Overview: One of the most competitive divisions in the whole NCS, division III looks to be another hotly contested affair with the top two finishers at last years NCS championships returning and coming off stellar track seasons. Look for Aidan Goltra and Fred Huxham to resume their rivalry and battle it out for the individual title, while a host of talented upstarts look to land a spot in the top 7.
1.Aidan Goltra (Campolindo) – Defending state champion in division III, “The King of the North” produced a quality track season, finishing 10th in the state in the 3200 with a time of. Looks to be the clear favorite at this point and will challenge for top overall NCS honors at both the section finals and state championships. Is the 2nd fastest returner in the entire state at Woodward Park.
2. Fred Huxham (Redwood) – Huxh am continued his breakout year with a1600 this spring and looks the best suited to closing the gap on Goltra. Finished 3rd at state last year in and is the 2nd best returner in all of division III.
3. Michael Wang (Acalanes) – Had a massively successful track season, dropping a1600 and while he appears to be more of a track specialist, look for Wang to make another great leap forward this cross country season.
4. Andrew Melendez (Bishop O'Dowd) – A consistent performer around the oval, Melandez courts the 3rd best 3200m time of all returners in this division with thehe ran at the NCS finals. Owns a sub pr on the ncs championship course so look for more consistent improvement this year.
5. Cameron Gaskell (Acalanes) – Had a surprisingly successful frosh campaign in track, dropping down to a3200, the 4th best freshman time in the entire state. Look for another step forward as the Dons look to have the best 1-2 punch in the section. Stiff competition in the DFAL will give him plenty of opportunities to compete with the sections best.
6. Andy Ehrenberg (Redwood) – An individual state qualifier last year as a freshman, runningat Woodward Park. Continued that upward momentum during track, clocking a in the 3200. With a consistent summer he will challenge Gaskell for top underclassmen honors.
7. Colin Burke (Bishop O'Dowd) A solid varsity runner last year for the dragons, runningat Woodward Park, Burke carved out a successful track season running in the 3200. With a talented group of teammates to push him, that improvement curve could continue to go up this cross country season.
On the bubble: Nick Downs (Bishop O'Dowd ) Ben Weinberg (Campolindo) Will Moran (Campolindo)
Overview: Look for the NCS title to go through the DFAL once again as Brighie Leach looks to continue her recent hot streak and improve upon her runner up finish last year while the rest of the DFAL looks to close the gap. Of course, freshmen will have an impact once the season starts but for now here are how the things look.
1. Brighie Leach (Campolindo) – The top returner from last season, Leach continued to make massive improvements this spring has she captured the NCS MOC 3200m title in. Also owns the top Woodward park time in this division at . Look for more of the same this coming season.
2. Chloe Hansel (Las Lomas) – Finished 4th at the NCS finals and 16th at the state finals last year. Got down to aclocking this past track season in the 1600 so look for Hansel to improve upon last years' performances.
3. Allie Timbrell (Alhambra) – A breakout performer this track season, ending up with a fine1600m time. It still remains to be seen if this can translate over to the longer distance in XC, but competing in the rugged DFAL should provide plenty of opportunity for Timbrell to measure up against quality opponents.
4. Emily Fiberling (Bishop O'Dowd) – Qualified individually for state last cross country season and recently clocked a personal best1600m at the Golden West Invitational. Again, track times, especially in the 1600 are not always indicative of XC success, however they are the best starting point to go with in regards to looking at next cross county season.
5. Rachel Johnson (Campolindo) – Another consistent performer for the Campolindo team, Johnson clocked anin the 3200 this past off-season. With a personal record of on the rugged Hidden Valley Park course (which favorably compares to Woodward park) look for Johnson to close the gap on the rest of the DFAL frontrunners.
6. Mary Orders (Campolindo) – Rebounded from an injury plagued fall to runin the 3200 during track. Consistent training with a group of talented athletes on the Campolindo squad coupled with competing in the DFAL should provide the boost necessary to land a medal position.
7. Hana Sun (Campolindo) – Yet another quality returner for the cougars, who postedclockings in the 3200m and 1600m respectively. Again, quality competition and a raft of talented teammates should make for another step forward.
On the bubble: Caith Wright (Acalanes) Isabel Moon (Novato) Bella Amyx (Tamalpais)