Having won state and CIF-Southern Section boys’ cross country titles in 2017, Cathedral High School of Los Angeles looks to repeat in 2018, with four of its top five runners returning.

The Phantoms placed five runners in the top 24 to win the Division 4 CIF championship last November, including sophomore Tyriq Granillo (third individually) and now-graduated Alexander Cantu (fourth).

The following weekend, Cathedral dominated the Division IV race at Woodward Park in Fresno to earn their first-ever state title, with a combined time that was nearly a minute ahead of the runner-up. Five runners were in the top 50: Alexander Cantu (sixth), Granillo (11th), juniors Alberto Lopez (22nd) and David Salazar (29th) and sophomore Andrew Cantu (50th).

Lopez and Salazar (now seniors) and Granillo and Andrew Cantu (now juniors) lead coach Martin Farfan’s team that aims for a D-4 championship repeat. (Cross country divisional placements, in both boys’ and girls’ competition, are determined by school enrollment.)

Another force to be reckoned with is J.Serra of San Juan Capistrano, seventh in the CIF D-4 event and eighth in the state. J.Serra’s Anthony Grover (now a junior) won the individual CIF D-4 and state D-IV championships in 2017 as a sophomore, while teammate Peter Herold (now a senior) was second in the CIF meet and fourth in the state championships.

Loyola finished fourth among Division I boys’ teams at CIF and state, with now-graduated Shane Bissell winning the CIF individual D-1 title. The Cubs lead all local Catholic schools with six state championship in boys’ cross country.

Among Division 3 boys’ teams, St. John Bosco was fourth in CIF and ninth in state. The Braves have won three state titles, most recently in 2012.

Other top contenders this year are Bishop Amat, fifth in the CIF event and tenth in the state D-4 meets, and St. Pius X-St. Matthias, tenth in the CIF- D-5 meet led by now-senior Angel Perez (15th in CIF).

Divisional placements

As per California Interscholastic Federation rules, each CIF Section (including the Southern Section) determines the divisional placement for its schools who qualify for the state cross country championships. Both State and Sectional groupings for cross country are determined by enrollment based on 2017-18; alternate placements are possible, depending on enrollments for 2018-19 as of Oct. 1.

The 2018 divisional groupings are as follows:

  • Division 1 (2017-18 enrollment 5652-2491): No Catholic schools.
  • Division 2 (enrollment 2490-2091): Loyola, Mater Dei.
  • Division 3 (enrollment 2090-1530): Damien, Santa Margarita, Servite, St. John Bosco.
  • Division 4 (enrollment 1529-601): Alemany, Bishop Amat, Bishop Montgomery, Cathedral, Chaminade, Crespi, Don Bosco Tech, J.Serra, La Salle, Notre Dame/Sherman Oaks, Paraclete, Salesian, St. Francis, St. Paul, Verbum Dei.
  • Division 5 (enrollment 600 or lower): Bishop Diego, Cantwell-Sacred Heart of Mary, Mary Star of the Sea, Padre Pio, Providence/Burbank, Santa Clara, Serra, St. Anthony, St. Bernard, St. Bonaventure, St. Genevieve, St. Michael’s Prep, St. Monica Academy, St. Monica/Santa Monica, St. Pius X-St. Matthias Academy, Villanova Prep.


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