Top 2016 Team Finish: 3rd CIF State Meet Boys D1
Head Coach: Joe Robles
Top Returner: Raymon Ornelas
Analysis: The guys from Eleanor Roosevelt did not make the NXN meet last year but finished third at CIF State Meet in the D1 Boys division. They will be returning five guys in their top seven and four in their top five. They will have to run well at their state meet in order to earn a shot at the NXN meet in Portland this season. With so many guys returning with state meet experience, they should be a power house in California this year.
Eleanor Roosevelt (CA) head coach Joe Robles and assistant coach David Cummings answered a few questions about their teams upcoming season. See their answers below.
How long have you coached at your school?
Joe: 11 years
David: I'm the assistant coach at Roosevelt, this is my third year as assistant coach -- third year teacher here as well. Prior to coaching at Roosevelt, I was the head coach of the Esperanza men's XC team, and an assistant track coach there. Prior to coaching, I was a JC runner and ran for CSU San Marcos under Steve Scott.third year teacher here as well. Prior to coaching at Roosevelt, I was the head coach of the Esperanza men's XC team, and an assistant track coach there. Prior to coaching, I was a JC runner and ran for CSU San Marcos under Steve Scott.
What is your meet schedule this fall?
9/2 -- Riverside Showcase @ CIF-SS Course
9/16 -- Mt. Carmel @ Balboa Park San Diego, CA
9/20 -- League Meet #1 @ Eastvale Community Park
9/30 -- Portland XC @ Portland Meadows Portland, Oregon
10/11 -- League Meet #2 @ Prado Park
10/14 -- IE Challenge @ Glen Helen Park San Bernardino, CA
10/21 -- Riverside Invitational @ CIF-SS Course
11/1 -- League Finals @ Eastvale Community Park
11/10 -- CIF Prelims @ Riverside CIF Course
11/18 -- CIF Finals @ Riverside CIF Course
11/25 -- State Meet @ Woodward Park
How has your summer training gone for your team? What do you focus on during the summer months?
Joe: Summer training has gone really well for the boys squad this summer overall. We have had a couple boys step up and there are some younger ones that have developed nicely. The focus over the summer was getting in a nice solid base as well as pack running.
David: Summer focus is on consistent training, weights, and mileage. Long runs have gotten up to 13 miles.
Which athletes do you see as the probable top five this season?
Raymon Ornelas, Senior
Tyler Spencer, Senior
Raul Chavez, Sophomore
Wayne Richards, Senior
Michael Sahagun, Sophomore
Who are your team captains or leaders and what stands out about them as examples for the rest of their teammates?
Joe: Joshua Potts is our captain and has been one since his freshman year. He is an athlete who leads by example both at practice and in the classroom. His work ethic, as well as coach ability, is off the charts and he is a work horse who always tries to do extra to improve year after year. He even started doing yoga at home after long runs and wound up getting half of the guys at our summer running camp in Big Bear, California, to join in the yoga daily after each morning run.
David: Josh Potts is hands down the best captain. He's been a captain since 9th grade. Everyone else has leadership qualities, but captains rise as the season progresses. Anyone can step up.
Who are some new faces who will make an impact on your team this year (i.e. freshmen, transfers, runners who have improved a lot)?
Joe: Moises Rendon isn't necessarily a new face but he will have an impact on our squad this year. He showed much improvement from sophomore year going from a 12+ min 3200 guy to a sub-10 minute guy as a junior. He has had a solid summer and may pop into our top five during the season.
David: Moises Rendon was our fifth man at JV league finals and this is technically his second cross country season. Sahagun is TALENTED. Probably Stanford-bound academic wise, great kid, will definitely turn heads. If I was a betting man, Sahagun will be All-American some day. We have a very well-rounded 9th grader, Zack Lang, he most likely won't make an impact this year, but he's in our top 14.
What are some staple workouts your team does during the season?
Joe: We have tons of dirt/gravel trails in our area and large parks with a good amount of grass. We do most of our repeats at the parks on those surfaces since they are similar to what we will run on at larger meets throughout the season. A 1200/1000/800 breakdown at our local park, 16-20x400, 400m hill repeats and various types of Fartleks to help simulate pace change during races. We also make sure to get in long runs on continuous hills throughout the season.
David: Tempos, fartleks, repeats. Joe Robles is the man to talk to on that front. He can give more info if he wants.
What will be the biggest reason why your team is successful this season?
Joe: I think one of the main reasons why our team will be successful this season is because they created and have worked towards this goal since they were freshmen. As freshmen my group of seniors shattered the freshman team time course record by three minutes at the Mt. SAC Invitational. Since then they have set a goal for themselves to continue to improve not only themselves but the program as a whole. The entire culture of our program has changed over the past four years and you can see it in the development of upperclassmen and the urge of the underclassmen to try to push to stay with them. There is friendly competition within the team with some of the varsity guys about who will be top six and all it is doing is pushing them to improve as a group.
David: Depth. Our 8-14 would win league in other leagues.
What will be the biggest obstacle or challenge facing your team this season?
Joe: I think the biggest obstacle/challenge we will have this year is to make sure our boys understand that our training is for late November and early December, not September/October. Like any athlete kids get excited to race, but we have discussed these items at our weekly team meetings on what our goals are. Then of course making sure everyone is injury free.
David: Biggest obstacle in our way is the unknown. Not getting sick, not getting injured, mentally peaking ourselves for the state meet. Portland doesn't matter. League finals doesn't matter. End of November matters.
How would you describe your team's culture?
Joe: The team culture is like any other XC team, they are like a brotherhood/family. They have one goal and one dream with their occasional roasting of each other during runs. Their fun banter and bonding outside of practice includes movie nights, fantasy sports leagues within the team and rap battles.
David: Dedicated, fun, diverse. They look out for one another and sacrifice a lot for each other.
What are your top three goals for the team this fall?
Joe: We have several goals that have been set such as team goals for 3mile/5K by grade level but the overall team goals are:
1. Helping build up and develop our underclassmen to continue our success in the future.
2. Improve upon our finishes at CIF-SS Finals and the California state meet in 2016.
3. Qualify for NXN for the first time in school history.
David: Win state/Give G.O. a run for their money, improve from last year, have fun.
Top Returning 5K Times From The 2016 XC Season
|Eleanor Roosevelt (SS) (CA)|
|1) Raymon Ornelas||15:30.10|
|2) Tyler Spencer||15:37.40|
|3) Raul Chavez||15:54.10|
|4) Wayne Richards||16:05.30|
|5) Michael Sahagun||16:23.70|
Average Time: 15:54.12 Total Time: 1:19:30.60 1-5 Split: 53.60
|6) Matthew Lieberman||17:33.90|
Top Returning 1600m Times From The 2017 Outdoor Track Season
|Eleanor Roosevelt (SS) (CA)|
|1) Raymon Ornelas||4:21.78|
|2) Tyler Spencer||4:23.81|
|3) Wayne Richards||4:24.54|
|4) Raul Chavez||4:27.54|
|5) Matthew Lieberman||4:28.57|
Average Time: 4:25.25 Total Time: 22:06.24 1-5 Split: 6.79
|6) Joshua Potts||4:29.51|
|7) Michael Sahagun||4:33.26|
Top Returning 3200m Times From The 2017 Outdoor Track Season
|Eleanor Roosevelt (SS) (CA)|
|1) Raymon Ornelas||9:08.79|
|2) Tyler Spencer||9:09.22|
|3) Raul Chavez||9:33.00|
|4) Wayne Richards||9:39.64|
|5) Michael Sahagun||9:52.03|
|Average Time: 9:28.54 Total Time: 47:22.68 1-5 Split: 43.24|
|6) Ricardo Sainz||9:55.44|
|7) Moises Rendon||9:58.48|