Ryan Montera: Legacy To Creighton


Ryan Montera's Best Marks

1,600 - 4:31

3,200 - 10:01

5,000 - 15:41


Q) Talk about the recruitment process - what other schools were you looking at, and how did you come to choosing the Creighton University?

The recruitment process was very good. I wanted to get a head start on things so I really started the recruiting process right after my Sophomore year ended. I had been working with my college counselor for a while to find places that she thought would be good academic fits and so that August before Junior year, I sent out emails to coaches all over the country. It really came back to looking at Jesuit universities though, and I settled in on a top-four of Creighton, Gonzaga, Santa Clara, and Loyola Marymount.

Q) What do you plan to study at Creighton

I applied as an economics major and have since realized that I want to major in political science so we're working on that currently.

Q) What event do you see yourself focusing on at Creighton

At this point, I'm not entirely sure. I have always had success in longer distances, especially the 5k, and I really enjoy the 3200m. The 800m and 1600m will always hold a special place in my heart but I think I would be better off running anywhere from 3km to 10km.

Q) You've had success in every event from the 1,600 on up to the 5k - what would you say your favorite event is, and why?

For me, you can't beat a cross country 5k. I first began to get competitive with running in middle school when I was training with Melody Fairchild and the Boulder Mountain Warriors. I absolutely love how abstract and random cross country races are and the importance each mile has in my overall success in a race.

Q) You've consistently made big gains each year (69th at State as a freshman, 44th at state as a sophomore, 29th at state as a junior, and seventh at state as a senior), what would say attributed to such improvement, and consistency? 

Hard work and hunger. Up until my freshman year of high school, I played soccer at a very competitive level and didn't really consider myself a runner. After I finished state cross country my freshman year, I could tell that something special was happening and this would be a sport I could develop in. I knew I wasn't the biggest or the fastest, but I could outwork my competitors.

The preparation for this sport has always been a big part for me, whether it was running during the summer, going to train in the mountains with Lisa Rainsberger and company, doing indoor track with REAL Training, or doing 15 mile long runs at 6:00 am. I like walking to the line knowing I've done the things necessary to be prepared for the race; it's also really easy to see improvement in placement or time.

Q) The first result we have on you on MileSplit is a 12:19 (3,000) 20th-place finish at the Colorado USATF Junior Olympic Championships race in November 2014 - What do you remember from this competition?

I do remember this. The start was super open and grassy but it ended up funneling really quickly. I'm not sure what point of the race this was but there was also a big hill we had to get up and I remember that knocking the wind out of me. But I think the last thing I remember about that day was finishing and looking behind me and seeing this kid named Henry Murphy right behind. I knew of him at the team but we would become closer friends after that when we went to nationals the year after and then ended up being right next to each other throughout high school.

Q) What got you interested in competing in XC/Track in the first place? 

A lot. My first experience with distance running came in first grade when my mom asked if I wanted to run the Bolder Boulder (photo below). I thought that was kind of fun and none of my first-grade friends could fathom the idea of running 6 miles which made it fun to talk about. I kept doing that race for the following years primarily relying on soccer for training. I also won a 1-mile cross country meet when I was in 5th grade for all the local elementary schools. By that time, my parents thought it would be a good idea to reach out to Melody Fairchild and see how I would do running cross country. It took a couple of years to completely come around, but by the end of my Freshman year, I was fully invested to do this sport completely. 

Q) Favorite book, musical artist, and movie: 

My favorite book is "Unbroken", I really like both Coldplay and U2, and my favorite movie is "Ferris Bueller's Day Off"

Q) What would your favorite high school moment be?

I'm going to give you two here. The first came in October 2019 when the boys team qualified for state for the second time in school history. I had a ton of really amazing teammates that had worked incredibly hard and sacrificed a lot to help us get there. I ended up being the one to tell the team what had happened and being able to hug those guys and congratulate them on an awesome year.

The second was this year after state. I had written a goal back in July about podiuming in the State Championships my Senior year. After the awards ceremony, I remember sprinting back to my family in absolute tears and being so in shock by what just happened. It was the culmination of 4 years of hard work to get to that moment, which is why it is one of my favorite high school XC moments.