Meghan White literally turned white but didn't black out yesterday after winning the Westminster Invitational for the second straight year, the Westminster boys ended eight years of frustration by capturing the team championship, and Greg Curtis of Oakland Mills started fast and finished strong for first place in the boys race.
Twenty-one schools and nearly 300 boys and girls runners competed sandwich in the 15th Westminster Invitational cross rTC country meet at Western Maryland College.
White, of Dulaney High, had collapsed last Saturday at the finish line of the UMBC Invitational and was out for 20 minutes before being revived and undergoing a series of extensive tests.
The tests proved inconclusive, but it is thought that the sophomore runner has an imbalance in her system that can be treated, said her father, Stan White, who met his daughter at the finish line.
Moments after covering the 3.1-mile course in 20 minutes and 18 seconds to edge her Dulaney teammate, Melissa Wilson (20:20), for first place in the girls race, White said she felt almost as badly as she did at UMBC. Her face was drained, but she continued to talk to her father and eventually she regained her normal color.
White said: "As long as I'm not injuring myself further, I'm not worried. The only thing that scares me now is I don't want to start off too fast in a race and start feeling too sick before I get to the finish line."
White said she didn't have any idea who was her top competition yesterday: "I just wanted to make sure I didn't open up the paper tomorrow and see that someone else had won. I would have been upset."
By remaining in the race to the end last Saturday and finishing 15th, White enabled the Dulaney girls to win the championship by one point in the UMBC Invitational.
The Dulaney girls had a much easier time of it yesterday on the way to the team championship, finishing with 36 points to 138 for second-place Mount de Sales.
Also helping Dulaney were Suzanne Sclafani (21:00, third), Marjorie Bollinger (21:20, 10th) and Erin Cecil (21:55, 16th).
Dulaney coach Bob Dean said: "All the girls ran well for us. What more can you say about Meghan? And Melissa Wilson ran her best race of the year to finish only two seconds behind Meghan. You have to give Melissa a lot of credit for working so hard all the time even though she gets beat by Meghan in every race."
In the boys competition, host Westminster was a winner over second-place Oakland Mills, 60-96.
The Owls had not won their own event since 1985, and coach Jim Gilford was beginning to wonder whether there was some kind of jinx on his squad.
"We won it in 1984 and '85 and lost it in 1986 on a technicality when some scorecards were messed up," said Gilford. "But I said in '86, that's OK we'll win it next year. Well, you see what happened."
The Owls had five runners place in the top 20 yesterday, with junior Mike Recek (16:41) finishing second to Curtis (16:32) by nine seconds.
Curtis, who was third last season as a junior, said he was pushed to the top this season by teammate Steve Petro, who took third at 16:44.