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Runners rank in top 10
Preparing for region meet
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Class AAA Girls Top 10
1 Westminster
2 Blessed Trinity
3 Hart County
4 Dawson County
5 Decatur
6 Oconee County
7 Savannah Arts Academy
8 Morgan County
9 Jefferson
10 Jackson

Class AAA Boys Top 10
1 Blessed Trinity
2 Westminster
3 Oconee County
4 East Jackson
5 Jefferson
6 West Hall
7 Dawson County
8 Savannah Arts Academy
9 Banks County
10 Jackson County

Both the boys and girls Dawson County High School cross country teams are ranked in the top 10 in Class AAA.

The Lady Tigers are currently ranked No. 4, while the boys are ranked No. 7.

Head Coach Charles Beusse's teams have been off for the last 17 days in preparation for the Oct. 27 Region 7-AAA championship meet at Banks County High School.

"This past week was very important for us," Beusse said. "We hit a couple of key speed workouts as we make a final push for one last fitness change before state. Friday was especially important as we did one of our hardest workouts of the season. With such a break between Lambert and region, I wanted something that would allow for a very tough workout since we didn't have a race lined up. Without getting into details, I was a little shocked myself by how well the runners handled this very hard work out. We could see some big things in the next few weeks."

For the boy's team, Jacob Poston has posted the fastest times this season. Poston's personal best is a time of 16:36 at the Mountain Invitational at Unicoi.

A minute behind Poston is Christopher Shelp with a personal best of 17:36.

Rounding out the boys team are: Ethan Clark (18:00), Garrett Carlisle (18:09), Cody Wood, Raleigh Payne, Ethan Cowart, Jacob Sinclair, Nico Poston, Caleb Regnier, Levi Baggett, Nate Umberger, Andrew Hafermalz, Aaron Garcia and Ethan Burt.

Freshman Frankie Muldoon continues to lead the girl's team. Muldoon's fastest time this season is 19:50 at the Mountain Invitational.

Lady Tiger Marley Hamby, a sophomore, is also having a great season. Hamby's fastest time over the 3.1-mile (5000-meters) is 20:48.

Rounding out the girl's team are: Bailey Cotter (22:31), Melanie Rimawi (22:31), Faith Sinclair (22:32), Lindsey Knotts, Dana Little, Nicole Chumbley, Isabel Queen, Ansley Costley, Iris Delira, Caroline Collett, Laura Anne Branson and Heidi Collett.

Beusse's teams have been fighting sickness and minor injuries as they prepare for the region meet.

"I think we are turning a corner on all that hopefully. Our boys' team is over their sickness and looked 100 percent last week. Bailey Cotter is also back from injury after missing Unicoi and running junior varsity at Lambert and she has looked strong in recent workouts. Having her back will be an asset to the girl's team. Fingers crossed, we will be in full force at region and state," he said.

The team has trained very hard over the last two weeks according to Beusse.

"We are currently focusing almost entirely on speed and lowering overall volume of training as we fine tune for the important races of our season. I tend to use speed work fairly sparingly and typically don't incorporate it into our training until the beginning of October. The main reason for this is because as the intensity of training increases through the harder workouts that come along with speed work, the risk of injury among runners increases as well," he said. "With the number of runners we have, it causes me to usually ere on the side of caution because we can't afford many injuries and it not negatively impact us. When doing speed work, I look at two things in determining paces: Heart rate and perceived effort. Making sure runners are within the correct range is vital to get the most out of a training session. We have had some great workouts lately and I think that the changes in training we have incorporated over the past few weeks will yield results at region and state."