Montgomery Blair High School's Online Student Newspaper
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Jan. 4, 2007

Close finishes plague indoor track team

by Johanna Gretschel, Online Managing Editor
DEC. 27, PG SPORTSPLEX-

The Blazers' relay teams experienced a number of close finishes at the second Montgomery County Developmental meet of the indoor track season, consistently finishing second in the un-scored practice meet.

Senior Victor Mba-Jones led off the boys' 4x200 meter relay, pacing Blair at the front of the pack with a split of 24.74. Sophomore Jonathon Haughton ran a 23.14 split to put the Blazers in a 2nd place before handing the baton off to fellow sophomore Chris Grindley, who ran a 24.88 split to maintain position. A messy hand-off between Grindley and Varella slightly delayed the Blazers, but Varella still ran a strong anchor leg of 23.03 to finish in a total time of 1:35.79, missing first by only seconds.

Grindley estimates that the botched hand-off between himself and Varella cost the team about one second. "I missed his hand, so it cut off a little bit," he recounted.

The girls' 4x200 meter relay 'A' team also placed 2nd in their heat. Junior Dorcas Olawuni sprinted a sizzling 27.93 split to put Blair in first in a field of 8 teams before handing the baton off to sophomore Indigo Goode. Goode ran a split of 34.90, dropping the Blazers down to 3rd place. Senior Ana Ramos slipped down to 4th place, running in a time of 31.15. Ramos passed off to senior Felicia Olawuni, who dug deep for a 28.24 finish, passing two teams to give the Blazers another 2nd place finish in a total time of 2:02.22.

The 4x200 meter relay was Goode's debut as a member of the varsity team. After experiencing the higher level of competition, Goode feels more fully prepared for future races. "I feel as though running in the 'A' team, which I usually don't do, boosted my confidence level," she said.

In the boys' 4x400 meter relay, Blair's 'A' team grabbed, big surprise, 2nd place throughout the entire race. Blair finished in 3:44.04 with an anchor leg of 55.20 from junior captain Louis Varella, nearly a second slower than his average time. Senior captain Aaron Townsend, sophomore Jonathon Haughton and senior Zach Hall made up the rest of the 4x400 relay team, and likewise ran slower as a result of fatigue. For many of the boys, the relay was their third event of the day.

Sophomore Keith Ayensu, a member of the heat-winning 4x200 meter relay 'B' team, said the Blazers will be picking up the pace at practice to make up the difference between themselves and the teams they lost to today. "Next time," he declared, "we'll be in position for first."

The Blazers' next meet is the Montgomery Invitational on Jan.13 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the PG Sportsplex.



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