The week before a state championship is not necessarily the time to be trying new tactics, but with school closings due to inclement weather in the days leading up to Monday’s Class 1A and 2A state indoor track and field meets held at the Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex, teams were forced to get creative, first-year Frederick Douglass High School coach Kori Green said.
“It threw off everyone’s schedule, nobody was able to practice,” Green said. “We just found ways, we kept in touch, we did interval works on treadmills, got on bicycles, kids were over at each other’s houses [working on something]. We kept in touch. It just showed the dedication they had.”
The Eagles’ commitment to being in the best possible shape Monday no matter the obstacles Mother Nature tossed their way paid off as the Douglass boys claimed their second indoor state title in three years. The team’s 2012 win was the program’s first ever.
Douglass edged Carroll County’s Century High, 65-60. Frederick County’s Catoctin (55.50 points), Largo (50) and Oakdale of Frederick (30) rounded out the top 5 in the boys’ competition.
The Largo girls finished second place by three points behind Baltimore County’s Western Tech, 64-61. Liberty (59) out of Carroll County, Oakdale (44) and Frederick County’s Middletown (43) finished third through fifth, respectively.
The Central boys (third place) and girls (fifth place) were Prince George’s top finishers in the Class 1A competition. Fairmont Heights (seventh) and Surrattsville (eighth) earned top 10 performances on the girls’ side; Forestville Military (seventh) was the only other top 10 team on the boys’ side.
Winning a state championship like Monday’s is not about winning every single event, Green said. First, it takes a bit of luck — healthy athletes, top performances. Then, it’s about being productive across the board.
“You have to do a little bit, everywhere,” Green said. “It is track and field and that’s how we truly look at it. If you can win the distance and win the in the field, [you’re in pretty good shape].”
The Eagles did just that. Junior Rico Gomez set a Class 2A meet record (1 minute, 5.35 seconds)in his 500-meter run victory. Terrell Green won the 1,600-meter run and posted a personal best 1:57.17 in his runner-up finish in the 800 meters. Freshman Kollin Smith was remarkable in his high jump win (6 feet, 2 inches) and finished fourth in the 55-meter hurdles. Gomez, Smith and Green also teamed with Quinton Mills for a runner-up finish in the 1,600-meter relay.
“Our big guys that we really rely on did their job and our role players stepped up,” Green said. “It means so much to the kids, they’ve been doing track their whole lives and it’s nice to see the work pay off. We demand a lot, track is a very demanding sport, so it’s nice to see the work pay off.”
Largo’s boys and girls posted several top performances to keep themselves in contention for the majority of Monday’s competition, including wins in the boys’ 800-relay (Jerome Miller, Marcelle Preston, Joshua Washington and Derek Durham) and 4x4 (Washington, Miller, Daniel Enieruem and Preston) and the girls’ 800-relay (Davonni Farrar, Jennifer Goodman, Stephanie Magruder, Eboni Carter) and 1,600-relay (Farrar, Bria Jones, Cayla Coleman and Dominique Devonish).
Preston also set a Class 2A meet record en route to winning the 300-meter dash (34.79).
“It means a lot to win, we knew it was important to get points wherever we can,” Durham said. “It means a lot to represent Largo well.”
Other county winners include, Favour Ihekwene (Largo, shot put), Anthony Chesley (Gwynn Park, 55-meter dash), Mary Foday (Central, 300-meter dash), Crystal Parker (Central, high jump), Chandler Cotton (Central, 300-meter dash, 500-meter run).