On The Move

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There has been constant movement in the NCAA as far as transfers are concerned. So instead of reporting each of these moves separately, we opted to do it all at once!

Here are a few notable distance runners who have found new homes for next year...

Linnea Saltz (Southern Utah to Georgetown)

Earlier today, Georgetown announced that the 2020 BIG Sky indoor 800 meter champion will be joining the Hoyas as a graduate transfer. Saltz enters the Georgetown program with impressive middle distance PR's of 53.99 (400m) and 2:05 (800m). The former Thunderbird will be pursuing a Masters degree while finishing her outdoor eligibility.

The Hoya women were led by sophomore Sami Corman this past winter in virtually every middle distance event. However, the introduction of Saltz will soften the workload for Corman next spring as far as doubles and potential relay duty are concerned.

In a BIG East conference without an overwhelming 800 meter star, Saltz could be an immediate title contender for the Hoyas in the 800 meters next spring. She has the potential to be an extremely valuable point scorer for a Georgetown team that is looking to rebound from a 5th place team finish at the BIG East Outdoor Championships last year.

Ed Kiolbasa (Western Washington to San Francisco)

Last week, San Francisco announced that former Western Washington runner Ed Kiolbasa will be joining the Dons starting next year. An underrated D2 talent, Kiolbasa quietly put together personal bests of 8:16 (3k), 14:36 (5k) and 30:34 (10k XC) during his time with the Vikings.

According to TFRRS, Kiolbasa has one season of eligibility left in cross country, indoor track and outdoor track.

After losing a promising group of seniors to graduation a few years ago, San Francisco has cycled through a handful of respectable talents such as Chris Olley, Jack Rowe, Hugh Nicklason and Andrew Snyder. Kiolbasa still has work to do in order to reach the level that those men were on, but his recent progress and new personal bests have been encouraging to say the least.

San Francisco has proven on numerous occasions that they can develop talent and produce competitive distance runners on a west coast that is headlined by PAC-12 elites. Kiolbasa may not be the next Chris Olley, but he could be an underrated talent in 2021 once he gets accustomed to his new training regime.

Isaac Cortes (Stanford to UC Riverside)

Earlier today, The Stride Report confirmed that Isaac Cortes will be finishing his eligibility at the UC Riverside. The former Stanford runner had been a reliable veteran in the Cardinal middle distance group during his time in Palo Alto, owning personal bests of 1:51 (800), 2:24 (1000) and 4:08 (mile).

According to TFRRS, Cortes still has two seasons of outdoor eligibility left as well as one season of indoor eligibility left. He has not competed in cross country since 2017.

Cortes was a consistent and oftentimes underrated part of Stanford's recent success. Cortes played a pivotal role in numerous relays for the Cardinal, including a leg on Stanford's All-American 2nd place DMR from the 2019 Indoor National Championships.

Although not anywhere near the powerhouse that Stanford is, UC Riverside has developed a few respectable talents of their own as of late. This past indoor season, Tanner Anderson (not to be confused with the former Oregon and Washington runner) ran 1:50 for 800 meters while Arman Irani ran 14:19 for 5000 meters.

Cortes will bring an extensive amount of experience to a program that was relatively young this past year and potentially lift up the promising talents already on the Highlanders' roster.

Megan Mooney (Florida State to Colorado State)

Yesterday, Megan Mooney announced that she be finishing her eligibility at Colorado State next year. The graduate transfer will join the Rams with strong personal bests of 4:21 (1500), 9:29 (3k) and 16:34 (5k).

Mooney was a key piece of Florida State's cross country lineup this past fall (one of the top teams in the country). The former Seminole finished as a top five scorer on multiple occasions for the FSU women throughout the fall of 2019, placing 29th at the ACC Championships and 57th at Pre-Nationals.

Mooney will be returning to her home state next year and joining her brother Michael Mooney on the Colorado State track and field team. She will be paired with a handful of other women who own similar personal bests such as Lily Tomasula-Martin (16:47 5k) as well as current senior and potential returner Ali Kallner (9:26 3k, 16:34 5k).

With Mooney now on the team, the Colorado State women have quietly assembled a very respectable contingent of competitive distance runners.

Zak Kirk (Eastern Kentucky to Portland)

Earlier this week, Portland announced that former Eastern Kentucky runner Zak Kirk would be joining the Pilots next year. Kirk will enter Portland with personal bests of 8:15 (3k), 14:39 (5k) and 30:37 (10k XC).

While some seasons may be better than others, Eastern Kentucky has been a consistently competitive squad in the Southeast region for the past few years. In most instances, Kirk has found himself a spot in those talented lineups.

Despite dealing with occasional injuries during his time with the Colonels, Kirk was still able to finish in 23rd place at the 2019 Southeast Regional Championships this past cross country season and act as EKU's #2 scorer.

There is still plenty of upside for Kirk who ran three personal bests in the mile, 3000 meters and 5000 meters this past indoor season. If you include his 10k from the Southeast regional meet, then Kirk has run four personal bests in his last seven races.

After losing numerous top scorers, the Pilots are looking to reload and build out their depth. Kirk will be joined by recent Washburn transfer Jacob Klemz this upcoming cross country season as they attempt to offer scoring support for top Portland returners Evert Silva, Riley Osen and Reuben Kiprono.