New Additions to the Great American Cross Country Festival Fields
By Ricky Quintana
Three teams and two sensational individual entries have been added to the already stacked Great American Cross Country Festival fields. The high school competition, scheduled for September 27th, will be held on the newly designed course on the SAS Soccer Complex grounds in Cary, NC. The college division precedes the high schools and will be run on Sept. 26th.
All three team additions will compete in the NIKE Race of Champions. On the boys team side, Reynoldsburg (OH) has been added and on the girls side, Wachusett (MA), and Taylor (OH) have been added. The boys race features 12 of the top ranked teams in the country (source: The Harrier) including #1 The Woodlands (TX), #3 Mountain View (UT) and #6 Shenedehowa (NY). The girls race features 8 top ranked teams including #2 Saratoga Springs (NY), #6 Hilliard-Davidson (OH), and #7 Mountain View (UT).
Individually, seniors, Erik Stanley of Klein (TX), the #1 returning miler in the country, and Victor Gras of Belmont (MA), the #3 returning miler in the country, have been added to the Seeded Invitational field. The Seeded Invitational field now includes 6 of the top rated returning milers; #6 Ryan Deak (Smoky Hill, CO), # 8 Gavin Coombs (Griswold, CT), #14 Chris Spooner (Lewisburg, PA) and #25 Jake Morse (Arlington, TX). #2 Jeff See (Middletown, OH) and #7 Brian Sullivan (The Woodlands, TX) are set to square off in the Boys Nike Race of Champions.
Top Ranked Teams in the NIKE Race Of Champions (ranking source: The Harrier)
#1 The Woodlands (TX), #3 Mt. View (UT), #6 Shenendehowa (NY), #12 Kingwood (TX), #13 Denver West (CO), #14 Christian Brothers Academy (NJ), #16 Middletown (OH), #19 The Webb School (TN), #20 Henderson (PA), #21 LaSalle (OH), #22 Bishop Kenny (FL)
#2 Saratoga Springs (NY), #6 Hilliard-Davidson, #7 Mountain View (UT), #14 Cedar Park ( TX), #18 Bay Shore (NY), #19 Kingwood (TX), #20 Spanish River (FL), #21 Wyomissing (PA)
Complete team profiles can be found at:
Additional Top Rated Individual Profiles
Erik Stanley, Klein TX Sr
The number 2 ranked miler in the country lurked in the shadows of last year’s number 1, Steve Magness of neighborhood rival Klein Oak. That did not diminish his superb performances. He lowered all his PR’s during last year’s track season: 800m, 1:53.56, 1600m, 4:03.77, and 3200m, 9:05.63. He finished 2nd at state 5A championships in both the 1600m and 3200m. He finished 8th in the mile at the AOC in a time of 4:10.14. He also finished 2nd at the 5A state cross country championships in the fall.
Victor Gras, Belmont MA Sr
Gras capped off his splendid season with a 5th place finish in the mile at the Adidas Outdoor Championships. His time of 4:06.93 was an improvement of 2.65 seconds over his state championship winning time of 4:09.58; his second mile title. He also improved a whopping 10.53 seconds over his 2002 AOC performance.
In cross country, Gras won the All-Class cross country state championships in the fall.
Nick Hutchins Millbrook, NC Sr
Hutchins blossomed in the spring track season after finishing 5th at the state cross country meet and 87th at the Footlocker south regional cross country championships. He placed 3rd in the Penn Relays 3000 in a time of 8:34.65. The time is the 9th fastest returning performance in the country. He went on to place 3rd at his state meet in the 1600m, 4:19.18 and 2nd in the 3200m, 9:26.14.
A complete listing of top rated individuals can be found at