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Walters finishes fourth
Sets school record
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Lady Tiger Maddy Walters finished in fourth place at the 6th Annual Northeast Georgia Cross Country Championships held at Athens Christian Academy last Saturday.


Walters competed in the champions division and crossed the finish  line with a time of 20:00.46.


The time set a new school record.


"Maddy ran a absolutely wonderful race. We asked her to run the first two miles with the faster twin from North Oconee (Rebecca Greenwell) and she ran her heart out," said Cross country coach Brian DeRose.


Emily Beusse also ran a strong race for Dawson County. Beusse came in 11th out of 81 runners. Rounding out the team were Kerstin Hlinski, 24th, Krista Morgan, 35th, and Morgan Williams, 49th.


"We decided to run in the big school race against some of the best teams. We have some young girls on our team. It should be an exciting year for us," commented DeRose.


Destiny Jenkins, an Athens Christian Academy sophomore, set meet and course records in the champions event. It was her first race as a varsity runner. Her time of 18 minutes, 34 seconds bested her completion.


The champions race featured the top runners from competing varsity teams, as Flowery Branch's Kiara Woods came in a distant second at 19:06. Last year's champion, Ann Centner from Oconee County, place third with a time of 19:24, followed by North Oconee's Rebecca Greenwell in 19:51, the Lady Tiger Walters rounded out the top five.


Coach Brian DeRose's girls' team finished fourth overall out of 10 teams in the top division.


Winder-Barrow High School won the team event, followed by Flowery Branch and North Hall.


The JV girls also ran strong with Bethany Auten, Morgan Gaddis, Riley Robbins and Jessie Parker competing.


On the boys' side, Tyler Thurmond came in 31st out of 202 runners in the varsity division with a time of 18:58.04 to lead all Tiger runners.  


"Our guys are building this year, but our goal is to go to state," said DeRose.


Preston Adams crossed the finish line in 44th place and a time of 19:22.63.


John Erickson, Chris Bywaletz, Jonah Bishop and Luke Parks ran well for the Tigers.


Dawson boys came in 10th overall out of 23 teams for a respectable finish.


Habersham Central won the team title in the varsity division.


There were over 1,536 runners in this year's event, which is one of the largest in North Georgia.


The course is tough this time of year due to the wide open spaces and the hot sun can be a drain on all but the most conditioned runners.


The Dawson girls are currently ranked #3 in AA in the state.