State track ramblings . . .
Hammond's Kisha Jett continued to amaze at this year's state track meet.
She easily defended her Class 2A titles in the 100-meter -- (11.8 seconds), the 200 -- (24.4) and the 400 run (55.6). There's no telling how much better she'll get, but she definitely won't rest on her laurels.
The sophomore carefully eyed Eleanor Roosevelt sprinter Ebony Robinson, who won the 100 (11.5) and 200 (23.4) in Class 4A. Jett has never managed to beat Robinson the few times she's raced her.
The Roosevelt senior looked impressive physically -- like a sleek, muscular running machine that moved with ease, grace and power. Robinson set a state record in the 200.
"That's what I want to look like by the time I'm a senior," Jett declared. "But I've got a long way to go."
That hunger to improve was also evident in Jett's mom, who told her she shouldn't have slowed down at the end of one race and should have leaned at the end of another, said Hammond coach Joe Russo.
Jett's only real disappointment was again the long jump. She should have won it, based on past efforts, but she scratched on two of her three jumps, and the other effort, 15-feet, 7 inches, wasn't good enough to qualify for the finals. She had been jumping 17 feet with ease.
"I panicked," Jett said. "And that will never happen again."
She held up her thumb and index fingers to indicate how little she went over the line on her scratches -- maybe two inches.
Jett, the heir apparent to Robinson in sprints, will compete in Russia June 27 to July 27 at the Pangaea Games, a goodwill event organized by citizens there.
Had Wilde Lake had a few field athletes, hurdlers, pole vaulters, shot putters, etc., wouldn't it have run away with the boys state Class 1A track and field title instead of finishing second?
The Wildecats had only eight athletes at the state meet but still scored 71 points, mainly on the speed of Andre Martin, Craig Butler and Reggie Alston. Butler and Alston return next year. The rest of the team graduates.
Write down the name Mona Jackson in your book of future superstars in track and girls basketball.
Jackson, a Howard High freshman, won the high jump, was second in the triple jump and third in the long jump.
In basketball, she scored 290 points for a 12-point average to go along with almost 10 rebounds per game.
Her father, Robert, was Howard High's boys track athlete of the year in 1971, so the talent comes naturally.
Atholton, which finished 15th at the state boys Class 3A track meet, certainly had a family atmosphere this season.
Head coach Ed Rhode was assisted by his son, Chris, a former state pole vault champ who is eighth on the University of Maryland's all-time decathlon list. Chris is a senior at Maryland.
Ben Rhode, a freshman at Atholton, pole vaulted and ran the 800. And Carolyn Miller, Ben's stepmother, kept score for the team.
Chris knew well how badly Glenelg felt in losing the state title by 1 1/2 points to Surrattsville. In 1988 when he was a Glenelg senior, the Gladiators lost the indoor state title by one point and the outdoor state title by a half-point.
Glenelg's Aaron Browning won the state Class 2A pole vault with a 13-foot effort. But he didn't quite set a school record. His older brother, Chuck, set that mark at 14-3.
I left out the Wilde Lake girls in Wednesday's track write-up. The Wildecats scored 13 points and finished 15th in the Class 1A meet.
The Wildecats' 400 relay team of Stephanie Sharps, Adelle Chenier, Marie Parker and Monique Alston finished third in 53.1 seconds. Their 800 relay team of Becky Mikkelson, Chenier, Sharps and Alston finished fifth in 1:53.9. And Chenier finished third in the 100 in 13.2 seconds.
As long as county girls teams Hammond and Glenelg are in the same classification as Central High of Prince George's County they may never win a state title.
The Central girls won their 12th straight state title and crushed runner-up North Hagerstown, 80-49. Glenelg was fourth at 44.