With many of the top runners in the region graduating, the Northeast boys field is wide open. A few experienced seniors lead the charge, such as: Sintayehu Taye, Brandon Jarrett and Donn Cabral. After those three, there are no less than a dozen others that could finish as high up as fourth at Foot Locker Regionals in November. It's a new year in the Northeast, so let the fun begin!
MileSplit's Foot Locker Power Rankings - Northeast Boys
(Photos Taken By John Herzog)
1. Brandon Jarrett (Sr., St. Benedicts, NJ) - If Jarrett continues to improve the way he did during the '06-'07 school year, he could be crowned national champion by December. Jarrett, because of where goes to school, does not compete often against the top New Jersey boys. Thus, he can save all of his energy for the late season meets. Jarrett finished twelfth at Foot Locker Nationals last fall, where he was the fourth team scorer behind three studs with the last names of Forys, Murdock and Centrowitz. This time, Jarrett will lead the squad, as he makes one last push in his final year.
2. Donn Cabral (Sr., Glastonbury, CT) - While not the only person in these rankings that will not be competing at FL Nationals due to the Foot Locker/Nike Team Nationals clash, Cabral would be a definite favorite to win FL Northeast Regionals if given the chance. Cabral ranks as the number six returnee from Foot Locker Nationals last year, where he earned a twenty-first place finish.
3. Vince McNally (Sr., Conestoga Valley, PA) - There is no room for error in Foot Locker regional qualifying. McNally seems to understand this, and after a few injuries that hindered his progress early last year, McNally ran through a great spring and put up some fantastic marks. The one that stands out is the 4:08 mile time for sixth at Nike Outdoor Nationals. While he may be the number two returnee in PA in 3A, he is the odds on favorite to win state right now and will push for the win at FL regionals as well.
4. Sintayehu Taye (Sr., Cushing Academy, MA) - Always on top of these sorts of rankings, Taye has been a national force since his freshman year. The problem this year was his lack of results during the track season. This is a bothersome problem and may affect him during the fall. Taye finished sixteenth overall last December in San Diego and nationally is the number five returnee.
5. Doug Smith (Jr., Gill St. Bernard, NJ) - Winning races and setting records since his freshman year, Smith is now the top returnee in the state of New Jersey and an odds-on favorite to once again challenge for a Foot Locker Nationals spot. While coming up short last year, Smith posted the top 3200m and 5k times by sophomores this past spring. His late season 9:04 effort was mighty impressive, as was his 14:40 Nike Outdoor Nationals mark.
6. Lee Berube (Sr., Ticonderoga, NY) - The king of New York is the man in line to take over for the seniors that proved so much. Berube will be ranked number one until he is beaten this fall in NY. He returns as not only the top returnee in NY from the Fed meet, but also as the number four returnee from FLNE '06. A nice 9:15 3200m effort this spring only cements his ranking here.
7. Matt Terry (Sr., Danbury, CT) - The top runner on the top team in the land will have a lot of expectations placed on him from outside forces this fall. His Danbury squad is currently ranked right at the top in pre-season polls. While Terry has a 9:08 3200m to his name, he will still have a lot of work to do to prove his greatness. Terry will more than likely not be competing in FL Nationals, as NTN NE qualifying is held the same day as FL NE qualifying.
8. Matt Paulson (Sr., Manchester Central, NH) - Winning, it seems, just comes to Paulson. The senior had a great junior season, capped with wins in cross country and the 1600m at state. He returns as the favorite, and should believe in his speed at the end of races, as he capped a fantastic 4:12 1600m time.
9. Brian Leung (Sr., WW-PS, NJ) - Despite being the third ranked runner in New Jersey in this power ranking, Leung has a great shot to make Foot Locker Nationals for the first time. The senior is the number two returnee from the New Jersey state championships, behind FLNE #5 Smith, and ran 9:14 in the 3200m, which ranks him right up there with most of the others in the region.
10. Chris Aldrich (Sr., WC Henderson, PA) - While his track 3200m time does not signify his talents, what does is his number one returnee status in Pennsylvania. Aldrich had a great fall last year, and while spending much of the spring focusing on helping his team (relays and shorter races), he still managed to throw out a nice 4:16 1600m effort.
11. Alex McGrath (Sr., Con-Val, NH) - McGrath is a gutsy performer, and during cross country he is going to have to use that attitude. While finishing third in '06 at the New Hampshire State Meet, McGrath really broke out during track, where he ran 9:08 in the 3200m and won the state title in that event. Going head-to-head with FLNE #8 Paulson will be a good in-season challenge for him.
12. Grahati Bazell (Jr., Atholton, MD) - While not on the radar until Nike Outdoor Nationals, Bazell really stepped it up a notch in North Carolina, running 9:10 in the two-mile. Consistency and building off of the amazing two-mile effort will be the keys to Bazell making Foot Locker Nationals.
Others To Keep An Eye On:
Andrew Judd (Sr., Conrad) - Ranked as the number three returnee in Connecticut, Judd should feel the need to push that much harder for the win in his senior season. A fantastic 9:14 3200m during track should give him that little extra confidence.
Everett Hackett (Sr., Hall) - If you look strictly at cross country results, Hacket is not in the top three in his home state. However, these rankings are about cross country, track and improvement and Hackett definitely covers those other two categories well. Hackett improved his 3200m time quite a bit in the spring, lowering his personal best to 9:13.
Kyle Merber (Sr., Half Hallow Hills West) - It's hard to rank everyone in these power rankings, but if we had a few extra spots, Merber would definitely be right up there. As the number three returnee in New York, Merber will have all eyes on him. He executed a fantastic 4:15 mile at Nike Outdoor Nationals, and threw out a great 3k effort at the Penn Relays in 8:37.
Giovanni Signoretti (Sr., Smithtown) - Giovanni has by far the coolest name in New York. Couple that with the fact that he is the number four returnee for the Federation Meet, and ran 9:22 for the 3200m in track, and he is easily one of the favorites in New York to win Feds, but also make the FL Nationals squad.
Julian Sheinbaum (Sr., Scarsdale) - While not as high perhaps on the returning New Yorkers list as some of the others here, Sheinbaum had a big track season, which should carry over well into the fall. His 9:24 3200m effort, followed by his 4:18 1600m time, put him near the top of those lists in New York.
Matt Flint (Sr., Queensbury) - A consistent performer for some time now, Flint will be in the running for a top three finish at Feds. He PR'd during the track season in the mile, running a solid 4:23.
Patrick DuPont (Sr., Fairport) - The #2 returnee in the Federation meet, DuPont's track season was less impressive, but the strength runner's focus is performing better than ever before in his last cross country season. Keep in mind that DuPont is the number seven returnee at FL NE Regionals.
Max Kaulbach (Sr., Germantown Friends) - While the MileSplit Foot Locker Power Rankings only rank twelve deep, if there was a thirteenth spot, it would go to Kaulbach. Kaulbach had a monster spring, running 9:16 in the two-mile at Nike Outdoor Nationals and a 4:17 mile.
Mark Dennin (Sr., Boyertown) - The #3 3A returnee comes from one of the best programs around. With his proven past in cross country, and another summer of intense training, Dennin's fall could be spectacular.
Tim O'Laughlin (Jr., Westeroy) - The top performer during the track season in Rhode Island, O'Laughlin is the man to beat early on in the season. His big time track PR of 9:14 in the 3200m took him to a level he had yet to run at.