First year Dawson County High School Cross Country Coach Charles Beusse now has a race under his belt.
On Aug. 24, both his boys and girls cross country teams competed against some tough competition at the Longhorn Invitational at Chattahoochee Point Park.
The event gave Beusse a chance to assess his teams strengths and weaknesses and continue to progress.
"It's hard to pick out any specific runners who have had good workouts this week because almost all of them have looked good. We have some very talented runners this season and I believe many are capable of more than anyone gave them credit for," Beusse said.
The team will now embark on a new phase of training.
"As a whole, we are not going to change much," Beusse said. "We're still focusing heavily on lactate threshold training, but we are slowly phasing in some work with faster paces."
"I feel like the kids are responding well to this regimen and we're going to make it the meat of our workouts for another month or so before going to the workouts which are more stressful on the body. We need to be fresh at region, not beat up from unnecessarily hard workouts."
Brian Colon, who was Beusse's third fastest qualifier at the team's time trials, is back on track after missing the season opener.
"Brian [Colon] has looked strong in workouts this week. He will be an asset to the guys team as we get into the season.
"On our girls side, Taylor Grindstaff is coming back from injury looking strong and should contribute quickly to our girls team," Beusse said.
The coach said he is really impressed with the seniors on the team who have really stepped up.
"Our seniors have taken a strong leadership role in workouts by pushing our team and leading by example.
"We may be beaten this season by experience or talent, but we will not be outworked. Developing a high work ethic and a never quit attitude is something these kids can take away from cross country and apply to any area of their lives. That's something that lasts longer than any trophy," he said.
The next meet for Dawson County will be the Warpath Invitational on Sept. 14.
The race will be held at Boiling Park in Canton and is hosted by Cherokee High School.
The varsity girls will race first at 8 a.m., followed by the varsity boys at 8:35 a.m.
Both junior varsity squads will also compete. The junior varsity girls will begin at 9 a.m., and be followed by the junior varsity boys team at 9:45 a.m.