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Meet the Blazers
By: Kevin Milsted
webmaster@mocorunning.com
2008-05-19


Everyone agrees that the Blair Blazers were not very good during the 2006 indoor and outdoor track seasons, but they could tell it was the beginning of something good. 2006 is when Louis Varella, Jonathan Haughton, Chris Grindley, Enuma Nzesi, and Keith Ayensu all joined the team. Mohammad Mansaray and Kingsley Asare later joined the original group. 2006 is also when Ralph Penn joined the Blazers and started turning things around. Drawing on years of experience coaching cross country and track at Columbia Union College, Penn took on the new challenge of developing a pack of young, unmotivated teens into a team of strong young men who motivate one another on and off the track. What they developed into was more than anyone could have imagined. They are now one of the strongest sprinting teams Montgomery County has ever seen, and they have hurdlers, throwers, distance runners, and a strong girls team to go along with it.

Get to know some of this year's Blair Blazers before they attempt to make this year's state championship one for the record books.


Name: Coach Ralph Penn

Hometown: Philadelphia

Coaching Experience: Three years coaching sprints at Blair. 15 years coaching Division II track and cross country at Columbia Union College in Takoma Park

Athletic Experience: Track & Field in high school and at Penn State University. Specialty in the 400-meter run and hurdles

Favorite Musical Artist: Miles Davis / John Coltrane

Name: Louis Varella

Class: 2008

Events at States: 400, 4x2, 4x4

Experience: Began track sophomore year

Titles: Montgomery County and 4A West 400m Champ

Favorite Music: Hip Hop / R&B

Name: Jonathan Haughton

Class: 2009

From: Born in Jamaica, moved to US at age 2

Events at States: 200, 4x1, 4x2, 4x4

Experience: Began track freshman year

Titles: Montgomery County and 4A West 200m Champ

Other Sports: Football

Favorite Musical Artist: Lil Wayne

Name: Keith Ayensu

Class: 2009

Experience: Began track freshman year

From: PG County originally, moved to Ghana at age 2, moved back at age 7

Middle School: Parkland

Other Sports: Football

Favorite Musical Artist: Nas

Name: Enuma Nzesi

Class: 2008

Events at States: 4x4

Experience: Began track sophomore year

Other Sports: Football

Middle School: Silver Spring Int'l

Favorite Musical Artist: Lil Wayne

Name: Chris Grindley

Class: 2009

Events at States: 4x1, 4x2, 4x4

Experience: Began track freshman year

Other Sports: Football

Middle School: Parkland

Favorite Musical Artist: Lil Wayne

Name: Kingsley Asare

Class: 2008

Events at States: 100, 4x1

Experience: Began track this season

Other Sports: Football

Middle School: Sligo/Eastern

Favorite Musical Artist: Bone Thugs-N-Harmony


Probable state competitors for Blair's boys team:
4x1 Kingsley Asare, Jonathan Haughton, Chris Grindley, Mohammad Mansaray
4x2 Jonathan Haughton, Chris Grindley, Louis Varella, Mohammad Mansaray
4x4 Chris Grindley, Jonathan Haughton, Enuma Nzesi, Louis Varella

Open 100: Kingsley Asare and Mohammad Mansaray
Open 200: Jonathan Haughton and Mohammad Mansaray
Open 400: Louis Varella
300 Hurdles: Brandon Hudgins
Shot Put: Alex and Victor Wang





Article Comments - Add A Comment

NameComment

Anonymous
2008-05-19 21:09:19

blazers... that's whats up!

Anonymous
2008-05-19 21:53:57

good luck at States blazers. Congrats on a great season and im sure you guys will turn even more heads at Morgan this week

Anonymous
2008-05-19 22:00:55

madd props to the coach...taking a group of kids 3 years ago and developing them into a sprint powerhouse. This is inspiring, best of luck to you guys at States

Rob
2008-05-19 22:02:52

This is a great idea for an article, Kp. Very nice!

Anonymous
2008-05-19 22:05:27

WANG BROS!

Anonymous
2008-05-19 22:12:40

yea blazers!!! we bout to fry!!!

MOHAMED MANSARAY
2008-05-20 14:08:32

BLAZER SUCK WHAT HAPPENED TO SUPERMAN I SUPPOSE TO BE IN THE

Anonymous
2008-05-20 16:34:33

GOOD LUCK AT STATES BLAZERS. & TO THOSE GRADUATING THIS YEAR. HAVE FUNN IN COLLEGE!!

Anonymous
2008-05-20 23:51:25

Ay yall funny!...whoever dat is tryna b moehammed...

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