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Meade, W. Tech boys win crowns

The Baltimore Sun

The boys of top-ranked Meade and No. 4 Western Tech removed much of the suspense from yesterday's state track and field championships at Morgan State.

Meade easily won the Class 3A state title after taking the Class 4A crown last year. Western Tech had pointed toward a Class 1A state championship all year and got it with little trouble.

Justin Murdock, Dahmar Smiles, Matthew Brinkley and Anya Uzoh all played big roles in helping Meade (103 points) easily beat Westlake (66). Murdock won the 400 (47.51 seconds), finished a close second to Westlake's Devon Smith in the 100 and 200 and helped on the winning 400 relay. Smiles took the 110 hurdles (14.24), and Brinkley was second in the 300 hurdles and 800.

Uzoh won the high jump Friday and also was on the 400 relay team as well as the the second-place 800 relay, as Meade kept piling up points.

"I call them the Four Horsemen," Meade coach Nigel Holder said. "These guys can do anything, any day, any meet."

This was Western Tech's first state title. The Wolverines finished with 120 points. Digital Harbor took second with 92.

Jermol Dix won the 300 hurdles in 40.80 - getting the same time as teammate Anthony Kiser - and Floyd Hawkes, Chris Mills and others helped the Wolverines by getting several finishes in the top three.

Dix and Western Tech closed the day with a big victory in the 400 relay (3:26.26). The Wolverines ended the season by winning the Baltimore County, regional and state crowns.

"It's a big accomplishment for us," Dix said. "It's going to let every really know that Western has some potential."

The Western Tech girls were one of three teams that just missed a state title. They finished with 64 points, two behind Williamsport, which needed to win the event's final race (the 1,600 relay) to win the crown.

No. 8 River Hill came up short in Class 2A, finishing second (55) to Middletown (65). The Annapolis girls were closer, falling by only two points to Westlake (58) in Class 3A.

Kelly Yarn's late victory in the shot put (34 feet, 4.25 inches) gave Western Tech a chance, but it wasn't enough. They also set a meet record in winning the 400 relay (48.46), and Lauren Campbell helped with second-place finishes in the 300 hurdles and the 400.

Torrie Saunders and Jessica Tongue pushed No. 6 Annapolis to its second-place finish. Saunders won the triple jump on Friday for her first individual state title and returned yesterday to take the 300 hurdles and help win the 400 relay (47.59).

"I've been waiting to win for a long time," Saunders said. "It made all the work worth it."

Tongue won the 200 (24.16) and was on the relay with Saunders. She also took second in the 100 and the 100 hurdles as the pair had a hand in all of the Annapolis points.

River Hill got strong work from freshman Anna Demaree, who finished second in the 800 and 1,600 yesterday after taking second in the 3,200 Thursday. Century freshman Maura Linde beat her in the 1,600 and 3,200.

The Hawks also got a good performance from Craig Morgan on the boys' side, as he won the 1,600 (4:24.35) and 800 (1:58.37). Alese Forbes from Northwestern was another multiple winner, taking the 100 (12.27) and 400 (56.97).

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