Scenes From LAHS XC Meet At Rio Rancho High School

Senior Rafael Sanchez was the first finisher for the ‘Toppers in Saturday’s meet at Rio Rancho, taking fourth place overall in a time of 17:07 on Rio Rancho’s sandy, hilly 5k course. Photo by Blake Wood

Junior Norissa Valdez and sophomore Emma Montoya at the start of the 5k race. Valdez and Montoya were the first and third ‘Topper runners, in third and eighth places, respectively. Valdez’s time was 20:50. Photo by Blake Wood

Eighth grader Eddie Gartz is closely followed by junior Reuben Goettee at the halfway point in the race. Photo by Blake Wood


The Los Alamos High School Boys and Girls Cross-Country teams traveled to Rio Rancho High School Saturday, March 13, to compete in their first meet in more than a year.

The hard work they have been conducting in the interim paid off. The Boys won the meet against very stout competition from Rio Rancho, 31-36, with Cottonwood Classical a distant third.

In a very exciting and close-fought race, the Girls took second to Cottonwood Classical, but narrowly beat Rio Rancho by a single point. Only four points separated the three teams.  

Cross-Country is usually a fall sport, so the windy spring weather in Rio Rancho was unfamiliar. Racing while wearing masks was a challenge, but one the ‘Toppers accepted.

This was their only non-championship varsity meet of this abbreviated season. Next up is the District Championship at the Los Alamos Golf Course next Friday, followed by the State Championship at Albuquerque Academy Saturday, March 27.

Senior Adrian Will crosses the finish line, closely followed by ‘Topper junior Morgan Schaller narrowly outsprinting a Hope Christian runner. Will was the fifth ‘Topper, finishing 11th overall in a time of 18:17. Photo by Blake Wood

Freshman Timothy Rousculp rounded out the ‘Topper finishers with an impressive kick. Photo by Blake Wood

Sophomore Hailey McDowell outsprints a Cottonwood Classical runner at the finish line to take 6th place overall in a time of 21:37. McDowell was the second ‘Topper finisher. Photo by Blake Wood

Senior Hannah Gartz, followed by Hailey McDowell negotiates a steep downhill at the halfway point in the race. Gartz was the fourth ‘Topper finisher, in 10th place overall. Photo by Blake Wood

Senior Isabella Bailey at the one mile point of the 5k race. Photo by Blake Wood

Senior Lidia Appell closely followed by sophomore Zorah Fullop at the one mile point of the 5k race. Photo by Blake Wood