Although there will be no results for the 1st Montgomery County Developmental Meet held this evening, all athletes and coaches in attendance now know individually where they are at this early point in the season. The meet was host to some of the county's seasoned veterans, many rookies, and a few rookies that looked like seasoned veterans.
The meet began with a group of veterans from Whitman in the 4x800m relay. Debbie Isen brought the Vikings through the exchange in 3rd place in 2:25. Morgane Gay got the baton and created an insurmountable lead over Blair and Churchill. Leslie Morrison cruised into a 9:45 team finish with a moderate 2:23 split. Later in the meet, Gay went on to dominate the 1600m in 5:17 and Morrison won the 500m in 1:17.
The boys 4x800 showcased a Damascus team lead by Wil Zahorodny, who dominated the opening leg with a 2:01 split. Historically, Damascus would fade away after Zahorodny's leg, but this Damascus squad was able to fend off a persistent Gaithersburg team, which was lead by Antonio Palmer with a 2:04 split. In the end, it was B-CC's Elias Tousley who blew by Gaithersburg's Mike Limongelli to place 2nd (8:37) behind Damascus (8:34). In the early-going, it appears that this year's Damascus team will have more than just the two weapons they had last year and should be competitive in a variety of events.
The 55 meter hurdle races followed the 4x8's. The audience got a treat in the very first heat, where 3 ladies completed the race in under 9 seconds (hand-timed by me). Shaakira Raheem of Einstein and Tara Okusaga of Northwest showed excellent speed and great form, but it was Churchill's Audrey Gariepy-Bogui who was the clear winner. The defending 100m hurdle state champ, Gariepy-Bogui is showing that she will be very hard to beat this season. Later in the meet, she headed over to the infield where she cleared a height of 5'-7.5" in the high jump.
A new face emerged from the boys 55m hurdle race when a Kennedy athlete crossed the line first. Amazingly, the winner was freshman Demetrius Lindo. Not only does Lindo have excellent hurdling form as a freshman, he also has speed, which was also showcased in the 2nd heat of the 300m run. He placed 2nd in the 2nd heat with one of the fasstest times of the day (about 37.5).
I missed most of the 55-meter dashes because I made my way over to the shot put area. Although it was difficult to hear what their marks were, it seemed to me that a few guys from Gaithersburg were a cut above the rest. Before I left, Sean Stanley's top throw of the day was 48 feet.
The first heat of the 300m Dash was led from start to finish by Jamal deen-Olatunde of Sherwood. Olatunde held on for a victory in a time of 37-low or 36-high. And although he wasn't the fastest runner of the day, many WOOT's were heard for Elias Tousley who won the 5th heat in 39s. The 1st girls 300m race was won by Alyssa Jewel of Gaithersburg.
The boys 1600m race was led by Richard Montgomery's daring Ben Hoyt for the first 800 meters. WJ's Chris Moen took over the race at the half way mark with Damascus's Wil Zahorodny chasing. Moen proceeded to put a large gap between himself and the field on his way to a victory in 4:26. Sherwood's Chris Barnard put in a strong final 400 meters to move into second. Barnard held onto 2nd place despite very strong kicks by Wootton's Chris Boyd and Sherwood's Tommy Mullings. 2nd through 4th place were all within 1 second of eachother (4:37). Freshman Andrew Palmer from Whitman made his 1600m debut with a time of 4:43.
I only had time to stay through the 500m races before I had to leave, but they were perhaps the most exciting races of the day. Churchill's Evan Whetsell dominated the boys race from the beginning. Whetsell, who won in a time of 1:08, appears to be in even better shape than he was in last year. 2nd place went to Wootton's Cedric Dana (1:09) who looked especially strong on the final lap. Like Whetsell, Dana also appears to be on a new level from where he was last year.
If you knew what you were watching, the girls 500m race was the best race of the day. Defending county champ Leslie Morrison took it out hard with the two Sinclair sisters of Blair in hot persuit. But one lap into it, it wasn't the Sinclairs, but rather it was Churchill's freshman Katie Wolf hot on the heels of Morrison. Morrison was definitely caught off guard by this new challenger, but she held her composure and kept the freshman 5 meters away over the second lap. With 100 meters to go, Morrison put in her deadly kick to secure the victory in 1:17. Wolf followed in 1:18.
Alright folks! That was a fun meet. If you saw something that I missed, talk it up in the forum. It's great to be back in track season. Keep working hard and having fun.