Western's 3,200 team gains Penn Relays final

Centrowitz finishes 7th, Zoltani 9th in girls mile

Track And Field

April 26, 2002|By Derek Toney | Derek Toney,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

PHILADELPHIA -- Rain was the story for most of the first day of the 108th Penn Relays yesterday, but it didn't distract Western.

Having to jump into action after arriving late, the Doves were able to qualify for the Championship of America finale in the 3,200-meter relay this afternoon at Penn's Franklin Field.

Western's time of 9 minutes 25.55 seconds gained it one of the 12 final spots. The perennial Baltimore city power placed third in a heat won by Boys & Girls School of New York, which set the U.S. record (8:52.84) in last spring's meet.

"We got here late. We were about 30 minutes behind schedule," said Western coach Jerry Moyneaux, whose quartet include Alica Williams, Midchild Carter, Rokesha Williams and Lotosha Wallace. "When we started running, that was our warmup."

Despite the late start and a steady rain, Western was the fastest among four Maryland schools in the event, including Glenelg (9:45.68) and defending state Class 4A champ Roosevelt (9:32.88).

The Doves will attempt to finish high in a field that will include Jamaican powers Holmwood Tech, last year's winner, and Edwin Allen (third last year).

Long Reach's girls will compete in today's small schools' 400-relay championship after recording a time of 49.59.

The girls from the Howard County school won their heat (4:09.13) in the 1,600 preliminary round. Atholton (4:11.28) and Southern-Anne Arundel (4:16.41) also won their heats. Hammond (50.36) and Southern-Anne Arundel (52.69) captured their 400 relay heats.

The rain cleared late in the afternoon, when Dulaney's Tenke Zoltani and Lauren Centrowitz of Broadneck competed in the girls mile championship. Two of the top distance runners in the area, Centrowitz finished seventh (5:08.22) and Zoltani placed ninth (5:10.24).

"I think it was decent," said Zoltani, competing in this meet for the first time. "We're not in top miling shape because we're halfway through the season."

Se'verine Tanic of Morgan State took the title in the collegiate women's high jump at 5 feet 8 3/4 inches.

Also, Western Maryland's 1,600-meter relay team of Stephanie McPherson, Thea Bayly, April Brown and Christine Johnson finished second in the Centennial/Middle Atlantic Conference combined event in 4:01.37, their best mark as a group in competition.

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