To chase or be chased? Such is the recurring question in cross country.

David Dowling, the longtime coach at Greely High, prefers the latter – although his girls won a Class B state title last fall after placing second in the regional meet.

“Oh, if I had my way I’d like to kick butt all the way through (the season),” he said. “But that didn’t happen.”

Last Saturday, the Rangers fell 19 points short of Yarmouth at the South regionals despite a 1-2 finish by junior Katherine Leggat-Barr and freshman Carolyn Todd.

Yarmouth also won last year’s regional meet at Twin Brook Recreation Area in Cumberland by six points, only to see Greely win by five on the flatter Belfast course a week later. On Saturday, the rivalry returns to Twin Brook, sandwiched between the Class A and Class C state meets.

“We do remember what happened last year,” Dowling said. “But they are definitely the favorite.”

At regionals, Yarmouth junior Abby Hamilton and sophomore Anneka Murrin tucked in right behind Greely’s dynamic duo and senior Grace Cowles, in ninth, was not far behind. What allowed the Clippers to cruise was the 15th-place finish of junior Georgia Giese, who began the fall as a field hockey player before deciding to run without carrying a stick.

The addition of a formidable fourth in Giese, who beat every other team’s No. 3 runner “has posed a big problem for those of us chasing them,” Dowling said.

Giese switched sports in late September after getting approval from the field hockey coach and the athletic director. It took a while for her to appreciate that cross country is a different animal than her more familiar road racing, said Yarmouth cross country coach Bob Morse.

The state meet will be Giese’s fifth race of the season. Even if she should falter, seniors Danielle Laverdiere and Lucy Alexander, both of whom sat out the Western Maine Conference championship meet, complete a strong top six for the Clippers.

“I told them we need you to have two good races in a row, not three,” Morse said. “We’re not taking anything for granted.”

Here’s a look at each of the six races scheduled for Saturday, in order of their start times:

Class A girls: Scarborough is the defending champion but trailed Bonny Eagle by 16 points at regionals. The trio of senior Kialeigh Marston and freshmen Ami Beaumier and Kayla Raymond leads the way for the Scots, who are seeking their third title in four years.

Massabesic and Northern Maine champion Brunswick are also in the mix for what should be among the most competitive races Saturday.

Class A boys: Defending champ Scarborough swept the top three places at the regional meet with seniors Colin Tardiff, Connor Doherty and Andrew Sholl. The Red Storm appear head and shoulders above the rest of the field. Southern runner-up Falmouth and Northern champ Hampden Academy will give chase should Scarborough stumble. Individually, Lewiston senior Osman Doorow will put his unbeaten record on the line.

Class B girls: Yarmouth’s depth should prove difficult for Greely and Northern champ Waterville to overcome. Individually, Leggat-Barr could be challenged by Waterville senior Lauren Brown.

Class B boys: Defending champion Freeport got a boost at regionals when freshman Alex Les placed 15th to support the team’s top three of Chandler Vincent, Henry Jaques and Erik Brobst. York and Greely were a point apart in second and third. Greely can match Freeport’s front-runners but not its depth.

Northern champion Caribou placed six runners in the top 11 at regionals, but the hillier Twin Brook trails will be challenging. Freeport’s average time (17:17) was faster than Caribou’s (17:23) despite the Vikings’ running on a more forgiving Belfast course.

Individually, Yarmouth sophomore Luke Laverdiere is unbeaten in Maine this fall; he placed second at the Manchester (N.H.) Invitational.

Class C girls: The Orono girls should breeze to a third straight title. Led by junior Tia Tardy, the Red Riots placed five in the top seven to win Northern Maine. Waynflete and Maine Coast Waldorf will likely battle for second. The Flyers won the South by eight points last weekend.

Class C boys: Boothbay Region seeks its second title in three years with Northern Maine champion Orono and runner-up George Stevens both capable of winning. Improvement from the back of its pack could also put Southern runner-up Lisbon in the hunt.