Wayne Joseph’s Blog

Running with the Big Dog

Big Dog’s Revised List of States Top 10 X-Country Runners

Honokaa's Tia Greenwell moves up to #2

Honokaa's Tia Greenwell moves up to #2The following list was compiled after reviewing the results of the first six weeks of the regular season cross-country meets held in all five leagues, OIA, ILH, KIL, MIL and the BIIF.latest rankings can be found at: https://waynejoseph.wordpress.com/2009/10/25/big-dogs-final-hhsaa-top-10-cross-country-runners/This new list takes into consideration meets held up to October 4. A final list will be generated a few days prior to the state championships. Coaches and harrier fans may make their own list and submit it in the comment section.TOP 10 GIRLSGrossman still #1Hailey Grossman, Seabury

  1. Hailey Grossman, Seabury Hall
  2. Tialana Greenwell, Honokaa
  3. Gabriella Jenkins, Mililani
  4. Deylynn White, Kapolei
  5. Kyleigh Mann, Punahou
  6. Ellie Brady, Punahou
  7. Jessica Kafer, Radford
  8. Julia Brand, Punahou
  9. Kaitlyn Chock, Waiakea
  10. Jenna Wong, Iolani

Top Five Girls Teams in State:  1. Punahou       2. Iolani      3.  Mililani       4.  Hawaii Baptist         5. Hawaii Prep

Honokaa's Josh Robinson breaks into top 10 by winning meet at HPA

Honokaa's Josh Robinson breaks into top 10 by winning meet at HPA


  1. Margarito Martinez, Leileihua
  2. Pierce Murphy, Island School
  3. Rocky Balala, Maui
  4.  Jordan Thibodeau, Kamehameha-Oahu
  5.  Daniel Kaneko, Kamehameha-Oahu
  6.  Borys Pleskacz, Iolani
  7. Isaiah Sato, Kamehameha-Oahu
  8. Jordan Kahawai, Kamehameha-Oahu
  9.  Chris Mosch, Honokaa 
  10.   Joshua Robinson, Honokaa

Top five boys teams in state:  1. Kamehameha-Oahu   2. Iolani   3.  Punahou   4. Leileihua   5. Honokaa


October 6, 2009 - Posted by | High School Runners | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. I guess you haven’t seen the Kamehameha boys run? Esaki from Iolani is probably their strongest runner.

    Comment by justgo | October 6, 2009 | Reply

    • Sorry, I missed your point. The Kamehameha boys dominated the Punahou race and Esaki was the number three runner from Iolani. He didn’t make my top 10 because of that performance.

      Comment by waynejoseph | October 6, 2009 | Reply

      • Esaki has been the most consistent for Iolani. Balala is good but I don’t think he should be above the Kamehameha foursome.

        Comment by justgo | October 6, 2009

      • Thanks for your opinion and i’m not here to create any hoopla.

        Comment by justgo | October 6, 2009

      • And I appreciate your opinion as well. Come October 31 we’ll see who comes the closest in their predictions.

        Comment by waynejoseph | October 6, 2009

  2. Hmmm…what about Ali Keith from Mililani for the girls? She’s been up and down, but going off past years performances plus Kaiser Invite and Punahou Invite this year, I think she’s gettin better week to week. Easily somewhere in the top 10.

    Comment by kukini | October 6, 2009 | Reply

  3. Can you please correctly spell the names of the runners on the Kamehameha-Oahu team: Jordan Thibodeau, Isaiah Sato and Jordan Kahawai

    Comment by runner | October 6, 2009 | Reply

    • Thanks, I appreciate you helping with the spelling.

      Comment by waynejoseph | October 7, 2009 | Reply

  4. I agree that Kristin Ali Keith should be on the list, based on her potential. I don’t think the week-to-week performances should have as much weight in the rankings as past performances, since there are several factors that may play into how they place at a particular meet, especially in the early season meets. Of course one factor is that some athletes have bad days or have some particular injury or ailment, others factors could be that the coach’s workouts at that certain point in the season is geared toward building strength and so the athlete isn’t expected to be at peak performance that week, top athletes may be asked by the coach to assist with pacing other teammates during the course of the race as part of a “team strategy”, or some athletes may be holding back because they don’t want to “show all their cards” early in the season.

    Comment by VanNostrand | October 7, 2009 | Reply

  5. It’s hard to compare results due to different courses (some are short/long/hilly/flat plus weather) but if I was gonna pick a top ten, it would probably be along the lines of this…


    1. Margarito Martinez, Leilehua
    2. Pierce Murphy, Island
    3. Jordan Thibodeau, Kam-Oahu
    4. Jordan Kahawai, Kam-Oahu
    5. Isaiah Sato, Kam-Oahu
    6. Daniel Kaneko, Kam-Oahu
    7. Troy Esaki, Iolani
    8. Erik Pak, Castle
    9. Chris Mosch, Honokaa
    10. Borys Pleskacz, Iolani

    Others to consider (In no particular order):
    Rocky Balala
    Nicola Perez-Garreaud
    Nikolai Scharer
    Joshua Robinson
    Ryan Hobson
    Dylan Hardie-Jordan

    1-2-3 will be pretty hard to break (Martinez/Murphy/Thibodeau), but quite honestly, I think that after that, it’s really about who tapers the best, who runs the course the smartest, and who has the best day. I could see the 4-10 boys interchanging at the state meet as all of them have put up similar times and many Oahu runners have beaten and been beaten by each other throughout the season.


    1. Hailey Grossman, Seabury Hall
    2. Kristin Ali Keith, Mililani
    3. Gabriella Jenkins, Mililani
    4. Ellie Brady, Punahou
    5. Kyleigh Mann, Punahou
    6. Julia Brand, Punahou
    7. Kimberly Pugliese, Mililani
    8. Deylynn White, Kapolei
    9. Jessica Kafer, Radford
    10. Tialana Greenwell, Honokaa

    Comment by runfast | October 11, 2009 | Reply

  6. I believe Balala is over rated. In competition against ILH and OIA runners at CORP he performed poorly finishing well below 10th place. He may undoubtly be the best on Maui but he should be lower on your top 10.

    Comment by datrunnah | October 11, 2009 | Reply

  7. Runfast – although I agree with most of your predictions, I would rank Tia Greenwell higher, because a 2nd Place finish at States last year should count for something. As we saw at HPA’s State course last year, the Big Island courses are a lot more difficult than the rest of the states courses. I believe Greenwell was also ranked low last year because her times didn’t compare with the rest of the state, but she and Bailey Massenburg were able to set a fast pace and distance themselves from the rest of the field. I think that even though the Kauai course isn’t as tough, you can’t underestimate Greenwell and give her too much of a lead.

    Comment by VanNostrand | October 12, 2009 | Reply

  8. Hey Big Dog.
    Thanks so much for giving us a list of the top 10 runners from the state. It’s very nice of you for doing that. I was wondering if someone there times could also be displayed just so we can compare the different times from different islands. Well thanks again.
    P.S. Those that have commented above; yes you may feel that another runner should be on the top 10 but it’s just his opinion and could possibly change the day of BIIFs.
    Thanks again Big Dog.

    Comment by Runner808 | October 13, 2009 | Reply

  9. These are the top times recorded on the MileSplit Site, http://hi.milesplit.us/
    but they may not have all the results from the neighbor islands

    Boys Three Mile Run
    Margarito Martinez Leilehua 15:38.01 2009-09-19
    Pierce Murphy Island School 15:55.50 2009-09-15
    Margar Martinez Leilehua 15:56.70 2009-09-05
    Jordan Thibodeau KS – Oahu 16:06.36 2009-09-19
    Isaiah Sato KS – Oahu 16:09.80 2009-09-19
    Troy Esaki Iolani 16:14.57 2009-09-19
    Jordan Kahawai KS – Oahu 16:19.95 2009-09-19
    Borys Pleskacz Iolani 16:26.48 2009-09-19
    Nikolai Scharer Punahou 16:29.00 2009-09-19
    Eric Pak Castle 16:29.40 2009-09-19

    Girls Three Mile Run
    Hailey Grossman Seabury Hall 18:21.25 2009-09-19
    Brady Ellie Punahou 18:43.33 2009-09-19
    Jessica Kafer Radford 18:50.34 2009-09-19
    Julia Brand Punahou 19:00.89 2009-09-19
    Kristin Ali Keith Mililani hool 19:01.64 2009-10-10
    Kyleigh Mann Punahou 19:01.97 2009-09-19
    Kimberly Pugliese Mililani 19:07.89 2009-10-10
    Jenna Wong Iolani 19:13.69 2009-09-19
    Gabriella Jenkins Mililani 19:19.30 2009-10-10
    Kelli Morrissey Iolani 19:27.14 2009-09-19

    Comment by VanNostrand | October 13, 2009 | Reply

    • Mahalo for providing that for us.

      Comment by waynejoseph | October 13, 2009 | Reply

    • Thank you for this list – although I believe all the times run on 9-19-09 (Boys #1, #4-10 and Girls #1-4, 6, 8, 10) were at the Iolani Invitational, a meet than was approximately 300 meters short.

      Comment by runfast | October 13, 2009 | Reply

  10. Hey, don’t shoot the messenger, I just copied what was posted at the MileSplit site, to show that there is a resource available that has all the top time this year ranked. If you think you have a better take on what times should be listed, feel free to do the research and compile your own list.

    Comment by VanNostrand | October 13, 2009 | Reply

  11. 1. Margarito Martinez
    2. Jordan Thibodeau
    3. Pierce Murphy
    4. Jordan Kahawai
    5. Isaiah Sato
    6. Dan Kaneko
    7. Troy Esaki
    8. Ryan Hobson
    9. Ian Terayama
    10. Eric Pak

    Rocky Balala raced against ILH and OIA runners and placed out of the top 10 and Pierce Murphy has yet to race against ILH and OIA runners this season

    Comment by ugly shwaggy | October 15, 2009 | Reply

  12. shwaggy- Piere Murphy raced against OIA competition this year at the Campbell Invitational at the beginning of the year. He took 2nd to Margarito. Whether he’s raced against ILH competition or not, he is a good runner with great racing skill. His times speak for themselves and I find it hard to rank him any lower than second just because he hasn’t raced against Thibadeau. Thibadeau’s times really don’t compare to his this year.

    As for the MileSplit website, that site lost credibility with me when they listed Margarito twice in the boys rankings. It’s obvious there is some low level work there with little research.

    Lastly, lay off the Big Dog if his rankings don’t match up with yours. He’s taking time out of his life to give his OPINION on high school cross country. Frankly, some of y’all are just being rude when you disagree with him.

    Comment by hzy | October 17, 2009 | Reply

    • Earlier in the season the MileSplit site had multiple listings for Ellie Brady/Brady Ellie, and some others. Still as a resource, it is better than having to go thru all of the year’s results to pick out the best times for each runner, rank them in order, then go thru all the results of the subsequent weeks and check if any of those runners improved on their times and/or changed their order in the rankings. The MileSplit site is a national ranking site, and they aren’t able to double-check correct names or spelling for every results from every state. I’ve had some experience with trying to compile results and have fallen victim to bad data being provided, like misspelled names, nicknames, etc. where someone gets listed more than once. We should be grateful that athletes from our state are getting recognition on this site, which will probably assist with scholarship opportunities for some of these athletes. There is a saying, “It is better to light a single candle than to curse the darkness.” So rather than complaining about inaccuracies, you should provide that site the correct info, which would allow another Hawaii athlete to be listed in these nationally viewed rankings.

      Comment by VanNostrand | October 18, 2009 | Reply

      • My point about the MileSplit site is that it presents itself as a credible resource but it is limited in its information. Thus, this makes it very limited as a resource for Cross Country rankings. It doesn’t include results from all of the leagues in Hawaii, and therefore the rankings really aren’t credible.

        This is not a public use website like we all log on and provide information to. This is not like Big Dog’s Blog. This is a national website and they shouldn’t rely on people like me to provide them with their information.

        If a college recruiter is really going to decide whether or not to award a scholarship based on information from this website, he/she will probably have a short career.

        Comment by hzy | October 19, 2009

      • So you’re saying a college recruiter should be basing his decision to award scholarships by looking at rankings submitted on blog sites by people with biased opinions or who only are familiar with the runners from their league/island. The bottom line is that the MileSplit site and even the DyeStat site, provides national exposure for Hawaii athletes. They may not be a college coach’s sole resource or part of his decision-making process, but it gets our kids out there and that student-athlete can use it as a reference when applying to schools. The MileSplit site has more current and accurate info than the HHSAA site, a site that is funded by all of the leagues in the state to promote high school sports. Even the most comprehensive track and cross country results sites in the state, the KauTech site, isn’t able to gather all of the results from every meet, and the operator of that site actively tries to obtain results. You can’t fault the MileSplit site for not having complete info or not recognizing bad data, when that problem exists for anyone who tries to provide a resource for information. I am very appreciative of all of the sites that attempt to bring recognition to our sport, KauTech, BigDog, USATF-HI, MileSplit, HHSAA, OIA, Individual School sites like Mililani’s, DyeStat, SportsHawaii blog, and the late Al Linsky’s blog. It is a lot of work to maintain these sites, often a labor of love, and sometimes a thankless task.

        Comment by VanNostrand | October 22, 2009

  13. VanNostrand, I never said a recruiter should use blogs for recruiting, I don’t know where you get that. My point was that the MileSplit site isn’t a blog site and therefore it shouldn’t be up to me to give them data.

    Any of the resources you listed is limited in one way or another. What it comes down to is that there is only one way to know who the best runners in Hawaii are and that’s for them to run against each other. We’ll see how things play out on Oct. 31.

    Comment by hzy | October 23, 2009 | Reply

  14. Borys is the best runner. He is definitely number 1.

    Comment by Usain Bolt | November 10, 2009 | Reply

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