Varsity Spring All-metro

Track

June 06, 2007

GIRLS PERFORMER OF THE YEAR

Liz McCarter

Mount Hebron

The senior has been one of the area's top distance runners throughout her high school career, and she went out on a winning note.

McCarter is one of the few distance runners who finds success in the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 meters - three races that require different skills. She swept all three at the Howard County and Class 3A East regional meets by wide margins. The Syracuse-bound McCarter helped the Vikings finish second in the state with victories in the 800 and the 3,200. She also led the 1,600 for much of the race before North Carroll's Katie Hursey caught her in the final 50 meters. Still, McCarter broke five minutes (4 minutes, 59.27 seconds) and bounced back later to win the 800 by beating Hursey, her Syracuse teammate next year.

Girls coaches of the year

Shedrick Elliott and Melissa Mikula

Western Tech

Elliott and Mikula got the most out of the team this season at a school that still doesn't have a track on campus. They took over the program a few weeks before practice began and worked hard to give the girls direction. The indoor team had struggled at times during the winter, but things went smoothly this spring. Elliott, who does not teach at the school, ran or the Wolverines earlier this decade and still holds several school records in track. Mikula stepped up from being an assistant to work with Elliott and assistant Amy Horvitz. The team finished third in the Class 1A state meet after taking the North regional title.

Boys Performer of the Year

Matthew Centrowitz

Broadneck

He didn't run in as many open races as in seasons past, but there was no doubt Centrowitz was the area's top performer this spring. He locked up that distinction with spectacular performances in big races. The Oregon-bound senior turned a lot of heads when he won the 1,600 meters at the prestigious Penn Relays earlier this spring in a meet-record time of 4 minutes, 8.38 seconds. Centrowitz then won the 3,000 (8:20.09) in the fastest time since the mid-1980s. He set a Class 4A and state record by winning the 1,600 in 4:04.09, drawing a huge ovation from the crowd at Morgan State. He also won three state titles in cross country and is perhaps the best distance runner of all time in Maryland.

Boys Coach of the Year

Nigel Holder

Meade

Holder helped turn a small group of Meade athletes into a dominant championship team this spring. The Mustangs had only 12 boys, yet posted 57 points to win the Class 4A state title. Holder put the right people in the right spots - and didn't stick with athletes in only one area. He had Terry Marshall in the shot put and discus, Malik Zafar in the distance races, Matthew Brinkley and others in hurdles plus some good relays. This group became a team, one that routed the field at the Class 4A East regional. The 12 athletes carried momentum from that performance to the state meet and beat highly touted Eleanor Roosevelt by eight points. They celebrated by running a lap around the Morgan State track with the state championship trophy held high.

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