Eleven county schools and 12 individuals will compete for titles Saturday at the CIF State Cross-Country Championships in Fresno.
The first of eight races, one in each of the four boys' and girls' divisions, will commence at 9 a.m. at Woodward Park.
Leading the area teams are the Irvine and Edison girls' teams, each of which will attempt to defend titles won last fall.
The Vaqueros, the county champion and area's top-ranked team, won the Division I race. The Chargers, the Sunset League and Southern Section Division II champions, edged the competition in Division II.
The Division I race also features El Toro and seniors Courtney Pugmire of Esperanza, Nancy Dollar of San Clemente and Santa Ana Valley's Eliaser Estrada in the individual race. All three runners qualified individually for the race a year ago.
Katella senior Jamie Vaicaro, the Empire League champion, and Mandy Schwecherl of Laguna Hills will contest the Division II race with Edison.
The Division III girls' race features section Division III-AA El Modena and Century League rival Foothill battle for the team title, while county champion Tracy Clark of Corona del Mar, Buena Park freshman Heather Garritson and Santa Margarita sophomore Katie Nuanes race individually.
Orange Lutheran and Laguna Beach are entered in the Division IV girls race, and El Modena, La Habra and Corona del Mar will compete the Division III boys race.
Mater Dei, the Orange County and South Coast League champion, is among the hopefuls in Division II. Sunny Hills senior Garrett Jensen, the Freeway League champion, and Sunset League winner sophomore Tony Trueba of Huntington Beach also are entered.
County champion Adalberto Sanchez of Capistrano Valley and Brethren Christian senior Brendan Pacheco will run in the individual races in Divisions I and IV, respectively.