CO-COACHES OF THE YEAR
Freddie Hendricks, Mervo -- Hendricks and assistants Ron Neal and Ron Taylor have been on a mission since finishing second in the 4A states by half a point two years ago. Some observers consider this year's team, which won the title, 106-63, over Gaithersburg, the best Baltimore City team in 15 years, and one of the area's best ever. What made Hendricks' team so impressive was that it wasn't one-dimensional but had great range and versatility. Jason Panniell is perhaps the area's best hurdler, and James Carter, a jumper and middle distance runner, is the area's most versatile performer. Mike Curtis is a nifty distance runner, and middle distance man Garfield Thompson ran an area-best (1:55.7) in the 800. But it took Hendricks and his staff's know-how to blend it all together and keep his athletes primed for the big events. At the Penn Relays, the Mustangs' 400-relay contingent of Dante Palmer, Royston Lyttle, Carter and Panniell was the highest placing American team (41.67 seconds), qualifying for the Championship of America. The 1600 relay squad of Garfield Thompson, Antoine Collins, Tyree Byron and Carter ran a 3:17.2 at the Towson Relays, and a 3:18.24 to win the state meet. This year's Mustangs are comparable to the Ron Evans-coached Arundel powerhouses in the early 1970s, Old Mill in 1978 and Northwestern in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Johnnie Foreman, Gilman -- Foreman returned every sprinter from the previous squad that won three of the four relays in last year's MIAA meet, along with 10 quality distance runners, including two-time All-Metro cross country runner Ted Lord. But with little depth in the field events, he feared even the talent in other areas wouldn't be enough to dethrone Calvert Hall or handle an up-and-coming McDonogh squad. "We beat Calvert Hall during the season, but then we lost to McDonogh," said Foreman, whose weaknesses were exposed during a tough scrimmage with Mervo. Assistant coach Jack Thompson worked overtime to improve those aspects and came through with the right formula. In the MIAAs, Donald Bacoat and Charles Howard were first and third in the triple jump, Pat Runge was second in the high jump, Sam Whittin was third in the pole vault, and George Bealefeld third in both the shot put and discus. Those key efforts, along with victories by Lord (3200), Terrance Whitehead (200), Jon Mychael Bowman (110 hurdles) and the 3200 relay squad aided in a 150-106 win over runner-up McDonogh, with Calvert Hall (103) finishing third. Gilman finished in the top three in 14 of the 18 events -- and the Greyhounds scored in each event. "We kept the emphasis on strenuous conditioning, and everyone pulling together and doing his job. The kids really became believers in that."
PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
James Carter, Mervo, junior -- Carter's efforts in the 4A state meet in the triple jump (48-9) and the 400 (47.9) were No. 1 out of all four classifications. Carter anchored the 1600 team (3:18.24) to a state title as well, and was third in 21.96 in the 200. Carter's state title-winning triple jump is the city's best ever and ranked among the top three in the history of the state tournament. One other local, Ralph Spry (Old Mill, 1978), now an assistant coach at the University of Florida, leaped farther than 49 feet (49-6), and later became an NCAA long jump champ in 1983 at Old Miss. At the Penn Relays, Carter ran a 47.7 split in his 400 leg of the 10th-place 1600 relay squad. It was the fastest split time of an American, second only to a Jamaican runner, but Carter's 46.81 at the Towson Relays was a personal best. Also at Penn, Carter was a member of the Mustangs' 400-relay contingent that was the highest placing American team (41.67 seconds) of the Championship of America. Put simply, this may be a future Olympian. "He'll run the hurdles, relays, even long jumps," said Hendricks. "If he could learn to pole vault, he could probably be a
FIRST TEAM AT A GLANCE
Jonathan Dietrich, Calvert Hall, senior -- Dietrich continued his classic rivalries with Gilman's Ted Lord, his nemesis and friend from cross country. Lord brought out the best in Dietrich in a dual meet, as Dietrich beat him in a personal and area-best 9:38.0. Dietrich was a runner-up to Lord in the MIAAs, finishing in 9:47.4.
Anders Fristedt, McDonogh, junior -- With Lord and Dietrich graduating, Fristedt will be a force among MIAA and area distance runners. His MIAA-winning 4:21.4 in the 1600 was a meet record, and ranked second in the area to 2A state champ Greg Curtis (4:21.11). Fristedt also ran a leg of the Eagles' MIAA-winning 1600 relay, which set a meet record of 3:29.6.
Damean Johnson, Carver, junior -- Johnson ran the race of his life in beating Mervo's James Carter in the 400 of the city meet. He received the nod over Carter in a photo finish of 47.9 seconds, a personal and area best for both runners. Johnson won the regions in the 400 and was second in the state meet, where he also anchored the Bears' winning 1600 relay squad (3:25.51). Johnson also won the city high jump crown, was third in the region and second in the state in 6-2.
Ted Lord, Gilman, senior -- Lord ran track as a sophomore but did not run as a freshman or a junior. Still, in winning the 3200 in an MIAA meet-record 9:41.8, Lord was able to avenge an earlier loss to friend and nemesis Jonathan Dietrich (Calvert Hall). Lord is headed to the University of North Carolina, where he'll major in pre-med on a Moorehouse Foundation full scholarship. The award is given annually by the school to gifted athletes based on community service and leadership.
Royston Lyttle, Mervo, senior -- At the city meet, Lyttle won four gold medals, including taking the 100 (10.6) and 200 (21.1) in meet records, and anchoring the 800 relay squad to a come-from-behind win. His 200 time remains an area best. Lyttle was first in the regions and states in the 100, second in the regions and states in the 200, and a member of the state runner-up 800 relay squad. Lyttle was a member of the Mustangs' 400-relay squad at the Penn Relays that was the highest placing American team (41.67) in the Championship of America.
DaVaughn Mellerson, Mount St. Joseph, junior -- Mellerson is a repeat All-City/County performer. He won his second straight MIAA shot put title in 49-2 1/2 -- six inches shy of his personal best -- and also captured the discus crown in a meet-record 143-5. Next year, the sky is the limit.
Dante Palmer, Mervo, senior -- Palmer won his second straight city title in the long jump, leaping 21 feet, 6 inches, and was the leadoff leg for the the Mustangs' 400 relay squad at the Penn Relays that was the highest placing American team (41.67) in the Championship of America. His season ended prematurely in the regions due to a leg injury.
Jason Panniell, Mervo, senior -- Panniell was the county and regional champ in both the 110 and 300 hurdles, posting an area-best 14.2 in the 110s at the city meet and an area-best 38.4 in winning the 4A state title in the 300s. Panniell, a runner-up in the 110s in 14.55, was a member of the Mustangs' 400 relay squad at the Penn Relays that was the highest placing American team (41.67 seconds) in the Championship of America.
Anthony Reid, Woodlawn, senior -- Reid won the county, regional and 4A state titles in the 200, the latter in a personal-best 21.8. In the regions and states, he edged Mervo's Royston Lyttle. Reid also won the county 100 crown in 10.6 seconds, was a county runner-up in the long jump (22-0), won the county 300 hurdles crown (39.7 seconds) and the county 400 -- (48.8). Reid was a state runner-up in the 400.
Dave Russell, Perry Hall, senior -- Before no-heighting at 11 feet at the 4A state meet, Russell, a state runner-up last year, had turned in a banner season. The senior pole vaulter cleared 14 feet five times, including heights of 14-6, 14-8 and a county-record 15-1 at the Baltimore County championships. Russell won his second straight regional crown at 13-0, and cleared 13-6 at the Towson Relays. He came off an undefeated indoor season in which he won his second straight state title by a then-count record 14-7. He won eight of the nine major meets he competed in indoors.
Stanley Shields, Randallstown, senior -- The county and regional champ in the long jump, Shields finished third in the 3A state meet. His best leaps were 22-1 1/2 and 22-2 1/2 . Shields also was a regional champ in the 100 --, and was a county and state runner-up in that event.
Sean Sullivan, McDonogh, senior -- Sullivan (6-5, 190) has the long, lean, athletic looks of a future decathlete. He twice beat Perry Hall's Dave Russell in the pole vault, the second time by clearing 14-6 in fewer attempts. And he won the MIAA with a
meet-record 13-6. Sullivan's clearing of 14 feet at the Meade Invitational was a meet record -- eight inches more than the record established by Dulaney's John Rousseau in 1986. Sullivan, who also won MIAA titles in the high jump (6-2) and 300 hurdles (40.6), was a three-sport athlete, having played football and basketball.
Garfield Thompson, Mervo, sophomore -- Thompson's 4A state runner-up clocking (1:55.77) in the 800 was an area best and followed his city and regional title victories. Thompson also was a member of the 1600 relay squad that ran a 3:17.2 at the Towson Relays, and a 3:18.24 to win the state meet. Thompson eschewed the indoor season to become a city and regional champion wrestler. He's a favorite to contend for a wrestling state title next year, but the indoor season could be critical to his state title hopes in the 800 outdoors. So a big question will be whether he wrestles or runs indoor track.
Jason Wancowicz, Perry Hall, senior -- Wancowicz, headed for Bucknell on a football scholarship, won the county and regional titles in the discus and finished fourth in the 4A state meet. In winning the regional crown, the 6-6, 270-pound Wancowicz tossed the discus 161 feet to eclipse the county record of 160 feet, 4 inches.
PICKING THE TEAMS
The Baltimore Sun 1995 All-Baltimore City/County Boys Track and Field Teams were chosen by Lem Satterfield after consultation with staff writers and area coaches.