The Sea Kings have been in the top 4 of Division 3 for 5 straight years, but typically they take a small step back after being in the top 2. Maybe not this year...
The Lancers lost a LOT to graduation, but they have enough in the pipeline to be back in contention in the CCS. Can they stay in the top 5 at the state meet?
The Highlanders already had a solid returning team, and they showed clear progress during the spring.
The Broncos have nearly all the features of a top 5 team in Division 1, with one exception.
The Titans have a deep, solid top 7 that could threaten for a top 5 spot in Division 2 this year.
The Mavericks need to bolster their depth, but they have the track record of year-to-year improvement that says they can accomplish that - and they have Caleb Niednagel.
The Warriors displayed some eye-opening times on the track, enough to offset the loss of three seniors and make them Division 2 podium contenders.
The Falcons have a budding star up front in Dylan Wilbur and a deep pack to support him, and that could be a recipe for a top 5 finish in Division 1.
The Matadors lost a TON to graduation, but they have enough young talent in the pipeline to bounce right back.
The Wildcats have 6 of 7 returning from their SJS D2 title-winning squad, and they want more than a 10th-place finish at the state meet this year.
The Diamondbacks return talent up front and leadership galore, but need to address one major issue before taking their place among the clear state title contenders this fall.
The Marauders got hammered by graduation, and that could be enough to end their run of SJS dominance - but don't expect them to just disappear.
When you have a 54-second 1-6 split in 2018 with four freshmen in your top 7, you have a chance to be special in 2019.
The Wildcats were among the youngest teams in the Southern Section finals last year, and the next step in their progression would be making the state meet.
The Cougars have a star #1 runner and a 5-girl pack behind her, with strong track results to indicate their year-round progress.
The Dons return a potent team that showed a strong front 5 during the spring, and they have serious motivation for the upcoming season.
The Cougars have 6 of seven returners back, but it's their record of year-round improvement that really stands out.
The Wildcats have 6 of 7 back and should be a force in Division 3, both in the Southern Section and state-wide.
The Ravens don't grade out as high in returning XC rankings as many of the teams in the countdown, but they have two other big factors in their favor.
After just barely missing the state meet in 2018, the Golden Eagles will deploy one of the tightest packs in the state.
With a strong pack that showed signs of improvement in the spring, the Tigers can repeat in their section and move up in the Division 2 state meet.
The Rams return 6 of their top 7 from 2018 and showed strong progress during the spring, but can they move up in a loaded Central Coast Section?
Our database says the Scots are the top returning team in the Central Coast Section, and we think they can move into the top 10 in Division 1 - but how high can they go?
(Photo from Simi Valley HS XC twitter account) After a successful run to the state meet in 2018, the Pioneers will be driven to stay on top of local rivalries this fall.
(Photo from Whitney Distance website) The Wildcats were one of the youngest teams in the state in 2018, and should have a two-year window to contend in Division 2 going forward.
(Photo courtesy of Agoura Athletics twitter account) The Chargers has a strong season in 2018, and that was with a young team - they could be a force in 2019.
What do we like about Burbank? The Bulldogs have a strong top three led by rising senior Sol Fernandez, and they put up good team results in track season.
(Photo from TOXC Twitter account) The Lancers lost a LOT to graduation, but they have enough returning talent to b back in the hunt in 2019.
The Wolverines feature one of the best 1-2 combinations in the state, and they will have their top 5 together for two more seasons.
The Rebels return five of their top seven and have the top returning Division 5 team using both 5K and 3 mile times.