"I've got good news and bad news," Centennial pole vaulter Robert Rix said to teammate Andrea Smith during yesterday's track and field meet at Atholton.
But before Rix could say another word, Smith, a fellow pole vaulter, jumped in.
"Was that the wrong foot?" she said, smiling and laughing.
The good news was that Smith, on her third and last attempt, cleared 6 feet 10 inches, a personal best and county record.
And yes, she did go off the wrong foot.
"You're supposed to go off your left foot," said Rix, who recently suffered a hairline fracture of his right elbow attempting to jump 11-6. "She loves going off her right foot."
Smith's performance -- she beat her previous mark of 6-7 set this spring at the Glenelg Invitational -- was among the highlights of the four-team meet that came one week before the two-day county championships, also at Atholton.
"My goal was 7, but I can't complain about 6-10," Smith said. "All I wanted to do was improve, and I did that. I'm happy."
Howard's defending county champion girls team looked impressive with 102 points, followed by Glenelg (67), Atholton (61) and Centennial (42).
Howard's Donna Mullings won four events -- 100 (12.7), long jump (16-10 1/2 ), 200 (25.8) and triple jump (35-9). Coleen Parker, running in the 800 for only the second time, finished first with a personal record of 2: 22.
Atholton's defending county champion boys team won 10 of the 18 events to finish with 110 points. Centennial was second with 79.5, followed by Howard (42.5) and Glenelg (40).
Atholton's 400 relay team of featuring Cian Oatts, Jared Howard, Keith Jefferson and Max Clifford bettered the county record by one-tenth of a second with a time of 42.6 last week at the Penn Relays. Yesterday, the foursome finished first in 43.1.
Centennial's Mike French and Oatts each won two individual events. French took the 1,600 (4: 32) and the 3,200 (9: 54); Oatts, the 100 (11.0) and 200 (22.1).
Shot putters Katie Wise of Glenelg and Mike Cochran of Centennial won with school records. Wise, a junior and defending county champion, threw 39-1 1/2 , breaking mark of 35-8 she set earlier this season at the Glenelg Invitational.
Cochran, who finished third in the county last year, threw 47-10 to surpass the 1981 mark of 47-2.
Wise plays the french horn and attended a band trip over the weekend to Myrtle Beach, S.C. Having not practiced over the weekend, she surprised herself.
"It's exciting to say the least," said Wise. "I hope that I'll be able to keep it up."
Atholton distance runner Dana Strickland, preparing for a quadrathlon (long jump, discus, 400, 1,500) Saturday, competed in her first field event, the long jump.
"It was neat," said Strickland, who jumped 13-2.
Pub Date: 5/02/96