Saturday, May 20, 2017

Katelyn Smith

at the GLIAC outdoor track championships Katelyn Smith set a new Northern Michigan University 5k track record - 17:18 to finish 3rd overall.  Congratulations Katelyn!

Katelyn was a GHS XC runner and earned all-state honors in 2015.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


Good luck to CHARLEND HOWARD, competing in the D3 regional meet on his home course at Oshkosh.  Last year he competing in D3 nationals and he is hoping to qualify again this year.

Also, congrats to Alexis and Katelyn Smith, competing for Northern Michigan University this weekend at the NCAA Division 2 Regional XC meet in Evansville Indiana.  With the teams 4th place finish (currently ranked 10th in the nation) they qualify for the NCAA championships in two weeks in Florida!!

NMU WILDCATS results and information

Sunday, November 6, 2016

It's over ... almost

Congrats to Zak Goddard on competing at his second MHSAA state finals.  He finished a very respectable 123rd place out of the 250 or so runners in a time of 17:23.  Actually, you could take this a step further... there are 150 teams in D2 cross country with an average of 15-20 runners per team.  This makes a grand total of around 2500 runners in division 2 and Zak finished 123rd.  123/2500 means Zak ranks in the top 5% of all runners in division 2 in the state.  Well done Zak!!

A few things this week.

1.  Remember to turn in your uniforms - put your shorts/jersey/tights/jacket in a bag, put your name on it, and turn it in asap!  thanks!!

2.  WEDNESDAY is the first annual GHSXC MILE.  Come out and run your best mile time ever!  3:15pm at the new GHS track!

3.  BANQUET ON THURSDAY.  6pm we eat dinner, subway, and then desserts from culinary arts!  Then slideshow in auditorium.

4.  Congrats to Alexis and Katelyn Smith, competing for Northern Michigan University this weekend at the NCAA Division 2 Regional XC meet in Evansville Indiana.  With the teams 4th place finish (currently ranked 10th in the nation) they qualify for the NCAA championships in two weeks in Florida!!

5.  Charlend Howard will compete in the D3 Regional XC meet next weekend on his home course in Wisconsin.  Good luck Charlend!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

REGIONALS - what a day, what a season

Here he is - our state finals qualifier for the second year in a row.

Zak Goddard improves his best time and his best regional finish, placing 12th at the MHSAA D2 regional hosted by Gaylord at the Michaywe 5k course.  Zak is the epitome of what it means to be an XC runner trying to reach your potential.  He pounds out hundreds of summer miles, eats right, works hard and runs smart.  Over his fine four year career Zak has improved steadily from a solid varsity runner as a freshman, to a sophomore #1 runner on the team, all regional as a Junior, and now all-conference, all-regional, and off to the state finals for a second time as a senior.  Congratulations Zak!!  The Gaylord boys finished 11th in the 15 team field - which seems a bit disappointing at first glance.  But, #2 man Nick Green ran a solid 1801 for his second fastest 5k of the season as only a sophomore.  I look for Nick to be a real contender for All-Regional honors next year with continued summer running.  #3 man Jack Hervela ends a fine 4 year career with a season best time of 1805, besting his last week's 18:33.  Jack has been a solid varsity runner for us for four years and I am going to miss his humor, his hard practice work effort and his all-around positive attitude.  Congrats on a great 4 years Jack.  #4 man Ethan Huey did not have the day he hoped - I am not sure if he was not feeling well or what.  Ethan was a consistent #2 for us all season, often getting close to Zak and I know today Ethan wanted that top 15.  #5 man Justin Desloover caps off a fine 4 year career as a GHSXC harrier also.  As a freshman JD was on and off the varsity, but each year after he has been a solid varsity scorer for us.  I know JD wanted more out of his senior season, but I am confident his track season and our 4x800m relay team will be kind to him.  Andrew Quaal (sophomore) caps a fine year with a solid effort today, just missing his personal best time.  I believe the 17's are in the cards next season for Andrew.  He is a tireless worker putting in lots of good summer miles and these will pay off next season.  Kenny Smith earned varsity status at the NMXCC meet last weekend and today ended his junior season with his second best time of the year.  He returns for a senior year in 2017 and I hope he can bring that time down to the 17's.

Overall our boys finished 11th - a ways back from where we had hoped.  This season we beat Petoskey twice and they were 5th today.  This is a fine boys team of hard workers and good attitudes.  Sometimes we have to go beyond the finish score to really see if we've had a good season or not.  In my opinion we had a great season, a season I wouldn't trade for anything.  It started with a great team camp - one of our best ever and ends with Zak competing at the state finals next Saturday at MIS.

Full results here D2 REGIONAL RESULTS

On the girls side Brianna Martin finished as our #1 girl for the first time this season in a season best 20:21.  Bri ran almost an identical time last week and I had hoped she could improve up on that just a bit as that's what it would take to make the top 15 state finals qualifying all-regional team.  She came up just 22 seconds short.  Bri suffered a severe knee sprain back in August at our team camp, and was not able to run until the early October meet at Saginaw.  Given that she missed almost 8 weeks of training, it is amazing to see her running this fast.  She will return for the 2017 season as our #1 girl and I look forward to the next two years with her leading our team.  #2 today, but #1 all season was Carlie Martella.  Carlie leaves GHS with a solid legacy of 3 years as a varsity runner and All-Conference honors this year.  She was also an important part of our 2016 team which placed 7th in the state finals.  Her time today was not indicative of her season as it was the first time she was even over the 21 minute barrier.  At the 2 mile mark Carlie was in a solid 6th place, looking to move up even closer to the leaders, but her body did not respond to her desire for more.  She faded over the last 800m and finished well beyond her goal.  After the race Carlie, and her team, were very sad for her.  They know, and she knows, her true place was on that all-regional team.  I told her at the conclusion of the race that all her summer miles and all her preparation were not in vain - the reward will be this track season where, I believe, she has a true shot at the school 1600m record and bettering her own 800m record.  #3 today was senior Allison Kowatch.  Alli has been a mainstay of our varsity for two years now, solidly nailing down the #3 position and pacing the younger runners on the team.  Alli is a great role model, excellent student, and a true role model for the younger girls on the team.  I am going to miss Alli Kowatch.  #4 and 5 today were the twins - Mikayla and MacKenzie Massey.  These young ladies, both freshman, had a pretty good season.  In fact, they're running times that Carlie ran as a freshman.  They can really have an impact on our team IF they decide to focus on summer running and build their endurance.  I am looking forward to 3 more years of these gals!  Also a freshman, #6 today was Amanda Keysor.  Amanda has done a great job in a stressful position on the team.  Always positive, always hard working she has a great future on GHSXC.  Senior Adrienne Edwards rounded out our varsity today - as a four year runner Adrienne stepped on to our varsity for the first time this year, always working hard, always positive, and always being a good role model.  Adrienne is a true scholar/athlete and uses XC to improve her conditioning for basketball season - BUT, never uses that as an excuse to miss XC or not work hard.  When she is an XC runner, she give it her all, and that's something that really looks good to coaches and the team.  It's been a great four years Adrienne.

Overall, the girls finished 10th in the 15 team field, about where I thought we'd be.  We have a young team and I look forward to seeing our improvement in the next couple years.

Zak will be in the D2 MHSAA finals at MIS on Saturday November 5th.  Good luck Zak!

Sunday, October 23, 2016



Monday - medium distance day 1 mile warmup inside - stretch - then outside - easy 5 miles.  Maybe rails to trails?  town loop?  your call, this is as a GROUP, nice and easy.

Tuesday - short 30-40 minutes easy

Wednesday - Meet at 6501 Hummingbird for practice as a PREP for REGIONAL DAY, SATURDAY.   GET A RIDE OR RIDE WITH ME IF YOU NEED.   We will park at coach's house and then run over to the course start.  Do a quick jog, then stretch, then the workout.  We will do one loop of the course doing 3 minutes hard, 2 minutes hard, 1 minute hard, 1 minute hard, 1 minute hard, 2 minutes hard.  This will get us back to near the start.  Then a few 100 meters stride-outs in to the finish.  These hard efforts will not be "all-out" but will be a bit faster than race pace.  We will then jog the course again to total 5 miles for the day.

Thursday - OFF - do not even come to my room after school.  REMEMBER A DAY OFF MEANS A DAY OFF.  Go home, take a nap, catch up on homework and relax.  Enjoy some sitting.  watch netflix for a few hours or more.  nap again and eat a good healthy dinner.  No climbing cell phone towers or trampolines.


Saturday - regionals, the day we have worked tirelessly for.  Seniors, the day you have been preparing for these last 4-5-6 years, maybe 7.  The day we peak and run our best.  The day we are focused, mentally and physically.

Time Schedule

8am - boys up and eat a light breakfast
845am girls up and eat a light breakfast
9:10am - boys arrive at coach's house
9:30 boys jog over to tent, drop spikes and jog course
10:00 boys done going through course, watch end of D4 boys race.
10:20 girls arrive at coach's house, have a snack, use bathroom, pet dogs, jog to tent at 10:35am
10:40 boys D2 REGIONAL - girls just arriving at tent watch boys D2 regional.  Girls jog first loop of the course at 11:15am.
11:20 girls D4 regional
12noon girls D2 REGIONAL
awards at 12:30pm

Supposed to be QUITE COOL ALL WEEK - bring tights, sweatshirts, warm clothes, hats gloves.  Eat good food, NO JUNK NO JUNK NO JUNK NO JUNK.  Good food only, no pop, no sugars no high fat goods.  Good normal diet.  Sleep more, go to bed early.  Parents please confiscate cell phones at 10pm and tell them coach said to do it so that you can actually go to sleep and not stay up until 1am snapchatting.

NMXCC WHAT A DAY!!!!!!!!!!

1400 runners, 31 varsity teams, 26 middle school teams and 41 of our 45 runners on GHSXC had personal best times for the season!!  What a way for the JV to end our 2016 campaign.  I am so proud of all of our athletes - putting in a couple hours helping sell shirts, concessions, parking cars and just generally being helpful.  Thank you to all the parents who worked to make this invitational a success.  I am proud of you and extremely thankful for the great group we have!!!  Well done!!

Full results  - NMXCC results here

On the boys side we finish 9th of 27 teams - pretty good, but I think we have more in us at the regional meet next week.  Our time gap from 1-5 man stands at 1minute 20 seconds or so and I hope for around 50-55 seconds next week.  Zak Goddard cracks the 17 minute barrier at 16:59 and placing 11th overall.  Ethan Huey also had a personal best at 17:28.  Both of these young men have a good shot at being all-regional next weekend.  Nick Green also clocked a personal best by 17 seconds and cracking the 18 minute barrier for the first time.  Nick has the ability to go 1730 or 1740 at regionals next weekend and the rest we give the team this week might propel him to that time.  Andrew Quaal and Justin Desloover rounded out our scoring 5 with solid performances.  Andrew and Justin both had season best times but I really believe that 17's are in the cards for them next week - they continue to improve and we have trained through many of these races with fairly hard weeks of practice and little "rest" before weekend invites.  This week is "rest" week - and we are hoping it leads to the peak in performance we usually see this time of the year.  Jack Hervela is also back to full strength and had a solid race as 6th man.

In the JV race we had a battle for the last varsity spot.  All JV boys were in the race to be the first across the line, because that person would be our last varsity runner at regionals.  Kenny Smith was up to that challenge and came through with a season best 18:16, placing 4th overall in the JV race.  Kenny was actually our 4th man by time today in the meet, his best of the season, just edging out Andrew and JD.  Kenny definitely had the race of the day for the Blue Devil harriers.  His time was a season best by 35 seconds.   8th man today was Jon Thorold - I know Jon wanted that 7th position very badly.  He has worked hard all season to earn a varsity spot on the team and just missed it today.  As I told the team at practice this week - "Don't let the failure to reach your goal be a negative thing - use it as fuel for the fire to prepare harder for next season."  Jon WILL be a varsity runner next season as I know he'll be preparing with LOTS of summer miles.  Some other JV runners of special note were Chase Henley with a season best by over a minute, Jacob Thorold season best by 1:24, and Jonathon Steele, season best by 1:19.  In the JV scoring GHS placed 3rd of 30 teams!!  Well done JV boys!!!

On the girls side, the return of Bri Martin and the race for varsity positions has given us a boost.  The lady blue devils placed 9th of 30 teams, equalling the boys effort.  Carlie Martella was again our #1, with a season best time of 19:47.  Carlie is right in line with times that Katelyn Smith was running last season - Kate ended up top 5 at regionals and all-state.  I believe Carlie can do the same.  Bri Martin again ran a season best time by almost a minute, and actually beat her time from last year on this course by about 20 seconds, running her 2nd fastest time of her short career.  If Bri can take another 20-30 seconds off this time she had today she can be all regional and earn a trip to the MHSAA state finals on November 5.  Ever consistent Allison Kowatch was again our 3rd, running a season best time and continuing to improve.  Rounding out our varsity scoring were solid freshman Amanda Keysor with a season best time by 40 seconds and Adrienne Edwards running a season best time by 42 seconds.  Both Amanda and Adrienne have been very consistent for us this year - improving each race and scoring as a varsity runner in every meet.

In the JV race we had a battle for our last 2 varsity spots.  The girls knew that whoever finished as our 1-2 runners in the JV race would be on our varsity for regionals and the double threat Massey girls pulled it off.  Mikayla ran a season best time by 59 seconds to secure a spot as our #4 girl, quite a feat after battle some health issues this season.  Sister Mackenzie was not far being, running a season best by 1:05!!  Both girls will be tough next season with more consistent summer miles and a healthier season.  Both have battled illness and knee issues ...

Other girls of note were Raija Taylor, Nicole Houghland, Laina Thomson and Cameron Martella.  All four of these gals have a very good shot at our varsity next season and can be very good XC runners with some more serious summer mileage.  Raija came on strong today after missing 3 meets, Nicole was in position to be 1-2-3 mid-race but faded just a bit after missing 3 meets also, and Laina had an amazing race back at Saginaw, but just couldn't duplicate it today and Cameron had been on and off the varsity all season.  These girls have worked very hard and I am super proud of their effort today.  Of special note were Emily Brazelton with a season best time by 1:23 and Olivia Apa with a season best by 1:13 and Jenna Monusko with a season best by 1:14.

Well done blue devils!!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016


WOW - what a crazy day.  TCWest girls beat TCCentral girls (who are ranked #3 in the state) in the finals BNC race.  TCW boys beat TCCentral boys for the conference title.  Petoskey boys beat Cadillac (who were at one time ranked top 10 in the state)  Just goes to show you that at this point in the season ANYTHING can happen!!!!!!!


For the Blue Devils - Congrats to ALL-CONFERENCE runners Zak Goddard and Carlie Martella.  Both had good races today to earn these honors,  Well done!!

As a team the boys had a hard pill to swallow - 6th in the conference.  I am happy to say that this is about as happy as I have even been with a 6th place.  There are 4 teams fighting it out in our regional for the remaining two state finals qualifying spots behind Fremont - Cadillac, Petoskey, Ludington and Gaylord.  Today we were closer to Cadillac than we have been ALL season and we have beaten Petoskey twice this season.  I truly believe, with some rest next week, and some good races from our top 5 the boys team CAN qualify.  Zak's effort was almost as good as his run at TCC two weeks ago and earning All-conference honors is a fine pat on the back.

On the girls side we again topped Petoskey and got a little bit closer to Cadillac.  Carlie's race wasn't the race she had hoped but it was enough to earn All-conference after 4 years of hard work.  Brianna Martin made a very nice step up closing the gap between her and Carlie.  The girls have been steadily improving their times and efforts and today we ran "ok" - I am hoping with some rest next week we can change that from 'ok' to "we ran great" when it comes time for regionals.

reminder - parent meeting at GHS on Wednesday 10/19 at 6pm to talk about our home invitational and regionals.