Parkview boys cross country coach James Tigue would like to think his team has a chance to defend its county title.
Then Tigue takes a look at Brookwood's lineup and reconsiders.
"Right now I don't see anyone getting close to them," Tigue said. "They've got some seniors, juniors and sophomores, so they have a good mixture and are running great right now. On paper, Brookwood should do really well, but you still have to run the race."
In Saturday's Gwinnett County cross county meet there are the Brookwood boys and the Collins Hill girls, then there's everyone else.
The Broncos and Eagles are ranked No. 1 in the state and are clear cut favorites to win team titles at River Green Complex in Duluth.
"The boys and the girls situations are really very similar. You have one really super good team and then another team in any other year might win, but because of this super power I guess it's going to be very difficult," Collins Hill coach Andrew Hudson said. "I'm not saying North Gwinnett couldn't win the girls or Collins Hill couldn't win the boys, but a lot of things would have to go wrong for that to happen."
Brookwood has a fierce lineup led by Tyler Anyan, Doug Kalmbach and Michael Sexton. All three finished in the top 15 at state last year. The Broncos haven't won the county title since 2003. The last five championships have been won by Parkview.
Collins Hill is ranked No. 2 in the southeast and No. 5 in the nation by milesplit.com. The Eagles, who have won the county title the last five years, feature defending state champion Amanda Winslow. Nicky Akande, Allyson McGinty, Briana Crawford, Sydney Williams and Vicky Winslow are also strong runners for Collins Hill.
"The Brookwood boys are extremely heavy favorites and our girls are extremely heavy favorites," Hudson said. "That's the situation on both sides, big favorites and really good teams contending."
Winslow is the defending individual champ and the heavy favorite to repeat. Her Eagle teammates are expected to be at the front of the pack along with North Gwinnett's Nicole DiMercurio and Laura Serres and GAC's Lauren Kester.
The boys individual title is the only race with a little uncertainty. As many as eight different runners have a shot to claim the title. Grayson's Kirubel Erassa is the early favorite after winning the 3,200-meter run state title in track last spring. The Brookwood trio of Anyan, Kalmbach and Sexton, Peachtree Ridge's Robert Fenesterer and Niall Longobardi, Parkview Brian Detweiler and Dacula's Mike McClay all have realistic shots of winning the county crown.
SideBar: Cross Country
· What: Gwinnett County cross country meet
· When: Saturday, 8 a.m.
· Where: River Green Complex, Duluth
· 8 a.m. - Varsity girls
· 8:30 a.m. - Varsity boys
· 9 a.m. - Division I JV girls
· 9:30 a.m. - Division II JV girls
· 10 a.m. - Division I JV boys
· 10:30 a.m. - Division II JV boys