Matthews, 72, on track after 40 years

RUNNING

December 01, 1992|By Michael Reeb | Michael Reeb,Staff Writer

Although he didn't run competitively for 38 years, Ed Matthews has come full circle.

Matthews, a member of the Maryland Masters Track Club, has returned to the sport he excelled at in the late 1940s at the University of Maryland. He is on a course that, hopefully, will take him to the U.S. National Indoor meet in March.

"I expect to be at the indoor meet unless something happens to me," Matthews, 72, said last week. "I'm also looking to the world veterans championship next year in Japan. And I expect to defend my titles in the 200 and 400 [meters] in the U.S. seniors meet in Baton Rouge [La.]."

His absence from competition was not because of lack of interest or physical condition that prohibited his participation. It was attributable more to a set of circumstances that sent him running in other directions.

"In 1950, I was still in law school [at Maryland]; I completed my undergraduate work in about two years," Matthews said. "But '49 was my last competitive year.

"I had a lot of problems at the time. My father died. I had to work at the railroad from midnight to 8 before going to class. I had a wife and a son."

Matthews was forced to put a career on hold that had made him a leading collegiate quarter-miler and that had taken him to the 1948 U.S. Olympic Trials. But he never strayed far from sports.

A retired Air Force colonel, Matthews coached track and cross country at the Air Force Academy from 1957 to 1962.

And, more importantly, he kept in shape.

"I stayed active," said Matthews, who lives outside Salisbury with his wife. "I played baseball and softball when I was in the service. I kept in condition. I never did the kind of things that would have gotten me out of shape."

So, in 1989, when he ran into the Maryland Masters Track Club's Joe Hemler, whom he had coached nearly four decades previously, he was ready to put on his running shoes.

"I hadn't seen him since 1950 when I coached at Mount St. Joe," Matthews said. "We got the club started and we've tried to keep it going since then."

At this year's Maryland Senior Olympics, Matthews won the 200 meters in 27.63 seconds. This winter, he will be competing in indoor meets that will take him from New Hampshire to Tennessee and on to Montana for the U.S. nationals.

"I hope to keep running along," he said. "I think I'm about two years from being the best I'm going to be. It's been about 38 years since my last top-notch performance."

Trail Marathon

Robert Marino, 35, of Annapolis, and Monika Bachmann, 27, of Comus, won the third annual North Central Trail Marathon on Saturday. There were 191 finishers. . . . The week's top finishers:

THURSDAY

Run For Affordable Housing 8K

At Inner Harbor

Males: 1. Ramon Marin, 27:00; 2. Stephen Dillard, 28:28; 3. Maurice Pointer, 28:50; 4. Doug Ripley, 29:13; 5. Rod Sapp, 29:29; 6. E. J. Purpura, 29:42; 7. Todd Unger, 30:04; 8. Bryan Handwork, 30:47; 9. Greg MacPhee, 30:56; 10. Joel Levis, 31:25. Masters: 1. Michael Hill, 31:28.

Females: 1. Meredith McMahon, 32:51; 2. Patrice Malloy, 33:33; 3. Theresa Prebish, 34:16; 4. Yolanda Washington, 34:50; 5. Michelle Apland, 35:46; 6. Kelly Conner, 36:57; 7. Gail Seidenberg, 36:58; 8. Kristin Snyder, 37:47; 9. Melissa Ascoine, 37:55; 10. Kyle Wilhelm, 38:12. Masters: 1. Sandy Salazar, 38:28.

SATURDAY

BRRC North Central Trail Marathon

At Sparks

Males: 1. Robert Marino, 2:29:25; 2. Troy Jacobson, 2:34:39; 3. Roger Howell, 2:42:49; 4. Jim Van Cleave, 2:43:54; 5. Michael Marino, 2:44:23; 6. Michael Lieder, 2:44:56; 7. Richard Elmore, 2:45:35; 8. Vince Touey, 2:46:59; 9. Neville Anderson, 2:48:28; 10. James Moreland, 2:48:47. Masters: Moreland.

Females: 1. Monika Bachmann, 3:14:30; 2. Tammy Huck, 3:15:26; 3. Britta Schasberger, 3:17:12; 4. Ann Meckley, 3:24:45; 5. Gretchen Butts, 3:31:32; 6. Lydia Johnson, 3:35:35; 7. Janet Newburgh, 3:37:13; 8. Mary Vonne Meuprivez, 3:42:01; 9. Susan Cain, 3:43:53; 10. Marlene Barr, 3:46:00. Masters: Newburgh.

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