Once again, Westminster's Owls are running ahead of the pack Girls track and field

March 29, 1993|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Staff Writer

Westminster is loaded again.

What else is new?

That is the story in girls track in Carroll county this season.

No, it doesn't matter that the coaches have only seen their teams working out in the gym because of the Blizzard of '93.

Everybody knows the Owls will most likely win their sixth straight county championship.

They not only had 58 girls come out for the team, but they have veteran coach Bill Hill back for his 16th season.

Last year, Westminster rolled up 157 points to 68 for second-place Francis Scott Key in the county meet.

Six seniors who have been on the team four years are back from that runaway Owls squad, including defending state high jump champion Kenya Warfield.

Warfield, who won the state high jump title with a leap of 5 feet, 5 inches, is also an outstanding hurdler and will add the long jump to her list of events this season.

Hill said: "People saw Kenya practicing the long jump last summer, and they believe she might be good enough to compete for a state title."

With Warfield seeking more points for the team this season, it will make it easier to lose nationally ranked distance runner Stephanie Morningstar, who is now at the University of Virginia.

The other five returning seniors are Jessie Farinholt (shot and discus), Caroline Hare (sprinter), Joanna Ruppert (sprinter), Laurie Moody (shot and discus) and Pauline McAlonan (high jumper and defending county quarter-mile champion).

Farinholt finished third in the state in the discus last season.

And there's more bad news for Francis Scott Key, Liberty, North Carroll and South Carroll.

Versatile senior Leslie Liddick has moved back to Westminster after living in Ohio for a year.

Liddick will compete in the shot, long jump, triple jump and distance runs.

"I'm glad she's back," Hill said. "She moved to Ohio because of her father's business, and now she's back. Leslie can get us a lot of points."

There are also three talented juniors back from last season who will win a lot of events. They are Holly Stewart, Cheri Harman and Joy Bullock.

Stewart is recording 34 feet in the triple jump, which is good enough to win a county title, Harman is an outstanding sprinter and Bullock is a superb distance runner who is coming off a third-place finish in the county girls cross country championships last fall.

"Hopefully Joy will want to settle some scores in county distance runs this season," Hill said. "I know she had hopes of finishing first in the cross country championships."

The Owls girls finished second in the regionals and seventh in the state last season.

"They key to winning the states will be to have people score a lot of thirds and fourths for us," Hill said.

Key trying to close gap

Finishing second in girls track in Carroll County isn't much.

Francis Scott Key was 89 points behind Westminster last season, and coach Tom Hill is talking bravely about "closing the gap" with his young team.

"It will all depend on how well our young people run," Hill said. "Westminster has a huge advantage in depth."

The Eagles have nine sophomores and nine freshmen on a squad that has only one top senior and three outstanding juniors. Key was second in the county, second in the regionals and second in the state.

Senior Chrissy Naurot (relays) and juniors Shannon Hugg (two-mile run and two-mile relay), Becky Tregoning (sprinter) and Lisa Etzler (hurdler) are the veterans.

Seven of the sophomores competed last season, including the Ryer twins (Carrie and Laurie), Lisa Turner (middle distance), Chris Harner (middle distance), Autumn Hinkle (hurdler), Jackie Miller (triple and long jump) and Jill Bohn (discus and shot put).

Carrie Ryer will run sprints and compete in the triple jump, and Laurie Ryer will run sprints and be a long jumper.

The two new sophomores are sprinters Jen Moorman and Courtney Anders.

The nine freshmen who are expected to gain points for the Eagles are Kikka Rose (hurdler), Candice Straub (throwing events), Allison Wigley (hurdles), Kelly Myers (jumper and middle distance), Ali Jones (middle distance), Stacey Greene (sprinter), Kim Hugg (distance), Kendra Nunnelee (jumper) and Angie Barnes (sprinter).

North Carroll in the hunt

The Panthers have three marquee seniors and a lot of young talent on a squad that hopes to challenge Francis Scott Key for second.

The top senior is Francine Hewes, who is the defending state long-jump champion (17 feet, 10 inches). As a sophomore, Hewes took second in the state triple jump.

Basketball and soccer standout Ashlee Douglas is one of the three top seniors back. She took second in the 100-meter intermediate hurdles last season.

Jessie Shanks returns for her final year after finishing fifth in the high jump in the states last season.

Two other seniors are also on the team, Sandy Spoonier (relays and sprints) and Laurie Seigman (distance runner). The top young prospect is versatile freshman Julie Baker who is a sprinter, hurdler, high jumper, long jumper and triple jumper.

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