Familiar story as Western, Mervo capture titles

Doves win 11th straight

Mustangs make it No. 7

City indoor track and field championships

High Schools

February 04, 2005|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Western's girls and Mervo's boys have used a simple formula to dominate the Baltimore City indoor championships over the last several years - a lot of points from a lot of places.

That worked nicely again in last night's championship meet at 5th Regiment Armory.

Top-ranked Western trailed early, but piled up the points late to capture its 11th straight city crown, while No. 6 Mervo had to fight off No. 5 Digital Harbor to win its seventh straight title.

For Western, juniors Theresa Lewis and Shalaiyah Sommerville provided the Doves with plenty of points. The Doves trailed No. 7 Digital Harbor and No. 8 Mervo early in the meet, but came back to win, finishing with 117 points. Mervo was second with 103.

Lewis came in on a roll, having posted the nation's fastest time in the 55-meter hurdles (7.95 seconds) in a meet at Virginia Tech last weekend, and kept right on going last night.

She won the 55 hurdles again (8.4) and also captured the 55 dash (6.9) and the shot put (31 feet, 7 inches). She also ran on the first-place, 800 relay team.

"We were just thinking about getting [personal bests] in all our events," Lewis said. "We weren't thinking about winning."

Sommerville also fared well, taking the 300 dash (40.01) and the 500 (1 minute, 19.6 seconds) to help the Doves get ready for the regional and state meets. She also ran on the winning 800 and 1,600 relay teams.

In the boys competition, seniors Orlando Brown and Brandon Eaton and junior Bryant Brown helped the Mustangs win with 131 points, ahead of Digital Harbor (111), though Mervo struggled early as the meet quickly became a battle between the two schools - third-place Poly had only 35 points.

Orlando Brown won the 55 (6.5) and the 300 (36.8) and also ran on Mervo's victorious 800 relay team. Eaton captured the high jump (5-8), took second in the 55 and ran with Brown on the 800 team. Bryant Brown took the 1,600 in 4:59.9 and then won the 3,200 (11:09.0) before finishing third in the 800.

"We have a good core of seniors, and the freshmen and sophomores were stepping up," Mervo coach Ronald Neal said. "The seniors know what they're expected to do, but we're getting extra from the ninth- and 10th-graders."

Digital Harbor got strong performances from many, including Kevin Johnson. He won the 500 (1:11.8) and 800 (2:11.0) and took second in the 300 plus sixth in the 1,600.

Johnson said the Rams will be pushing Mervo and the other good City schools.

"That's what we're doing right now," Johnson said. "They're going to have to fight for it."

Digital Harbor has only 15 on its boys team, but coach Jeff Tolson said their second-place finish opened some eyes.

"They're really dedicated and work hard for me," Tolson said. "They just do what I ask."

The Rams' girls also fared well, finishing third with 78 points. Junior Brittney Griffin sparked Digital Harbor by winning the 1,600 in 5:39.3 and took fourth in the 800 while also running on the runner-up unit in the 3,200 relay.

Digital Harbor stayed close early but faded toward the end.

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