Countdown to XC Day 12: Long Beach Poly Boys

Timing can be everything in cross country - the timing of peak competitive form, the timing of a minor injury. In the case of Long Beach Poly, it may be the timing of graduations that holds them back, specifically the Class of 2018. The Jackrabbits' 2017 squad was their best in recent memory, running strong through the championship season and posting a 6th-place finish at the Division 1 state meet. However, Poly lost three seniors from that team (including their #2 & 3 runners), and it's hard for any program to overcome that kind of loss and still improve overall as a team. It's not all bad news, though: this is a deep program now, with enough returning talent to have a chance to repeat last year's success. William Frankenfeld is back to lead the way again, having run 4:21 and 9:09 on the track, Ronan McMahon-Staggs also had an excellent spring, and the Jackrabbits put 16 returners under 5 minutes for the 1600. This is shaping up to be a repeat season in two ways: this is a team capable of finishing in the top 10 in Division 1, but will lose another big group of runners to graduation.


Team Statistics:

  • 3 Mile Improvement Rating: 33rd
  • 5K Returning Rankings: 17th
  • 3 Mile Returning Rankings: 7th
  • 1600 Returning Rankings: 14th

The purpose of the Countdown To XC is not to predict the top 30 teams in the state for the upcoming season (although we certainly hope that the top 15-20 teams are included in the countdown at some point). The goal is to recognize thirty teams to watch as cross country begins, using data to uncover squads with strengths that stand out from the pack. The countdown is also not meant to be in a strict order, because it's impossible to sort out several teams of similar strength at this point of the season.