Gilman, Wright runners win Spiked Shoe titles Bryn Mawr top girls team

Va. team nips Wright boys

Cross country

September 15, 1996|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

He wasn't set when the starter's pistol sounded and he ran into a tree, but that didn't deter David Chalmers from winning the boys varsity race at yesterday's 49th annual Spiked Shoe Invitational at Johns Hopkins University.

The Gilman senior shrugged off his misfortunes and ran the hilly 3.1-mile course through Wyman Park in 16 minutes, 50 seconds.

"I tried to cut the course a little close and I grazed my shoulder on a tree," said Chalmers, his shoulder still bleeding. "The start was a little screwy, but I managed to get out OK. Our team was huddled up, and all of a sudden, we hear, 'Runners take your mark.' "

C. Milton Wright junior Kelly Coogan, normally the Mustangs' No. 2 runner behind All-Metro runner Mary Beth Rollins, showed she was ready for the girls varsity race as she broke away at the two-mile mark and never looked back before crossing the finish line in a winning time of 20: 21.

Harford County runners swept the top three awards in the girls event. Megan McNew of North Harford took home the runner-up trophy, and Rollins finished third.

"This is the best thing that has ever happened to me. This is very encouraging," said Coogan, while receiving a congratulatory hug from coach Barbara Johnson. "I've had some really discouraging races, and I've never been able to get my mental act together. Today, finally, I was able to stand on the starting line and say, 'I do it because I love it.' "

Johnson added: "Kelly ran very hard this summer, she's focused on what she is doing, and she's got it all together. The swimming and cross-training she's been doing is paying off."

The Mustangs also produced the runner-up in the boys race. Erick Benjamin finished 22 seconds behind Chalmers and 11 seconds ahead of McDonogh's Garth Terry, a friend and rival of Chalmers in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association.

Bryn Mawr, a member of the Association of Independent Schools, captured the first-place trophy in the girls team competition. The Mawrtians, who edged runner-up James Madison (Va.) 61-63, had three runners in the top 10 finishers -- Tess Deanehan (fourth), Chris Houle (seventh) and Brianne Jenkins (10th).

C. M. Wright, Bel Air and North Harford took third, fourth and fifth among girls teams.

James Madison won the boys team competition, but not by much. Madison and Loyola both finished with 82 points, but the Virginia contingent won on a tie-breaking rule that looked at the performance of each team's sixth-place finisher. The Dons' Chris Knott finished fourth, and teammate Vince Pagoda was 13th.

Gilman, which got a fifth-place effort from junior Seamus Whelton, took third in the team competition with 90 points. McDonogh was fifth with 153.

"We've never won the first-place team trophy, but we've had good individual performances here," said Greyhounds coach Jack Thompson, referring to Ted Lord's Spiked Shoe victory in 1994. "Our team always brings some hardware home, but never the big trophy."

Pub Date: 9/15/96

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