The Dawson County High School varsity boys and girls cross country teams both finished in third place at the fourth annual Bob Roller Invitational at East Jackson High School Oct. 7.
There were 13 teams in the boy's race and eight teams in the ladies event.
"Overall, I was pleased with the effort I saw from our runners," said head coach Charles Beusse.
The 3.1-mile course at East Jackson typically runs about 45 seconds slower than a normal course due to some tight turns. Not only were the turns tighter for the Dawson County runners but a strong wind wreaked havoc.
The girls accumulated 88 team points. Winning first place was Athens Academy with 21 points followed by runners-up Athens Christian with 52 total points.
For the Lady Tigers, Marley Hamby led the way with a 13th place finish. Hamby covered the 5,000-meters in (22:41).
Hamby was followed by Ansley Costley (19th), Faith Sinclair (20th), Bailey Cotter (22nd), Melanie Rimawi (24th) and Taylor Grindstaff (25th).
The times for the varsity girls were: 23:40 for Costley, 23:44 for Sinclair, 24:02 for Cotter, 24:09 for Rimawi and 24:15 for Grindstaff.
Nicole Chumbley, Dana Little, Isabel Queen and Iris Delira also ran in the event.
"Seeing how tightly the girls stayed grouped during the race and pulled each other along was great. We will need that same effort from them at region and state," Beusse said.
Taking the individual title was Anna Marian Block from Athens Academy. The freshman covered the distance in 19:43.
Second place went to Emily Ballard-Myer from Athens Academy with a time of 20:48.
In the boy's race, Jacob Poston led the Tigers with a time of 17:54 and a sixth place finish.
Following Poston for Dawson County were: Christopher Shelp with a 14th place finish and a time of 18:32, Owen Jordan (28th), Garrett Carlisle (30th) and Brandon Barker (33rd).
Also running for the Tigers were: Ethan Clark, Ben Umberger, Seth Miller, Jacob Sinclair and Aaron Garcia.
Crossing the finish line in first place was Adam Hearn from Athens Academy with a time of 16:52.
The runner-up medal went to Stephen Yarbrough from Archer High School. Yarbrough covered the course in a time of 17:18.
There were 104 runners who finished the meet.
"While we competed well, many of the runners looked a little tired. This was their second race in five days and I think many of them were still feeling some heavy legs from Unicoi," Beusse said about his boys' team.
"Unicoi was a big, exciting meet and the emotion associated with a meet of that magnitude really jacks runners up, especially the younger ones who have never experienced a race like that. After a meet like that, it's tough to bounce back."
The boys team totaled 102 team points, good enough for third place.
Winning the team title was Archer with 38 points, followed by Jackson County with 101 points.
"We have a couple of weeks before the region and state meet," Beusse said. "This will be big in terms of preparation for region and I know that the kids will be ready when the time comes."