Running: College track and field athletes shine before holiday

Wins were plentiful for Harford County collegiate track and field athletes the week before Easter.

Matt Cross, a Bel Air High School grad, won the pole vault in his first competition of the spring. A senior at Messiah College, he vaulted 13-11 3/4 in a meet at York College on April 3. The win came a month after Cross placed fifth in the NCAA Division III wrestling championships, earning All-American honors and completing the season with a 41-8 record.


Harford Tech grad Dana Smothers won the 800 in the Coppin State Twilight Meet in 1:57.29. Three days later, the Bowie State junior placed third in the 400 at Winston-Salem (N.C) Collegiate Invitational in 48.42. He also ran on Bowie State's winning 4x100 relay team and its 4x400 team, which placed second in 3:13.94.

Erika Stasakova of Lafayette College won the 3000-meter steeplechase in 11:29.35 in a meet at Lehigh University on April 7. A John Carroll grad from Bel Air, she also placed fourth in the 5000 meters in 18:43. Her steeplechase time places her fifth on Lafayette's all-time list for the event.


Shannel Shivers of Aberdeen was a double winner in the Goucher Invitational in Towson April 7. The Towson University senior won the shot put at 40-6 and discus at 127-8. The school record holder in the discus, Shivers placed second in the hammer throw at 162-8, approaching to the school record of 166-11 held by teammate Shianna Smith.

Hannah McKenzie, a C. Milton Wright alumna, won the 3000-meter run in the Goucher Invitational. The Towson University junior was timed in 10:50.94 in finishing 3 seconds ahead of teammate Ashley Simmons, who was second.

Salisbury University sophomore Kara Tolson won the 200 in the Goucher meet in 25.68, missing her own school record by 0.17 second. The Patterson Mill grad also high jumped 5-1 for fourth place and long-jumped 15-11 3/4 for sixth.

Versatile Wes Jacobs, a senior at Frostburg State, won the 800 in 1:56.04 in the Goucher meet. Jacobs, an Aberdeen High grad, has turned in outstanding performances from the 400 through the 1500 this spring.

Also competing in the 16-team meet at Goucher were: Xzavier Robertson (Aberdeen), third in the 100 in 11.09; Ron Troutman (North Harford), sixth in the hammer at 131-4 and sixth in the discus, 126-10; Tyler Quill (CMW) 10th in long jump at 19-2 3/4 and ninth in high jump at 5-7; Matt Smith (CMW), sixth in 5000 in 16:35.66; Shea Staab (Fallston), eighth in the 5000 in 20:44.08; and Brooke Schulz (CMW), eighth in 400 hurdles, 1:12.24.

In road running...

Gus Jacobs of Bel Air finished first in the over-70 age category in the Cherry Blossom 5K in Wilmington April 7. Jacobs, 75, was timed in 28:21, and his wife, Sue Jacobs, ran 34:04 in finishing second in women's 60-69. Also finishing in the top 10 in age groups were Duane Christy, seventh in 40-49 in 21:19 and Sabra Kurth, ninth in 50-59 in 32:01.

Tim Preston of Bel Air ran 1:35:11 in the Knoxville (Tenn.) Half Marathon on April 1. He placed seventh in the 45-49 age group and was 79th overall among 2,619 finishers.


Bob Brown and Anna Wasielewski were the top finishers in the RASAC Duathlon in Bel Air on April 7. Brown trailed Rob Tisch and John Jagde in the first of two 5K runs, clocking 23:01. He then took the lead on the 18.6-mile bike course after Tisch went off course. Brown closed with a 24:58 5K to win by 18 seconds over Justin Markel. Jagde was third. Wasielewski won the women's race by 14 minutes. Donna Kreiss placed second and Wendy McPherson, third.