2015 End of Season Rank - 57th
2016 Preseason Rank based off 2015 times - 22nd
Ardrey Kell used to consistently have one of the stronger boys distance programs in North Carolina, but have fallen off a little over the past few years due to heavy graduation. This year should be the year they turn things back around. Thought, this might be a little ambitious for the Knights, but there were a lot of qualities I liked about this team during the 2015 season. Ryan Kendall and Carson Philbin should become stars for AK this season. Kendall is more of a longer distance oriented guy while Philbin might be better on the track. Kendall made a big jump in his career when he finished 4th at the NCHSAA 4A West regional last fall qualifying for the state meet. Going into his senior season he will have some high goals he will look to accomplish, and leading AK as a team to the state meet is one of them.
Depth may be an issue for Ardrey Kell this season, past their top 2 guys they have William Ishee and Daniel Petronis. Ishee had a strong freshman season for the Knights running 4:44 outdoors and could be the guy who makes a big jump for AK this year. We did not see Petronis during the outdoor season for AK making it a big question mark for them this season. But he holds a PR of 16:56 from his sophomore year. If he comes back focused and healthy it'll be a major factor for the team.
The fifth man will be a question for AK this season. Matt Santos, Joshua Downey and William Cooper will be contenders for this spot. Out of the three Santos was much better on the track running 4:51. He also is just going into his sophomore season. The jump from some boys from their freshman to sophomore year can be tremendous as they come back much more experienced. Some other options could be Samari Liggins or Hunter Huckaby who were good over middle distance for AK. Liggins was one of the top freshman in the 800 in NC while Huckaby is going into his senior season not have running XC before and only two years of track. Neither ran XC last year, but a good season of distance training could be what they need to move to the next level on the track. Their is a lot of potential with this young Ardrey Kell team and they could be a year away from being the powerhouse program they were. The first race will show a lot on how serious they took this summers training.