The Mt. Hebron girls 4x400-meter relay team capped off the last event of the 3A East Region championship Tuesday at the Baltimore Armory with a dominating victory.
However, despite the commanding win the Vikings were just 1.5 points shy of capturing a 3A East region title.
Northern-Cal (79.5 points) edged Mt. Hebron (78), which saw two individuals claim region championships and six athletes land in the top-3.
Vikings sophomore Sydney Robinson continued her dominant season and won the 300-meters with a time of 43.94 seconds. She then placed second behind teammate Ebere Ugorji in the 500 and also finished third in the 55-dash.
Ugoriji crossed with a winning time of 1:23.94 in the 500, before helping anchor her team in both the 4x400- and 4x200-relay — where the Vikings placed second behind Atholton.
Jaiden Ritter, who was also apart of Mt. Hebron's state qualifying 4x400 and 4x200 relay teams, placed second behind Robinson in the 300 with a time of 43.43.
The Raiders' Asha Washington cruised to a 3A East winning time of 7.41 in the 55-dash, besting Robinson (7.51) and James M. Bennett's Azarelle Mapp (7.50).
"I tell you what, Asha was sick last week with the flu so they had to scratch her in the , but she got her poise back in that 55," said Atholton coach Ivan Alvarado. "She's looking every bit of that state contender that she was early in the season. She kind of hit a little bit of a rough patch there, but she is on full cylinders [now]. So it is a good sign, not only for the team but for her. I think she should be one of the state favorites."
Washington also aided the Raiders to a regional championship performance in the 4x200-relay. Washington, Krystal Wood, Samantha Hall and Hannah Tarver finished with a winning time of 1:51.53, followed by the Vikings (1:52.24) and Northern-Cal (1:52.70).
Atholton started off the afternoon with a 3A East title in the 4x800 relay, as the quartet of Gabriella Degrezia, Christina Rogers, Isha Santosh and Emma O'Brien crossed in 10:23.60 — nearly six seconds faster than second-place finishers, Northern-Calvert.
Degrezia later qualified for states in the 800, placing fourth with a time of 2:33.48, while teammate Madison Garrigus also qualified in pole vault after a second-place standing behind Stephen Decatur's Jillian Mitrecic.
"I think it is going good," Alvarado said midway through the meet. "My 4x8 won a close one, so we're taking it to them in the relays. Degrezia, she just qualified in the . Madison Garrigus, our freshman, was second in the pole vault. A lot of fifth places — every one is doing well."
Glenelg's team of Jenny Giampalmo, Megan Writt, Courtney Baehr and Kirsten Crawford placed second behind Mt. Hebron in the 4x400-relay. Giampalmo also had a top-3 finish in the 500.
Long Reach's Joelle Bailey placed third and fourth in the 55-dash and 300, respectively, while the Vikings' Emily Beyer was the fastest Howard County runner in the 3,200, placing fifth.
River Hill's Jasmine Tiamfook finished with the best time of any Howard County runner in the 800. She placed third behind Imhof and Norther-Cal's Sarah Deresky, and also placed fifth in the 1,600.
Reservoir's Janaya Cooper-Marshall crossed third in the 55-hurdles, while the Gators' 4x800-relay team finished third with a time of 10:36.09.
Reservoir's Lola Alli won her second-straight region title in shot put, throwing 34-feet, 4 1/2 inches, while Wilde Lake's Deanna Yancey bested the Vikings' Julia Shanley in the girls high jump, recording, 5-feet, 2-inches.
"She's a competitor," said Wildecats coach Judd Lincoln. "She's set another school record again for the indoor season. She just missed 5 [feet], 4 [inches] so we are looking forward to the state meet and that's her focus, the high jump."
Lincoln, who after spending the last six years on the Gators coaching staff, is in his first year at Wilde Lake. He not only guided Yancey to her second-consecutive region championship, but also helped the Wildecats to a successful night on the boys short-distance side.
Christian Saulsbury and Jason Macmillan finished first and second, respectively, in the 55-dash, while MacMillan also placed second in the 300. TJ Lyles finished second in the 55-hurdles, while Kareem Press, along with winning a 3A East crown in pole vault, also helped the Wildecats to a second-place standing in the 4x400-relay. Saulsbury, Macmillian, Lyles and Wayne Johnson also secured second in the 4x200-relay.
"As far as the boys go, our sprints — we just have four guys and they are doing the best that they can," Lincoln said. "They all run in the 4x2 and 4x4 and then we have some of our distance runners come down and help them out with that. And then we'll see when the fur is done flying we'll see how we'll end up. We're in it to do the best we can, so we'll see what happens."
Wilde Lake placed second in the boys team race with 74 points. Oxon Hill won handily with 128 points.
"I coached at Oxon Hill for 10 years so I know how tough those kids are," said Wildecats coach Whitty Bass. "I think we can compete with them, but we just don't have the depth that they've got. We are much smaller team… [but] we are very pleased. Coach Lincoln has done very well with his sprinters and jumpers. They have done very well tonight."
Kai Muniz had a solid outing for the Gators, earning two second-place finishes in both the 1,600 and 800. Teammate Jesse Parson finished third in the 300, fourth in the 55-hurdles and fifth in the 55-dash.
Hammond's Jordan Lomax won the boys high jump with a height of 5-feet, 7 inches, while in the same event on the girls side, the Golden Bears' Maya Harris finished fourth.
Atholton's Roshen Abraham and Dae'trell Gordon both earned top-3 standings in high jump and shot put, respectively. Centennial's Ethan Carpenter placed fourth in the 3,200, while the Gladiators' Jared Allen was the highest placing Howard County runner in the 500, finishing fifth with a time of 1:12.94.
The Hawks' Rahul Reddy crossed third behind Muniz in the 3,200, while finishing as the county's top runner in the 1,600, placing fourth with a time of 4:43.62.
Reservoir finished third in the boys team race with 73 points, followed by River Hill (44), Northern-Cal (37), Atholton (25), Huntingtown (22), Hammond (22), Mt. Hebron (19), Centennial (15), Stephen Decatur (12), Long Reach (10), Great Mills (10), St. Charles (7), James M. Bennett (4), Glenelg (4) and Potomac (1).