Arundel boys track captures first team title in 37 years

Penn Relays

The Arundel boys track and field team won its first team title in 37 years, while Meade's girls stopped Alexis Franklin from carrying Old Mill to another Anne Arundel County title on Wednesday night.

Arundel's boys edged out both Old Mill and Severna Park to win the school's first team title since 1974. The Meade girls captured their third team crown in six years stopping Franklin and Old Mill from winning a third straight championship in the title meet at Chesapeake.

On the boys side, the Wildcats began celebrating the title before the official results were announced. . Arundel finished with 117 points, beating out Old Mill (115) and Severna Park (113.33).

"I told them on the bus if everyone has a good day, then something can happen," coach Ira Queen said. "It was a team effort. The kids are overwhelmed. I'm overwhelmed by the whole thing."

Gary Cropper led the Wildcats, winning the long jump (20 feet, 8.5 inches) and triple jump (43-6.75). He also ran on the victorious 800 relay team.

In addition, Arundel got a win from Ian Wood in the 800 (1:58.77) plus a first-place finish in the 1,600 relay. The Wildcats won five times and finished in the top three in nine of the 18 events.

On the girls' side, Franklin won three individual events and ran on a first-place relay in her final county meet. She won the 100 hurdles (14.29), 300 hurdles (42.43, meet record) plus the 400, which she captured in 55.18, beating Eren Cannon of Annapolis (1:00.34) by about 25 yards .

Franklin also ran on a third-place 1,600-relay team, the race which brought her Anne Arundel County career to a close. The Ohio State-bound senior also recently won the 400 hurdles at the Penn Relays.

"It's kind of bittersweet," Franklin said. "I kind of want to leave here with kind of…a special mark."

The Meade girls made their own mark with a dominant effort, finishing with 143 points to easily beat out Severna Park (103.20). Old Mill finished fourth with 76.83 points.

"They've been working hard all season," Meade coach Bryan Trueblood said. "The girls put the work in…[and] showed up today."

Aharon Salaam won the long jump (16-11.5), beating out teammate Nichelle McMillian. But McMillian later won the triple jump (35-11). Salaam also got third in the 100 and ran on the winning 400 relay team with Kiara Haughton, Leslie Gray and Jasmine Bandy (50.00).

Gray, Bandy, Haughton and Deonna Diggs combined to win the 800 relay (1:45.87). The Mustangs also took second in the 1,600 and 3,200 relays.

There also were a number of good individual performances. Harry Bullen of Annapolis swept both the 1,600 and 3,200. Ashley Hayes of Severna Park took the 800 and 1,600, and Sarah Taylor of Chesapeake set a new meet record in the pole vault – clearing 10-7 in the rain in the night's final event.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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