Gatorade Names Colin Sahlman 2021 CA Boys Top XC Runner


Newbury Park senior Colin Sahlman, pictured leading a 1-2-3 finish at the Garmin RunningLane Cross Country National Championships in early December, has been recognized by Gatorade as the top boys XC runner in CA for the 2021 fall season. 

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Colin Sahlman, who won the section, state, and national cross country titles and dropped the second-fastest time ever at Woodward Park while leading Newbury Park to an unprecedented season, has been recognized by Gatorade for the California State Cross Country "Player of the Year" Award

Sahlman, a senior headed to Northern Arizona, also won "Player of the Year" honors for the 2020-21 cross country season as well as the 2021 track and field season

Sahlman concluded his stellar high school cross country career with a 5000-meter personal record of 14:03.29 to win and lead a 1-2-3 Newbury Park finish on the way to the team title at the Garmin RunningLane Championships on Dec. 4. His winning time on the flat and fast course in Huntsville, Alabama ranked U.S. No. 1 for 5K. 

That performance solidified the Panthers as the MileSplit 50 top team in the nation. 

The week before, Sahlman won the CIF-State Division I cross country individual title running the 5K Woodward Park course in Fresno in 14:26.50, the second-fastest time ever on that course the fastest ever in the D-I race, and the second-fastest ever by a senior boy in the history of the State Meet, which dates to 1987.

In that race, he led Newbury Park to an unprecedented 1-4 finish and meet records for points (16) and team time (73:25).

Sahlman led an unprecedented 1-6 finish at the Southern Section Division 1 championship, running the new Mt. SAC course in 14:52.60.

His winning time at Clovis on the 5K Woodward Park course of 14:29.40 ranked as the No. 3 performer all-time on that course before dropping it even more at the State Meet.

"Colin is a great team leader who takes charge in every workout and isn't afraid to push himself beyond what he's done before," Newbury Park coach Sean Brosnan said in the Gatorade release. "He knows there's no stopping because as soon as he reaches one goal, the next one is set higher."

The Gatorade award recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. In winning California's high school girls cross country honor, Frias is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Girls Cross Country Player of the Year award to be announced in February.


Image by Wells Sports Photos