - photo credit Michael Lucid

At Wednesday's CMC Championships, Wirt placed third, but in a way, it's kind of like a win. The CMC scores as two separate classes, NCL I and NCL II, and in her NCL 1 classification she earned the title by over a full minute. As for the two in front of her in the overall race, one is a two-time defending State champ, and the other is her sister. With those three the only runners in the 20:XX minute range, Wirt is in very good company. Next up, she'll hope to earn her own berth to the State Championships with a top placing at the NCS Championships in Hayward.

Kheva Mann, Sonoma Academy, sophomore

Kheva Mann - photo credit Michael Lucid

Following two of CMC's all-time studs, Mann powered through a very tough course en route to a bronze medal at the CMC Championships. While he wasn't able to defend his surprise title from last year, he does have one more season to try to get back on top of the podium. in the meantime, he'll have to be proud of leading his Coyotes to yet another CMC crown, with all his teammates in the top-9. The focus now turns to NCS, where another team win is the goal, before seeing how he and the rest of the Coyotes stack up against the best small schools in the state.

Sonoma County League Championships

Jack Dunbar, Petaluma, junior

Jack Dunbar - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

It's not every day you podium at a Cross Country League Championships. Nor is it common to go sub-16 on the historic Spring Lake Course. But Dunbar did just that, clocking 15:58 on Saturday to earn bronze at the Sonoma County League Championships. While the win was never really in the cards, Dunbar handily earned a podium finish, crossing the line over 20 seconds before the next runner. It's been a steady climb this season for Dunbar, but with this most recent showing he can now turn his attention to a similar finish at the NCS Championships, where he can hope to earn a berth to the State Meet in Fresno.

Sophie Hospodar, Petaluma, senior

Sophie Hospodar - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Jumping three spots since last season, Hospodar was able to finish a solid fourth at the Sonoma County League Championships. Indeed, she was just 8 seconds shy of the bronze medal, as she crossed in a respectable 19:09, a good 20 seconds faster than she ran last year. Now she'll just have to hope that upward trend continues as she heads to Hayward for the NCS Championships, and a potential berth to State.

North Bay League Championships

Siena Wigert, Casa Grande, junior

Siena Wigert - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

With the Carrillo Trio off the front, Wigert ran a tough race to mix it up with the best of the rest at the North Bay League Championships. While her time of 19:37 is identical to what she ran last year, it's all about the competition. Last time she was 14th, while this time she easily capturing 4th. Her low stick was key to Casa Grande's 3rd place finish, and they were only a few points out of 2nd. With all her teammates returning for her senior Season, Wigert has got to be looking forward for the podium, not just for her, but for her entire Gaucho team.

Cooper Moore, Maria Carrillo, senior

Cooper Moore - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

What a sendoff. In his last race on the Spring Lake Course, Moore finally cracked the 16 minute barrier, crossing the line in 15:58. That barrier-breaking run placed him 4th at the North Bay League Championships, and more importantly helped solidify the Pumas team title. It is the 5th straight time MCHS has earned the pennant, and they did so in decisive fashion, winning 32-61 over the Panthers. But the big test for Moore and his Pumas will come at the NCS Championships, where the Pumas will have a very tough time taking the top step of the podium. But if Moore can replicate this performance, the Pumas will certainly have a fighting chance.

Week 10

Nathan Hayes, Piner, sophomore

Nathan Hayes - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Only a sophomore, Hayes was able to hang tough with two of the top runners in the SCL, finishing third in the final regular season SCL meet against El Molino. His time of 14:56 was within 25 seconds of the new course record set by SCL favorite Schulz, and put him nearly a minute ahead of the 4th place finisher. Not only does this bode well for his individual chances, but should give the Prospectors some confidence heading into the championship season.

Amy Stanfield, Sonoma, junior

Amy Stanfield - photo credit Michael Lucid

There's not a much better lead up to the championship season than with a win in the final SCL meet of the year, and Stanfield did just that. In a tri-meet with Petaluma and Elsie Allen, she was the run-away winner, crossing the line 15 seconds ahead of her next competitor. What's more, she led Sonoma to a dominant 22-39 victory. With her time of 17:47 being nearly 45-seconds faster than at the same course one week prior, Stanfield has to feel confident that she's peaking at the perfect time for the upcoming SCL Championships.

Week Nine

Talia Leano, Maria Carrillo, sophomore

Talia Leano - photo credit Jim Crowhurst

The Carrillo Trio has been swapping spots all year, with Leano taking the lead at the Pumas' final league meet last Wednesday. In what was basically a dress rehearsal for the NBL Championships next week, Leano led a Puma 1-2-3 and team win, taking the first individual win of her season. And though the course may finish on a nice all-weather track, it is one of the most difficult in the region, with plenty of climbs and rollers to fight, thus making Leano's win all the more impressive. Next up is the League Champs, and Leano, along with her Puma teammates, will certainly be looking at taking home some nice hardware.

Andre Williams, Kelseyville, sophomore

Andre Williams - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Fighting not only top local athletes and top athletes from Arcata and Marin, Williams too was fighting one of the hardest courses in the region at the Yoshanny Rahm Invite in Ukiah. And he came out of it very, very well. Taking second only to a stud from Arcata, Williams blazed a 16:36 on the incredibly difficult course. With the legendary Luis Luna having only run 16:21, that puts Williams in pretty nice company. And while he lost, it was probably good for him, as local races have been a bit too one-sided. He won his Wednesday league meet by nearly two minutes! Good thing he'll have some competition at the CMC Championships next week!

Week Eight

Wes Methum, Rincon Valley Christian, senior

Wes Methum - photo credit Michael Lucid

He may go to a small school, but no one should thing Methum can only compete against the little guys. He proved that handily on Wednesday, with a blazing 15:32 on the Spring Lake course, easily defeating his top CMC competitors. But it wasn't just the CMC folks in the race; Methum is now the 2nd fastest ever from his conference, only 4 seconds off the record. But as we said, it's not just the little guys. Methum is now the 34th fastest ever in the entire Redwood Empire, and this was only a regular-season meet. There are certainly big things ahead for this Rincon Valley Christian senior!

Iris Berto, Technology, junior

Iris Berto

Racing against some of the top D5 runners in the state, Berto was still able to turn heads at her Wednesday CMC competition. Beating everyone not named Bowen, she shattered the 20-minute barrier, clocking 19:31. That mark moves her into the top-10 ever for CMC athletes on the Spring Lake course, and she still has one season to go. But first comes the post-season, where not only will she be eyeing a podium spot at CMC, but to really mix it up at the State Meet come late November.

Week Seven

Sydnie Rivas, Maria Carrillo, junior

Sydnie Rivas - photo credit Michael Lucid

Continuing her impressive season, one which has helped propel her Pumas to a 9th place state ranking, Rivas turned in two very solid performances both near and far. First up was an NBL Center Meet at Spring Lake, where Rivas led a trio of Pumas across the line, edging teammates Armstrong (last week's Runner of the Week) and Leano to take the overall win. While she only beat her teammates by 1 and 3 seconds respectively, she was 19 seconds ahead of the next non-Puma, setting the tone for the rest of the NBL season.
Then on Saturday, Rivas raced at the always competitive Clovis Invite, helping the Pumas to a 6th place finish against many of the same D3 teams they'll race at the State Meet on this very course in just over a month's time.

Robert Swoboda, Ukiah, senior

Robert Swoboda - photo credit Michael Lucid

After a respectable, but not jaw-dropping, junior season, Swoboda has slowly but surely moved his way up to being an NBL contender. He had the chance to prove this to a wide audience at Wednesday's NBL Center Meet, where he engaged in a hard-fought battle with two former Runners of the Week in Esponda and Lawson. He ended up sandwiched between them, 3 seconds off the win and just one second ahead of third, in a very fast 15:43. That's nearly 20 seconds faster than the time he ran at NBL Finals last year when placing 4th, so you've got to assume the Wildcat standout is thinking big for his senior season.

Week Six

Joey Johnson, Sonoma Academy, senior

Joey Johnson - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Johnson took double duty this week, racing a CMC meet on Wednesday before heading down to Castro Valley for the Scotty Bauhs invite. At Point Arena on Wednesday, Joey was a close second to teammate Kheva Mann, helping Sonoma Academy to the dominant win. But it was on Saturday where he really shone, clocking 16:10 on the challenging Scotty Bauhs course. That was good enough to be 8th fastest senior on the day and tops from the local contingent. While the races were run by grade level, taking all into account Joey led Sonoma Academy to a 6th place team finish. Not too bad for the Division 5 Coyotes!

Aimee Armstrong, Maria Carrillo, sophomore

Aimee Armstrong - photo credit Michael Lucid

Top honors for the MCHS Pumas seem to change each race, with Armstrong having a stellar performance in the Seeded race at the Stanford Invite to lead her Pumas and earn the RotW nod. Competing against some of the top teams in the state, Armstrong led her Pumas to a very respectable 14th place finish. While they didn't win, their team time of 97:22 is faster than any previous Redwood Empire team at the Stanford Invite. That could only have been achieved thanks to Armstrong's 18:51.8 clocking, which was the second fastest for the Empire on the day. With some fellow Pumas close behind, Armstrong looks to help her the Pumas continue their post-season honors come next month.

Week Five

Kassia Chagnon, Piner, senior

Kassia Chagnon - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Competing in an interlock with athletes from all three leagues, Chagnon showed that she's ready to do big things during her senior year. Behind only two other Runners of the Week, Chagnon notched a 19:25 on the Spring Lake course, quite the solid mark for a mid-season meet. That was 20 seconds ahead of the next competitor from the SCL, which bodes well for her post-season chances. Last year, she won a three-way sprint for 4th at the SCL Championships, so you'd have to expect a podium finish is now on the radar for the Prospector senior.

Zach Esponda, Casa Grande, senior

Zach Esponda - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Having a reigning league champ blow away the field in an a mid-season interlock meet is normally nothing too exciting. But when the league title came at 800m and the race distance is 3 miles, people should take notice. Leading from the gun, Esponda destroyed a field that included Week 2 Runner of the Week Jonny Vargas, en route to a blow-out 17 second win. And it wasn't just the margin of victory; Esponda's time of 15:35 makes him the 40th fastest ever for the Spring Lake course. With many more meets to be run here, including the NBL Championships, expect him to move well up the list before the season is complete.

Week Four

Luca Mazzanti, Santa Rosa, senior

Luca Mazzanti - photo credit Michael Lucid

Erik Olson, Luis Luna, and ... Luca Mazzanti?! That's how the all-time list at the Viking Invitational now reads, after Luca's blistering 9:51 to win the senior race over Week One Runner of the Week Brian Schultz. Luca held steady in second for most of the race before blowing past his competitor, cementing himself as one of the fastest XC runners from the Redwood Empire. Multiple league, section, and even State Champions now sit behind him, only growing the expectations for the rest of the season. And the two in front of him not only went on to tear up the XC course, but break 9 minutes on the oval in the spring. So basically, Luca just announced himself as a potential Empire All-Timer. So even if we weren't biased - he does work here, after all! - we're super excited to see what the Panther senior can do the rest of the year!
And just to add to the week's accomplishments, Luca also dominated the field at the Super Septo race on Wednesday, clocking 15:49 for the course. That earned him the win by 30 seconds over Week Two Runner of the Week Jonny Vargas. Quite the double performance indeed!

Kate Bowen, Sonoma Academy, freshman

Kate Bowen - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

While it's not uncommon for a freshman girl to make an immediate impact, thanks to her sister's accolades there was extra excitement for Kate Bowen as she started her HS career. And I think it's safe to say that Kate is proving that speed runs in the family. (Their mom, Nika Horn, is a 2-time NBL XC champ and had the 3rd fastest 1,600m in the Empire by the time she graduated, a time that is still top-20 all-time.) Kate is certainly on path to do much more for the Bowen (and Horn) name. This weekend she travelled down to the elite-level Woodbridge Invitational, mixing it up with some of the best runners not only in the state, but in the country. Running in the Sweepstakes Race (the meet is 2 full days of race after race), Kate blazed to a 17:47 for the 3mile course. That time placed her 54th in the elite field (40th from California). On a more local level, it tied her for the 19th fastest 3miler in Redwood Empire history. Not too bad for the first big race of your freshman season!
And this actually was Kate's second race of the week, as on Wednesday she raced in a big CMC cluster meet at the Rancho Cotate course. There she was second only to the reigning D5 State Champ (aka her sister), where she clocked a respectable 18:59. But that was only to be the appetizer before the weekend's race at Woodbridge!

Week Three

Rylee Bowen, Sonoma Academy, junior

Rylee Bowen - photo credit Thomas Benjamin

Now a household name for fans of prep Cross Country, it's no shock that Rylee Bowen handily defeated all comers at the San Francisco Invite, hosted by Lowell HS. Running on the aptly named "Speedway Meadows", Bowen clocked 17:03.5 for the ~2.9mile course. While there were two varsity races, she still ran the fastest time of the day. And, while official records are not kept, the much respected Cross Country Express places her run as the fastest ever for the course. And it wasn't only just a good individual performance; Bowen led her Coyote teammates to a 3rd place finish, made all the more impressive knowing that they raced against schools significantly higher in enrollment. Obviously the 2-time defending D5 State Champ is expected to have a good season, but it looks like Bowen may have some company in the post-season accolades this year.

Ben Lawson, Maria Carrillo, Junior

Ben Lawson - photo credit Michael Lucid

Taking a step down in distance, Lawson led the Pumas at the always competitive Ed Sias Invitational this weekend. He crossed the line 4th in the Small School race, clocking 10:20.5 for the difficult 2ish mile course. Only one other Empire runner broke 11, and Lawson was the top non-senior in his race. While the distance will increase and the meets will get more important, this bodes incredibly well for the Puma's post-season chances. Lawson finished one place ahead of the top Campolindo runner, a perennial NCS rival, and the Pumas handily beat other top NCS competitors Los Lomas and Miramonte. While the future is never certain, it's a very safe bet that Lawson will do much, much more than his 10th place NBL finish from last year!

Week Two

Jonny Vargas, Piner, junior

Jonny Vargas

Kicking off the season by battling some out-of-section competition, Vargas set the bar with a top-10 finish at the Lagoon Valley Classic "Small School" race, and lead his Prospectors to a 3rd place team finish out of the 20-field team. This experience getting out of the local Empire bubble should help Vargas as he looks to really mix it up in the post-season this year. (While he did make State in 2015, he was "only" 76th.) But this result, coupled with a solid T&F season which saw a 9:36 3,200m, shoes that Vargas should be ready to really make some noise on the circuit in 2016. And after finishing just off the SCL podium last year, you'd have to expect he'd be hungry for something big League Champs!

Cynthia Rosales, Piner, sophomore

Cynthia Rosales

As a freshman, Rosales's performance at the Lagoon Valley Classic certainly turned some heads. Now, as the reigning SCL Champion, it's a lot harder to impress. Nonetheless, her 5th place finish this year is a solid sign that for another great season. Her 19:36 wasn't just good enough for those "Small School" honors, but would have placed top-10 in the "Big School" race against some of the top girls in the state. As long as she keeps working hard, it looks to be a great battle in the SCL with Rosales and Peterson this year, and who knows what she'll be able to do in the post-season. And, not too far back was Kassia Chagnon, who looks to help give the Prospectors a solid 1-2 punch as the season goes on. After all, Piner did just place 3rd against some solid squads from across the state this weekend!

Week One

Gabby Peterson, Healdsburg, sophomore

Gabby Peterson - photo cred: Michael Lucid

One year ago, Peterson started her XC career at the Rancho Invite with a respectable, but far-from-stunning, 20:49 for 19th. While she'd go on to have a solid end of the season, which included top-5 finishes at her league and section, no one would have expected her brilliant performance to start the 2016 season. This year, she improved by over 2 minutes to run 18:30 at the Rancho Invite, winning the race by a whopping 12 seconds. That time moves her to 9th on the all-time Rancho list, one spot ahead of the only 4-time NBL champ in history. The season has only just begun, but there's no doubt that it's going to be a great one for Peterson!

Brian Schulz, El Molino, senior

Brian Schulz - photo cred: Michael Lucid

Coming off a great junior year, there was no doubt that Schulz was going to be a force to be reckoned with in 2016. Not only did he win his league last year and place top-10 at State, but on the oval he torched a 9:12.92 3,200m to move high onto the all-time Empire list. And it looks like he's continuing right where he left off. He captured the Rancho Invite by a full 10 seconds, clocking a very speedy 15:07 for the 2.97 mile course. That time moves him all the way up to 2nd on the all-time Rancho list, a very good sign for the season to come. Expect him to be the heavy, heavy favorite to repeat as league champion, with an eye on big things in the post-season this year.


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Athletes of the Week are picked solely by the Heart and Sole Staff, but we greatly value input from local COACHES. If any coach from the Empire has an athlete they wish to nominate, please contact us.