Catching Z's: Part 2

You can catch Part 1 here

Let's continue...

Kamryn McIntosh (Clemson)

One of the top names who I have rarely seen mentioned when discussing collegiate greats is Clemson's Kamryn McIntosh. As a freshman, this young woman went on a tear by taking down some of the top names in the ACC. Throughout 2018, she threw down personal bests of 54 seconds in the 400 and 2:03 in the 800.

As great as her times are, what really impresses me is her consistency. She ran 2:03 four different times and all of them were run when they mattered the most. Whether it was the ACC final, East Regional Preliminaries, or the Outdoor National Championships, McIntosh found a way to have her best performances when she needed to the most.

She was unable to get past the prelims at Nationals last year, but when you consider her youth, I don't think anyone is disappointed. With a year of experience under her belt, watch out for this Tiger sophomore to make some serious noise in 2019.

Katrina Robinson (Arkansas)

Robinson is a complete wildcard heading into indoors after a solid cross country season. The true freshman from Australia was one of the top runners in the country for much of the fall, but struggled at NCAA's, missing out on All-American honors. Overall, she had a very successful season despite the rough finish and her ability to compete could go a long way in a championship setting. While she may not be a traditional "sleeper" pick, I think she is undervalued and someone who is at least capable of winning a national title (if not now, then maybe in the future).

Back in Australia, Robinson won a total of seven national championships and 35 state championships. While she will obviously face much stronger competition during the indoor season, her experience racing in championship races could give her an edge come March, especially with how unpredictable racing indoors can be.

The big question with Robinson is what event she will focus on. She comes in with personal bests of 4:14 for 1500 meters, 9:03 for 3000 meters, and 16:06 for 5000 meters, all of which could put her in contention for an NCAA title. The 5k might be a stretch given how fast the times at BU were, but either the mile or 3k look to be right in her wheelhouse. Keep in mind that Dani Jones won the 3k national title with a personal best of 9:02. Based solely on times, the 3k would likely be Robinson’s best event given her personal best and ability to close fast unlike some of the other true long distance talents.

Paige Duca (Boston College)

One of the more interesting women to keep an eye on this season is Paige Duca, the junior miler out of Boston College. Although Duca has built her reputation in the mile distance with a 4:37 personal best, she has flashed glimpses of potential in other events.

In 2018, Duca ran personal bests in four different events (800, 1000, 1500, and mile). If you count the steeplechase (which she has only run once throughout her career), then she PR'd in five. Simply put, this BC junior is incredibly well-rounded and she owns some very underrated speed with an 800 PR of 2:09 and 1000 PR of 2:48.

In tactical races, that speed could be huge, especially in championship racing for the mile. She'll need to improve her mile time if she wants to be closer to a top 16 national qualifying spot, but Duca has bettered her mile time in every indoor season of her college career. After going from 4:56 to 4:43 to 4:37, Duca has the potential to reach All-American caliber fitness in 2019.

Aaliyah Miller (Baylor)

Much like Kamryn McIntosh, Miller is a mid-distance stud who hasn't gained the recognition she deserves. The 2018 outdoor national qualifier has some very underrated range for someone focused primarily on the 400 and 800. Her personal bests of 54 seconds and 2:02 makes Miller a legitimate All-American, but his PR's in the 1k and 1500 are quietly strong. With times of 2:47 and 4:26, Miller has some of the best middle distance strength that most 800 runners never find (even in their pro careers). After her appearance at Nationals last spring, the Baylor junior could translate her success to the indoor oval, specifically in March.

Savannah Carnahan (Furman)

Over the past few years, the Furman men have gained a lot of attention from TSR for their rise to becoming consistent national contenders. However, the Lady Paladins have done just as much over the past few seasons, both individually and as a team. With the departure of Allie Buchalski, the Furman women have turned to Savannah Carnahan as their new low-stick ace and so far she has not disappointed.Carnahan has a wide variety of impressive PR's. She's run 4:20 (which converts to about 4:38 for a full mile depending on who you ask), 9:11 (converted to 9:07), and 15:49. Based on her resume, she is someone who can eventually qualify for Nationals this winter and potentially find a spot on the podium. She'll need to improve a few of her times if she wants to guarantee a top 16 spot, but given her experience that is more than reasonable.