2016 XC Preseason rankings
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Here are the preseason rankings for XC. Remember that this is not a prediction, it is a look at who is returning from each team. Don't know about transfers, incoming freshmen, etc., hopefully will have that info by the end of September, my first in season rankings. Enjoy, and feel free to post some information on your team, below.

2016 LA City XC Rankings-Preseason
Girls:
1) Palisades: Going for 4th title in a row. Return 5 of 7 from last year’s team and 2 at sub 20:00 at Pierce. Depth doesn’t appear to be quite as good as in year’s past.
2) El Camino Real: 3 stellar sophs should lead them with 6 of 7 returning from the 3rd place team in ’15. Another freshmen class like last year could easily put them in control.
3) Santee: In Division 2 this year, but could go 1-2 individually and then have 3 good kids to take D-2 crown. Depth is a problem right now, but with Sanchez and Perez scoring low points, they will be tough to beat.
4) San Pedro: Lose 3 of top 4, but had some nice breakthroughs in track with frosh/sophs. Solid depth could carry them a long way.
5) Taft: Nice duo of Biel and Lee will lead them, but will need to find more depth to battle for State meet berth.
6) Granada Hills: Could be a sleeper, Macias returns at sub 20:00 for her senior year, but big find during track in Larbaoui who qualified for State and ran 5:19 and 11:38. Better depth could put them in top 2 territory.
7) Bravo: Another D-2 team, always has great depth. Corona had a super track season, sweeping all 3 distance events in Frosh/Soph City Finals and is fastest returner, but can she handle Santee pair?
8) Marshall: Murray is fastest returner, but only one at sub 21:00. Will need to develop depth to have shot at podium.
9) Monroe: Top 2 returners had very good performances in track, so look for them to improve a lot in XC this fall.
10) Birmingham: Salas is a huge loss, will need to reload if they are going to be able to qualify for City Prelims. Chatsworth is close behind, so realistically 5 teams could make it from West Valley.
Individually: Sanchez and Perez (Santee) may be best in City, but they will be in D-2 race. Darrow and Samandi (Pali) return to lead the Dolphins, while Ramirez (ECR) had a great frosh campaign last year. Macias (Granada) returns at sub 20:00, but teammate Larbaoui could be the one to watch in D-1.

Boys:

1) Palisades: They only return the entire team that won City last year that included 3 in the top 8, and their #6 guy last year went to State in track in the 800. Dolphins will be trying to sweep both titles for 2nd straight year.
2) El Camino Real: Matching the girls’ runner-up spot, the boys have more depth, and hope to regain the top spot from two years ago. Hazell is a favorite for the individual crown, but they will need some others to battle with Pali’s top 3 if they are going to unseat the Dolphins.
3) Monroe: Good solid returning crew gives the Vikings hopes of a State meet berth and potentially a title. Martin del campo is finally a senior and he hopes to lead them to the starting line at Woodward Park in Fresno.
4) Bravo: As of right now, the top D-2 team. Always lots of depth, should be no different this year
5) Granada Hills: A good track season has the Highlanders going into this season with dreams of more than a spot on the podium. Has potential to battle it out for State berth.
6) Birmingham: Solid depth and nice track season from Rivera leaves the Patriots looking at a spot on the podium. Decent depth should help.
7) San Pedro: Two under 17:00 return, but nobody else under 18:00 at Pierce. Nice development from frosh/soph in track, will need them to step up to varsity to have shot at better than last year’s 5th place.
8) Marshall: Garcia graduates, so who will step up for the Barristers. Most likely they will need soph Amon-Franceschi to take controls if they are going to garner some hardware in November.
9) Santee: Lost a lot from last year and had two of top 5 returners apparently moved out of area. They always come up with a good team, and the move to D-2 should give them more time to develop.
10) Garfield: Junior Hernandez should lead them, and if he continues to drop, they could be doing more than hoping for a spot on the line at City Finals. Depth has been down, which could cause problems.

Individuals: Hazell (ECR) is the favorite and he had a super soph track season last spring. Palisade’s trio of Pollack, Smith, and Hamer may be best of rest. Good track seasons from Tiber (Granada), Martin del Campo (Monroe), Brdar (ECR), and Jimenez (SP) could lead to top 10 performances in November.


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