Navy has the talent and depth to go after defending champion Manhattan and George Mason at the IC4A indoor track and field championships at Harvard this weekend, but it isn't going to happen.
The Mids repeated as the Heptagonal champs last week, and because distance ace Greg Keller wants his March peak to come at the NCAAs March 12-13, his IC4A schedule will be limited to a leg on the distance medley relay. Navy coach Steve Cooksey admits that his IC4A lineup isn't as strong as it could be, but the Mids still could break into the top five.
"Earlier in the season, I thought we might have a chance to win the IC4As," Cooksey said. "We've got a lot of potential scorers, but it's not fair to Greg [Keller] and some other guys who are trying to get to the NCAAs. We're trying to save his legs for next week."
Keller, a senior from Harvard, Neb., enjoyed his last trip to Boston, when he won the 3,000 meters at the Terrier Classic in 7 minutes, 56.23 seconds, the fastest time in the NCAA. He was sixth in the NCAA mile last year, but will go in the 3,000 this time.
Cooksey's squad includes several local products. Chris Novak, a senior out of C. Milton Wright, was third in the 500 meters at the Heptagonals; Earl Young, a junior from Calvert Hall, is a regular on the 4 x 800 relay; and Greg Sutton, a plebe from Perry Hall, is one of Navy's best young jumpers.
The women's companion to the IC4As, the ECAC championships, are across the Charles River at Boston University. Maryland's Marchelle Payne is the defending champion in the triple jump.
Wrestlers shoot for NCAAs
The Maryland wrestling team goes to the ACC championships at Duke Friday and Saturday with a No. 21 national ranking. The only dual-meet losses for the Terps, who never have gone unbeaten in the regular season since they started wrestling in the conference in 1954, were by identical 16-15 scores to Navy and Clemson.
Kevin Brown (190 pounds), a senior from Poly, is Maryland's only past ACC champion, and his title came two years ago. There are also high expectations for David Land (118), a senior from Laurel who is No. 7 in Amateur Wrestling News rankings; Keith Burgess (142), a senior from Salisbury; Steve Woods (150); and Bill Ferencz (heavyweight), who was a state champion for North Carroll High.
In other weekend tournaments that will serve as NCAA qualifiers, No. 14 Navy will try to improve on last year's runner-up finish in the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association when it goes to Lehigh, and Morgan State and Coppin State go to the Eastern Regional at California, Pa.
III's best at Loyola High
The soccer team stayed home despite going unbeaten in its last eight games and the basketball team was snubbed despite winning 15 of its last 17 games, so it's up to the lacrosse team to get Salisbury State to the NCAAs.
The Sea Gulls begin their push for a fifth straight NCAA bid Sunday in the first game of a doubleheader at Loyola High that features four of the first seven teams in the Division III preseason poll. Fifth-ranked Salisbury State plays No. 3 Roanoke, last season's NCAA runner-up, at noon, followed by No. 6 Gettysburg and No. 7 Ohio Wesleyan.
Big finish for Amoss
Goucher's Renie Amoss ended her basketball career with a state-record 2,220 points, 421 assists and 311 steals, and ended this season in the Division III top 10 in scoring and assists. Amoss is a field hockey All-American who probably will play No. 3 singles for the tennis team this spring.
It was also a season of milestones at the College of Notre Dame. Both Toyah Houck (Westminster) and junior Debbi Pearson reached the 1,000-point plateau, and junior point guard Karyn Murphy (IND) tied the school record with 16 assists in a game last week.
J. J. Kremer (Calvert Hall) had eight goals to help UMBC win the seven-team Chesapeake Indoor Soccer Invitational. . . . The Retrievers and Towson State are encouraged by news that the Big South Conference most likely will get an automatic NCAA bid next fall in soccer. . . . The Tigers' gymnastics team takes a 12-meet win streak to Pitt Saturday, and goes after its seventh straight ECAC championship March 20 at the Towson Center. . . . Navy junior Jamie Slough was selected as a first-team All-America by the National Intercollegiate Squash Racquets Association for the second straight year. Midshipman Casey Garwood was named second-team All-America for the second straight year.
Coppin State: Sophomore G Sidney Goodman was named co-Player of the Week along with Florida A&M;'s DeLon Turner in the MEAC. Goodman averaged 15.5 points and 4.5 rebounds, 4.5 steals and 4.0 assists in MEAC victories.
Salisbury State: Junior G Dameon Ross was named the Eastern College Athletic Conference Division III Southern Player of the Year. The Sea Gulls have had the Player of the Year each of the past three years. Ross averaged 28.2 points, 7.3 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.7 steals.
Towson State: Senior G Devin Boyd (Walbrook) was named Player of the Week in the Big South Conference after scoring a league-record 46 points in a double-overtime defeat of UMBC. He also set Big South records at the free throw line, making 22 of 26. Boyd also was named co-Player of the Week in the ECAC.
Navy: Freshman G Kate Wells was named the Rookie of the Week in the Patriot League. She had 12 points and five rebounds in a win over Fordham.
UMBC: Junior G Missy Quille (Annapolis) was named Player of the Week in the Big South Conference. She had 37 points and 22 rebounds in wins over Radford and UNC-Asheville.
Towson State: Freshman Carrie Leger was named Gymnast of the Week in the Eastern College Athletic Conference Division I. Her 38.5 score in the all-around gave her second place and led the Tigers to a narrow victory over Kentucky and Vermont.