It’s Week 4 of the Arizona High School Cross Country season and one of the biggest meets of the season, Desert Twilight at The Links, is taking place in San Tan Valley October 1-2.
The top 10 teams in the state in the four divisions of the Arizona Interscholastic Association will have stiff competition. However, there are no teams that are outright favorites to win their respective division titles.
here is that of the Republic 10 best women’s cross country teams so far through week 4.
The Hawks are flying high early in the season and are looking to move past second-place finishers Phoenix Desert Vista in the 2019 Division I Championship. Their sophomores Kayla Case, Sophie Mann, Emma Baugh, Kate Sewell, Lindsay Schilink, seniors Marina Dear, Story Alexander and Finchum, one of the best fleets in the state. Highland dominated the Sophomore Session II and Junior Session II races at the Chandler Invitational on September 12. He also won both the Western Equinox Open Big Schools and Varsity Big Schools Session I on September 19.
2. Phoenix Desert View
Who will outrun Lauren Ping? This is the biggest question that remains unanswered because that of the Republic The 2020 Women’s Cross Country Runner of the Year leads the defending Division I champion to potentially win her fourth state title in eight seasons. She had the fastest time at fellow Western Equinox Ping sophomores Emily Littlefield, Bailee Christofis and Chelsea Condon powered The Thunder to win Chandler Invite’s Sophomore Session I and Katie Sigerud individually won Junior Session I. Ping and her Junior teammate Katie Sigerud had the top two finishes in Session I of Western Equinox’s big varsity school. Rookie Gryffyn Geist will also produce solid times for DV.
3. Phoenix Xavier Preparation
The Gators are still lurking in the top three rankings or finishes of the Division I state championships. They were the third team in the state title race last year, won four titles in the past 10 seasons and were runners-up to the title four times between 2013 and 2017. Xavier has plenty of experience in the upper classes such as juniors Tatum Goforth, Catherine Alaimo, Karime Morales, Erika Germinario and Charlotte McClelland put in a solid performance to finish second to Highland at the Western Equinox Open Big Schools I and finished fifth in the event’s Varsity Big School Session I. Second session i.
The Pumas have a lot of speed and potential to be Division I champions this season. All-Arizona junior Taylor Lovell came in first and teammate Sydney Stevens finished third as they led Perry to finish second to Highland in the Chandler Invite Junior Session II race. Kylie and Kate Miller finished first and seventh in the Senior Session II races of this event. Lovell and her two other teammates, Sarah Jones and Kylie Miller, took the top three podium spots, helping Perry win Western Equinox’s Varsity Big Schools II and second in her Open Big Schools II race. On September 25, Perry won the Desert Daylight Senior race and finished second in the Freshman, Sophomore and Junior competitions.
5. Chandler Arizona College Prep
The third Chandler-based women’s team on this list leads the course and finishes together near the front of the pack. AZ College Prep rides with its fast-paced herd of sophomores who trailed Desert Vista by five points to secure second place in Session Two of Chandler Invite. AZ College Prep commanded the course en route to winning Western Equinox’s Open Small Schools I and Varsity Concours Small Schools I, in which its top six athletes both finished in the top 15.
6. Tucson Salpointe Catholic
The runner-up to last season’s Division III state title has a lot to prove. The Lancers are one of the few cross country programs in southern Arizona whose season has not been canceled due to the pandemic. They are chasing the school’s third women’s cross country state title in five seasons and have a full roster. Junior Maria Fernanda Ruiz de Chavez won the individual title in the Junior Session II of the Chandler Invite. Salpointe won Western Equinox’s Varsity Small Schools III race. Salpointe rookie Alex Montano and Paulina Aguilar pushed Salpointe to fifth in the Chandler Invite Freshman Session I race.
After being the sixth team in the Division I title race last season, seniors Sophia Hackett and Sarah Plant have put Wolves back on the path to redemption for their first title since 2017. Sophia Noriega is their best newcomer ever. finished second at Chandler Invite’s Freshman Session I and helped the team finish in fifth place overall. Lauren Kazaroff finished ninth in Chandler Invite’s Second Session I and Chandler finished fourth in Western Equinox’s Big College School Session I. Additionally, Hackett and Plant finished seventh and 13th in the Desert Twilight senior race.
8. Chandler Hamilton
The Huskies’ top runners are seniors Anna Haralson Makena Thornton, Connie Escobar, Taylor Vance, juniors Rujuta Sane and Caitlyn Nelsen. They had an impressive run at Desert Twilight, finishing second in their senior race and third in their junior race. Hamilton also finished first in the Senior I session and seventh in the Junior I session at Chandler Invite.
The reigning Division III titleholders are looking to repeat this season amid the division’s smallest pool of competitors due to the coronavirus affecting those schools’ fall athletic programs. Prescott is led by seniors Sara Townsend, Ashlyn Braithwaite and junior Kammi Kimball. The Badgers had a stellar performance finishing second to Salpointe in Western Equinox’s Open Small Schools III and Varsity Small Schools III races.
10. Mesa Mountain View
The Toros can race with any of the top teams in the state and placed eighth in the Division I title chase last year. They were second to Highland in the Senior Session I of Chandler Invite. Mountain View took first place by a landslide in first place in the Open Big Schools III Western Equinox race, and Peoria Sunrise Mountain edged the Toros by just three points in the Varsity Open Big of that meet. . Schools III.