• Information Packet 
    Welcome to the 2022 Matawan Aberdeen Middle School Cross Country team!  In this packet, you’ll find information about meets, workouts, nutrition, expectations, and more. 


    Please note that attendance and participation at practice is mandatory to remain on the team.  If your athlete is sick or has a doctor’s appointment, please send a note as soon as possible.


    I am excited for this upcoming year and can’t wait to start running!

    PLEASE REVIEW:    2022-2023 Handbook For Parents




    Coach Dean
    Coach Vasilenko


     What is Cross Country?

    Cross country is a team sport that involves running a 1.5 mile course over a variety of surfaces and terrain.  Many cross country meets are held on park grounds, school campuses, golf courses, or dirt trails.


    How is Cross Country scored?

    Cross country meets are scored by each team adding up the finishing places of its top 5 finishers.  As in golf, the lowest score wins. See the example below.


    A team’s 6th place finisher can also figure in the scoring if there is a tie in the score of the top 5 finishers on 2 teams.  The 6th finisher’s score from each team is then added to the team point tally.  The team with the lowest score then wins.


    Matawan                                            Colts Neck

                            1                                                          2

                            4                                                          3

                      5                                                          7                                 

                      6                                                          8

                     10                                                         9         

           Score      26                                         Score       29

                                  MATAWAN WINS!!!

    Meet Days

    Included in this packet is a schedule of our meets and directions to the meet sites.  Home meets are at Gusti Field behind MAMS.  Away meets are held at the respective Middle School unless otherwise noted.  Return times are based on starting time.  We should be back at MAMS by 5:00 on meet days.  There is no late bus on those days so students must arrange for their own transportation home. 


    Our 2022 conference consists of 7 teams: Matawan, Hazlet, Bayshore, Thorne, Thompson, Cedar Drive (Colts Neck), Long Branch, and Satz Intermediate (Holmdel).


    The team will travel to the meets on the bus.  If you would like to coordinate other means of transportation for your athlete to get home, a travel release form must be filled out 24 hours in advance.  If your child returns from a meet on the bus, please pick them up in the front of MAMS.


    Uniforms are provided to all runners for the meets.  Please be very careful to wash them as follows: cold water, gentle cycle, and no bleach.  Do not dry them in the dryer; hang them to dry.  Uniforms that are damaged due to improper washing/drying will need to be paid for before another uniform is issued.  


    What to Expect

    As your aspiring young runner begins the first weeks of training, you may wonder what you should expect and how you can assist him or her as a parent in terms of recovery, eating, sleeping, and mental attitude. A normal consequence of beginning to train is muscle soreness, which will soon go away. If your son or daughter has not participated in sports before or has not had a highly active summer, this may persist up to 2-3 weeks. They should communicate this with me. If untreated, this small pain might become a larger pain!


    What to Eat

    A nutritious, well-balanced diet is essential for an athlete. Fatty and fried foods and carbonated drinks (Coke, Dr. Pepper, Sprite, etc…) should be limited, especially on race days. It is important for each runner to eat breakfast and a healthy lunch. Most times, when kids complain about being tired, it is because they have skipped either lunch or breakfast or are not drinking enough water.


    How to Be Successful

    More than anything else, success in cross country takes time…time to learn; time to train; time to sleep, rest and recover; before school time; after school time; weekend time. With academic responsibilities of being a middle school student, most student-athletes are busy most of the time. The willingness to devote the time that success demands is called DEDICATION.


    Being a member of the Matawan Aberdeen Middle School Cross Country Team carries other expectations and responsibilities. Doing what is expected of every team member is called COMMITMENT. Attending team practices every day is one of the commitments I expect. Our goals are to have fun, learn to run, and develop teamwork, and self-discipline.


    Another commitment I expect is COMMUNICATION with me. If a problem or illness is going to force your son or daughter to miss practice or a meet, please call me in advance to let me know. Communicating helps me out so much.


    Hints for Training: (advice for runners)

    Most Important!!! You need to buy a good pair of running shoes. It is helpful to buy running shoes from a store where the employees are also runners, so they are able to help fit shoes to the running style of each individual.  Even though everyone wants to look stylish while running, this should be the least important factor when deciding on a shoe. If you have problems with your arches, your knees, or pronation, etc., then you should inquire into shoes that compensate for your specific problem. Contact your coach for any advice on running shoes.


    Stretch!! – 90% of the injuries caused from Cross Country are preventable with proper stretching. You should get in the habit of stretching after each run. Begin stretching prior to aches and pains to avoid bigger problems.



Last Modified on September 12, 2022