High School Girl’s XC Poll: Week 1

Every Wednesday, El Paso Running will utilize a point system to highlight El Paso’s top girl’s cross country runners.

The system is as follows: In a race of less than 150 runners, first place gets 10 points, second gets 9 points all the way down to 10th place which gets 1 point. For meets with between 150 to 300 runners, double points will be rewarded meaning 20 points for first, 19 for second all the way down to 1 point for 20th. For every additional 150 runners, another 10 runners will be included in the points.

For those who like raw times, we also list the Top 25 girls race times and the meets and dates that they occurred.

For questions, videos and photos email vrmart66@gmail.com.

This week’s schedule

Franklin Invitational: 8 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 20, Mary Frances Keisling Park. Franklin, Coronado, Irvin, El Paso, Chapin, Pebble Hills, Eastlake, Americas, Hanks, Ft Hancock, Tornillo, VVECH, Ysleta, Del Valle.

Canutillo Invitational: 8 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 20, Canutillo Middle School. Eastwood, Canutillo, Austin, Burges, Jefferson, Andress, Bowie, Radford, Montwood, Socorro, Hanks, YWLA, Anthony, Cathedral, Loretto, Santa Teresa, Gadsden, Chaparral, San Eli, Bel Air.

Franklin senior Alyssa Laspada will begin her final season on Saturday. She has run on the Cougars varsity since she was a freshman.

Top 10

1. Franklin: The Cougars open its season Saturday at its own invitational at Mary Frances Keisling Park. Parking is bad, so get there early.

2. Eastwood: The Troopers open its season Saturday at the Canutillo Invitational at Canutillo Middle School.

3. Montwood: The Rams did not run a full team at the Eastlake Invitational at Blackie Chesher Park but senior Jazmine Miranda finished sixth in 21:00.13.  The team is scheduled to race at the Canutillo Invitational at Canutillo Middle School on Saturday.

4. Coronado: The T-Birds won the Irvin Invitational at Skyline Park (2.7 miles) placing three runners in the top 8 including Carolina Pitchkolan (third, 20:04.50), Kyra Walker (fourth, 20:10.07) and Isabella Galindo (eighth, 20:35.57). Coronado is scheduled to race at the Franklin Invitational, Saturday at Mary Frances Keisling Park.    

5. Pebble Hills: The Spartans won the Eastlake Invitational at Blackie Chesher Park in an average time of 21:06.94. The team swept the top three spots with freshman Aubrey Arsenault winning in 20:27.08 followed by juniors Natalie Franco (second, 20:33.60) and Carolina Zarrabal (third, 20:45.32). Pebble Hills is scheduled to race at the Franklin Invitational, Saturday at Mary Frances Keisling Park.

6. Canutillo: The Eagles move up one spot after finishing four points behind Coronado at the Irvin Invitational at Skyline Park. Senior Natalie Rivera won the 2.7-mile event in 17:42.75, senior Jennifer Najar was fifth in 20:13.43 and sophomore Arianna Castaneda was ninth in 20:38.54. They will race at its own invitational at Canutillo Middle School on Saturday.

7. El Paso High: The Tigers move up one after finishing third at the Irvin Invitational at Skyline Park. El Paso placed four runners in the top 12 and two in the top the top six. Junior Andrea Castillo was second in the 2.7-mile race in 19:58.64 and senior Jezarae Valenzuela was sixth in 20:21.07. The team will be challenged at the Franklin Invitational, Saturday at Mary Frances Keisling Park.

8. Eastlake: The Falcons break into the Top 10 after finishing second at the Eastlake Invitational at Blackie Chesher Park. Eastlake placed four runners in the top 10 including Itzel Chavez (fourth, 20:50.62), Chloe Del Real (seventh, 21:05.01), Natalie Martinez (ninth, 21:13.09) and Sarah Dovenbarger (tenth, 21:24.40). The team will race at the Franklin Invitational, Saturday at Mary Frances Keisling Park.    

9. Del Valle: The Conquistadores will open the season Saturday at the Franklin Invitational at Mary Frances Keisling Park.

10. Burges: The Mustangs will race at the Canutillo Invitational at Canutillo Middle School.

Dropped out: Americas.

On the brink: Hanks, Chapin.

Pebble Hills’ Natalia Martinez will begin her 2022 campaign at the Franklin Invitational on Saturday.

Top Times (3 mile or 5K)

1, Aubrey Arsenault, Pebble Hills, 20:27.08 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

2, Natalie Franco, Pebble Hills, 20:33.60 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

3, Carolina Zarrabal, Pebble Hills, 20:45.32 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

4, Itzel Chavez, Eastlake, 20:50.62 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

5, Gianny Correa, Chapin, 20:54.27 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

6, Jazmine Miranda, Montwood, 21:00.13 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

7, Chloe Del Real, Eastlake, 21:05.01 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

8, Rebecca Duran, Chapin, 21:09.05 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

9, Natalie Martinez, Eastlake, 21:13.09 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

10, Sarah Dovenbarger, Eastlake, 21:24.40 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

11, Sophia Santivanez, Pebble Hills, 21:25.80 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

12, Laila Morales, Americas, 21:26.64 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

13, Ava Maldonado, Chapin, 22:10.49 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

14, Clarissa Morales, Pebble Hills, 22:22.88 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

15, Krystal Talavera, Pebble Hills, 22:33.14 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

16, Alexa Guevara, Eastlake, 22:34.52 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

17, Kylene Elias, Tornillo, 22:40.06 (Clint, 8/13).

18, Kimbrea Storrer, Pebble Hills, 22:43.29 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

19, Kiana Matsuda, Eastlake, 22:45.95 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

20, Gisele Abascal, Americas, 22:47.25 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

21, Julie Canales, Montwood, 22:54.71 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

22, Gabriela Quintana, Americas, 23:00.99 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

23, Anabella Escobar, Americas, 23:31.23 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

24, Olivia Belmonte, Eastlake, 23:37.31 (Blackie Chesher, 8/12).

25, Elizabeth Aguirre, Hanks, 22:48.51 (Clint, 8/13).

Power Rankings

1, Aubrey Arsenault, Pebble Hills, 10 (1).

1, Natalie Rivera, Canutillo, 10 (1).

1, Kylene Elias, Tornillo, 10 (1).

4, Andrea Castillo, El Paso, 9.

4, Natalie Franco, Pebble Hills, 9.

4, Elizabeth Aguirre, Hanks, 9.

7, Carolina Zarrabal, Pebble Hills, 8.

7, Caroline Pitchkolan, Coronado, 8.

7, Marysol Vida, Bel Air, 8.

10, Itzel Chavez, Eastlake, 7.

10, Kyra Walker, Coronado, 7.

10, Kim Castro, Riverside, 7.

Gianny Correa, Chapin, 6.

Jennifer Najar, Canutillo, 6.

Itzel Dean, Horizon, 6.

Jazmine Miranda, Montwood, 5.

Jezarae Valenzuela, El Paso, 5.

Camila Luna, Riverside, 5.

Chloe Del Real, Eastlake, 4.

Nadine Villasana, Socorro, 4.

Ashley White, Hanks, 4.

Rebecca Duran, Chapin, 3.

Isabella Galindo, Coronado, 3.

Hillary Hernandez, Riverside, 3.

Natalie Martinez, Eastlake, 2.

Arianna Castaneda, Canutillo, 2.

Paula Tapia, Riverside, 2.

Sarah Dovenbarger, Eastlake, 1.

Mea Workman, Socorro, 1.

Madison Leedom, Hanks, 1.

Author: Victor R. Martinez

My love of running began with my son Deric. His passion and talent for distance running opened my eyes to a sport I never imaged I would embrace with such enthusiasm. As a journalist at the El Paso Times, I was the lead writer for cross country and track for several years and I was able to tell the stories of these amazing unsung athletes. Never a runner myself, I decided to change that when I turned 50 in 2016 when I trained for my first 5K. I've been running ever since and I love every minute of it - well - sort of.

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