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Four county athletes win state titles

May 26, 2000|By DAN KAUFFMAN

BALTIMORE - Four more Washington County athletes joined North Hagerstown's Jacy Bayer as state champions at the Maryland State Track and Field Championships at University of Maryland-Baltimore County on Friday.

Williamsport had three champions crowned - Sarah McDonald, Ryan McDonald and Nicki Witman. Smithsburg's Tissa Porter joined them in victory.

Sarah McDonald, a senior, won her first Class 1A outdoor title, clearing 10 feet, 6 inches in the girls pole vault after finishing second each of the last three years.

"I had faith in myself," she said. "Being my senior year, I wasn't going to let anyone take it away from me."

Sarah McDonald won the Class 1A/2A state pole vault title in indoor track this year, but the outdoor title meant a little more because of the previous close calls.

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"It's an incredible feeling," she said. "It's a great achievement to be number one in Maryland, and it really means a lot when you think about it."

Ryan McDonald, a junior who is not related to Sarah, claimed his first state championship with an effort of 51-7 in the boys Class 1A shot put.

"I just knew I had to do my best," he said. "It feels great knowing you're the best."

Witman, a sophomore, won the girls Class 1A triple jump with a leap of 36-6 3/4, her first leap ever over 36 feet and a performance that gave the Wildcats their third champion of the day.

"It's finally hitting me," she said. "I didn't even think of (winning the event) until I was the second seed, and then I pulled 36 feet out of nowhere."

Porter, a senior for Smithsburg, won the girls Class 1A discus title with a throw of 116-4 for her second career state title, along with the shot put crown she won last year.

Porter's winning throw was her final one, which was enough to beat out Elkton's Debbie Lanzi by more than 4 feet.

"The last throw, I just did it," Porter said. "I was so frustrated the whole time, and I just knew I had to get out there and do it, and I did it."

Ryan McDonald, Witman and Porter will all make attempts at other individual titles today. McDonald and Porter will both compete in the discus, while Witman qualified for both the 100- and 200-meter dash finals and will also participate in the long jump.

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