The NCAA Division I track and field championships will be held tomorrow and Saturday at the Hoosier Dome in Indianapolis, and several men and women with local ties have scoring potential.
Heading the women is Maryland's Marchelle Payne, a junior from Richmond, Va. who is one of the nation's hottest triple-jumpers. She won the ACC with a record leap of 43 feet, 9 1/4 inches, and added an ECAC title last weekend in Syracuse.
Morgan State's Andrea Thomas, a junior from Jamaica by way of the Bronx, won the ECAC 400, and she'll be running in the NCAAs in that event along with another of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference's best, UMES senior Jessica Hudson.
Thomas will be without Leonard Braxton, who's in London coaching the best American women at an all-star meet. In other international developments, Wisconsin's Jen Howard, a freshman out of Fallston High, finished second in the U.S. Trials and will wear the red, white and blue at the World Cross Country championships March 21 in Boston.
Among local men going to the NCAAs is Navy miler Greg Keller. He led the Mids to their first Heptagonals title since 1974, taking both the mile and 3,000.
James Madison hurdler Jerry Roney, a junior out of Woodlawn High, was touted as the best collegian in the nation following his fourth-place finish at The Athletics Congress championships, but he was knocked off by Syracuse's Qadry Ismail at the IC4As in Princeton Sunday. Roney was timed in a personal best 7.19 seconds to Ismail's 7.16.
The "Missile," remember, is Raghib "Rocket" Ismail's brother.
At the national junior college championships, Essex Community College scored in three events. Marilyn Wernert was fifth in the women's high jump, Demark Thompson sixth in the men's shot put and the men's 4x400 relay was sixth.
First for Goucher: Kim Raley, a freshman from Towson High, will become the first female athlete from Goucher to participate in an NCAA championship competition, when she goes to the Division III swim championships at SUNY-Buffalo this weekend.
Raley dominated at the Capital Athletic Conference championships, winning the 200 individual medley and 200 backstroke. She's qualified for the NCAAs in the 200 medley and 100 and 200 breaststrokes.
Hopkins coach George Kennedy will take eight swimmers and a diver to the NCAAs. The men's championships are next week at Buffalo. The Blue Jays will send 10.
Frostburg State's Gary Mann, a junior out of Mount St. Joseph, isn't going to the NCAAs, but he set Bobcats records in the 100 and 200 backstrokes.
Weaver's home finale: When Towson State is host to Pittsburgh tomorrow (7 p.m.) in women's gymnastics, it will be the final appearance at the Towson Center for Wendy Weaver, the best '' ever to wear aTigers uniform.
Weaver's freshmen and junior seasons were slowed by an assortment of injuries, but in between she competed in the all-around at the 1990 NCAA championships. She underwent shoulder surgery last year, but has come back to post the best scores of her career, 38.60 and 39.00, in her last two meets.
Awards: The honors keep coming in for Maryland senior Walt Williams, who was named to ECAC all-star basketball team, which had Georgetown's Alonzo Mourning as the Player of the Year. Towson State guard Terrance Jacobs, the East Coast Conference Player of the Year, was named to the second team. In other all-star news, Princeton senior forward Matt Eastwick (Gilman) was named to the Ivy League second unit.
Terps baseball: Maryland's baseball team is at Clemson for a three-game series this weekend, and coach Tom Bradley will take a repeat of last week's ACC opener with North Carolina State, in which the Terps knocked the Wolfpack from their No. 13 ranking by taking two of three. Derek Hocopian, a senior right fielder out of Winston Churchill High in Potomac, is the ACC Player of the Week after going 12-for-20 with five home runs and 13 RBI.
Bowling championships: The National Junior College Athletic Association bowling championships will be held tomorrow and Saturday at the Brunswick Crown Lanes in the Hawthorne Shopping Center. Host Essex is among the top women's teams entered.