Derrick Smith captured two gold medals in the 15-16 age group while competing for Ed Waters' track club in last weekend's three-day, East Coast Invitational in Fairfax, Va.
In a meet that drew more than 2,650 participants from 22 states, Japan and Bermuda to George Mason University, Smith won the 400-meter run in 48.6 seconds and anchored the winning 1,600 relay team to a meet-record time of 3 minutes, 20.1 seconds.
The relay team, which is unbeaten in summer competition, includes Brian Harold, Garfield Thompson and James Carter, who was third in the 200-meter -- behind teammate Royston Little.
In all, there were five gold medals won by Ed Waters, which leaves tomorrow for this week's July 29-Aug. 1 U.S. Track and Field Association Junior Nationals in Baton Rouge, La., and later will complete its season with the Aug. 1-7 Amateur Athletic Union nationals in Knoxville, Tenn.
Results of the meet do not count toward qualifying for either of the national events.
Two more relay teams -- both in the 400 -- placed first in the 13-14 and 17-18 age groups, respectively.
The younger relay team was comprised of Tyrell Whitaker, Isac Talley, Timothy Coles and Rodney Kitchen. The elder team -- comprised of Jefferey Fisher, Ronald Keene and Mervo's All-Metro seniors Anthony Stuckey and Ben Braswell -- edged the Japanese national squad in a race that assistant coach Ron Neal called "the highlight of the event."
"It was almost a photo finish," said Neal, adding that Braswell's finish ignited the crowd in chants of "USA, USA."
Ed Waters' All-Metro Jamal Dixon-Hawkins, an Old Mill graduate, was first in the discus and fourth in the shot put, and the 1600 TC relay team of Whitaker, Tyson Lyles, Coles and Kitchen were second in the 13-14 age group.
Two All-Metro juniors from Baltimore County, Woodlawn's state champion hurdler, Sheraie Darby, and Perry Hall's county and regional champion 100-meter runner Jim Banach, met with disappointment.
Banach was winning his 100-meter heat when an old hamstring injury forced him from the race and -- as the anchor of the 400 relay team -- prevented that team from competing. Previously unbeaten Darby -- who was fifth in the 400 hurdles -- was disqualified for unsportsmanlike conduct after her event.
"A lot of the girls she ran against she'd never seen before, but they'd been running a lot longer than she has. I hope she'll learn to take losing a little better," said Neal, adding that each runner had already qualified for the nationals the next two weeks. "We're hoping that Jim recovers from his injury in time."
Bullets 13th nationally
Coach Tom Dean's under-14 Baltimore Bullets returned from Yakima, Wash., yesterday with a 13th-place finish out of 57 teams in the seven-day, AAU national tournament.
The Bullets, who placed seventh in last year's under-13 tournament, lost to teams from Cleveland (fourth place) and Nashville (sixth), and beat teams from New Mexico, Texas and Vermont.
"We played very well going unbeaten in our pool and got a bye into the final 16," said Dean, adding that starters Christopher Dean (swingman), Dennard Milton (guard), Antonio Tripp (forward), John Williams (center) and Kim Washington (guard) played well.
"I feel very good about next year, because six of the 10 players were going there for their first time," said Dean. "The kids were very positive about the experience and showed perfect conduct throughout the tournament."
Roland right along
Roland Run Club of Ruxton continued to dominate the 25-year-old, nine-team Baltimore Junior Interclub Tennis League, winning its 12th straight crown last week with 76 total match victories among its 12 players.
The league's 12-member teams competed over four weeks on Tuesdays and Thursdays in a round-robin format and in under-13 and under-17 age groups.
Roland Run's girls (39 individual match wins) and boys (37 match wins) captured their 12th titles in the past 13 and 14 years, respectively. It was the seventh straight championship for the girls and the fourth straight for the boys.
Roland Run's top older players were Vasanth Santosham and Jason Mersey among the boys, and Shireen Santosham and Emily Evans among the girls. The younger players were led by girls Sara Barnett and Kelly Boyle, and boys Jay Wich and Jamie Daue.
"This year's race was the closest it's been in years," said coach Rick Felber, whose club edged runner-up L'Hirindelle (71 victories).
Standing around 5-foot-3 a piece, the Dehan sisters of Beth T'Filoh may be small, but they left a huge impression on counselors during the Cathy Rush Future Stars basketball camp two weeks ago at Delaware Valley College.
Rachel, a sophomore, made the camp's All-Star team in Southeastern Conference, and Lilly, a freshman, played on the conference's championship squad.
The news sounds good to Beth T'Filoh girls coach John Grap, whose Warriors went 1-17 last season.
"They'll be key assets, because we're rebuilding next year," Grap said. "They're both quick, talented athletes."