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Girls cross country preview: Top 10 O.C. teams to start the season

CONTRIBUTING WRITER

OCVarsity’s girls cross country preview for 2015:

O.C. TOP 10

1. Capistrano Valley (34): The Cougars sport a revamped top four that might be faster than last year’s county title-winning squad. Depth is more of a concern this year, but if healthy, this is the team to beat.

2. Trabuco Hills (32): Orange County runners-up a year ago, the Mustangs hope they have closed in on the Cougars for county supremacy.

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GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY PREVIEW

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3. Esperanza (30): Shannon Mac Kellar and Sapna Dholakia each placed in the top 10 of the 3,200 meters at the CIF-SS Division 3 Finals in track. The Aztecs are looking to overtake Canyon for the Crestview League crown.

4. Dana Hills (29): The Dolphins are young, but talented. It will be fun to see what they can put around the dynamic duo of Kathryn Kaloroumakis and Sienna Serrao.

5. Canyon (29): They have a new coach in former Brea Olinda assistant Joe Wiley. The Comanches might have been looking to make a season-opening statement at the Cool Breeze Invite with top-four finishes by sophomore Sara Leonard and senior Nikki Zielinski.

6. Yorba Linda (16): The Mustangs had the seventh overall team time at the Orange County Championships. Top three runners Rachel Iida, Sarah Heckel and Ashley Lee run very close to each other. Their success depends on how much they can close the gap at the bottom half.

7. Tesoro (11): Titans ace Amanda Gehrich will be one of the favorites in any race. The Titans are thinner at the top after losing All-County member Briar Brumley to graduation. Tesoro will try to defend its Sea View League championship.

8. Corona del Mar (8): Coach Bill Sumner’s squad hopes to repeat as Pacific Coast League champions. This roster is loaded with upperclassmen, led by junior Raquel Powers.

9. JSerra (5): Returning sisters McKayla and Skylar Giacobetti will lead the way as the Lions pursue their sixth straight Trinity League crown.

10. Laguna Beach (5): The Breakers return four all-league members from last year’s Orange Coast League championship. They are hopeful it translates to a return trip to the Division 4 state meet.

Also receiving votes: Mission Viejo (5), San Juan Hills (4), Los Alamitos (3), Brea Olinda (3), Foothill (3), Northwood (2), San Clemente (1).


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