Scouting Report: Miami Sunset Boys

2012 was a year of history for the Miami Sunset boys cross country team. The team finished fourth last year lead by Nick Diaz and Kenny Castro who finished fifth and seventh respectively. The duo is back again this year for a Knight's squad that wants to continue to rewrite history. Coach Alex Shaw says his guys learned a lot from last year both good and bad, but feel the best is yet to come in 2013. Diaz, Castro, as well as senior Ronny Greenup, and junior Malik Gunter will be in the top four, with a huge battle between four to give guys for that fifth and final spot. 

Several members of the team are coming off a great outdoor track and field season. The 4x800 meter relay team featuring Castro, Diaz, and Gunter made it to the state finals. Diaz, leads the team with the fastest 1600 meter time, and finished third at state in 4:20.61. Castro, Diaz, and Greenup placed second, sixth, and ninth in the 3200 meters. Five runners have gone under 4:40 for 1600 meters during the year. That closing speed will be integral come November at Appalachee Regional Park.  
When track ended, the team didn't stop working. The Knights logged over 500 miles this summer and concluded their summer conditioning with running camp in Ocala. Coach Shaw says everyone is healthy and running better than they were last year at this point in the season. It's not the fun and exciting stuff they encounter when the season begins, but combined with weightlifting three times a week, hill workouts and striders, they will be ready to run in November.  Doing all the little things right, demonstrating unselfisihness, and getting the job done in the classroom are all characteristics he believes separate a good team from a great team like his. St. Thomas Aquinas is the favorite in 4A, but Sunset is in a great spot to clinch the runner-up trophy and improve on their fourth place finish from last year.

Coach Shaw Says...

"I feel my boys have plenty of strengths but if I had to choose a few to write about it would be: their attention to doing all the "little things" right. I always felt doing the "little things" is what separates a good team from a great team. Another incredible strength they demonstrate is the unselfishness they have between each other. Whether their goal is to break 15:30 or to put on a varsity jersey, they all treat and care about each other equally. With that said, I still feel their most important strength is how they conduct them self in the classroom. Its going to be the 5th year in a row that our team average G.P.A. is over 3.25.. They might be pretty good at running, but they are outstanding students and even better human beings!

"We kick off the season in Miami for the first two local meets and then we begin to travel to Boca (Spanish River); Titusville (FlRunners) and Tally (Pre-State). Once we get through those meets, we hope to set our goals in the state series. With so many great teams in our region and at the state level, we know its going to be a tough journey. We do look forward to reaching our ultimate goal November 9th in Tallahassee."

Top Returner's Times (Previous Seasons)

Boys 5,000 Meter Run (XC)
15:45.96 Diaz, Nick FHSAA Cross Country State Finals 2012-11-17
15:54.71 Castro, Kenneth FHSAA Cross Country State Finals 2012-11-17
16:34.42 Greenup, Ronny FHSAA 4A Region 4 2012-11-07
16:42.94 Gunter, Malik FHSAA Cross Country State Finals 2012-11-17

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