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Following its win in the 2017 PSAL championship, Susan Wagner had a big rebuilding job on hand with the loss of three of the team's top 4. From early in the 2018 season though, the Falcons showed that they had the reconstruction well in hand as they formed a pack that would place five runners in the top 16 of the PSAL meet for a 58-94 win over Bronx Science.
Evan Sherman of Brooklyn Tech won a repeat PSAL championship in his senior year. Riverdale-Kingsbridge junior Jacob Ireland was 2nd, and he was the non-senior among the top 5 PSAL finishers, who also included Ermiyas Harper of Midwood, Robert Parker Straight of Brooklyn Tech, and Jack Craven of Beacon School.
Seven of the 10 of the top PSAL runners were seniors in 2018, and also 15 of the top 25. Entering last year, the PSAL had 7 of its top 10 runners returning, so 2019
The top 5 PSAL teams begin 2019 running an average of about 5 TR points behind the teams in their ranking positions last year. Most of that difference though lies with the teams at the back, and frontrunners Susan Wagner and Bronx Science are both well set for a very competitive PSAL showdown.
The reigning champ Falcons lost Josep Romero and Evan Daneluzzi from their top 5 of last year's race, but they had good depth and will begin 2019 comfortably ahead in the PSAL. Seniors Daniel Wronski and Sean Acosta and sophomore Michael Rodriguez-King provide three guys back from the PSAL top 20 pack, and senior Muhammad Qadri finished 22nd and should be part of this year's top 5. With some help expected in the back for the 5-6 spots, Susan Wagner will be hard to divert from snagging a third straight title.
Bronx Science was 2nd in the PSAL in 2018, and it lost lead runner William Wade and also Max Jaffe from its top 5. Seniors Sawyer Cooper, Lucas Koenig, and Nathaniel Lentz were all around the top 20 though, and if the Wolverines can get some more help at the back they could be a stiff challenge to Susan Wagner.
Riverdale-Kingsbridge's Jacob Ireland closed to within 3 seconds of Evan Sherman to finish 2nd in last year's PSAL, and he will be the big favorite in this year's race as a senior. Susan Wagner's top trio of Daniel Wronski, Sean Acosta, and Michael Rodriguez-King occupy the next three spots in the ratings, and as a rising sophomore, Rodriguez-King may have the highest ceiling following a promising track season. Another sophomore name to throw into the discussion if he's running is Beacon School's Alexander Brown. Brown did not run XC last year but led all PSAL runners in the 1600m this spring with a 4:19.89 time as a freshman.