Coppin State sweeps MEAC cross country

November 07, 1992|By Paul McMullen | Paul McMullen,Staff Writer

How dominant was Coppin State at the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference cross country championships?

The other eight schools could have put together all-star squads at muddy Herring Run Park yesterday, and they still wouldn't have beaten the Eagles, who swept the team titles for the second straight year. A year after sweating out victories over Morgan State, both of coach Don Webster's teams scored 23 points.

Nicholas Eugene covered the men's 10,000-meter course in 33 minutes, 55 seconds, and Diana Pitts was timed in 19:45 over the women's 5,000-meter course. Both have led their teams all season and took control of their respective races early yesterday.

Pitts, a junior from Christiana, Del., was 10th as a freshman and sixth last year. She has had a busy year, as she ran in the NCAA track and field championships last June and qualified for the Olympic trials in the 800. She was second in the Metro Invitational in September and sixth in the state championships last month.

"I keep telling myself, I don't want to get used to it [the 5,000-meter distance]," said Pitts, whose 800 best is 2:06.17. "Seriously, I'll be experimenting with the 1,500 next year, and this distance work is great for me. I'm the captain, and I take setting a good example for the other girls very seriously."

Pitts was joined in the top 10 by four teammates, including third-place finisher Felisha Harris, the 1991 champion.

The Coppin State men put four juniors and a freshman in the top eight. Eugene was challenged early by Delaware State's Anthony Stewart, who ran for the Eagles two years ago, then held off a late surge by Florida A&M sophomore Chris Kelly.

"He [Kelly] beat me in the 1,500 in the conference meet last spring," said Eugene, who is from St. Lucia in the West Indies. "I stepped it up when I saw him moving up."

Eugene, the state championship runner-up, will lead Coppin State in its first appearance at the IC4A championships a week from today at Lehigh.

MEN

10,000 meters

Team scores: 1. Coppin State, 23; 2. Howard, 69; 3. Florida A&M, 109; 4. UMES, 110; 5. Delaware State, 111; 6. Morgan State, 130; 7. South Carolina State, 158; 8. North Carolina A&T, 239; 9. Bethune-Cookman, 240.

Individuals: 1. Eugene, Coppin State, 33:55; 2. Kelly, Florida A&M, 34:14; 3. Willoughby, Coppin State, 34:36; 4. Turner, Delaware State, 34:39; 5. Bennett, Coppin State, 34:45; 6. Hinds, Coppin State, 34:55; 7. Stewart, Delaware State, 35:01; 8. Edwards, Coppin State, 35:03; 9. Hall, South Carolina State, 35:15; 10. Hendrick, Morgan State, 35:32.

WOMEN

5,000 meters

Team scores: 1. Coppin State, 23; 2. Delaware State, 89; 3. Howard, 90; 4. Morgan State, 117; 5. South Carolina State, 127; 6. Florida A&M, 128; 7. North Carolina A&T, 165; 8. UMES, 182; 9. Bethune-Cookman, 221.

Individuals: 1. Pitts, Coppin State, 19:45; 2. Abbshinejad, Howard, 20:08; 3. Harris, Coppin State, 20:26; 4. Gillard, Coppin State, 20:45; 5. Williams, Coppin State, 20:52; 6. Tanefo, Howard, 21:13; 7. Pinkney, South Carolina State, 21:18; 8. Sutton, Florida A&M, 21:27; 9. Key, Morgan State, 21:39; 10. Beverly, Coppin State, 21:44.

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