Rio Rancho High’s Sal Gonzales, who coaches the Rams’ boys and girls cross-country teams, has been named New Mexico’s high school Coach of the Year by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. Gonzales was recognized for his work with the 2016 girls cross-country team, which won the 6A state championships earlier this year. It is the second time Gonzales has won the award; he was recognized in 2014 for the Rams’ boys team’s achievements.
One boys coach and one girls coach from each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia were honored for their successes during the fall of 2016, as selected by a committee of experts from around the nation. State-by-state winners were selected based on their teams’ performances throughout the 2016 cross country season including team score and placement at the state championships, margin of victory, performance against rankings, and how their teams’ performances stacked up to previous years.
The winners from each state are in consideration for the association’s National High School Cross Country Coach of the Year award. One boys coach and one girls coach from among all the states will be selected by a panel of experts and be announced later this month as the national winners.