Depth is a prerequisite for a track and field team to excel in dual meets.
But a couple of standout competitors can turn an ordinary dual-meet team into a powerhouse in the section championships.
Take Littlerock High.
The Lobos aren't ranked among the top 10 boys' teams in the region by The Times, but they could be in the hunt for the Division I title today in the Southern Section divisional championships at Cerritos College in Norwalk.
Senior Rodney Woods and junior Marcus Raines are Littlerock's only competitors in the meet that begins with field events at 11 a.m. and running events at 1 p.m. But they could win four events between them and help the Lobos total 40-45 points for the meet in which the top six finishers in each event are awarded points on a 10-8-6-4-2-1 basis.
A 45-point total rarely wins a title in the divisional championships, but there is no dominant team in Division I this year.
Woods, who has signed a letter of intent to play football for Fresno State, was the leading qualifier from the preliminaries in the long jump and triple jump and has bests of 23-3 1/4 and 47-9 1/2 in those events.
Raines, a football teammate of Woods, was the leading qualifier in the 110-meter high hurdles and the 300 intermediates in the preliminaries and the No. 5 qualifier in the long jump.
He ranks second on the state list in the high hurdles at 14.10, third in the intermediates at 37.63 and has leaped 22-0 3/4 in the long jump.
The boys' teams from Ventura, Notre Dame and Oak Park and the girls' squad from L.A. Baptist are tabbed to finish second or third in their respective divisions.
Ventura, led by Josh Spiker and Clark Goodwin, won the Division II title last year, but is an underdog to Arroyo Grande.
Travis Johnson, defending champion in the shotput, and hurdler Jon Williams lead Notre Dame in the Division III meet and distance runner Mark Nevers paces Oak Park in Division IV.