Phil’s Web Blog 2017

I want to call attention to this event coming up at the end of January. New Day Racing is headed up by founder and Race Director Charlene Ragsdale and her brother Kirk Buckley. Charlene and Kirk are not just long-time-LVTC members, they are active and involved members. If you have been following the Championship Series results, you know that this dynamic duo were both runners-up in the 2016 CS. The upcoming event on Saturday, January 28th is a 5K and 1M event. The price is right—from $15 to $30 for one or both and depending on when you enter—and it’s a convenient location, Sunset Park, using a similar course that we have used for many LVTC events in the past. It’s well worth our support. I plan to be there to help kick things off as New Day Racing begins its 2017 Race Series. You can enter via links from their web site New Day Racing.

Coach Phil

2016 Legends Announced 

Joining Bryce Odegard from Pahrump Valley, an automatic Legend by virtue of winning the Division 3 State Cross Country Championship in 2016, will be Lenny Rubi, Green Valley;  Daniel Ziems, Palo Verde; Kayla Roberts, Centennial; and Emma Wahlenmaier, Palo Verde. The four were elected into the Legends Hall of Fame by the Legends Selection Committee of past and present coaches and current Legends. All four received at least 75% of the votes with Wahlenmaier a unanimous selection. 

The five incoming Legends will be inducted into the Southern Nevada Cross Country Hall of Fame at the Las Vegas Track Club’s annual banquet in June and honored again at the 21st Annual Legends Run at Sunset Park, August 4, 2016. 

This year’s Legends Run will include an Open 5K followed by a Seeded 5K race, which will be a team event, teams of seven runners, in three divisions, Male, Female, Mixed. Runners who meet qualifying standards my run unattached.

The Legends 5K course at Sunset Park in 2017 will be a true cross- country course run largely on grass and dirt trails. It will be similar to the course used for the 2014 Nevada State Cross Country Championships. With over 100 entries expected in each race, the Seeded race, will include many current college runners, most of them Legends, and many of the top local runners. The Seeded 5K will likely meet expectations as the “fastest 5K race run annually in the Las Vegas valley.” The defending champions from 2016 are Martin Ponce, who graduated from SECTA in 2013 and now runs for Montana State, and Sydney Badger, who graduated from Centennial and now runs track and cross country at the University of Michigan. Both are Legends.

  Legends Nominees for Class of 2016

                                       BOYS                                                                             GIRLS

                                       Steven Birch (Basic)                                                   Amy Amezcua (Green Valley)
                                       Nathan Cromwell (Coronado)                                 Skyler Free (Liberty)
                                       Tim Myers (Arbor View)                                           Tori Landers (Palo Verde)
                                       Leonardo Rubi (Green Valley)                                 Kayla Roberts (Centennial)
                                       Omar Rubio (Del Sol/Green Valley)                       Emma Wallenmaier (Palo Verde)
                                       Daniel Ziems (Palo Verde)                                        Julie Weaver (Centennial)

This year’s Selection Committee is comprised of 16 active or retired coaches and current Legends. In order to be elected, a candidate must receive 75% of the votes. Voters may select up to three candidates from each list. No write-ins allowed.

Bryce Odegard
(Pahrump Valley), a junior, the 2016 State 3A Champion is an automatic qualifier this year. Among the senior boys, none of the nominees ever finished higher than 7th at State, but Leonardo Rubi was twice All State (top 15) and Omar Rubio and Daniel Ziems were both Region champs (Rubio in 2016 and Ziems in 2015 and 2016). The other nominees this year all had less noteworthy careers but are deserving of the nomination. All of them went to State one of more times and finished in the top 10 at Region at least twice.
There were no carry-over candidates from 2015.

Steven Birch
Three-year runner at Basic. His best finish at State was 2015 when he was 9th. His top finish at the Sunrise Regional was in 2015 when he finished 3rd.

Nathan Cromwell
Four-year runner at Coronado. Twice All Region (top 10), in 2014 and 2016. Four times to State, best finish 18th as a senior

Tim Myers
Three-year runner at Arbor View. Three-time top-7 at Sunset Regional; three-time state qualifier, best finish 25th as a senior.

Leonardo Rubi
Four-year runner at Green Valley. Twice won Frosh-Soph. Twice runner-up at Sunrise Regional (his sophomore and junior year). Four times to State, never worse than 22nd; best finish was 7th in 2015.

Omar Rubio
Ran one year at Del Sol as a freshman (4th at Frosh-Soph). Transferred to Green Valley and did not run for two years—except at NXN SW Regional in 2015 when he finished 17th in the Open race (16:13 for 5K). In 2016 he won the Sunrise Regional and finished 8th at State.

Daniel Ziems
Three-year runner at Palo Verde. Twice Sunset Regional Champion as a junior and senior. Three times to State, improving each time with a best of 9th in 2016.

No automatic qualifier this year. Karina Haymore, who won the 4A race in 2015 as a junior, is already a Legend. Of the six nominees from this year’s class, clearly the top candidates for election are Kayle Roberts from Centennial and Emma Wallenmaier from Palo Verde. Roberts finished in the top-8 at State three times, was runner-up in 2014. Wallenmaier was top-7 at State three times, runner-up in 2015, and Sunset Region champion in 2015. All four of the other nominees had “noteworthy” careers of at least three years and all four were All Region at least twice. All four went to State at least three times, but none ever finished higher than 15th. As with the boys, how noteworthy is for you to judge.

Amy Amezcua
Three-year runner at Green Valley. She finished top 5 in the Sunrise Regional all three years and ran State three times as well, finishing 24th as a senior.

Skyler Free
Ran three years for Liberty. Top 8 in the Sunrise Regional three times, runner-up in 2014. Three time state qualifier and made All State by finishing 15th in 2016.

Tori Landers
Solid four-year varsity career at Palo Verde, never #1 on her team but All Region twice and four times to State. Best finish at State was as a sophomore when she placed 24th.

Kayle Roberts
The Centennial senior had a terrific four years. She finished first as Frosh-Soph both times she ran it; was top 6 at the Sunset Regional four times, runner-up twice; and made All State four times, finishing second in 2015.

Emma Wallenmaier
Three years at Palo Verde, and the team’s #1 runner her junior and senior year. She finished 4-1-2 at the Sunset Regional 2014-’16 and finished 7-2-5 at State, the #1 runner from the South her senior year. 

Julie Weaver
Ran a bit “under the radar” for high-profile Centennial but had three good years as a varsity runner. Twice All Region—4th in 2015—and three times to State with best finish of 17th in 2015. 

Voting begins December 6 and ends December 31. Winners will be announced in early January, 2017. Awards given at the Las Vegas Track Club banquet in June and/or the 2017 Legends Run in August.

Phil Lawton, Legends Selection Chair