LANDOVER — LANDOVER -- The fourth-ranked North Carroll girls made school history last night.
Katie Hursey won the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs and played a large role in the Panthers winning the Class 3A-2A state championship at the Prince George's Sports & Learning Complex. This was the school's first indoor track state title.
North Carroll won the state title after capturing the Carroll County, Monocacy Valley Athletic League Chesapeake Conference and the Class 3A-2A West regional crowns.
The Panthers got Hursey's two victories plus Jess Huber's win in the pole vault and a relay victory to help compile 50 points, beating Annapolis and Largo, which were tied for second with 34. North Carroll coach Jim MacDonald said his team had a good mix of first-place efforts and points from other events.
"You have to have first-place finishes," MacDonald said. "You have to be able to cover all the bases at the state meet."
North Carroll had already locked up the team title when Huber won in the night's final event, clearing 9 feet, 6 inches. She beat Urbana's Sarah Lueck (also 9-6) with fewer misses. This was Huber's second consecutive state title.
Hursey's first victory seemed to give both her and the Panthers a spark. She was one of the state's best cross country runners last fall, but Mount Hebron's Liz McCarter used a late spurt to beat her in the Class 3A state title meet at Hereford.
McCarter also beat Hursey earlier this week in the Class 3A-2A West regional meet. But Hursey gained some revenge in this meet, taking off on the final lap to pull away from McCarter and capture the 1,600 race in 5 minutes, 6.42 seconds. McCarter took second in 5:11.04 and later won the 800 in 2:20.85.
"I like using everything that I have on the last lap," Hursey said. "I just took off."
Hursey ran on North Carroll's third-place 3,200 relay team. The Panthers got another win in the 800 relay (1:45.71). Brittney Coppa, Sam McCardell, Brittany Poist and Alexis Hurd combined for that victory.
Howard was the only local school to come close to winning the boys meet. The Lions finished third with 32 points, just behind co-winners La Plata and Middletown. Both schools had 35 in the first time two teams tied for a boys championship since 1981.
The Lions won the Class 3A state title in outdoor track last spring. Last night, Howard didn't win any events but took second in the 800 relay, and Joey Thompson finished third in both the 1,600 and 3,200.
Injuries hurt the Lions, as Chris Brewington battled hamstring problems but still was able to anchor the 800 relay. The Lions came in on a roll after taking the Howard County and Class 3A-2A West regional titles recently.
"They really wanted to win," Howard coach Matt Clever said. "But when you get to a meet like this, you need everything to happen and today it didn't."
Indoor track isn't an official sport in Harford County, but two of its schools came away with two state records anyway.
Aberdeen's Paris Williams won the 300 (40.79) and set a Class 3A record in capturing the 500 (1:14.58). Chris Wagner of Fallston also set a Class 3A mark with his victory in the 800 in 1:57.04.