David Olds started talking about the top runners on this year’s Crossroads girls cross-country team. Then he paused as if to second-guess his own analysis.
There are key contributors worth mentioning, he said, but arguably the biggest storyline goes beyond that.
“What’s great about my girls team is that any one of my top five or six could be my top runner on any given day,” the longtime Roadrunners coach said. “The spread time between 1 and 5 is gonna be pretty tight.”
Pack-oriented depth could pave the road to success for Crossroads, which is hoping to engineer another strong season despite the loss of three seniors to graduation.
The Roadrunners have finished atop their league standings a couple times in the last few years and have captured berths to the CIF Southern Section championships in each of the last four seasons.
What Crossroads is ultimately hunting for, though, is a spot at the state meet, which the squad last earned when its current seniors were freshmen.
Leading the charge is senior Andrea De Oliveira, who took 12th place individually while helping the Roadrunners take sixth place as a team in their season-opening race at the Brentwood Invitational last month.
De Oliveira, who clocked in at 21 minutes 55 seconds in the 5-kilometer event, was the program’s top runner for much of last season.
“She was our team leader on the course through league,” Olds said, “and it seems like she’s on her way to do that again.”
Following closely behind De Oliveira at the Brentwood race was freshman Roya Touran, a soccer player who impressed Olds with her time of 22:26 to take 18th place overall in the first full-length varsity race of her career.
“She ran spectacularly,” Olds said. “She was like a seasoned vet. She was running faster than anyone else at the end of that race, and she’s still figuring things out.”
Olds is anticipating a standout campaign for senior Soofie Motamedi, who is healthy after sustaining a knee injury during her sophomore soccer season. She placed in the top 100 at last year’s section finals.
“She’s a total monster out on the course,” Olds said.
Also strengthening Crossroads’ lineup is Lucy Davis, a freshman who has shown promise against varsity-caliber competition. She was a standout runner in the middle school ranks.
“Now she has some girls at her level to train and race with,” Olds said.
De Oliveira, Touran, Motamedi and Davis figure to bolster the Roadrunners’ chances of qualifying for the section finals. Their toughest obstacles will likely come in the form of Calabasas-Viewpoint and rival Brentwood.
“I think are girls are going to be competitive,” Olds said. “The league is really pretty tough. It’s going to be a season of battling, but it’s going to be a fun battle.”
Crossroads competed in its first conference meet Sept. 30. The squad participated in the Viewpoint Invitational on Tuesday at Paramount Ranch in Agoura, but results were not immediately available.
The Roadrunners’ season is slated to continue Thursday with the Chadwick Invitational at Palos Verdes Peninsula High School.