The Brentwood boys finished third last year at the Nike national meet in Portland, Ore., but the top four from that team graduated. Two transfers from Utah, Gavin and Brodey Hasty, should give the Bruins a spark. Francois Llorens and Ryan Lee will lead the rebuilding effort.
The Bruins have won the past three Class AAA titles. Former coach Derek Youel is going back to school, though, so Laura Whitaker will coach the boys and girls.
Brentwood’s girls lost two seniors from their Class AAA runner-up team, but the Lady Bruins will rebuild around Hannah Caldwell, Lacey Duvall and Hailey Hendry.
Independence and Ravenwood could challenge Brentwood.
Beech has three sets of twins: seniors Julia and Jessica Rizor, sophomores Reese and Elijah Black and sophomores Brook and Trent Millspauh.
“I’ve had five or six sets of twins in the last 10 years,” coach Brice Askren said. “I don’t know what’s in the water.”
The Rizors’ mother, Terri, also is a twin. Julia finished eighth at the Class AAA meet with an 18:57.00 and Jessica was ninth in 19:06.80.
REPEATING WILL BE TOUGH
Defending Division II-AA girls champion Brentwood Academy lost three of its top seven runners to graduation but will rebuild around sophomores Claire Cheeseman, Caroline Archer and Caroline Dean.
Last year’s state runner-up, Harpeth Hall, figures to be strong again. BA’s boys are hoping for another top-three finish in Division II-AA after taking second last year. MUS, MBA and McCallie also boast strong teams. Will Boling, Ben Roberson, Andrew Powell and Joshua Bell will lead the way for BA.
GIRLS RUNNERS TO WATCH
Hannah Caldwell, Brentwood, Jr.: She finished fourth in Class AAA with a time of 18:44.30 and took third in the Mid-State Championship.
Bailee Dean, Cane Ridge, Sr.: The 2013 Tennessean Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year won the Class AAA title in 18:08.40, the fastest time of any runner in Middle Tennessee. She took second in 2012.
Nicole Gardner, Siegel, Sr.: The 2012 Class AAA champion finished third in 18:40.40 and won the Junior Ward/Tennessee Classic gold division.
Emma Sloan, Ensworth, Sr.: She finished second at the Division II-AA meet in 18:51.97 and won the McCallie Invitational.
Claudia Smith, Central Magnet, Sr.: She won the Class A/AA meet in 18:57.31 and took fourth at the Midstate Championship with a personal-record 18:24.
BOYS RUNNERS TO WATCH
Will Boling, Brentwood Academy, Sr.: He finished ninth in 16:38.90 at the Division II-AA meet.
Mark Britt, Lebanon, Sr.: He finished 17th in 16:37.47 at the Class AAA meet after taking second at the Region 5-AAA championship.
Waqqas Fazili, Brentwood, Sr.: He took 21st at the Class AAA meet in 16:42.93, but his summer training was hampered by a shin injury.
Eli Leskinen, Oakland, Sr.: He finished 12th with a time of 16:19.10 at the Class AAA meet and won the Sharp’s Springs Invitational.
John Payne, Portland, Sr.: He took 19th in 16:41.01 at the Class AAA meet.