Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Reasons Behind the Running Renaissance

With the "Miles Lists" 1600 meter compilation posted below and the 3200 meter statistics to be posted tomorrow, we're publishing Steven Paske's two-part investigation into what might be behind the recent resurgence in US high school distance running and last year's fantastic season of high school distance running in Minnesota.

Paske is a former Osseo High School and Marquette University runner and author of a novel about cross country called "Breaking Stride." Paske's newest book, "The Immortal," was recently e-published by For more information about all of Paske's writing, see

The Reasons Behind the Running Renaissance -- Part I
By Steven Paske

Minneapolis South’s Hassan Mead crossed the finish line of the 2007 Minnesota State 3200-Meter Championship in a time of 9:03.29. This effort was less than two tenths of a second off Jay Schoenfelder’s State Record and was fast enough to hold off 2005 Champion Rob Finnerty of Burnsville, who clocked 9:04.42. You would think that after closing in 4:22 on a windy day that Mead would have been ecstatic. The problem was he didn’t win. Winona’s Elliot Heath did, in a State Meet Record 9:02.65.

The phenomenon of three Minnesota runners essentially matching the old State Meet record in the same race is indicative of a growing national trend. Since 1999, high school distance running has gone through a renaissance that is coming ever closer to matching the success of the glorious 1970’s. The trend must be terribly evident to Finnerty, who despite running equivalent to 8:56 at the Nike Outdoor Nationals two weeks later, still finished behind Mead (8:48), and Heath (8:43), a Minnesota all-time best.

Nationally, U.S. distance running hit its low in the 1990’s. Four out of ten years didn’t produce a 3200-meter time below 9:00, and three others saw a best time of 8:58 or higher. Contrast this to 2004, when the 20th best time in the country was 9:00.3, or in which the 25th fastest time of 9:02.6 was faster than 1993’s best of 9:03.8. Similar results also hold in the 1600-meter, where as recently as 1998 the fastest time in the country was 4:08.7, a time that ten kids bested during the 2004 season.

The question becomes why has American high school distance running gone through this sudden resurgence? What accounted for the precipitous drop off that occurred in the late 1980’s and 90’s, and why are times coming back all of the sudden?

Was it the advent of the Internet, which coincided with this accelerated trend, which suddenly gave coaches and runners unlimited access to the training expertise of the likes of Lydiard and Daniels? Could it have simply been a few pioneers ramping up the mileage on their own, finding sudden success, forcing the crowd to follow if they wished to stay competitive? Perhaps a foreign influx of talent is the culprit.

In this article, my home state of Minnesota will serve as microcosm to try and better explain this surge in high-school distance running at a national level. During the past seven years, perhaps no State presents a more eclectic mix of circumstances to help explain the trend.

Its top runners are significantly faster than seven years back, the depth better, and the State Meet results have been affected by the talents of a significant number of Somali immigrants. Through interviews with top runners and coaches from both eras, I’ve tried to piece together reasoning behind the sudden distance running renaissance. Perhaps a closer examination of why young runners are currently running faster will allow American distance running to avoid another collapse.

The Internet:

Take a quick glance at the performance history of high school runners in the 1600 and 3200-meters, and you’ll notice an interesting trend. Beginning in 1980, the golden age of high-school distance running began its gradual end. It started with a drop off in two-mile depth and accelerated into tailspin that led to the decade of the 1990’s being by far the slowest since they started keeping good records.

In 1998 the tenth best time in the 3200-meter wouldn’t have cracked the top 50 in any of the last seven years of the 1970’s. Then in 1999 something happened. The top time in the nation crashed 13 seconds to its lowest point since 1985. The tenth best time plummeted nine seconds. Over 25 runners ran faster than the tenth best time the previous year. All of this occurred in the first year the U.S. Internet users cracked 100 million. In fact, U.S. Internet usage was a mere 38 million just three years earlier.

Type “training distance runners,” into Google and you will get more than 2.5 million hits. In seconds you can access websites, articles, and books with training advice from the likes of Sebastian Coe, Pete Pfitzinger, and Bill Dellinger.

Clearly the correlation between the advent of widespread Internet use and the sudden resurgence in high school times may be connected. Prior to the Internet a runner would have had to pick up a periodical, probably Runner’s World (not known for targeting the more advanced distance runner), for information about training outside of their coach. With virtually infinite amounts of training advice suddenly available, even a kid with a clueless coach now had the ammunition to improve significantly.

As part of the investigation, I interviewed the three aforementioned runners along with several other top Minnesota Harriers, including Edina’s T.C. Lumbar (9:06) and Lakeville’s Tyler King, rated number two in last fall’s cross country pre-season poll. When I asked about Internet usage no clear trend developed. Some used the Internet to look up results, some for training advice, and others tended to avoid it all together. There was however a quote from King that caught my attention.

“I think a big reason kids have gotten faster is that the Internet allowed your average coach to become much more educated about training physiology,” he said. "Suddenly they’re reading Daniels, Coe, and Lydiard. In the past, they’d have to buy the book or go listen to the guy talk to get the same information."

Piggybacking off of King’s theory, I distributed a survey at the Minnesota Cross Country Coaches Association clinic that asked various questions about Internet usage. Though the runners themselves hadn’t been as involved with the using the Internet to meet up for runs or for training advice, perhaps the coaches had. Again the results were muddled.

About one third of coaches said they used the Internet for training research three or more times a month. Another third said they used the Internet about once a month. The final third said they had never used the Internet for training research purposes. Of those coaches that said they had implemented some suggestions from Internet research, all of them said that their teams were either performing the same or slightly better than before they made the changes.

Not that there aren’t coaches who think that the Internet has had a significant impact. Nate Uselding is a former University of Wisconsin runner who has coached both Finnerty at Burnsville High School and Heath at Winona.

“Why is it that all the sudden we have a resurgence? Communication wise there is a lot more information out there and a lot more communicating and networking between coaches,” he says. “(With the Internet) the ability to find information is a lot easier."

Clearly the Internet has penetrated the running community somewhat, but the results of my interviews and survey did not produce the clear-cut answer that I would have expected. As a rule, the runners and coaches used the Internet in a limited capacity to research running and collaborate with others, but few admitted that it made much of an impact on their success. So if the Internet isn’t the reason for the recent running boom, what is? The answer may lie with the coach of a very successful Division III program in Minnesota’s north woods.

Tomorrow ... Part II: Might higher mileage training be the answer?

Photo by Gene Niemi. In racing order: Mead, Finnerty, Heath, Ryan Little, and Lumbar.

The Miles Lists: 1600 Meters

Here are the 2007 and all-time Minnesota high school boys performances lists for 1600 meters as compiled by St. John's coach Tim Miles and Wayzata coach Bill Miles.

See all the "Miles Lists" we've published so far HERE.


2007 BESTS

Rob Finnerty 11 Burnsville (4:10.49 mile) 4:08.84c
Ben Blankenship 12 Stillwater Area 4:09.10
(Blankenship also ran 3:51.11 1500 meters, equal to 4:07.94 1600)
Paul Hilsen 12 Lakeville South (4:11.04 mile) 4:09.39c
Elliott Heath 12 Winona 4:10.29
Andy Richardson 11 Irondale 4:10.78
Jordan Carlson 11 Rosemount (4:14.72 mile) 4:13.04c
Ryan Little 12 Eden Prairie 4:13.54
T.C. Lumbar 12 Edina 4:13.98
Hassan Mead 12 Minneapolis South 4:14.17
Matt Yak 12 Northfield 4:15.20
Tom Burke 12 Edina 4:15.44
Doug Debold 12 Hopkins 4:16.70
Tyler King 11 Lakeville North 4:17.25
Jackson Wiley 12 Eden Prairie 4:17.64
Kaafi Adeys 12 Willmar 4:17.9
Zach Mellon 10 Buffalo 4:19.05
Jonathan Stublaski 12 Henry Sibley 4:20.02
Travis Burkstrand 11 Eastview 4:20.37
Donny Wasinger 11 Winona Cotter 4:20.84
Pieter Gagnon 11 Minneapolis Washburn 4:21.76
Aaron Gorman 12 Park Center 4:21.77
Mike Howard 12 North St. Paul 4:22.00
Richie Mark 12 Red Wing 4:22.19
Harry Backlund 12 St. Paul Highland Park 4:22.24
Nick Succeedo 12 Henry Sibley 4:22.25
Mahad Hassan 10 Willmar 4:22.69
Mike Shelendich 12 Mounds View 4:22.88
Matt Volz 12 Lakeville South 4:22.99
Michael Hutton 11 Apple Valley 4:23.02
Dan Docherty 11 Cretin-Derham Hall 4:23.16
Ian Campbell 12 Blooming Prairie 4:23.76
Kyle Neumann 12 Andover 4:24.01
Travis Beniak 11 Zumbrota-Mazeppa 4:24.65
Obai Hussein 11 Rosemount 4:24.69
Justin Tyner 12 Brainerd 4:24.78
Tom Pesch 11 Plainview-Elgin-Millville 4:24.88
Dustin Franta 12 La Crescent 4:25.04
Marcus Piepho 12 Mankato Loyola 4:25.13
Josh Letofsky 12 Osseo 4:25.68
Andrew Quinn 12 Benilde-St. Margaret 4:25.71
David Pachuta 12 Eastview 4:25.72
Ben Wilson 12 Alexandria 4:26.01
Tyler Leverington 12 Roseau 4:26.11
Alex Wrobel 12 Mounds View 4:27.12
Joe Wells 11 Minneapolis Southwest 4:27.18
Kyle Buck 12 Kenyon-Wanamingo 4:27.29
Kevin Lachowitzer 11 Perham 4:27.37
Justin Peters 12 Redwood Valley 4:27.44
Wade Hassel 12 Mounds View 4:27.54
Craig Kiefer 12 Grand Meadow-L-O-S 4:27.56

4:03.5 Garry Bjorklund, Proctor 1969 (4:05.1y)
4:06.70 Nick Schneider, Benilde-St. Margaret 2000 (4:08.33y)
4:07.62 Steve Holman, Richfield 1988 (4:09.26y)
4:08.84 Rob Finnerty, Burnsville 2007 (4:10.49y)
4:09.00 Garrett Heath, Winona 2004
4:09.10 Ben Blankenship, Stillwater Area 2007
4:09.39 Paul Hilsen, Lakeville South 2007 (4:11.04y)
4:09.4 Bob Redenbaugh, Rochester JM 1976 (4:11.0y)
4:09.9 Rob Carney, Burnsville 1978 (4:11.5y)
4:10.0 Mike Slack, St Paul Harding 1969 (4:11.6y)
4:10.29 Elliott Heat, Winona 2007
4:10.1 Ian Keith, Rochester Mayo 1976 (4:11.7y)
4:10.5 Tim Harris, Henry Sibley 1972 (4:12.1y)
4:10.5 Dan Lyndgaard, New Richland 1972 (4:12.1y)
4:10.5 Steve Plasencia, Cooper 1974 (4:12.1y)
4:10.78 Andy Richardson, Irondale 2007
4:10.9 Scott Clark, Osseo 1976 (4:12.5y)
4:11.4 Tim O'Donnell, Simley 1975 (4:13.0y)
4:11.4 Larry Berkner, Ely 1975 (4:13.0y)
4:12.0 Mike Hanley, Anoka 1968 (4:13.6y)
4:12.27 Luke Watson, Stillwater Area 1998
4:12.4 Mike Gebeke, WB Mariner 1979
4:12.5 Ben Grokett, Mpls Roosevelt 1967 (4:14.1y)
4:12.7 Jay Schoenfelder, Duluth East 1995
4:13.04 Jordan Carlson, Rosemount 2007
4:13.07 Andy Tate, Stillwater 1996
4:13.13 Jeremy Polson, Duluth Denfeld 1996
4:12.9 Donovan Bergstrom, Elgin-Millville 1988
4:13.0 John Purves, Rochester JM 1971 (4:14.6y)
4:13.51 Ryan Kollman, Centennial 1996
4:13.54 Ryan Little, Eden Prairie 2007
4:13.56 Ben Hanson, Buffalo 2001
4:13.59 Tom Schmidt, Faribault 2002
4:13.5 Bob Wagner, St Louis Park 1965 (4:15.1y)
4:13.98 T.C. Lumbar, Edina 2007
4:13.8 Pat Kriedler, Dul Denfeld 1969 (4:15.4y)
4:14.04 Mike VanBeusekom, Irondale 2003
4:13.9 Tim Richardt, Rochester JM 1974 (4:15.5y)
4:14.17 Hassan Mead, Minneapolis South 2007
4:14.18 Josh DoBell, Mankato East 2000
4:14.1 John Keohen, Montgomery 1978 (4:15.7y)
4:14.37 Mark Narveson, Mankato West 1988
4:14.53 Mar Jang, Mpls Edison 2002
4:14.3 Gary Wilde, Mpls Roosevelt 1969 (4:15.9y)
4:14.4 John Long, Totino Grace 1985
4:14.4 Tom Poliseno, Little Falls 1977 (4:16.0y)
4:14.65 Jason Owen, Stewartville 1995
4:14.78 Steve Leuer, Osseo 1996
4:14.6 Dennis Fee, White Bear Lake 1972 (4:16.2y)
4:14.8 Craig Greenslit, Hastings 1988
4:15.04 Ted Gustafson, Owatonna 2000
4:14.9 Lindsay Brown, Stillwater 1978 (4:16.5y)
4:15.20 Matt Yak, Northfield 2007
4:15.0 Greg Nelson, Mpls Washburn 1967 (4:16.6y)
4:15.0 Kim Baron, Proctor 1970 (4:16.6y)
4:15.37 Mike Torchia, Rochester Lourdes 2006
4:15.44 Tom Burke, Edina 2007
4:15.46 Carson Hoeft, Armstrong 1985
4:15.46 Neil Grosscup, Minneapolis Southwest 2003
4:15.55 Neil Hanson, Fairmont 1999
4:15.71 Chris Erichsen, Kingsland 2004
4:15.5 Dave Jones, Dul Morgan Park 1967 (4:17.1y)
4:15.6 Bruce Johnson, Minnetonka 1966 (4:17.2y)
4:15.8 Kurt Roth, SP Cretin 1975 (4:17.4y)
4:15.8 Mark Feyereisen, Grace 1977 (4:17.4y)
4:15.8 Don Hurley, SP Cretin 1978 (4:17.4y)
4:16.12 Yonas Seyum, St Paul Arlington 2000
4:15.9 Steve Sanford, Edina 1965 (4:17.6y)
4:15.9 Tim Turnbull, Hopkins 1966 (4:17.6y)
4:15.9 Gary Delaney, White Bear Lake 1978 (4:17.6y)
4:15.9 Brian Kraft, Bemidji 1981
4:15.9 Jim Larranaga, Holy Angels 1984
4:16.41 William Leer, Minnetonka 2003
4:16.2 Van Nelson, Mpls Washburn 1964 (4:17.9y)
4:16.55 David VanOrsdel, Hopkins 2002
4:16.62 Casey Ide, Red Wing 2002
4:16.4 Dan Spear, Alexander Ramsey 1973 (4:18.1y)
4:16.4 John Wodny, Cloquet 1985
4:16.70 Doug DeBold, Hopkins 2007
4:16.5 Pat Kelly, SP Monroe 1965 (4:18.2y)
4:16.5 Jake Watson, Stillwater 2004
4:16.74 Justin Grunewald, Brainerd 2004
4:16.6 Mike McGowan, Blue Earth 1979 (4:18.3y)
4:16.84 Greg DeFor, Jefferson 1985
4:16.85 Jonathan Stublaski, Henry Sibley 2006
4:16.87 Ryan Malmin, Hopkins 2000
4:16.92 Forrest Tahdooahnippah, Mpls. Southwest 2002
4:16.7 Walter Johnson, Mpls Southwest 1975 (4:18.4y)
4:16.99 Jason Greene, Lakeville 1996
4:16.9 Lane Weiker, Armstrong 1975 (4:18.6y)
4:16.9 Dan Fjelstad, Albert Lea 1975 (4:18.6y)
4:16.9 Mike Brown, Stillwater 1985
4:16.9 Todd Beetcher, Rochester Mayo 1985
4:16.9 Jeff Taylor, Mounds View 1985
4:17.25 Tyler King, Lakeville North 2007
4:17.33 Sean Graham, Stillwater Area 1999
4:17.33 Jesse Prince, Bemidji 1999
4:17.1 Chris Thompson, Faribault 1989
4:17.2 Mike Johnson, Osseo 1985

4:06.70 Nick Schneider, Benilde-St Mrgt 2000 (4:08.33y)
4:07.8 Garry Bjorklund, Proctor 1968 (4:09.4y)
4:08.84 Rob Finnerty, Burnsville 2007 (4:10.49y)
4:10.5 Tim Harris, Henry Sibley 1972 (4:12.1y)
4:10.78 Andy Richardson, Irondale 2007
4:11.4 Tim O'Donnell, Simley 1975 (4:13.0y)
4:13.04 Jordan Carlson, Rosemount 2007
4:13.68 Ben Blankenship, Stillwater Area 2006
4:13.81 Garrett Heath, Winona 2003
4:13.9 Rob Carney, Burnsville 1977 (4:15.5y)

4:10.9 Rob Carney, Burnsville 1976 (4:12.5y)
4:11.85 Rob Finnerty, Burnsville 2006 (4:13.52y)
4:12.4 Garry Bjorklund, Proctor 1967 (4:14.0y)
4:13.8 Pat Kreidler, Duluth Denfeld 1969 (4:15.4y)
4:15.40 Mar Jang, Mpls Edison 2000
4:15.83 Nick Schneider, Benilde-St Mrgt 1999 (3:56.88m)
4:16.61 Garrett Heath, Winona 2002
4:16.9 Tim O'Donnell, Simley 1974 (4:18.6y)
4:17.39 Elliott Heath, Winona 2005
4:17.49 Mike VanBeusekom, Irondale 2001

4:16.95 Rob Finnerty, Burnsville 2005
4:17.5 Garry Bjorklund, Proctor 1966 (4:19.2y)
4:18.4 Steve Briggs, Winona 1986
4:20.18 Dahir Jumale, Marshall 2004
4:20.74 Nick Schneider, Benilde-St Margaret 1998
4:20.74 Mar Jang, Minneapolis Edison 1999
4:21.34 Garrett Heath, Winona 2001
4:23.15 Moses Heppner, Warroad 2006
4:23.55 Chris Erichsen, Kingsland 2001
4:25.96 Andy Tate, Morris Area 1993

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Deatherage: "I needed to get my head back in the game."

When DtB last talked to Jenelle Deatherage, HERE, it was on the heels of her 8th place finish at the 2007 USA Outdoor Championships in Indianapolis. She was trying to find some answers in frustrating season that had challenged her confidence.

What a difference seven months can make!

Yesterday, we heard from to the former University of Wisconsin star again. This time as the Reebok Boston Indoor Games champion in the mile, a laurel she surprisingly won over the weekend. Deatherage (pictured winning in Boston), formerly of Team USA Minnesota, told us about last season, the changes she needed to make, and how she is training now.

DtB: Were you surprised by your run on Saturday? Did you have indications from your training that you were ready for a fast one?

Deatherage: My training has been going well and I was hoping to finish near the top but yes I was surprised. It's so early in the season that you just never really know what to expect.

DtB: We know 2007 wasn't a banner year for you. How difficult was it for you?

Deatherage: I don't know, I guess looking back it wasn't that it was difficult, just more of a turning point. I realized that I needed to make some changes if I wanted to be serious about making the Olympic team. I needed to get my head back in the game.

DtB: What do you think has changed for the better for you now?

Deatherage: Honestly, my attitude. I turned 30 last September and really thought to myself "wow, you don't have a lot of time left in this sport you'd better make the most of it".

DtB: We saw in some of post-race coverage that you credited both your former coach Dennis Barker and your current coach Juli Henner for your success at Boston. What has each of them offered that was helpful to you?

Deatherage: I have been INCREDIBLY lucky throughout my running career to have worked with some of the very best coaches in the country. They all have their strengths just as the athletes do. I think that Dennis is an unbelievable motivator. He really helped me to dream big and to realize that anything is possible. Juli is really passionate about the sport as well and brings personal experience with racing my event. Most importantly they are both good people who genuinely care about their athletes.

DtB: What exactly is your coaching/training situation like right now? Are you training alone mostly? How do you and Juli communicate?

Deatherage: We communicate by phone and e-mail. I was out in DC in the fall to learn some drills and to get a personal feel for the program. I'll probably go out there again a few times in the spring. For now, I do all of my hard workouts on my own and try to meet up with the Team USA girls as much as possible for easy runs.

It's not an ideal situation but moving wasn't really an option. My husband and I LOVE the Twin Cities. We have such great friends here and are both really happy with our jobs. I'm proud to call myself part of this amazing local running community! Where else do you see tons of people out for a long run on Saturday morning when it's in the single digits?

Photo by Lisa Coniglio

Goucher to Run Millrose Games Mile

Duluth native Kara Goucher, the bronze medalist at 10,000 meters at last years IAAF World Championships, will compete in the mile at the 101st Millrose Games in New York City on February 1, meet organizers announced.

Goucher (pictured, # 967), who won a battle over the half-marathon distance against British superstar Paula Radcliffe last fall, will test the other end of her racing range at the Madison Square Garden meet. She will face 2006 World Indoor Championships silver medalist at 3000 meters Liliya Shobukhova of Russia, a former World Record-holder at that distance.

As DtB noted last week, Goucher had knee surgery at the end of her 2007 campaign but tested her legs on Seattle's indoor oval and deems herself ready for some tight-cornered , indoor competition.

You can listen to a podcast interview with Goucher, HERE, thanks to the folks at The Final Sprint.

Photo by Sean Hartnett.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Investment in Brown Already Paying Dividends

We're just speculating here, but we're pretty sure the folks who invest in up-and-coming athletes for the Minnesota Elite Athlete Development Program like the dividends that Team USA Minnesota's Emily Brown is already paying out.

Brown (pictured), one of five Minnesota distance runners to earn stipends from Minnesota's generous development program this year, won the loaded 3000 meter event at Saturday's Jack Johnson Minnesota Classic with a 17 second PR of 9:10.60.

A nice return in these recessionary times.

Brown beat fellow Gopher alum Rasa Troup, 2nd in 9:21.81, University of Iowa star Diane Nukuri, 3rd in 9:24.25, and current Gopher Jamie Cheever, 4th in 9:24.82. Team USA Minnesota teammate Mandi Zemba was 6th in 9:28.03; Gopher Ladia Albertson-Junkans was 10th in 10:14.27.

Brown established a new fieldhouse record bettering Sabrina Dornhoefer's 9:15.95 mark from 1990. Brown did, however, forfeit her school record to Cheever in the race.

"I was planning on letting some of the other runners lead it out since I had talked to a few of them and we were all kind of on the same page as far as pace goes," Brown said in a Team, USA Minnesota media release. "But 100 meters into it, I knew I wasn't comfortable back there and had to get out in front. It is something that hasn't always worked for me, but I feel most comfortable when I have the freedom to run my own race and that is how it worked out so I was pleased."

"As soon as I got through the first 400 meters, I wasn't really focused on the competitive aspect of the race," the former Big Ten steeplechase champ admitted. "I was more focused on holding a steady pace between 36-37 for each 200. I didn't hear specific 200 splits but I knew I was on pace at the mile and just wanted to keep that going. I wasn't so much concerned about pulling away from the field as I was about pushing the pace and feeling strong."

Brown's fast opening mark was a nice return on the $1250 she was recently awarded by MEADP to advance her development in the sport. Also receiving stipends from MEADP, a program funded through contributions from Austin-Jarrow Sports, Grandma’s Marathon-Duluth, Inc., Minnesota Distance Running Association (MDRA), and Twin Cities Marathon , Inc., were Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier Melissa Gacek ($1250), Team USA Minnesotan Antonio Vega ($1250), Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier Eric Hartmark ($750) and USATF co-Runner of the Year Jeremy Polson ($500).

Photo by Gene Niemi.

The Miles Lists: Shot Put

It's time for the big boys ... as the shot putters take the stage in our posting of the Bill and Tim Miles' lists of the top 2007 and all-time Minnesota high school boys performances.

You can view all the lists posted so far by clicking HERE.


2007 BESTS
Trey Davis 12 Farmington 61- ¾
Tyler Kleinhuizen 12 Forest Lake 61- ¼
Matt Maresh 12 Glencoe-Silver Lake 57-6 ½
Casey Dehn 10 Owatonna 57-3 ½
Todd DeJong 12 Hopkins 56-2
Justin Brown 12 Rushford-Peterson/Houston 56-1 ¼
Andy Enyi 12 Lakeville North 55-9 ¼
Derall King 12 Henry Sibley 55-1
Mike Shaver 12 Owatonna 55- ¾
Martell Lightfoot 12 St. Paul Harding 54-10 1/2
Anthony Jacobs 12 Northfield 54-2 ¼
Tom Sawyer 12 Winona 53-10 ¾
Nate Solors 12 Elk River 53-9 ½
Ross Hillukka 12 Buffalo 53-9
Tyler Velzke 12 Waterville-Elysian-Morristown 53-7 ¾
Eric Walechka 12 Le Center/Cleveland 53-7 ½
Brian Leonhardt 11 Spring Lake Park/St. Anthony 53-7 ¼
Matt Schwartz 12 Forest Lake 53-1 ¼
Tim Juba 12 Park 52-10
Tom Lyscio 11 Brainerd 52-8 3/4
Gerard DeWet 12 Lewiston-Altura 52-8 ½
Sean Matti 12 Roseville Area 52-8
Marc Jennings 12 Mankato West 52-7 ¾
Paul Meyers 12 Plainview-Elgin-Millville 52-7
Aaron Thauwald 11 Kingsland 52-6 ½
Bryce Koke 12 Bloomington Jefferson 52-2 ½
Randy Erickson 12 Hutchinson 52-1 ½
Ryan Orton 12 Eden Prairie 52- ½
Joe Plante 11 MACCRAY 52-0
Patrick Schwartz 12 Park 51-11 3/4
Jake Brinkman 12 Mayer Lutheran 51-10 ½
Corey Tutewohl 12 Farmington 51-8
Matt Benson 11 Grand Rapids 51-8
Ross Schulz 11 Bloomington Kennedy 51-7 ¾
Joseph Johnson 11 Mounds View 51-6 ½
Mike Schwanke 12 Lakeville South 51-3 ¾
Micah Hegerle 11 Kasson-Mantorville 51-2 ¾
Andrew Northenscold 12 Mankato West 51-2 ½
Darin Underhill 12 Brainerd 51-2
Jandre DeWet 12 Lewiston-Altura 51-1
Kyle Grimm 11 Barnum 50-10
Jared Thompson 11 Blaine 50-9 ¼
Devin Dirth 11 Apple Valley 50-6 ¾
John Walsh 12 Rosemount 50-5 ¾
Kenny Klein 11 Forest Lake 50-5
Chris Heil 12 Blaine 50-3 ¾
Eric Zingleman 12 Andover 50-3
Matt Anderson 12 Hibbing 50-3
John Howard 12 Big Lake 50-3
Jose Meregotte 12 White Bear Lake 50-2 3/4

65-6 Nate Englin, Mounds View 2003
65-3 Tim Senjem, Hayfield 1996
62-8 Mike Yonkey, Wells-Easton 1987
62-6.75 Rob McGarry, Stillwater 1979
61-11.5 Chad Goldstein, St Louis Park 1989
61-9 Don Hoffman, Blaine 1978
61-9 Chris Waltman, Elgin-Millville 1980
61-3.5 Chris Redden, Robb Armstrong 1988
61-2 Lyndon Murtha, Hutchinson 2004
61-1.5 Eric Lowe, Apple Valley 1982
61-1.5 Larry Hartman, St Louis Park 1985
61-1.5 Darwin Dumonceaux, St John’s Prep 1995
61-0.75 Trey Davis, Farmington 2007
61-0.25 Joe Palke, Mounds View 1998
61-0.25 Tyler Kleinhuizen, Forest Lake 2007
60-11 Creighton Schroyer, Pipestone-Jasper 2006
60-10.75 Karl Erickson, Rochester Century 2001
60-7.5 Joe Toth, Forest Lake 1990
60-6.25 Andy Walker, Park Center 1974
60-5.5 Eric Snyder, Austin 1988
60-5.25 Tom Grad, Blaine 1982
60-2 Colin Anderson, Golden Valley 1969
60-1.5 Kent Kitzmann, Rochester JM 1975
60-1 Jeff Deaton, St Cloud Apollo 1980
60-1 Nick Kalis, Wells-E-Alden-C-F 1991
60-1 Ben Sobieski, Mahtomedi 1997
60-0.75 Wayne Tennis, Park-Cottage Gr 1986
60-0.25 Dale Robley, Pelican Rapids 1969
60-0.2 Jim Northenscold, Mankato West 1975
60-0 Todd Spratte, Rochester JM 1979
60-0 Joe Remitz, North Branch 2002
59-11.75 Bob Schweich, North Branch 1990
59-11.5 Eric Fredrickson, Northfield 1997
59-9.75 Ivan Zubar, Richfield 1982
59-9.25 Kevin Henderson, Winona 1980
59-9 Irv Forseth, White Bear Lake 1972
59-8.75 Steve Cook, Richfield 1969
59-8.75 Jon Jellum, Lakeville 1993
59-8.25 Rob Hydukovich, Bemidji 1990
59-7 Matt Kleffman, Red Wing 2004
59-6 Tim Biegert, Osseo 1978
59-5.75 Doug Schindler, Richfield 1967
59-5.75 Joel Kuebelbeck, Little Falls 1982
59-5 Greg Bartlett, Park Center 1979
59-4.75 Steve Turnbull, Eden Prairie 1973
59-4.5 Jim Micketts, Hermantown 1966
59-2.75 Adam Schnaible, Burnsville 2001
59-2.5 Jeremy Soupir, Redwood Valley 2004
59-2.25 John Zollinger, Frank Kellogg 1985
59-2 Nate Pederson, Brainerd 1994
59-0.75 Joel Sward, Red Wing 1987
59-0 Seth Rorem, International Falls 1999
58-11 Joel Staats, Winona 1988
58-10.5 Jerry Skogmo, Fergus Falls 1968
58-10 Don Joyce, Mahtomedi 1971
58-9.75 Royce Bottin, Jackson 1975
58-9.75 Simon Stewart, Carlton/Wrenshall 1998
58-9.5 Nick Hartzel, White Bear Lake 1967
58-9 Tom Lofgren, Stewartville 1998
58-8 Brett Ailts, Jackson 1980
58-7.25 Dan Seebart, White Bear Lake 1964
58-7 Chris Brinkworth, Bloom Kennedy 1990
58-6.25 Jeff Wetzel, SP Harding 1981
58-6 Dave Snesrud, Red Wing 1968
58-5 Justin Asher, Wayzata 1996
58-3.5 Marcus Benjamin, Robbinsdale Cooper 2004
58-3 Dan Geere, Rosemount 1986
58-2.5 Steve Wright, Wayzata 1977
58-2 John Bruley, Forest Lake 1988
58-0.5 Peter Svien, Lewiston-Altura 1987
58-0.25 Matt Vardas, Pierz 1988
58-0 Gordy Lupfer, Litchfield 1972
58-0 Bryan Bennett, Duluth Denfeld 1982
57-11.25 Paul Gronvall, Red Wing 2004
57-11 Matt Wolfe, Coon Rapids 1981
57-10.5 Tom Swanson, Northfield 1957
57-10 David Giehtbrock, Chatfield 1987
57-10 Nick Nemmers, Cloquet 1987
57-10 Eric Schroeder, Stewartville 2004
57-9.5 Chris Dolejs, Apple Valley 1987
57-9.5 Howard Collett, Lakeville 2002
57-7.25 Gary Kummet, Pierz 1994
57-6.5 Matt Maresh, Glencoe-Silver Lake 2007
57-6 John Sitarz, Irondale 1983
57-6 Chad Kingsbury, Fillmore Central/Lanesboro 1999
57-5.5 Dave Wadewitch, Lewiston 1978
57-5.5 Jake Truebenbach, Shakopee 2004
57-5.25 Tom Sorenson, Pipestone 1975
57-5 Wayne Jacobson, Grand Rapids 1968
57-5 Todd Pavlek, International Falls 1979
57-4.5 Bob Peterson, Mpls Marshall 1958
57-4.5 David Thompson, Mpls Central 1981
57-4 Damie Abdo, Mahnomen 1998
57-3.5 Chris Dustrud, Park Center 1977
57-3.5 Kurt Zuidmuller, Hibbing 1985
57-3.5 Casey Dehn, Owatonna 2007
57-3.25 Jerry Netland, Bagley/Fosston 2004
57-3 Les Glover, International Falls 1988
57-3 Mark Fahey, Forest Lake 1996

65-6 Nate Englin, Mounds View 2003
60-3.75 Trey Davis, Farmington 2006
59-5 Joe Palke, Mounds View 1997
59-2.75 Adam Schnaible, Burnsville 2001
58-9 Tyler Kleinhuizen, Forest Lake 2006
58-8 Larry Hartman, St Louis Park 1984
58-7.75 Dan Hoffman, Blaine 1977
58-6.5 Joel Staats, Winona 1987
58-2 Justin Asher, Wayzata 1995
57-11.5 Peter Svien, Lewiston-Altura 1986

61-8.5 Nate Englin, Mounds View 2002
57-10.5 Nick Kalis, Wells-Easton-A-C 1989
57-3.5 Casey Dehn, Owatonna 2007
55-11 Nick Landy, Fairmont 1984
55-7.75 Larry Hartman, St Louis Park 1983
55-3.5 Tyler Velzke, Waterville-Elysian-Morristown 2005
55-3.25 Tim Biegert, Osseo 1976
54-3.25 Justin Brown, Rushford-Peterson/Houston 2005
54-3 John Olsonoski, Bloom Jefferson 1978
54-0.75 Bob Schweich, North Branch 1988
54-0.5 Trey Davis, Farmington 2005

53-8 Tim Biegert, Osseo 1975
53-3.5 John Zollinger, Frank B Kellogg 1982
53-1 Derek Peterson, Forest Lake 2003
51-3 Jim Velishek, Waterville-Elysian 1986
51-1 Justin Staebler, Perham 1995
50-9 Nick Landy, Fairmont 1983
49-11 Gary Horack, Hibbing 1991
49-9 Trey Davis, Farmington 2004
49-4 Andy Agrimson, Stillwater 1993
49-4 Justin Brown, Rushford-Peterson/Houston 2004

Monday, January 28, 2008

Gleason Returns from Accident with Near-PR

The results are in: Getting run over by a truck will cost you nearly a second over 3000 meters.

Brandon Gleason, the Hamline University junior who survived being run over by a truck last winter while he was on a training run, returned to competition Saturday running 8:34.45 at the Iowa State Open 3000m. His time was, mind-bogglingly, less than a second slower than the PR he set last year, prior to the accident.

In an e-mail to Down the Backstretch the yesterday, Gleason (pictured) joked that he thought he might have run a lap short in the race, but then admitted, " ... I looked down at my right leg and I just slapped my scars and thought, "You did it."

The accident last February had left Gleason with his tibia protruding from his leg after a truck running a stop sign rolled over both of his legs. He now runs with the scars, hardware fastening his compound-fractured tibia together, and persistent knee pain.

Gleason said he was targeting a time around 8:45 for the race on ISU's 300 meter oval for his return to competition after nearly a year.

"But when the gun went off, it felt liked everything came back," the Kasson-Mantorville alum said. "I got out towards the front right away. There were two guys that gapped the field right away but I just had to tell myself, "RUN YOUR RACE." However, instead of running 70 for the first quarter I came through in 67 and it felt good and relaxed surprisingly. Then my next 300 was about 50 seconds. [66+ for 400m.]

Last year, Gleason opened his accident-abbreviated indoor season with his PR 8:33.51 3000m at St. Olaf.

Gleason said the impressive run doesn't change his goals for the young track season.

"No, not really because my real test will be Iowa State in three weeks," he said referring to the 5000 meter race which could qualify him for NCAA Indoors. "I just want to stick to my training routine and not do anything crazy that might hurt my future goals.

"I just need to remember that I have to do what is best for my current state and that's all I can ask for. BUT, I would really like to provo in the 5K in three weeks and, if something more than that happens well, then it just goes to show that nothing is impossible."

As he has throughout the months since his accident, Gleason highlighted his teammates' role in his return.

"Even though I am happy with my time," he said, "what I will take away from this meet is the fact that I have some of the best teammates anyone could have. I just remember the whole team cheering and getting louder with each lap and without them, this just wouldn't be as much fun."

You can find DtB's story about Gleason from before Saturday's race HERE.

You can find the report of Gleason's accident last year HERE.

Photo courtesy of Hamline University.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Deatherage Wins in Boston

Jenelle Deatherage of St. Louis Park kicked off her 2008 season with a big win in the Visa Women's Mile at the Reebok Boston Indoor Games. Deatherage (pictured) ran 4:32.95 to edge out Lauren Fleshman and Roisin McGettigan, who finished in 4:33.46 and 4:4:33.96 respectively.

Team USA Minnesota's Katie McGregor ran 9:58.51 to finish 4th in the Reebok Women's 2 Mile. Olympic gold medalist and 5,000 meter world record holder Meseret Defar of Ethiopia won the event in 9:10.50.

File photo courtesy of Team USA Minnesota

Friday, January 25, 2008

The Short-Cut: Results Links for Jan 25-27th

Back again in 2008 ... here's our patented (not really) gathering of links to results of each weekend's important events.

Two events in particular look outstanding this weekend ... The women's 3000 meters at the Jack Johnson Minnesota Classic at the U of M where Gopher stars Jamie Cheever and Ladia Albertson-Junkans will race Iowa's 4th place NCAA XC finisher Diane Nukuri and Team USA Minnesotans Mandi Zemba and Emily Brown ... And, the women's pole vault where D2's highest vaulter ever, Katelin Rains of Minnesota State Mankato, will get a rematch with Pan Am Juniors gold medalist Alicia Rue of the Gophers. Rue beat Rains last weekend at the U and earned her second Big Ten Athlete of the Week honor in doing so.

Carleton Open (men): Results
St. Olaf Triangular (women): Results
Iowa State Invitational: Results

Jack Johnson Minnesota Classic (U of M) ...
Heat Sheets for MEN & WOMEN
Results for MEN & WOMEN
Iowa State Invitational: Results

Grandma's Marathon: Only 2600 Spots Remain

Grandma's Marathon officials announced that the field for their 2008 event is nearly three-fourths full. Since Grandma's inaugural on-line registration opened eight days ago, 6,900 runners have signed up for the event’s 32nd annual running.

The marathon field is limited to the first 9,500 participants. Runners looking to secure one of the remaining 2,600 spots should visit

Grandma's Marathon weekend, of course, also features the 18th annual Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon and the 15th annual William A. Irvin 5K. Registration for those two events will begin in February and March, respectively. The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon is Saturday, June 21 at 6:30 a.m. and the William A. Irvin 5K is Friday, June 20 at 6 p.m.

Brandon Gleason to Return to Racing Saturday

At the end of a week when we all could use an uplifting story, we have one.

Brandon Gleason, the Hamline University distance star who was struck by a truck last February and had both of his legs run over in the incident will return to competition for the first time tomorrow in the 3000 meters at the Iowa State Open in Ames. After less than a year, Gleason has recovered from the broken right tibia that protruded from his right leg, the medial collateral ligament damage that his right knee incurred, and the overall impact and ordeal of the incident.

Gleason (pictured) had originally intended to return to competition in the fall of 2008 and race one, full, final school year for the Pipers. He chose to return early for several reasons, he told DtB via e-mail.

"I began becoming disconnected from Hamline," Gleason said. "Even though I was working on campus and was attending team practices roughly 3 to 4 days a week, and traveling with the team, it wasn't the same. This was all really hard for me because for three years, the team is the only thing that I knew was a solid for me or a sure thing."

Gleason said his coaches -- Paul Schmaedeke and Lynden Reder -- showed so much excitement and his progress last fall their that it prompted him to consider returning in time for the 2008 indoor season.

"[Coach Schmaedeke and I] then started talking about if I was going to use all of my seasons of eligibility for track or not," Gleason explained, "but after an emotional talk with him, I decided that I owed it to Schmed as well as myself to use the 2008 season of indoor as a jump start to a true comeback and to give it one last push -- making sure to have no regrets.

Finally, Gleason credits is current and former teammates for his ahead-of-schedule return.

"Those guys have done long runs with me, morning runs, and have never put doubt into my head that my goals of becoming an All-American in track/XC were out of reach," he said. "By them getting out the door with me in the cold, even though they didn't have to, made me realize that they support me because they know what I can become."

Despite maintaining the same ultimate competitive goals for himself as he had before the accident -- when he was the #6-ranked 5000 meter runner in NCAA Division III -- Gleason is maintaining a patient attitude about the beginning of his comeback.

"My goals for indoors are very make it to the start line of each race healthy and with a smile on my face," he said. "I also want to qualify for conference in two events (either the mile, 3k, or 5k) and that's about it. I just want to use indoors to get my legs back under me, get use to racing again, and just evaluate where I am. But the biggest goal has to be to stay healthy."

For the outdoor season, though, Gleason plans to be setting his sights a little higher.

"My goals for outdoors are also very simple.... make it to OSHKOSH in May (NCAA National Meet) in either the 5k or 10k," he states. "I really feel that if I do not have any setbacks and I can train how I know I can and race how I used to and stay focused that this is not out of reach. I really do not care about making noise at the meet, I just want to make it which will help me realize that I can compete again and do it well -- this will be a good boost for the upcoming seasons."

At the end of the 2008 track season, Gleason will still have a season each of eligibility in cross country, indoor, and outdoor track.

Gleason's training of late suggests his 2008 track goals and his ultimate hopes for his racing next school year aren't unrealistic. In the last twelve weeks, Gleason has logged just shy of 1000 miles of training including weeks of 105, 110, and 100 miles the past three weeks.

"These mile weeks are right around what I ran last year," he said. "So as far as training, I am almost back to where I was. This just means that I can handle running training runs between 6 minute and 7 minute pace, I can handle long hilly runs of 18 miles, and I can handle doubling runs 6 days a week. This has been a huge confidence boost because where I am at currently and what I hope to accomplish, I cannot afford to get hurt and i do not think i will anymore."

Still, Gleason does endure persistent pain in his knee since the injury.

"From day one until now, my knee has been and will be the only thing that holds me back from accomplishing what I want to accomplish," he said. "It just feels like I have arthritis and at times, it severely hurts to get a good stride when I run -- I find it hard to bring my knee up to high or even bend it to much -- and I think that by living in Minnesota doesn't help to much. This is because I still have the rod and screws in my leg and as a result my knee and leg I think are effected more with the cold due to the hardware. Otherwise, I feel like my shins are holding up, my hips and back are okay and my lungs have gotten used to running again."

The gun is schedule to fire for the Iowa State 3000 meters -- and the beginning of the rest of Gleason racing career -- Saturday at 4:55 p.m.

Photo courtesy of Hamline University.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Boren, Lundstrom, Polson Named Runners of the Year

Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier Jenna Boren, Pan American Games marathon 6th place finisher Chris Lundstrom, and former Golden Gopher Jeremy Polson were named 2007 USATF-Minnesota Runners of the Year based on standings compiled by the Minnesota Running Data Center.

Awards were confered at the Minnesota Distance Running Association annual party last Saturday.

Boren won the open women's division with 82 points accumulated throughout 2007 in races ranging from 5K to the marathon. Nicole Cueno was second with 77 points. Erin Ward was third with 71.

Lundstrom and Polson tied for the men's title with 85 points. Pat Russell was third with 83 points.

Full Runner of the Year standings, including those in age-group competition, can be found HERE.

Also ... Receiving awards last Saturday along with the Runner's of the Year and MDRA's Grand Prix winners -- HERE -- were contributors to the sport Tim Zbikowski and John Cramer and his family.

Zbikowski was awarded the Pat Lanin Distinguished Service Award for decades of contributions to the running community. Zbikowski might be best known as the organizing force behind the Minnesota Track and Field Hall of Fame. The former MDRA president is also the co-director of the Meet of Miles and a former Twin Cities Marathon board member.

Cramer and family were named Volunteers of the Year for their work organizing the Como Relays, the popular, weekly, late-summer event-series in St. Paul. The family faced extra challenges in 2007 after a storm blew down dozens of trees on the course.

The Miles Lists: 800 Meters

We move to the 800 meters in our posting of the Bill and Tim Miles' lists of the top 2007 and all-time Minnesota high school boys performances. You can view all the lists posted so far by clicking HERE.


2007 BESTS
Andy Richardson 11 Irondale 1:51.60
Zach Mellon 10 Buffalo 1:51.87
Isaac Veldkamp 11 Eden Prairie 1:53.62
Jordan Carlson 11 Rosemount 1:53.88
David Pachuta 12 Eastview 1:53.96
Obai Hussein 11 Rosemount 1:54.04
Nick Hutton 11 Apple Valley 1:54.09
Mike Shelendich 12 Mounds View 1:54.37
Jonathan Stublaski 12 Henry Sibley 1:54.51
Ben Blankenship 12 Stillwater Area 1:54.58
Mike Mueller 12 Hopkins 1:54.99
Nick Ramberg 12 North Branch 1:55.08
Mustafa Yusuf 12 Willmar 1:55.49
Alex Wrobel 12 Mounds View 1:55.50
Robel Kebede 10 Minneapolis South 1:55.68
Tyler King 11 Lakeville North 1:55.73
Anthony Held 11 Elk River 1:55.94
Abdi Mohamed 12 Eden Prairie 1:56.10
Ben Garbers 12 North St. Paul 1:56.23
Tom Hoffman 12 Mahtomedi 1:56.24
Ned Brady 11 Minneapolis De La Salle 1:56.24
Aaron Gorman 12 Park Center 1:56.55
Kevin Bradley 11 Mounds View 1:56.70
Ian Campbell 12 Blooming Prairie 1:56.85
Kaafi Adeys 12 Willmar 1:56.86
Rob Finnerty 11 Burnsville 1:57.18
John Paul Vaith 12 Hastings 1:57.25
Denny Meints 12 Pine Island 1:57.31
Abdi Awale 12 Willmar 1:57.36
Lloyd Gbahtuo 12 Spring Lake Park/St. Anthony 1:57.40
Kevin Ragborg 12 Lakeville South 1:57.41
Doug Debold 12 Hopkins 1:57.42
Jeff Janssen 11 Fairmont 1:57.43
Paul Hilsen 12 Lakeville South 1:57.56
Dan Starke 10 Mankato West 1:57.61
Mitch Lorenz 11 Brainerd 1:57.62
Luke Delaney 11 Brainerd 1:57.64
Tyler Leverington 12 Roseau 1:57.78
Colin Carpenter 11 Minneapolis De La Salle 1:57.86
Evan Kearney 11 Minneapolis South 1:57.87
Harun Abda 9 Fridley 1:57.89
Tom Burke 12 Edina 1:57.95
Sam Shidla 12 Mound Westonka 1:57.9
Moses Heppner 10 Warroad 1:58.23
Jackson Wiley 12 Eden Prairie 1:58.30
Dominick Rosario 11 Edina 1:58.54
Reid Gilbertson 11 Stillwater Area 1:58.62
Harry Backlund 12 St. Paul Highland Park 1:58.67
David Haugen 12 Moorhead 1:58.68
Andy Wendroth 12 Zumbrota-Mazeppa 1:58.68

1:49.13 Jason Owen, Stewartville 1996
1:49.30 Trent Riter, Mounds View 2001
1:50.56 Steve Holman, Richfield 1988
1:51.0 Tim Turnbull, Hopkins 1966 (1:51.7y)
1:51.60 Andy Richardson, Irondale 2007
1:51.75 Ryan Ford, St Cloud Apollo 2000
1:51.82 Tom Schmidt, Faribault 2001
1:51.87 Zach Mellon, Buffalo 2007
1:52.07 Carson Hoeft, Armstrong 1985
1:51.9 John Cordes, Duluth East 1968 (1:52.6y)
1:52.22 Jon Ortloff, Mankato West 2000
1:52.39 Hans Storvick, Mankato West 2004
1:52.41 Garrett Heath, Winona 2004
1:52.3 Josh Bunker, Mpls South 1985
1:52.4 Dave Hodge, Austin 1966 (1:53.1y)
1:52.5 Chris Thiem, Mankato 1968 (1:53.2y)
1:52.98 Bill Bowser, Forest Lake 2001
1:53.01 Dan Knappmiller, St Paul Central 2001
1:53.12 Collin Beachy, Staples-Motley 1989
1:53.28 Justin Tuomela, North St. Paul 2003
1:53.34 Terry Haley, SP Cretin-Derham Hall 1994
1:53.53 Mike Brown, Stillwater 1986
1:53.53 Jake Watson, Stillwater 2004
1:53.3 Steve Webber, Simley 1985
1:53.62 Isaac Veldkamp, Eden Prairie 2007
1:53.4 Jeff Brauchle, Edina 1969 (1:54.1y)
1:53.4 Jim Lieb, Mpls Southwest 1974 (1:54.1y)
1:53.5 Mike Gebeke, White Bear Mariner 1979 (1:54.2y)
1:53.75 Chris Erichsen, Kingsland 2004
1:53.80 Jason Boon, Park 1992
1:53.88 Jordan Carlson, Rosemount 2007
1:53.91 Zach Swartzendruber, Anoka 2001(
1:53.7 Marty Johnson, Minnetonka 1966 (1:54.4y)
1:53.7 Tom Steiner, Alexander Ramsey 1969 (1:54.4y)
1:53.7 Andy Bunge, Preston 1972 (1:54.4y)
1:53.7 Lee Branville, Virginia 1974 (1:54.4y)
1:53.7 Kevin Roth, St. Paul Cretin 1976 (1:54.4y)
1:53.7 Dan Casper, Northfield 1985
1:53.96 David Pachuta, Eastview 2007
1:54.02 Toby Henkels, Worthington 1998
1:53.8 Mike Newman, Rochester JM 1974 (1:54.5y)
1:54.04 Obai Hussein, Rosemount 2007
1:54.09 Nick Hutton, Apple Valley 2007
1:53.9 Joe Brisson, North St Paul 1978 (1:54.6y)
1:53.9 Jim Bergen, Stillwater 1978 (1:54.6y)
1:54.19 Nika Jones, Mpls South 1992
1:54.20 Ed Reeves, Edina 2003
1:54.21 Ben Hanson, Buffalo 2001
1:54.0 Mark Killen, Owatonna 1978
1:54.29 Jon Gargano, Eden Prairie 2001
1:54.30 Mike Yard, Maple Grove 2003
1:54.33 Trevor Mitchell, Stillwater 1997
1:54.35 Steve West, SP Highland Pk 1984
1:54.36 Mike Moran, Park 1980
1:54.36 Collin Plummer, Mounds View 2005
1:54.36 Brian Sames, Shakopee 2005
1:54.37 Mike Shelendich, Mounds View 2007
1:54.2 Wally Malmstrom, Elk River 1966 (1:54.9y)
1:54.2 Dan Ewing, Mounds View 1967 (1:54.9y)
1:54.2 Chris Silva, Hill-Murray 1988
1:54.2 Mike VanBeusekom, Irondale 2003
1:54.47 Jason Max, Minnetonka 1989
1:54.51 Rob Finnerty, Burnsville 2006
1:54.51 Jonathan Stublaski, Henry Sibley 2007
1:54.3 Steve Petrie, SP Harding 1975 (1:55.0y)
1:54.3 Mark DeFor, Bloomington Jefferson 1982
1:54.58 Ben Blankenship, Stillwater Area 2007
1:54.59 Mike Mason, Osseo 1991
1:54.59 Austin Flom, Moorhead 2001
1:54.4 Joe Vortherms, Worthington 1978 (1:55.1y)
1:54.4 Brian Maas, Austin Pacelli 1979 (1:55.1y)
1:54.64 Rob Edwards, Prior Lake 1996
1:54.64 Yonas Seyum, St Paul Arlington 2000
1:54.64 William Leer, Minnetonka 2003
1:54.4 Steve Solum, Hawley/Ulen-Hitterdal 2004
1:54.66 Eric Palmquist, Warroad 2003
1:54.5 Les Johnson, Hutchinson 1978 (1:55.2y)
1:54.5 Matt Ferry, Osseo 1986
1:54.79 Chris Boldt, Stillwater Area 1999
1:54.83 Tony Foss, SP Cretin-Derham Hall 1996
1:54.83 Lancer Lumby, Stillwater Area 1998
1:54.6 Bob Neumer, St Louis Park 1965 (1:55.3y)
1:54.6 Mark Kittleson, White Bear Lk 1971 (1:55.3y)
1:54.6 Dana Bonstrom, Osseo 1972 (1:55.3y)
1:54.6 Ben Porter, Edina-East 1974 (1:55.3y)
1:54.6 Mark Richardson, SP Johnson 1977 (1:55.3y)
1:54.85 Jordan Bremer, Apple Valley 2001
1:54.7 Mark St Aoro, Mounds View 1975 (1:55.4y)
1:54.7 Roger Roettger, Stillwater 1982
1:54.7 Nick Schneider, Benilde-St. Margaret 2001
1:54.95 Steve Tingum, Alexandria 1998
1:54.97 Cory Ylinen, Eden Prairie 2000
1:54.8 Skip Chalker, Edina East 1974 (1:55.5y)
1:54.99 Mike Mueller, Hopkins 2007
1:55.03 Michael Finnerty, Burnsville 2005
1:55.05 Steve Scarince, Sartell 1986
1:55.08 Collin Bushman, Stillwater Area 2003
1:55.08 Nick Ramberg, North Branch 2007
1:55.09 Eric Hudson, Stillwater 1991
1:55.11 Pat Lehman, Plainview 2003
1:55.13 Eric Hawes, Hutchinson 1997

1:51.60 Andy Richardson, Irondale 2007
1:51.82 Tom Schmidt, Faribault 2001
1:52.24 Jason Owen, Stewartville 1995
1:53.41 Steve Holman, Richfield 1987
1:53.53 Trent Riter, Mounds View 2000
1:53.3 Tim Turnbull, Hopkins 1965 (1:54.0y)
1:53.62 Isaac Veldkamp, Eden Prairie 2007
1:53.88 Jordan Carlson, Rosemount 2007
1:53.8 Andy Bunge, Preston 1972 (1:54.5y)
1:53.8 Tom Steiner, Alexander Ramsey 1968 (1:54.5y)
1:54.04 Obai Hussein, Rosemount 2007

1:51.41 Jason Owen, Stewartville 1994
1:51.87 Zach Mellon, Buffalo 2007
1:54.51 Rob Finnerty, Burnsville 2006
1:54.69 Tom Schmidt, Faribault 2000
1:54.8 Andy Bunge, Preston 1971 (1:55.5y)
1:55.4 Dave Krejci, Austin 1985
1:55.68 Robel Kebede, Minneapolis South 2007
1:55.6 Josh Bunker, Mpls South 1983
1:55.87 Isaac Veldkamp, Eden Prairie 2006
1:55.92 Brian Sames, Shakopee 2003

1:57.11 Jason Owen, Stewartville 1993
1:57.89 Harun Abda, Fridley 2007
1:57.94 Isaac Veldkamp, Eden Prairie 2005
1:58.32 Jordan Carlson, Rosemount 2005
1:58.33 James Billings, Eagan 1992
1:58.85 Tom Hoffman, Mahtomedi 2004
1:58.85 Zachary Mellon, Buffalo 2006
1:59.01 Dusty Cossette, Fergus Fall 1997
1:59.31 Anthony Held, Elk River 2005
1:59.2 Steve Briggs, Winona 1986

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Remembering Wesly Ngetich's Short Life

In the wake of Wesly Ngetich's violent death on Monday in Kenya, we thought it would be fitting to remember the two-time Grandma's Marathon champion's life with someone who knew him well. We asked his agent, Hussein Makke, to tell us a something about Ngetich's life in Kenya and his career as a professional runner.

We especially enjoyed Makke's story of Ngetich's 2006, night-before-the-race switch -- unbeknownst to his agent -- from Houston's half-marathon to its marathon. It was there that Ngetich ran his 2:12:10 marathon PR.

More soberingly, Makke told us he learned today from Ngetich's uncle that the marathon star (pictured) was ambushed at close range by Masai tribesmen. Three women and another man were killed in the same attack.

Here is our full interview with Makke ...

DtB: Where in Kenya was Wesly born?

Hussein Makke: He was born in Trans Mara on December 15, 1977

DtB: How did Wesly get his start as a runner?

Makke: I don't think Wesly ran in school; he started running in the late 90's as a way to earn a living

DtB: Were there others in his family that ran? Was his area known for producing great runners?

Makke: No one in his family runs; his area is a little far from the Rift Valley -- Iten and Eldoret areas, which are famous for producing world class runners.

DtB: When did Wesly first attract your notice?

Makke: In 2002, Wesly was training near my training camp in Nyahururu where he rented a small house to live with friends in an area where running is very popular It was more convenient for him than training in his hometown.

DtB: How did his international career get started?

Makke: He ran the Nairobi Standard Chartered Marathon in 2004, where I think he finished 4th; he wasn't training for the marathon -- he was just testing himself and wanted to make some money; after this, he ran his 1st international race in the 2005 Los Angeles Marathon, where he finished 5th.

DtB: Was he always a marathoner or did he have some cross country and track success too?

Makke: He did not compete in cross country or track; he ran some shorter road races in Kenya but never had a background of running in school so he just competed in road races and went straight to the marathon

DtB: What can you tell us about Wesly's farm and his family?

Makke: What I know is that he is married and has three children. He recently married another wife and there are no children from his 2nd wife; during his international career racing, he made some decent money and bought a new house -- of course, he bought more cows and land for farming. When I was in Kenya this past December, I was joking with him and asked him if he was recognized as a big man in his home town and he said not yet, he has to own 1000 cows or more to be recognized and he is not even close. His aim was to be well recognized in his hometown and provide for his family.

DtB: What made him such a successful marathoner?

Makke: He was super talented and I don't think he ever achieved his full potential. He had too much energy and he was not able to manage his energy properly. Wesly was a front runner and made some mistakes in racing when he broke away too early, only to fade in the final miles because he was impatient. He often rushed since he knew he was in good shape and had a lot of talent but he wasn't able to be patient.

What made him successful is his great personality. He never worried about anything. In 2006, he was supposed to run the half marathon in Houston and asked the race director the night before to switch him to the marathon. I wasn't there since I was in Kenya. He didn't prepare for the marathon but he adapted well and ran his personal best of 2:12:10 and finished 2nd there. His success is his talent and his ability to adapt and adjust to any situation.

DtB: What was he aiming for going into the 2008 season?

Makke: After we met last month in Kenya, he told me he was hoping to win the P.F. Chang's Rock-n-Roll Marathon in Phoenix (which he didn't come for) and then come back to Duluth to defend his title and be the only runner ever to win Grandma's three times.

DtB: He was unable to attend the Rock 'n' Roll marathon due to the post-election strife. What had he told you about conditions in his area prior to his death.

Makke: I did not speak to him directly but from what I heard, fighting broke out in his hometown and roads were closed so he was not able to train or travel.

DtB: Have you learned any more details about Wesly's death?

Makke: Today I heard from my guys who spoke to Wesly's uncle that he was ambushed by the Masai tribe and he was shot from close range in the chest with an arrow (40 meters away) so this is why it was so deadly. There were 3 women and one other man who also died in the ambush. The burial will be on Friday, January 25.

DtB: What are you still hearing about the violence in Kenya from other athletes you manage?

Makke: You hear different news from different towns. I think some towns are okay and there is no danger but the whole country is on hold waiting to see what the politicians decide so they can move on with their lives.

DtB: What do you think you'll remember most about Wesly?

Makke: Wesly was a true Africano. I will always remember his character. He was passionate about everything he said or did. He was very generous and was full of hope.

Photo by Jeff Frey & Associates, courtesy of Grandma's Marathon.

Watch Will Leer Breaks 4:00 in Seattle

Perhaps Down the Backstretch should consider opening a Seattle bureau, since lots of Minnesotans seem to be passing through that town these days ...

First, we learned that former Minnetonka star Will Leer, who graduated from Pomona-Pitzer Colleges last spring, ran 3:59.83 to win the mile at the University of Washington's Indoor Preview meet last weekend. Leer is now training in Eugene with the Oregon Track Club.

You can watch his race, HERE, on Paul Merca's web-site.

Second, fellow OTC-er Cack Ferrell, a St. Paul Academy and Summit School alum, also raced around Seattle's big oval last weekend. She won the 3000m in 9:13.58 and was 5th in the mile at 4:43.12.

Results from the entire meet can be found HERE.

Finally, Duluth native Kara Goucher was also spotted in the Emerald City recently. As she reports on her Nike blog, the Portland-based star was there testing her indoor legs after recent surgery to repair torn cartilage in her knee.

"I had an indoor season planned and it looked like it might not happen due to the surgery, but now I am thinking its back on again," she said. "I went to Seattle this weekend to run on the indoor track at the University of Washington and test it out. The workout went great and although I’m not as ready as if I hadn’t had this interruption, I still think I can get out there and run some good races."

"I love racing, I love pushing myself," she continued. "Even though the preparation hasn’t been perfect, it doesn’t change the fact that I want to get out there and test myself! Racing is the fun part; it’s the reward of all the hard work. It’s the perfect time of year to do something enjoyable and different before the long buildup that will come in a couple of months. I am willing to go in less than 100% ready because it’s going to be so much fun."

Photo courtesy of Pomona-Pitzer Colleges.

The Miles Lists: Pole Vault

Pole vaulting has been the story of the indoor track season so far, albeit with collegiate women. Here are the top 2007 and all-time Minnesota high school boys' performances in the event as complied by Tim and Bill Miles.


2007 BESTS
Casey Kedrowski 12 Sauk Rapids-Rice 14-9
Stephen Koecher 12 Blaine 14-9
Jacob Wolter 11 Lakeville North 14-7
Bryan Atwood 12 Mankato East 14-6
Jordan Mogck 12 Mounds View 14-6
Zack Gowdy 12 Burnsville 14-6
Bobby Downs 12 Chaska 14-3
John Pollack 12 Irondale 14-3
Andrew Norman 12 Maple Grove 14-3
Gabe Hymer 12 Apple Valley 14-3
Toney Banks 12 Apple Valley 14-0
John Merchant 12 Bloomington Kennedy 14-0
Zech Bertilson 12 Elk River 14-0
Matt Koivisto 12 Hibbing 14-0
Karl Novak 11 Lake City 14-0
Steven Lewis 12 Foley 14-0
Raphael Gelo 11 International Falls 14-0
Caleb Coffee 12 Milaca 13-9
Mitch Hagen 12 Pelican Rapids 13-9
Davis Thomas 12 Wayzata 13-8
Nathan lillis 12 Perham 13-8
Blake Weimerskirch 10 Robbinsdale Armstrong 13-7
Nolan Berg 12 Tri-County/G-MR/Badger 13-7
Andrew Fuller 11 Faribault 13-6
David Shaffer 12 Rosemount 13-6
Dan Sandor 11 Stillwater Area 13-6
Michael Hinton 11 Coon Rapids 13-6
Josh Hendricks 10 Eden Prairie 13-6
Tanner Ties 11 Lewiston-Altura 13-6
Erik Romsdahl 11 St. James 13-6
Brandon McCabe 12 Esko 13-6
Peter Erickson 11 Irondale 13-5
Adam Starr 11 Mankato West 13-3
Zach Rudolph 12 Sauk Rapids-Rice 13-2
Ethan Carlson 11 Plainview 13-2
Joe Donner 12 Lakeville South 13-0
Drew Feuk 11 New Prague 13-0
Evan Zachman 10 St. Michael-Albertville 13-0
Matt Masloski 12 Park 13-0
Cole Stenquist 12 Anoka 13-0
Yoni Seevers 10 Irondale 13-0
Matt Piersak 11 Mounds View 13-0
Patrick Hayden 9 Robbinsdale Armstrong 13-0
Shaise Schuette 10 St. Francis 13-0
Bryan Fischer 11 Sartell-St. Stephen 13-0
Patrick Peterson 11 Murray County Central 13-0
Lucas Krueger 11 St. Croix Lutheran 13-0
William Brenny 11 Foley 13-0
Matt Oltrogge 12 Mayer Lutheran 13-0
Andrew Stoen 12 Minnewaska Area 13-0

15-7 Tim Koupal, Anoka 1997
15-6.5 Jed Bergstrom, Buffalo 1997
15-6 Mike Brockwell, Edina 1996
15-4 Jason Beutz, Foley 2003
15-3 Chip Malmstrom, Mahtomedi 1994
15-3 Jon Anderson, Morris Area 1994
15-3 Brock Spandl, Moorhead 2006
15-1.5 Matt Kolb, Osseo 1982
15-1 Mark Devine, Roseville 1991
15-1 Isaac Molin, St. Francis 2005
15-0 Jim Lee, Austin 1970
15-0 Mike Moberg, Hibbing 1994
15-0 Matt Stark, Apple Valley 1997
15-0 Andrew Peterson, Coon Rapids 2000
15-0 Chris Holmes, Henry Sibley 2000
15-0 Shawn Francis, Hastings 2004
14-10 Brent Smith, Alexandria 1976
14-10 Erling Ringquist, Mpls Roosevelt 1984
14-10 Brian Laurel, Mayer Lutheran 1991
14-10 Ryan McGlynn, Stephen 1992
14-10 Tyler Zamudio, St Cloud Apollo 2003
14-10 Brandon Johnson, Robbinsdale Armstrong 2006
14-9 Ross Thompson, Esko 1987
14-9 Arden Beachy, Staples-Motley 1989
14-9 BJ Jones, Plainview 1994
14-9 Dan Madden, Delano 1999
14-9 Nick Wilson, Mankato West 2003
14-9 Derek Oslund, Robbinsdale Armstrong 2005
14-9 Ross Werner, Robbinsdale Armstrong 2005 & 2006
14-9 David Gierut, Mankato Loyola 2006
14-9 Casey Kedrowski, Sauk Rapids-Rice 2007
14-9 Stephen Koecher, Blaine 2007
14-8.75 Curt Maertens, Brooklyn Center 1985
14-8.5 Dave Correll, Moorhead 1980
14-8 Marc Christian, Bloom Kennedy 1989
14-8 Scott Trombley, Hopkins 1994
14-8 Langdon Stahle, Minnetonka 1994
14-8 Noah Barnes, Richfield 1994
14-8 Ryan Sawatzky, Mankato West 1997
14-7.25 Glen Bullick, Brooklyn Center 1972
14-7.25 Bryan Mortland, St Louis Park 1974
14-7 Matt Peters, Cambridge 1986
14-7 Latanna Vannavong, Mpls Roosevelt 1989
14-7 Andy Stark, Apple Valley 1995
14-7 Mark Bruemmer, St Cloud Apollo 1999
14-7 Jacob Wolter, Lakeville North 2007
14-6.5 Jayme Pantekoek, Mankato West 1998
14-6.5 Ben Mauch, Mankato East 2001
14-6 Jesse Cogswell, Roch Mayo 1970
14-6 Dana Powers, Moorhead 1974
14-6 Tom Larson, Bloomington Jefferson 1978
14-6 Mike Braun, Edina East 1979
14-6 Dave Anderson, St Louis Park 1983
14-6 Tom Silverhus, Cambridge 1983
14-6 Nick Berg, Bemidji 1983
14-6 Pete Walker, Austin 1984
14-6 Jeff Landreth, Kennedy 1986
14-6 Kent Landreth, Kennedy 1987
14-6 Ted Erickson, White Bear Lake 1988
14-6 Dave Zarns, Mounds View 1989
14-6 Todd Williams, St Cloud Apollo 1990
14-6 Ryan Beachy, Staples-Motley 1991
14-6 Jay Schmitt, St Croix Lutheran 1991
14-6 Paul Sander, Apple Valley 1993
14-6 Sam Chittendon, Stillwater 1994
14-6 Mike Edwards, Winona 1994
14-6 Jeff Klein, Zumbrota-Mazeppa 1994
14-6 Chris Chandler, Crookston 1995
14-6 Andy Eggerth, Spring Lake Pk/St A 1995
14-6 Khoun Thammalangsy, Lakeville 1996
14-6 Dan Shroyer, Grand Rapids 1996
14-6 Adam Lee, Hutchinson 1997
14-6 Nate Sutton, Mankato East 2000
14-6 Ben Villnow, Willmar 2000
14-6 Ryan Manke, Detroit Lakes 2000
14-6 Justin Schmidt, Elgin-Millville 2000
14-6 Paul Gans, Sauk Rapids-Rice 2001
14-6 Josh Sorenson, Madelia/Truman 2001 & 2002
14-6 Steve Kramer, Mayer Lutheran 2002
14-6 Brian Sworsky, St Francis 2003
14-6 Jon Morales, Willmar 2004
14-6 Beau Pilgrim, Staples-Motley 2006
14-6 Bryan Atwood, Mankato East 2007
14-6 Jordan Mogck, Mounds View 2007
14-6 Zach Gowdy, Burnsville 2007
14-5 Steve Jungbauer, St Francis 1977
14-5 Tony Spandl, Staples 1977
14-5 Darin Palmer, Albert Lea/Alden-C 1996
14-4.5 Bob Stark, Bloom Lincoln 1979
14-4.25 Matt Jackson, Mankato West 2003
14-4 Ryan Church, Bloom Kennedy 1976
14-4 Don Esping, Hutchinson 1982
14-4 John Amrhein, Forest Lake 1985
14-4 Paul Moehring, Hutchinson 1985
14-4 Jason Ahlgren, Cloquet 1988
14-4 Tony Rogich, Robb Cooper 1990
14-4 Chad Camacho, Brooklyn Center 1990
14-4 Eric Bjerketvedt, Willmar 2000
14-4 John Getzke, Eastview 2003
14-4 Ted McAlpine, Monticello 2006
14-4 David Hahn, Warroad 2006
14-3.5 Jeff Siegle, Belle Plaine 1983
14-3.5 Matt Smoldt, Rochester Mayo 1992
14-3.25 Doug Weimerskirch, Minnetonka 1979

15-3 Chip Malmstrom, Mahtomedi 1994
15-1 Mark Devine, Roseville 1991
15-0 Tim Koupal, Anoka 1996
14-9 BJ Jones, Plainview 1994
14-9 Mike Brockwell, Edina 1995
14-9 Ross Werner, Robbinsdale Armstrong 2005
14-7 Casey Kedrowski, Sauk Rapids-Rice 2006
14-7 Jacob Wolter, Lakeville North 2007
14-6 11 tied

14-6 Josh Sorenson, Madelia-Truman 2001
14-5 Tony Spandl, Staples 1977
14-3 Mark Devine, Roseville 1990
14-3 Noah Barnes, Richfield 1992
14-0.5 Khoun Thammalangsy, Lakeville 1994
14-0.5 Nick Wilson, Mankato West 2001
14-0 Arden Beachy, Staples 1987
14-0 Mike Brockwell, Edina 1994
14-0 Michael Hinton, Coon Rapids 2006
13-10.5 Todd Williams, St Cloud Apollo 1988

13-8 Josh Sorensen, Madelia/Truman 2000
13-6 Mitch Hoihjelie, Sauk Rapids 1997
13-4 Nate Hemstad, International Falls 1989
13-3 Brad Junker, Mountain Lake-B-Odin 1993
13-2.75 Tom Coles, Hutchinson 1976
13-2 Mark Devine, Roseville 1989
13-2 Jesse Budimir, Grand Rapids 2000
13-0.25 Nick Wilson, Mankato West 2000
13-0 Mike Brockwell, Edina 1993
13-0 Matt Gustafson, Faribault 2004
13-0 Casey Kedrowski, Sauk Rapids-Rice 2004
13-0 Patrick Hayden, Robbinsdale Armstrong 2007

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

More on Wesly Ngetich's Death ...

We've collected some additional items following from the news of two-time Grandma's Marathon champion Wesly Ngetich's death ...

-- Dave Monti, who broke the news (see post below) corrects one element of his story. Ngetich, born on December 15, 1977, was 30-years-old at the time of his death, not 34.

-- Minnesota Public Radio interviewed Grandma's Marathon executive director Scott Keenan yesterday about the tragedy. You can hear the interview HERE.

-- The Duluth News-Tribune's Kevin Pates has expanded his original story on Ngetich HERE.

-- WDIO, Duluth's Channel 10, has a report HERE that includes race footage and a phone interview with Hussein Makke, Ngetich's agent.

-- Reuters has THIS story about how violence in Kenya is impacting the sporting hopes of the nation.

-- And, the Star-Tribune's Curt Brown has THIS story on the tragedy that quotes me on the matter.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Wesly Ngetich, Two-Time and Defending Grandma's Champ, Killed in Kenyan Violence

(Race Results Weekly's David Monti generously gave DtB permission to re-print his story reporting the death of two-time Grandma's Marathon champion Wesly Ngetich.)

By David Monti
(c) 2008 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved

The ongoing violence in Kenya has claimed the life of marathoner Wesly Ngetich, according to his manager Hussein Makke. The 34 year-old athlete was shot in the chest with an arrow today during fighting in his hometown of Trans Mara, not far from Masai Mara.

"They spoke to his sister-in-law who said they took him to the hospital and he passed away," Makke explained in an e-mail message to Race Results Weekly. "I don't have any further information at the moment."

Makke got the news of Ngetich's death from his on-site manager in Kenya, Francis Kamau.

Ngetich had hoped to run the P.F. Chang's Rock 'N' Roll Marathon in Phoenix two Sunday's ago, but could not get out of Kenya due to the fighting. He set his personal best time of 2:12:10 when he finished second at the Chevron Houston Marathon in 2006. He was also a two-time champion of Grandma's Marathon in Duluth, Minn., winning in 2005 and 2007.

"We are extremely sad for this terrible news and send our deepest sympathies to his family for their loss," said Makke. "We hope and pray this fighting will come to an end very soon."

Also ... The Duluth News-Tribune is reporting the story, HERE, and includes a photo remembrance of Ngetich, HERE.

And ... Grandma's Marathon executive director Scott Keenan said in a media release:

“Words cannot express our feelings at this moment. Our sympathies go out to Wesly’s family and friends and our thoughts and prayers will remain with them during this extremely sad and difficult time. We loved having Wesly here at Grandma’s and he enjoyed coming here. It is difficult to imagine that he is gone.”

Photo by Jeff Frey & Associates, courtesy of Grandma's Marathon.

Report: Two-Time Grandma's Champ Wesly Ngetich Killed Today in Kenyan Violence

Race Results Weekly reports that two-time Grandma's Marathon champion Wesly Ngetich was killed today in the on-going violence that has followed Kenya's recent elections.

Ngetich won Grandma's last year and in 2005.

The violence in Ngetich's native Kenya had caused him to withdraw from the Rock 'n' Roll Arizona Marathon earlier this year.

The BBC offers THIS overview of the violent political situation in Kenya.

We'll have further information as it becomes available.

Rue Tops Rains in Pole Vault Clash

Gopher sophomore Alicia Rue, the Pan American Junior Games gold medalist last year, topped Minnesota State - Mankato's Katelin Rains, Division II's all-time best pole vaulter, in a clash between two of event's top young stars on Saturday.

At the U of M's Minnesota Open meet, Rue cleared a Gopher record 13-5 1/4 to win over Rains who vaulted 13-1 1/2.

Rue (pictured) needed two attempts to clear her opening height of 12-1 1/2 as well as two at 13-1 1/2 before being the only vaulter to over-fly 13-5 1/4. Rains opened at 12-7 1/2 and sported a clear score sheet until her undoing at the winning height.

The clearance is another NCAA Division I Nationals provisional qualifying mark for Rue who improved upon the 12-11 1/2 she opened the season with last week. Off of that performance, Rue was named one of the Big Ten Athletes of the Week last week.

Rains, a junior who vaulted 14-0 1/2 in December to set the D2 all-time mark, finished 6th at the Reno Pole Vault Summit two weeks ago with a 12-11 1/2 clearance.

Gophers took 3rd through 6th places in the vault this weekend. Senior Andrea Smith, third at 13-1 1/2 also made the D1 "provo" qualifying standard.

Full women's results from the Minnesota Open can be found HERE.

Full men's results are HERE.

Photo courtesy of the U of M.

The Miles Lists: 400 Meters

We'll kick off the statisitical week with the 2007 and all-time high school boys' 400 meter lists as complied by Wayzata coach Bill Miles and St. John's University coach Tim Miles. Last season, Mounds View's Quinn Evans, now a Wisconsin Badger, set a new Minnesota all-time best in the event at 47.18.

Click HERE to see all the Miles List events published so far.


2007 BESTS
Quinn Evans 12 Mounds View 47.18
Jerrell Hancock 12 Anoka 48.36
Kevin Bradley 11 Mounds View 48.57
George Dudley 12 Hopkins 48.85
Cory Kessler 12 St. Michael-Albertville 48.89
Leon Cheneyon 11 Robbinsdale Cooper 49.00
Josh Wiseman 11 Champlin Park 49.05
Jordan Johnson 11 Tartan 49.06
Ben Pehling 12 Irondale 49.32
Andrew Balzer 11 Mounds View 49.45
Chris Anderson 12 Duluth Central 49.47
Isaac Tut 12 Northfield 49.76
Rashad McDonald 12 Robbinsdale Cooper 49.76
Chris Stoks 11 Virginia/Mountain Iron-Buhl 49.81
Zachary Alexander 10 Minneapolis Southwest 49.82
Sahr Matturi 12 Tartan 49.90
Cory Shufelt 11 Hutchinson 49.7
Matt Muenchow 11 Glencoe-Silver Lake 49.95
Don Schaefer 12 Minnetonka 50.04
Matt Higgins 12 Chaska 50.08
Andy Wendroth 12 Zumbrota-Mazeppa 50.21
Derek Ludwig 12 Alexandria 50.24
Danny Klotz 12 Elk River 50.27
Ernest Dorsett 10 Woodbury 50.31
Paul Schreiner 11 New Life Academy 50.31
Otimio Masso 12 Farmington 50.33
Colby Citrowske 12 Canby/Minneota 50.43
Lance Arneson 11 Kingsland 50.56
Joey Heglund 11 Yellow Medicine East 50.56
Obai Hussein 11 Rosemount 50.57
Tyler Hanson 12 Brainerd 50.57
Adam Endres 12 Plainview-Elgin-Millville 50.57
Tyson Molitor 12 Sauk Centre 50.67
Dan Dieter 12 Tracy-Milroy-Balaton 50.69
Aron Welch 11 Winona 50.73
Chris Mathews 12 Woodbury 50.77
Mike Shelendich 12 Mounds View 50.82
John Bye 10 Moorhead 50.82
Maxwell McQuirter 12 Minneapolis South 50.87
John Kelly 12 Rochester Mayo 50.91
David Pachuta 12 Eastview 50.7
Mike Mueller 12 Hopkins 50.96
Isaac Veldkamp 11 Eden Prairie 50.97
Travis Pedersen 11 Worthington 50.99
Kennedy Maddox 9 Minnetonka 51.00
Josh Carter 11 Duluth Denfeld 51.00
Aaron Richter 10 Mankato West 51.03
Rob Field 11 Delano 51.04
Andy Scott 12 St. Francis 51.05
Danny Jandro 12 Rosemount 51.06
Justin Jurek 12 Tartan 51.06
Josiah Head 12 Warroad 51.06

47.18 Quinn Evans, Mounds View 2007
47.59 Randy Melbourne, Mpls Washburn 1993
47.66 Tom Gerding, Waconia 1996
47.66 Adam Steele, Eden Prairie 1999
47.72 Scott Beadle, Moorhead 1993
47.79 Owete Omodt, Roseville Area 2001
47.86 Adam Freed, Duluth Marshall 1996
47.90 Aaron Buzard, Rochester Mayo 2002
47.8 Ryan Lamppa, Benson 1977 (48.1y)
48.06 Greg Kimbrough, Bloom Jefferson 1992
48.11 Jamal Alkins, Coon Rapids 2001
47.9 Fred Merrill, Orono 1969 (48.2y)
47.9 Mark Lutz, Rochester Mayo 1970 (48.2y)
48.14 Trent Riter. Mounds View 2001
48.22 Paul Otto, Edina East 1977 (48.50y)
48.0 Tom Coles, Hutchinson 1977 (48.3y)
48.1 Leo Bond, Faribault School for Deaf 1972 (48.4y)
48.36 Jerrell Hancock, Anoka 2007
48.2 Steve Makie, Eden Prairie 1977 (48.5y)
48.48 Erik Hanson, Mesabi East 1996
48.49 Reece Vega, Dover-Eyota/St. Charles 2002
48.50 Paul Harris, Woodbury 2004
48.54 Roy Allen, SP Highland Pk 1990
48.54 Craig Kotsmith, Milaca 2002
48.55 Tim VanVoorhis, Apple Valley 1993
48.57 Kevin Bradley, Mounds View 2007
48.61 Brian Meyer, Bloom Jefferson 1997
48.61 Rashon Powers-Neal, St Paul Cretin-DH 2001
48.61 Hans Storvick, Mankato West 2004
48.63 Rich Harkwell, Totino Grace 1984
48.63 Mike Thomas, Apple Valley 1989
48.4 Mitch Potter, St Michael-Albertville 1998
48.65 Ryan Noreen, Bloom Jefferson 1999
48.68 Melvin Carter, SP Central 1997
48.68 E.J. Houston, Cretin-Derham Hall 2005
48.71 Matthew Shannon, Mpls Washburn 2000
48.73 Jesse Posusta, Glencoe-Silver Lake 2005
48.77 Robb Merritt, Hopkins 2000
48.78 Andy Wiberg, Totino Grace 1997
48.78 Ben Nauman, Rochester Mayo 1999
48.80 Jason Bruce, Burnsville 1983
48.83 Jon Gibbs, Bloom Jefferson 1999
48.6 Ray Dunn, Edina 1966 (48.9y)
48.6 Charles Walker, Mpls Central 1973 (48.9y)
48.6 John Lawton, Minnetonka 1983
48.84 Steve Bangh, Albert Lea 1988
48.84 Andy Wohlin, Concordia Academy 1998
48.85 Shane Hall, Burnsville 1997
48.85 George Dudley, Hopkins 2007
48.87 Jason Max, Minnetonka 1989
48.87 Neuby Ras, Alexandria 1999
48.87 Adewole Adebayo, Rochester Century 2004
48.89 Cory Kessler, St. Michael-Albertville 2007
48.91 Mark Bennett, Wayzata 1984
48.91 Tyrone Hale, Mpls Washburn 2000
48.92 Mark Jundt, Woodbury 2001
48.93 Lance Moen, Stewartville 2001
48.93 Eltedric Greenprice, Buffalo 2006
48.93 Derek Ludwig, Alexandria 2006
48.7 Mike Gilham, St Louis Park 1963 (49.0y)
48.7 Ron Watters, White Bear Lake 1968 (49.0y)
48.7 Pat Schultz, Owatonna 1981
48.7 Ken Rothenberger, Jordan 1984
48.7 Jim Grebin, Austin Pacelli 1984
48.97 Todd Lewis, Duluth East 1983
48.98 Dan Samion, Minnetonka 1991
48.98 Logan Stroman, Chaska 2006
49.00 Ray Spann, Edina 1984
49.00 Leon Cheneyon, Robbinsdale Cooper 2007
49.01 Trevor Mitchell, Stillwater 1997
49.01 Cody Stenberg, Monticello 2004
49.02 Mitch Kostelecky, Woodbury 2004
49.03 Ryan Murray, St Thomas Academy 1990
48.8 Bill Stock, Rochester Mayo 1981
48.8 Mike Murphy, Frank Kellogg 1985
48.8 Clem Dabney, SP Highland Park 1986
49.05 Brant Grimes, Bloomington Jefferson 1995
49.05 Josh Wiseman, Champlin Park 2007
49.06 Redd Overton, Mpls North 1980
49.06 Jordan Johnson, Tartan 2007
49.07 Tony Gulyard, Mpls Henry 1988
49.07 John Person, Elk River 1998
49.09 Rod Smith, Roseville 1988
49.11 Scott Anderson, Breckinridge 1980
49.13 Reik Andersen, Wayzata 1985
49.13 Josh Smith, Staples-Motley 2004
48.9 John Larson, Mpls Marshall 1961 (49.2y)
48.9 Cicero McGee, SP Central 1975 (49.2y)
48.9 Al Hutchinson, Bl Jefferson 1976 (49.2y)
48.9 Mark Simunds, Albert Lea 1976 (49.2y)
49.14 Dave Guinn, Jefferson 1978 (49.42y)
48.9 Sam Ocel, Mpls South 1978 (49.2y)
48.9 Greg Heinecke, Hopkins 1989
48.9 John Wahlstrom, Rosemount 1992
49.14 Jerald Burton, Osseo 2003
49.14 Pat Leaf, Winona Cotter 2004
49.15 Randy Roeske, Atwater-Grove C 1989
49.20 Marcus Barto, Chisholm 2001
49.21 Brady Ries, Plainview 2006
49.22 Aaron Banks, Robbinsdale Cooper 1998

47.59 Randy Melbourne, Mpls Washburn 1993
47.66 Tom Gerding, Waconia 1996
47.90 Aaron Buzard, Rochester Mayo 2002
47.9 Fred Merrill, Orono 1969 (48.2y)
47.79 Owete Omodt, Roseville Area 2001
48.17 Scott Beadle, Moorhead 1992
48.1 Leo Bond, Faribault Schl for the Deaf 1972 (48.4y)
48.2 Tom Coles, Hutchinson 1978 (48.5y)
48.2 Jamal Alkins, Coon Rapids 2000
48.57 Kevin Bradley, Mounds View 2007

48.0 Tom Coles, Hutchinson 1977 (48.3y)
49.02 Mitch Kostelecky, Woodbury 2004
49.06 Aaron Buzard, Rochester Mayo 2001
48.9 Fred Merrill, Orono 1968 (49.2y)
49.14 Tom Gerding, Waconia 1995
49.23 Mason Anderson, Apple Valley 1999
49.32 Jake Swedlund, Blaine 2005
49.33 Derek Ludwig, Alexandria 2005
49.1 Leo Bond, Faribault Schl for the Deaf 1971 (49.4y)
49.50 Dan Cinnamon, Stillwater 1998

49.33 Ashton Allan, Mounds Park Academy 1996
49.37 Casey Grunewald, Barnesville/Rothsay 1996
49.72 Kevin Bradley, Mounds View 2005
49.8 Jeff Robinson, Mpls Central 1982
50.28 Mason Anderson, Apple Valley 1998
50.32 Cory Shufelt, Hutchinson 2005
50.33 Owete Omodt, Roseville Area 1999
50.1 Fred Merrill, Orono 1967 (50.4y)
50.2 Kraig Klefsass, Brooklyn Center 1983
50.3 John Lawton, Minnetonka 1980 (50.6y)