Previewing the Field: 4A Girls Cross Country

4A girls cross country belonged to Los Alamos last fall--lock, stock, and stopwatch. Will it be any different this fall?

The Hilltoppers blew out the state meet, scoring 34 points to the 101 posted by second-place St. Pius X and 136 by third-place Albuquerque Academy.

It's a new year this year, but not as new for Los Alamos as for a lot of folks. And that doesn't bode well if you're hoping for a change in the established order of things. To be a little more precise about what that means, let's take a look at the returners from the top 50 finishers at state last fall:

 

  1 Jenna Thurman                Del Norte                  19:09.80     1
  2 Jordan Parker                Los Alamos                 19:18.50     2
? 3 Arena Lewis                  Belen                      19:21.10     3
  4 Jennifer Mooday              Los Alamos                 19:25.80     4
  5 Lindsay Friesenhahn          Farmington                 19:29.20    --
  6 Teresa Sandoval              Los Alamos                 19:34.20     5
  9 Elizabeth Turner             Los Alamos                 19:47.40     8
 10 Claire Archibeck             Albuquerque Academy        20:05.30     9
 11 Kelli Reagan                 St. Pius X                 20:09.70    10
 13 Britani Gonzales             Santa Teresa               20:12.40    12
 14 Regina Marquez               Santa Teresa               20:14.70    13
 15 Jazzy Padilla                Del Norte                  20:18.30    14
 16 Janali Gustafson             Los Alamos                 20:19.60    15
 17 Marissa Nathe                St. Pius X                 20:27.90    16
 18 Mikayla Pulliam              Los Alamos                 20:28.10    17
 19 Eliand Riciputi              Los Alamos                 20:29.30    18
 20 Greta Miller                 Santa Fe Indian School     20:31.80    19
 21 Kendra Lente                 Los Lunas                  20:33.90    20
 22 Askia McCulley               Bernalillo                 20:38.70    21
 23 Kiona McCulley               Bernalillo                 20:40.80    22
 24 Sheri Adair                  Kirtland Central           20:48.20    23
 26 Julie Gianinni               St. Pius X                 20:54.80    24
 30 Morgan Findley               Albuquerque Academy        21:07.20    28
 31 Camilla Allison              Santa Fe Indian School     21:11.00    29
 32 Noel Prandoni                Santa Fe Indian School     21:11.00    30
 33 Kaylee Tsingine              Gallup                     21:12.30    31
 34 Mara Short                   Albuquerque Academy        21:13.80    32
 36 Abigail Hunter               Albuquerque Academy        21:15.50    34
 38 Marisol Mendoza              Bernalillo                 21:29.80    35
 39 Sammy King                   Albuquerque Academy        21:30.00    36
 40 Samantha Caire               Atrisco Heritage Academy   21:33.20    --
 42 Grace Vickers                Valencia                   21:36.30    --
 43 Bianca Avalos                St. Pius X                 21:38.50    37
 45 Chelsea Nez                  Del Norte                  21:45.00    39
 46 Sierra Martinez              Aztec                      21:46.70    40
 47 Victoria Cordova             Belen                      21:48.40    41
 48 Alicia Page                  Moriarty                   21:50.70    --
 49 Shelby Levi                  Piedra Vista               21:53.60    42
 50 Beatrice Jones               Gallup                     21:56.80    43
 
All in all, there weren't many graduates out of this group, and none of the graduates there were came from Los Alamos. So, of the girls who scored 2-4-5-8-15, they're all back. And so are the ones who scored 17 and 18. That's not much of a reprieve, for anyone. It only gets worse if LA is bringing up any promising young freshmen. Jordan Parker, Jennifer Mooday, Teresa Sandoval? You'll be seeing more of them this fall.
 
St. Pius X should be very happy to have Kelly Reagan and Marissa Nathe back, but they also have a few who aren't back. Ditto for Albuquerque Academy, which returns Claire Archibeck. Staying healthy is likely to be a big emphasis for the Chargers.
 
Probably the most intriguing question yet to be answered from these teams lies in how AA will respond to having Adam Kedge holding the reins of both the boys' and girls' programs. There is considerable talent at Albuquerque Academy, and it would not be wise to dismiss the Chargers lightly.
 
Following the established pattern of these articles, we take a quick check of the 3200 rankings of returning runners from this spring to see what those might add to the discussion. Those rankings are as follows:
 
 
Rank Time Athlete Name Team C/O Date Meet
1. 11:33.77 Marissa Nathe NM St. Pius X High School 2013 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
2. 11:33.78 Jenna Thurman NM Del Norte High School 2013 05/31/2012 Great Southwest Classic
3. 11:37.04 Regina Marquez NM Santa Teresa High School 2015 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
4. 11:47.05 Jazzy Padilla NM Del Norte High School 2015 04/07/2012 Rio Rancho Invitational
5. 11:47.93 Mikayla Pulliam NM Los Alamos High School 2014 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
6. 11:49.41 Julie Giannini NM St. Pius X High School 2014 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
7. 11:50.58 Amanda Mercer NM Los Alamos High School 2014 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
8. 11:51.22 Claire Archibeck NM Albuquerque Academy 2014 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
9. 11:52.90 Elizabeth Turner NM Los Alamos High School 2013 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
10. 11:54.24 Joanna Miranda NM Santa Teresa High School 2015 04/27/2012 Mirmanian Invitational
11. 11:57.94 Kendra Lente NM Los Lunas High School 2013 04/09/2012 Marilyn Sepulveda Classic
12. 11:59.62 Teresa Sandoval NM Los Alamos High School 2013 03/17/2012 Bernalillo Invitational
13. 12:01.31 Kelly Reagan NM St. Pius X High School 2014 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
14. 12:09.74 Miranda Barraza NM Los Alamos High School 2013 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
15. 12:15.25 Greta Miller NM Santa Fe High School 2014 05/11/2012 New Mexico 3A-5A State Track and Field Championships
16. 12:26.00 Eliyah Lucero NM Los Lunas High School 2013 03/24/2012 Valencia Relays
17. 12:57.12 Morgan Findley NM Albuquerque Academy 2014 04/20/2012 Richard Harper Invitational
18. 13:12.00 Lori Espinoza NM Belen High School 2014 03/03/2012 Los Lunas Invitational
19. 13:12.32 Victoria Quintana NM Santa Fe High School 2015 04/20/2012 Richard Harper Invitational
20. 13:14.34 Sheri Adair NM Kirtland Central High School 2013 04/14/2012 Bill Slade Invitational
21. 13:15.82 Abigail Hunter NM Albuquerque Academy 2015 05/04/2012 New Mexico District 5 - 4A Meet
22. 13:16.52 Samantha King NM Albuquerque Academy 2015 05/04/2012 New Mexico District 5 - 4A Meet
23. 13:19.45 Victoria Cordova NM Belen High School 2015 04/27/2012 Mirmanian Invitational
24. 13:22.69 Camille Sammeth NM Santa Fe High School 2015 03/27/2012 Golden Spike Classic
25. 13:27.21 Amanda Peywa NM Hershey Miyamura High School 2015 04/14/2012 Bill Slade Invitational
26. 13:29.68 Anna Wermer NM Los Alamos High School 2014 03/24/2012 Los Alamos Classic
27. 13:35.45 Arianne Garcia NM Grants High School 2014 03/17/2012 Bernalillo Invitational
28. 13:36.44 Corina Baca NM Valencia High School 2014 03/10/2012 Jim Burke Invitational
29. 13:54.90 Briannah Baca NM St. Pius X High School 2015 03/03/2012 Chile Quad
30. 14:00.00 Alicia Page NM Moriarty High School 2014 03/03/2012 Los Lunas Invitational
31. 14:01.34 Ginette Nez NM Gallup High School 2016 04/14/2012 Bill Slade Invitational
32. 14:07.07 Vanessa Sanchez NM Valencia High School 2013 03/10/2012 Jim Burke Invitational
33. 14:09.81 Holly Mangum NM Piedra Vista High School 2015 03/10/2012 Piedra Vista Invitational
34. 14:18.21 Jessica Benally NM Hershey Miyamura High School 2013 03/10/2012 Jim Burke Invitational
35. 14:20.31 Paige Vallejos NM Hershey Miyamura High School 2015 04/07/2012 Miyamura Patriot Invitational
36. 14:20.57 Marissa Watson NM Kirtland Central High School 2013 03/10/2012 Piedra Vista Invitational
37. 14:24.52 Taylor Graves NM Santa Teresa High School 2013 04/20/2012 Alamogordo Qualifier
38. 14:27.00 Sara Lopez NM Valencia High School 2015 03/03/2012 Los Lunas Invitational
39. 14:36.04 Sarah Scott NM Del Norte High School 2014 04/07/2012 Rio Rancho Invitational
40. 14:36.83 Ruiz Rosa NM Artesia High School 2014 04/20/2012 Artesia Invitational
41. 14:43.25 Vernette Nez NM Kirtland Central High School 2015 04/14/2012 Bill Slade Invitational
42. 14:46.56 Darrian Palmer NM Deming High School 2014 03/03/2012 Gadsden Invitational
43. 14:51.49 Kaila Paul NM Deming High School 2014 04/13/2012 Therman Jordan Relays
44. 14:53.89 Alexx Zumbren NM Goddard High School 2014 04/20/2012 Artesia Invitational
45. 14:58.85 Sioux Rivera NM Piedra Vista High School 2014 04/14/2012 Bill Slade Invitational
46. 15:08.44 Kristen Ponce NM Artesia High School 2014 03/09/2012 Artesia Bulldog Relays
47. 15:15.12 Sofia Bali NM Chaparral High School 2015 05/05/2012 New Mexico District 3 - 4A Meet
48. 15:18.88 Angel Ward NM Grants High School 2014 04/07/2012 Miyamura Patriot Invitational
49. 15:38.28 Crystal Zamora NM Chaparral High School 2015 02/24/2012 Fred Loya Invitational
50. 15:38.44 Haley Roan NM Hershey Miyamura High School 2015 04/07/2012 Miyamura Patriot Invitational

 

These rankings would suggest that returning state champion Jenna Thurman will have her hands full trying to repeat against the likes of Marissa Nathe. And, Santa Teresa phenom Regina Marquez might have something to say about the ultimate outcome as well.

Team-wise, Los Alamos may not be quite as dominant here as they were in cross country, but neither is there a lot for anyone to take comfort from. In fact, it appears we can add Mikayla Pulliam to the first wave of Hilltopper harriers.

Albuquerque Academy, St. Pius X, and Santa Teresa all present some interesting possibilities for the fall, but none to the extent that would suggest sharing of favorite status with Los Alamos.

The story told by the list of returning competitors from the 1600 rankings of this spring reads much the same.

If anyone is going to close ground on Los Alamos, look to a few key meets to tell that story. That list of meets would start at UNM and make a pass through Rio Rancho along the way. There are bound to be more telling meets than just these two, but I'm not clear at this time which meets LA will be engaging with substantial portions of the chase pack.

 

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