Warriors hurdle success in a word

May 26, 2003|By ANDREW MASON

CATONSVILLE, Md. - Equipoise.

Whatever it is, Boonsboro hurdlers had lots of it Saturday at the Maryland Track & Field State Championships at University of Maryland-Baltimore County, as sophomore Sarah Hensley, senior Brett Morrell and junior Dan Robinson swept all four Class 1A hurdles events.

"Equipoise," said longtime Boonsboro hurdles coach/guru Dwight Scott. "It means the ability to combine concentration and relaxation.

"My only words of wisdom were to run as fast as you can for as far you can and make sure you got a load of equipoise."

Apparently, the Warriors were all ears. They also extended much of the credit for their success to the 71-year-old Scott and his vast wisdom of the sport.


Hensley won the 1A girls 100-meter hurdles (15.45) and 300 hurdles (45.70) - a year after finishing sixth in the 300s and not even qualifying for the 100s.

"He's a major help," Hensley said, "probably the biggest reason I've improved so much."

"Coach works us hard," said Robinson, the two-time defending state champ in the 55 hurdles indoors, who won the 1A boys 110 (14.77) Saturday for his first outdoor crown. "He's a big part of it."

Morrell, who finished second to Robinson in the 110, completed the sweep with his third-straight title in the 300 in a 1A state-meet record 39.02 - .15 seconds faster than the mark he set in 2002. Morrell, who also won his third-straight long jump crown in a school-record 23 feet, closed out his prep career with seven outdoor state titles.

Scott said his athletes' all-around showing was about the best he'd ever seen.

"I don't believe any high school has ever won all four hurdles races," he said.

He was also only willing to take so much of the credit.

"Success depends on talent - size, speed and strength," said Scott. "No coach is going to make someone a champion without God-given ability. Those things are 80 to 90 percent of the athlete's success. Ten to 20 percent depends on the coach, especially in high school."

According to Scott, that last ratio also depends on how much information a coach can steal.

"All good coaches are renowned thieves," he said. "They steal good ideas from other coaches."

Of course, Scott's probably had his pocket picked more than a few times.

"I've got a little advantage because I was a hurdler," Scott said. "And when you're this old, you've learned enough to pass on some wisdom."

Medals galore

While the area champions stole Saturday's show, leaving UMBC with 15 individual golds, two relay wins and team titles for the Smithsburg girls and Middletown boys, the medals didn't stop there.

- Capturing silvers and bronzes were: 1A girls - Boonsboro's Kara Wastler (third, 800), Sarah Harris (third, 100) and 400 relay (third); Brunswick's Liz McCallum (second, 200), Kacie Escamilla (second, shot put), Chris Shortz (second, 300 hurdles) and 1,600 relay (third); Hancock's Carie Beaver (second, long jump) and Amber Moats (third, shot put); Smithsburg's Corina Campbell (second, 100 hurdles), Jessica Yu (second, high jump) and Kristen Poffenberger (third, high jump) and Williamsport's Kristin Berry (second, 800).

- 2A girls - Middletown's Allison Jarkey (tied for second, pole vault).

- 4A girls - Thomas Johnson's Lauren Grimes (third, high jump).

- 1A boys - Boonsboro's Morrell (second, 110 hurdles); Brunswick's Scott Custer (second, 800); Smithsburg's Dustin Sier (third, 200) and 400 relay (third); South Hagerstown's Antwan Jones (second, triple jump) and Williamsport's Aaron Buchman (third, 1,600).

- 2A boys - Middletown's Justin Myers (second, 1,600), John Coconis (third, 1,600), Josh Aldana (second, 110 hurdles), Vaughn Sheroda (second, discus) and David Chesney (second, pole vault).

- 4A boys - Thomas Johnson's Stephen Link (third, discus).

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