Photo by Dasam Gill
Preseason Power Rankings Daily Schedule
Sunday, August 25th - Tuesday, September 3rd: Girls 1-10 (one a day)
Wednesday, September 4th: Boys Classification/Private School (top 15 each)
Thursday, September 5th: Girls Classification/Private School (top 15 each)
Our 2019 preseason XC power rankings continue with the top ten girls teams. These rankings are subjective and based on last year's performances (season bests, plus performances at big meets like conferences and states), track performances, program depth and reputation (how certain programs stay strong year after year).
We will rank the top 50 boys and girls teams heading into the season, then provide weekly top 25 ranking updates!
Top seven returners are based on last year's 5K or three mile season bests. Other runners to watch include those with standout track performances (relative to the rest of the team), unless those runners have run multiple track seasons without running cross country - we don't want to assume they will be running cross country in the fall. Freshmen or rookies who did not run cross country but did run track are usually included.
Use these rankings to preview your rival teams, debate your friends, and lace up those shoes and prove us wrong about your team!
6. Walter Johnson High School Wildcats (Bethesda, MD)
Photo by Joe Swift
County: Montgomery (1st) Region: 4A West (1st)
Top Seven Returners:
1. Jenna Goldberg (senior): 19:55 5K, 5:21 1600, 11:08 3200
2. Ella Gaul (junior): 20:07 5K, 5:06 1600, 11:23 3200
3. Camille Gagne (junior): 20:44 5K, 5:47 1600, 12:16 3200
4. Isabelle Senafute (sophomore): 20:47 5K, 2:49 800, 5:36 1600
5. Ellie Rogers (sophomore): 21:07 5K
6. Sophia Morales (junior): 21:26 5K, 5:35 1600, 12:13 3200
7. Caroline Kennon (senior): 22:07 5K
Others to Watch:
Kathrine Weaver (senior): 22:25 5K, 2:45 800, 5:47 1600
Amelia Burkhard (sophomore): 23:27 5K, 5:51 1600, 12:59 3200
Emma Kothari (sophomore): 2:31 800, 5:53 1600
Few teams have had as successful a decade as the Walter Johnson girls have. They won five straight state titles from 2013 to 2017 - an almost unthinkable feat in the state's largest classification - as well as four straight Montgomery County titles (they finished second to BCC in 2013). That last year's performance - fourth at counties and seventh at states - can be considered a "step back" is a tribute to just how dominant they were in the middle of the decade.
Now, can they reach those heights once again in 2019? The Wildcats will have a 1-2 punch that almost any team in the state would love to have, with senior Jenna Goldberg (5:21 1600, 11:08 3200) and junior Ella Gaul (above, 5:06 1600, 11:23 3200). Gaul placed 17th at last year's state meet and Goldberg's 11:08 3200 indicates she is more than capable of cracking the top 20 at the state meet this fall. Their top returning seven includes two sophomores coming off strong end-of-season performances, Elli Rogers (29th at the state meet) and Isabelle Senfaute (50th).
The road back to the podium - at counties, regionals or states - won't be easy, as usual. The Whitman girls bring back most of their squad that won the county and regional meets, and now Urbana jumps into a region that already includes B-CC, Wootton and Richard Montgomery. But the Wildcats have been so good for long enough that you can bet head coach Tom Martin will have them ready to roll by the time October rolls around, and perhaps start taking home some hardware once again.