Anne Arundel County

Track and Field

March 21, 2001|By Bo Smolka

Given how the county indoor meet played out in February, Chesapeake boys track and field coach Skip Lee is itching to start the outdoor season.

The Cougars were within striking distance of their first county title until a collision on the final leg of the 800-meter relay wiped out Shawn Freshwater and, with him, their title hopes.

Broadneck won the championship, edging the Cougars by 2 1/4 points.

Now as attention shifts outdoors, Lee is ready to take aim at two-time defending champion Annapolis. Broadneck looks for a clean sweep after winning cross country and indoor titles, and Severna Park, the runner-up last year, also has the depth to contend.

In the girls competition, look for another spirited duel between Broadneck and Arundel. The Bruins edged Arundel, 97-96, for the county title last year, but Arundel squeaked out the indoor championship last month by one point over Annapolis and seven over Broadneck.

The Annapolis boys have been hit hard by graduation. Then again, that was true last year and the Panthers won the county meet convincingly. Junior Mike Brown, the defending Class 3A state high hurdles champion, could be a big scorer in multiple events. Reigning county triple jump champion Mario Harris is just a sophomore.

At Chesapeake, there is strength in numbers; the Cougars' roster is at 45, up from 19 two years ago. Hurdler Evan Carter may be stronger at the longer distances outdoors, and the drop from 500 meters (indoors) to 400 should help Jason Verhoef. Matt Death and Freshwater lead a solid sprint corps, and high jumper Matt Waranius went 6 feet 8 indoors en route to the 4A-3A state title.

Severna Park always makes its mark in the distance events (last season finished 1-2-3 in the mile, 1-2 in the 800) but must score elsewhere. A pair of county champion pole-vaulters, Mike Hall (outdoors) and Brian Grubel (indoors), will help.

Broadneck has Jeremy Moore, the county's premier thrower, and Jason Sparkman, who won two county titles (500, 800) indoors.

Arundel high jumper Brian Devaul will duel with Chesapeake's Waranius after finishing second to him in the county and state indoors.

Northeast and Old Mill are strong in the middle distances, and Meade has David Pickett, the defending 3,200-meter champion.

Perennial contender North County is rebuilding and might be hard-pressed to duplicate last year's third-place finish.

On the girls side, Arundel coach Ira Queen hit a trifecta with the return of Eva Tukarski, Nashira Rawls and Roxanne Hall. The trio collected four individual events at last year's county meet (100, 200, 400 and 100 hurdles) and form the nucleus of Arundel's potent relays.

Broadneck used its depth to squeeze past Arundel last season and could do it again. In addition to a good distance group, the Bruins return Erin Burns, the defending shot put champion.

As long as Annapolis has Erin Masterson, the Panthers will be in the running. The senior won the 3A state mile (5:07.29) last year and hit a rare triple indoors last month with county titles in the 800, mile and two-mile. Maleka Diggs (high jump) and Kerra Strum (pole vault) served notice with indoor county championships.

Severna Park has a deep distance contingent led by Rebecca Funk and Cecile Currier, but it must find a way to beat Masterson to score the big points. Caitlin Chalmers and Megan Beechner are title contenders in the pole vault.

Two years removed from its string of 18 straight titles, Old Mill could get major scoring from Suna Lumeh (jumps) and Beth Nolan (throws).

Sheila Brady and Ginger Williams lead a strong group of throwers at Cheseapeake, while Northeast has a rising middle-distance standout in Brittney Milliken.

Senior sprinters Courtney Matthews and Jennifer White, the last remaining ties to Glen Burnie's 1999 title team, head up the Gophers' rebuilding effort. North County is also a work in progress.

Among the county's private schools, Archbishop Spalding returns distance runner Dusty Leib, the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association mile and two-mile champion. U'Tonna Sherrod leads the girls. Severn is paced by distance runner Chris Foster.

Players to watch

Jeremy Moore (Broadneck, senior, thrower) Has seven county titles ... and counting

Erin Masterson (Annapolis, senior, distance) The 3A state mile champ last year was unstoppable indoors

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.