Boys Top 25 Cross Country Countdown: #11 Providence Day

Throwback video to a Practice Visit with Providence Day in 2014, Noah Dolhare and Connor Haaf's freshman year.

#11 Providence Day

Returning Database All-Class Team Rankings: 26th

Returning NCISAA 3A Team Rankings: 3rd

Returning CISAA Conference Team Ranking: 1st

2016 NCISAA 3A State Championship Finish: 3rd

2016 CISAA Conference Championship Finish: 1st

Key Loses

Dylan Riddell

Alex Smith

Key Returners

Noah Dolhare

Jason Krell

Robert Veres

Connor Haaf

Providence Day returns as the 26th best team in North Carolina based off our database, so ranking them 11th might seem like a bold prediction.  But this Providence Day team has everything it needs to be one of the top programs once again this season.  Also their historic past as a strong cross country program bodes well for them in my rankings.  Noah Dolhare will return as the senior leader of this Providence Day program and has been their top runner since his sophomore year.  He has a PR of 15:56 and though he's been good in cross country he hasn't come close to what he's capable of.  What proved this to me last season was when he had taken a big loss to Coleman Mitchell and Ben Mitchell at the NCISAA 3A State Championships, then three weeks later threw down a 9:21 on the track almost taking 2nd to Connor Lane at the Dash for Doobie.  Dolhare was just off guys that had been running in the 15:20s/30s all year long. Something just wasn't clicking for Dolhare on the XC course last fall, so if he can figure it out this year he's going to be one of the top runners in the state.  Dolhare returns at the NCISAA 3A 1600 & 3200 Champion from last spring.

Towards the end of the season Jason Krell came on strong for Providence Day and was running as their #2 guy as a freshman!  Krell ended the year with a PR of 17:29 and took 22nd at the NCISAA State Championships.  On the track Krell ran PRs of 4:35 and 10:07.  He also was 5th at the NCISAA 3A State Championships in the 3200.  As a reference to how strong that is, Dolhare holds PD's freshman XC record and only ran 4:38 for the 1600 in the outdoor season.  Another freshman that was big for PD last XC season was Robert Veres who ran a PR of 17:14 at the NCISAA State Championships placing 15th overall.  Veres ran his best race of the season when it mattered most almost prevailing PD to a podium finish at the state meet.  Veres' outdoor season will be slightly under shadowed by how strong of a freshman class Providence Day has, but ran a 4:54 for 1600 meters.  

Connor Haaf will join Dolhare as the senior leader of this team and has been a varsity runner for PD the last two seasons.  After a bumpy season leading up to the state meet Haaf finally had things come together at the state championships running 17:36 taking 27th overall.  His season best coming in was a 18:38.  Have had his best year yet on the track running 4:52 for the 1600.  Haaf will need to step things up just slightly if he wants to hold on to his top 5 spot heading into the season.

This is where Providence Day took a big jump for me in the rankings.  The addition of rising sophomores Adam Habas and Andrew Riolo.  Neither ran for Providence Day last fall due to soccer, but both had monster outdoor track seasons.  Coach Ben Hovis has confirmed both will be on the XC roster this fall and have put the cleats aside for now.  Habas ran 1:56 last season winning the NCISAA 3A State Championship for 800 meters and also ran the second fastest freshman 1600 in NC of 4:34.  He did run at Foot Locker South last fall and ran 17:22 for cross country.  Habas will come into the season with a ton of confidence after being a young stud on the track, but it may take him a while to get comfortable with the beast that is the cross country course.  Riolo was Providence Day's 5th best 1600 runner last season running 4:43 breaking 5 minutes in every race of the season.  He also ran 10:25 for the 3200.  This was a major breakthrough for Riolo as he only ran 5:36 while in middle school at PD.  Riolo hasn't run cross before, but should certainly impact the top 5 after taking 10th in the NCISAA 3200 last spring.  They'll bring in a stud freshman as well in Christian Landis who ran 4:55 for the 1600 last outdoor season and 10:36 for the 3200.  Landis likely hasn't seen competition to push him to his full potential, but after see have Coach Hovis and Providence Day did with their freshman last year, he could be in for a huge season.  The addition of these three stars have skyrocketed the Chargers in the rankings, but only time will tell if they can live up to the hype and contend for a NCISAA 3A Team Title.