The cross country season continued to pick up steam over the weekend from coast to coast, with some of the nation's top teams and individuals getting their first taste of the competitive season.
Here is a recap, with links to specific meet pages with additional highlights and results:
Dyestat Cal editor Rich Gonzalez filed a thorough report on the Seaside Invitational, detailing the performances of several of the Golden State's top teams -- Palos Verdes and Trabuco Hills on the boys side, and the perennially strong Saugus girls. Jonah Diaz was impressive in victory.
Also on the west coast, North Central's boys from Spokane and the Bozeman (MT) girls made splashy debuts at the Tracy Walters Invitational in Spokane. (For those of you who don't know, Tracy Walters was Gerry Lindgren's coach at Rogers High back in the 1960s and a legend in his own right). Anthony Armstrong and Katie Knight got impressive individual wins.
Way up to the north, Kenai Central's fab frosh Allie Ostrander won meets on back-to-back days. She won a 3,000-meter race on Friday and then went sub-18 for her third straight win at 3 miles or 5K, this time at Alaska's Palmer Invitational.
In Utah, the Davis boys rolled to a big victory at the BYU Autumn Classic in Provo.
In Missouri, Rockhurst's Zach Herriott flipped the script on Rock Bridge's Caleb Wilfong at the Forest Park Festival. A year ago, it was Wilfong first, Herriott second. There was also a sparkling debut from freshman Hannah Long of Eureka in the girls race.
In Alabama, Carmen Carlos and Griffin Lee picked up individual honors, at the Mobile Challenge of Champions. Plus, Arthur Mack provides details of the team titles won by McGill-Toolen's girls (AL) and Brother Martin's boys (LA).
In Illinois, the New Trier girls rolled and the Niles North boys got a big lift from their No. 5 at the Peoria Woodruff Invitational. Amanda Fox dipped under 17 minutes for 3 miles and Garrett Sweatt got a big win on the boys side.
In Indiana, the Columbus North boys went 1-5-7-12-15 to win the 17-team Brown County Eagle Classic.
At the Mason Invitational in Ohio, the girls from Carmel IN made themselves at home, going 1-3-5-6-7 to make a strong statement. Meanwhile, at the always huge Tiffin Cross Country Carnival in Ohio, Tsehaye Hiluf (15:19.58) and Jacquelyn Crow (18:23.14) put up impressive early season times.
In New York, Lizzie Predmore demonstrated her might with a 61-second win on the tough Guilderland course.
And in New Jersey, Bronxville's Mary Cain's star continued to rise with a big PR at the Randolph Invitational, where she won by a whopping 82 seconds.