|Senior Boys All-State Teams|
California Senior Runner of the Year
Chris Schwartz, Foothill HS, Bakersfield-CE
A split of the national championship meets did nothing to cloud our decision to recognize
Chris Schwartz as Senior Runner of the Year, that despite finishing a distant seventh
individually in Division III at the State Meet. The 2007 Division I state champ, Schwartz
rebounded from what he termed as "poor eating decisions" at the state meet to place a
very impressive eighth overall at Foot Locker Nationals two weeks later. Interspersed in
those results was a California-best 14:47 at the Mt. SAC Invitational and a FootLocker
West Regional title on the 5k version of the Mt. SAC course. Schwartz's lone setback
against Golden State foes came at state, was a bad diet on the weekend of the meet
led to a disagreeable stomach and illness. Chris' successes are all the more sweeter
considering a difficult childhood in which he was abandoned at a young age and had
repeatedly filtered in and out of the foster care system over the years. He has since
found a supportive set of parents, a fine group of coaches and the support system to excel!
FIRST-TEAM ALL-STATE SENIORS
1. Chris Schwartz (Foothill, Bakersfield-CE) -- While unable to successfully repeat as a state champion, Chris
rebounded to finish as the top Californian (eighth overall) at FootLocker Nationals, capping a dream story for
the likeable senior who overcame long odds after being shuffled through various foster homes over the years.
2. Tyler Valdes (Dana Hills, Dana Point-SS) -- Heading up a sensational team campaign for the state Division I
champion Dolphins, Tyler was the Orange County champion and the Division I sectional and state champion.
3. Jonathan Sanchez (Buchanan, Clovis-CE) -- Missed the earlier season due to injury, but Jonathan's return to
the lineup spurred the Bears to their finest season in school history, netting the Central Section title, the state
runner-up plaque and then leading the team to a ninth-place finish at Nike Cross Nationals.
4. Zack Torres (Crescenta Valley, La Crescenta Valley-SS) -- Proving his move from the baseball diamond to the
cross-country course was a smart one, Zack gained respect as a tough race-day combatant while placing
second in State Division I and earning All-American honors (tied for 15th) at FootLocker Nationals.
5. Cody Schmidt (Redondo Union, Redondo Beach-SS) -- Continuing a seemingly systematic rate of progress in
recent seasons, Cody (3rd at State D2) carried over nicely from a strong track campaign to pace the Seahawks
to their best finish -- fourth at state in D2 -- in school history while qualifying individually for Nike Cross Nationals!
6. Mac Fleet (University City, San Diego-SDS) -- Entering the season with considerable expectations, Mac captured
the Woodbridge Invitational title for a second consecutive year and avenged a mid-season Stanford Invitational
setback by winning the Division III state individual crown in leading his team's successes.
7. Wyatt Landrum (Liberty, Brentwood-NCS) -- From virtual unknown to big-meet performer, Wyatt emerged very
nicely in the Fall with a series of meet records and showdown triumphs, romping to an NCS-title effort and an
eventual 4th-place finish at the Division II state meet to qualify for FootLocker Nationals.
SECOND-TEAM ALL-STATE SENIORS (listed alphabetically)
James Cameron (Mission Viejo-SS) -- Flashing far better resiliency as a senior, James waged continual battles
against Tyler Valdes and emerged as among the most popular racers in the state, where he took 6th in Division I.
Isaac Chavez (Barstow-SS) -- A cool cucumber under pressure, Isaac was the proven leader and pacesetter (he
placed 2nd at state) for a powerful Aztecs program clinched a fourth consecutive state title under Jim Duarte.
John Guzman (Upland-SS) -- Possibly the most impressive improvement down the stretch, John was the clutch
performer to place 4th in State D1 for a Highlanders squad that peaked marvelously to finish 3rd in state as a team.
Nathaniel Litwiller (Clayton Valley, Concord-NCS) -- Perhaps one of the best-kept secrets on the statewide scene,
Nathaniel duplicated his fine track season peak with a repeat pop in cross-country, placing 8th at State in D2.
Matt Peterson (Davis-SJS) -- Steady throughout the season, Matt saved his best for last in posting a solid Top 10
finish (seventh) in Division I at the year-end state meet, also leading his Blue Devils team to the SJS title.
Renaud Poizat (Arcadia-SS) -- Overcoming mid-season injury to return in peak form at state meet, Renaud keyed
the team's high finish and placed 5th in State D1 individual, qualifying for Nike Cross Nationals in the process.
J.P. Slater (Loyola, Los Angeles-SS) -- Emerged as experienced leader for traditional powerhouse Cubs program,
with J.P. helping steer the D2 team to yet another state championship run while placing 7th individually.
THIRD-TEAM ALL-STATE SENIORS (listed alphabetically)
Andres Diaz (Loyola, Los Angeles-SS) -- Part of a dangerous up-front attack for the Cubs, Andres' consistency
and fine state run (12th in D2) was vital to the team's state-meet title run and berth to Nike Cross Nationals.
Sean Gildea (Thousand Oaks-SS) -- The key frontrunner to the most improved team in the entire nation, Sean
placed 11th in State D2 and propelled the Lancers attacked to a 10th-place team finish at Nike Cross Nationals.
Tyre Johnson (Palma, Salinas-CCS) -- Despite not ranking among the swiftest seniors at the state meet, D4 champ
Tyre proved his worth with fine runs at CCS Finals and at FL West Regional meet to punch ticket to FL nationals.
Jose Lezama (Leuzinger-SS) -- Despite coming out late for the season, this soccer-to-cross-country convert
cracked the 15-minute barrier at Mt. SAC before qualifying to state as an individual, where he placed 10th in D1.
Tyler Reed (Ayala, Chino Hills-SS) -- Very hot at season's outset, Tyler overcame a few mid-season bumps in
the road to throw down an excellent race at state (placing 13th in D2), capping an excellent cross-country career.
Simon Schmidt (Redondo Union, Redondo Beach-SS) -- Steady throughout the season, Simon's consistency
down the stretch )placed 10th in State D2) aided the Seahawks en route to realization of their state-meet dreams.
Danny Vartanian (Buchanan, Clovis-CE) -- Flurry of strong performances and excellent co-leadership by Danny,
who placed 8th at State and was vital to success or powerful Bears program that placed second in Division I.
Toby Villalva (El Toro, Lake Forest-SS) -- Known more for his mid-distance successes in track, Toby's breakthrough
hill-and-dale breakthrough (9th at state) keyed Chargers' Orange County successes.