Southeast’s girls missed a state qualification by two places last year, finishing sixth in the Region 7 4-A Meet.
“We should be a better team this year because we have a lot more girls out,” said Carrie Bishop, who’s in her fourth year as the Lady Raiders’ coach. “We have people pushing each other more.”
Her roster of 15 girls is led by sophomore Isabel Salinas. She joined the runners last year after softball season and paced the Lady Raiders at the region meet.
“Isabel is just going to do cross country this year,” Bishop said of Salinas, who has clocked a best of 22:59. “She pushes herself.”
Sophomore Ana Padilla provides the biggest challenge, while juniors Jessica Flores and Sandy Torres and senior Jessica Cervantes likely will comprise the five scorers.
Other Southeast candidates include Brenda Canales, Cinthia Flores, Jessica Lugo, Clarissa Martinez and Brittany Sandoval, juniors; Sandy Baza-Figueroa, Sheila Islas and Veronia Zamora, sophomores; and Daisy Ramirez and Yesenia Ramirez, freshmen.
Southeast’s boys, who finished in the lower tier at the region meet a year ago, might be hard-pressed to reach the higher tier.
“We’re not as strong this year from top to bottom,” said Raiders coach Kevin Kettenring, who’s in his second season leading the boys. “However, it’s still early.”
Juan Ruiz, a senior, goes as the top Raider.
“Juan was injured for part of last year’s season,” Kettenring said. “He has a goal of a sub-19. He can do that. Maybe 18:30 or 18:40.”
Other probable top five performers are juniors Martin Arredondo and Omar Ruiz, sophomore Adrian Gonzalez and freshman Diego Cervantes.
Depth comes from Jorge Cuevas, Rolando Hernandez, Jose Hurtado, Ruendy Martinez, Jose Quijano and Hunter Young, seniors; Alejandro Luna, Omar Rangel, Roberto Sandate, Jesus Torres and Huy Tran, juniors; Christian Gonzalez, Jose Hurtado, Lixandro Ramirez, Cruz Ruis and Sandro Ruiz, sophomores; and Luis Perez and Daniel Triana, freshmen.