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Runners prepare for region
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Region 8-AA competition comes to a head Thursday as teams head to Oglethorpe High School for the region championship.

Dawson County High School cross country coach Brian DeRose is expecting stiff competition.

Our Region is one of the toughest in the state, DeRose said Monday. Five of the top ten ranked teams in the state come from our region and only four will make it to the state meet.

Ive told my runners the past few years that if they can make it out of the region, there is a good chance they can place top ten in the state, he continued.

The Tigers biggest competition will come from North Oconee, East Jackson and Jefferson in Thursdays race.

These teams have come a long way in the past few weeks, DeRose said. They passed us in the coaches poll and thats a good thing. We like to fly in under the radar going into region and pull out some upsets.

The both Dawson teams have spent the last several weeks preparing for this weeks race.

The girls are running really well right now. We had an excellent week of practice, he said. The girls are running strong.

The girls team features one of the top runners in the state - Madilyn Walters.

Maddy will have a good race in prep for the state meet, she is focused on the top spot at state, DeRose said. She has a great group of girls supporting her also. The girls are so tight on and off the course. I have watched the team dynamic develop over the past fours years. Win or lose, these girls have had a great season already.

Like the girls team, the guys are currently ranked fifth in the region and have high hopes for the region meet.

The guys are running just as well, DeRose said. They all had great workouts last week and are ready to go for Thursday.

They have the talent to surprise some people, he continued. If the guys run smart and all them have a good day, there is a chance they can win Region.

The Region 8-AA meet is Thursday, Oct. 27 at 4:15 p.m. at Oglethorpe High School.