The state-ranked Dawson County High School cross country teams competed in the Region 7-AAA meet yesterday at Banks County High School.
Head Coach Charles Beusse's boys' team entered the event ranked No. 9 while the girls' team went in as the No. 7 ranked team in Class AAA.
Results from the meet weren't available at press time.
Before the meet Beusse reflected on the training and science of cross country.
According to Beusse, the team has had some time off since racing early in October. It gave the team a chance to focus on goals of good performance leading up to region and state.
"Our workouts are at a threshold pace, which means they are designed to improve endurance, something many of our runners lack," Beusse said. "In threshold training we have runners work at roughly 82-88 percent of their max heart rate. In a nutshell, that means that I have them running a pace at which their bodies are able to clear blood lactate as quickly as their bodies produce it."
Because of the training, Beusse said that both teams are currently relatively healthy aside from the normal aches and pains associated with training and some sickness.
"I've seen some great workouts from both teams this month, which leads me to believe they are ready for region. Our girls team has continued to look strong and should be able to make a run at winning region," Beusse said.
Returning from injury for the Lady Tigers is Bailey Cotter after missing most of the season with a stress fracture.
"She should make a big impact," said Beusse.
"Cassidy Lecours, Marley Hamby, Melanie Rimawi, Faith Sinclair and Ansley Costley have all looked great the past couple of weeks and I believe they are peaking at just the right time."
Things should be interesting on the boy's side, according to Beusse.
Banks County should be the team to beat for the Tigers. The Leopards beat Dawson County at the Unicoi Meet.
"We have changed the training and really focused on some individual weaknesses among our runners, which should help at region."
Running in the region meet for the boys will be: Jacob Poston, Chris Shelp, Garrett Carlisle, Owen Jordan, Brandon Barker, Ethan Clark and Ben Umberger.
"We have a lot of youth and inexperience on the boy's team, but they continue to impress me each time we race," Beusse said.