New Mexico Girls Cross Country Countdown: #1 Los Alamos

The New Mexico Cross Country Countdown breaks down the top 25 New Mexico boys and girls teams returning this fall. These rankings will include projected top runners and weighing how each team may do in their respective districts and state competitions. Changes to class alignments and adaptions to the state championship format have been taken into consideration. These rankings are based on past two seasons of performances and do not include teams that did not compete last year due to a lack of athletes and team information. All top returning runners are only projections and may include athletes no longer on the team due to transfer or out-of-state relocation.

#1 Los Alamos Hilltoppers

This is undeniably the #1 team returning this fall as Los Alamos has been in a league of their own the past few seasons. The only shame is that due to limitations on the varsity team size that they weren't truly competing at full strength when they captured their second consecutive 4A title this past spring. While they depart seniors Hannah Gartz and Mabel Pyle they still remained just as stacked with talent. Norissa Valdez will be aiming for her third individual state title this season while teammates Emma Montoya (14th) and Hailey McDowell (8th) return from the 2020 state team. We will be hoping to see the return of Sophie Chadwick (2nd in 2019) who gave chase to Valdez in the final stretches pushing her to really earn that first individual title. If we are to see some newcomers to varsity then how about sophomore Delaney Ulrich who has a personal best of 19:10 which would fit nicely on this championship squad that has been in the zone lately. History has shown that this is the most decorated team in New Mexico and they don't appear to show any signs of slowing down in 2021.

4A Girls

2020 State Finish: 1st

State Titles: 1981, 1982, 1992, 1994 -1997, 2000 -2004, 2006, 2009 - 2015, 2019, 2020

Individual State Champions: Magdalena Sandoval (1998) Kristen Hemphill (2002,2003,2004) Alexandra Blum (2005) Norissa Valdez (2019, 2020)

2021 Los Alamos Rankings

New Mexico Ranking1st
4A Ranking1st
District 2-4A Ranking1st

Top Returning Runners

NameGradePersonal Best (5K)Best State Finish

Norissa Valdez


Emma Montoya

Jr18:369th (2019)

Sophie Chadwick

Jr18:022nd (2019)

Delaney Ulrich


Hailey McDowell