Saturday’s annual Bob Firman Invitational in one word: Stacked.
California powerhouse Great Oak, the alma mater of star University of Texas athlete Destiny Collins, is coming for the first time in three years and several nationally ranked teams and individuals will be there. I’m making the trip to help cover the meet for DyeStat. I’ll also be tweeting from the meet. You can follow along at @mwhereford.
The Medal Stand: National caliber runners in Boise this weekend
The Post Register coverage area will have 14 teams competing Saturday at the annual Bob Firman Invitational at Eagle Island State Park, which is drawing an impressive crop of national talent this year.
Bonneville, Blackfoot, Challis, Firth, Idaho Falls, Hillcrest, Skyline, Thunder Ridge, West Jefferson, North Fremont, Salmon, Shelley, Sugar-Salem and Leadore have all registered. Coaches have confirmed to the Post Register that the elite races, which take place at 11:20 and 11:50 a.m., will include the Idaho Falls boys, Skyline’s Sariah Harrison and Shelley’s Karlie Callahan. The Sugar-Salem boys have won varsity Division II for two consecutive seasons, the Skyline girls are defending varsity Division I champions and I.F.’s Zach Erikson placed 10th in last year’s elite race, the highest finish on record for any District 6 boy in that race. The Tigers will be the first District 6 boys team to compete in the elite race since Skyline and Madison did so in 2016.
Great Oak (Calif.), whose girls are currently ranked No. 3 by MileSplit and were No. 5 in DyeStat preseason national team rankings and whose boys are currently ranked No. 2 by MileSplit and No. 4 in DyeStat’s preseason rankings, will compete at Bob Firman for the first time since 2015. Utah teams American Fork (currently No. 7 in MileSplit boys national rankings, No. 3 in DyeStat’s preseason national rankings), Skyridge (No. 27 in DyeStat preseason boys national rankings) and Davis (No. 40 in DyeStat preseason boys national rankings) are also registered. Also coming are Mission Viejo from California (No. 39 in DyeStat preseason girls national rankings) and North Central from Washington (currently No. 17 in MileSplit girls national rankings, No. 49 in preseason girls national rankings).
Idaho teams Boise (No. 30 in DyeStat’s preseason girls team national rankings), Rocky Mountain (No. 37 in DyeStat’s preseason boys team national rankings) and Mountain View (No. 15 in DyeStat’s preseason girls national rankings) are also competing. Mountain View is also scheduled to compete this weekend at Nike-Battle for the 509 in Cheney, Wash., so it is not clear if the Mavericks’ varsity runners will be at Bob Firman.
Among the national caliber teams coming to Eagle Island State Park are nationally ranked individuals who all made DyeStat’s preseason U.S. 100 individual rankings. They include Borah’s Nathan Green (currently ranked No. 24 in the U.S. by MileSplit), Bishop Kelly’s Nick Russell, Springville (Utah)’s Grant Gardner (currently No. 12 by MileSplit), American Fork’s Luke Grundvig, American Fork’s Dalton Brems, American Fork’s Carson Clinger, Star Valley (Wyo.)’s Asefa Wetzel, Great Oak’s Tori Gaitan (currently No. 17 by MileSplit), Great Oak’s Fatima Cortes, Boise’s Eve Jensen, Corner Canyon (Utah)’s Karli Branch, North Central’s Allie Janke, Boise’s Maggie Liebich, North Central’s Erinn Hill and Twin Falls’ Mattalyn Geddes. DyeStat’s next individual national rankings will be released today.
The Post Register will have a follow-up early next week on how local runners and teams fared at Bob Firman.