1996-97 All-Baltimore City/County Indoor Track Teams

February 28, 1997|By Steven Kivinski

Girls team

Coach of the Year

Dave Schoppe, Dulaney: The Lions began the year as the metro area's top-ranked team and never dropped down. With Pittsburgh-native Schoppe at the helm, the Lions held off runner-up Catonsville (69 1/2 ) and Perry Hall (58) to capture their second straight Baltimore County championship title with 96 points. "We set goals for the girls, and they were motivated enough to achieve them," said Schoppe, a physics teacher who is assisted on the track by Murray Davis (middle and long distance), Steve Thompson (shot put) and John Britt (hurdlers). "This was a very rewarding season.

Performer of the Year

Meghan White, Dulaney, senior: White, who was undefeated in Baltimore County regular-season meets, started her final indoor campaign by winning the mile run (5: 20.1), the 2-mile (11: 41.9) and the half-mile (2: 23.5) at the Metro Invitational. She closed out the season by finishing fifth in the nation in the Millrose Mile, which features the nation's top eight returning high school milers. Before that, she won her first individual state title, in the 3,200-meter run at the Class 3A-4A championships. Slowed by flu and running against her doctor's wishes, she led Dulaney to its second straight county title, finishing second in the 800 and 1,600 and third in the 3,200. "She is going to be a tough one to replace," said Schoppe.

The team

Jen Geroux, Parkville, junior: After winning county titles in the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs, Geroux capped her junior indoor campaign by winning the 3,200. Her time of 11: 43.8 was the fastest of all classes in the 3,200. She opened the state meet by finishing a disappointing third in the 1,600. "She thought she could have run a better race [in the 1,600] and she was very determined to come back and win the 3,200," said Parkville coach Carrie Smith. At the regionals, the All-Metro Cross Country Runner of the Year took first in the 1,600, second in the 3,200 and was fourth in the 800.

Brigid O'Connell, Catonsville, senior: O'Connell was a key member of the Comets' undefeated 3,200-meter relay team. She and teammates Eden Rellihan, Lauren Nopolis and Renee Tirocchi set a state-meet record of 9: 55.3. She took second and beat Geroux in the 1,600-meter run at the state meet and finished fourth in the 3,200. O'Connell helped the Comets win their eighth straight region crown by winning the 3,200 and finishing second in the 1,600.

Eden Rellihan, Catonsville, senior: Rellihan didn't lose an 800-meter race all season. She swept county, region and state titles in the 800 and was a member of the Comets' record-setting 3,200-meter relay team, running the fastest split of the group (2: 25.0). "She is a real versatile athlete," said coach Jeff McDaniel. "She's a distance runner with foot speed." She plans to play lacrosse in college and is considering attending the University of North Carolina or Ohio State.

Catrice Jefferson, Woodlawn, junior: After winning the 500-meter dash at the county meet and running the anchor leg of the Warriors' county champion 800 and 1,600 relays, Jefferson caught the flu and missed qualifying for states in the 500. She ran a 59.8 split in the 1,600-meter county relays and a 26.7 split in the 3,200. She turned in a county-best time of 1: 20.6 in the 500, an event she won at the National Guard Meet.

Kim Saab, Patapsco, junior: Saab passed the performance test with flying colors at the county meet, winning three events, including the 55-meter dash, 55 hurdles and 300. At regions, she collected an assortment of medals after claiming first in the 55 dash, second in the 300 and third in the hurdles. The transfer from North Plainfield, N.J., who single-handedly put Patapsco's first-year program on the map, closed out her indoor season by finishing fourth in the hurdles at the state meet. "She was a welcome surprise," said Patriots coach Lori Powers.

Kate Macfarlane, Hereford senior: Macfarlane, a three-time All-Metro soccer goalkeeper, set a metro-area best and state record in the pole vault at the Class 1A-2A state meet after clearing 9 feet, 6 inches. She cleared 8-6 to win the county meet title and won the regionals by soaring 9 feet. Earlier this month, she signed a national letter-of-intent to play soccer at Rutgers.

Natalie Gassman, Perry Hall, senior: Gassman, primarily a discus thrower, won the county shot put title with a toss that traveled 31 feet, 5 inches. She finished second in the Class 3A-4A regional meet, but didn't place in the state meet. Her personal best this season was 32-11 1/2 . "She is an extremely good technician and a brilliant student, both in the classroom and of the sport," said coach Jerry Martin.

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