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Campbell is super for Leopards

May 05, 2007|By ANDREW MASON

BRUNSWICK, Md. - There's nothing easy-going about the track and field season, now that it's May.

"Before, practice was more relaxed," Smithsburg senior Jamal Campbell said. "But now the coaches are pushing us harder."

It showed Friday at the MVAL Antietam championships.

In a battle of last year's top two boys teams in Maryland Class 1A, defending state champion Smithsburg got the best of Brunswick again. The Leopards won with 153 points, the host Railroaders were second with 120 and Williamsport took third with 91 in the eight-team field.

"Brunswick's our biggest competition," said Campbell, who won four events Friday. "If we can beat them now, we should be able to make some noise at states."

Campbell won the 110-meter hurdles in 15.21 seconds, the 300 hurdles in 40.99, the long jump with a leap of 21 feet, 3 inches and the triple jump in 43-6 1/2. His performances in the latter three were all personal bests.

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"My goal is to win everything at states and get 40 points," Campbell said.

The state meet in Baltimore is only three weeks away. The Leopards ran away with last year's state title, outscoring runner-up Brunswick, 116-56.

"I think we should be able to win again," Campbell said. "If we don't win, we should still be close. But it won't be the crush it was last year."

The Williamsport girls also picked up Friday where they left off last May, when they won the 1A team title at states. The Wildcats scored 170 points to easily capture the Antietam crown. Brunswick was second with 89 and Smithsburg took third with 74.

"This is the big drive into states," said Williamsport's Amy Taylor, who won the 100 hurdles (16.33), 300 hurdles (48.18) and ran a leg of the winning 1,600 relay (4:15.45).

"We're just as good, if not better, than last year," she said. "The team's really coming together and everyone's working to support each other. We really want to win states again. Everyone's driving for it."

Williamsport also got victories Friday from Cayla Broadwater in the high jump (5-0) and triple jump (33-0), Jordan Atha in the 1,600 (5:46.54), Tracey Forsythe in the 3,200 (12:27.10) and Morgan Keplinger in the pole vault (8-0).

"For me, it's a lot about focus because states is coming up really soon," said Broadwater, who's hoping for more improvement by then. "I think I can always do better. I'm always shooting for the next PR."

Other girls winners included Smithsburg's Erin Kittel in the discus (96-2) and Boonsboro's Hayley Harnett in long jump (16-6) and Sarah Johnson in the shot put (33-4). North Hagerstown won the 400 relay (51.05) and South Hagerstown the 800 relay (1:51.88).

Smithsburg senior Chad Brown won his fourth straight conference title in the 100 (11.16) and third straight in the 200 (22.39), twice edging North senior Jarell Hasan, who, in his first year of track, has become Brown's chief rival.

"Usually we go back and forth," Brown said. "Racing against Jarell has been the best thing that's happened to me since I started running track. He's helped me to push myself and be better prepared for states."

Other boys winners included Williamsport's Mike Lilley in the 1,600 (4:36.71) and Clear Spring's Dustin Adams in the 3,200 (10:01.11). South won the 400 relay (45.10) and 800 relay (1:33.98), Williamsport won the 1,600 relay (3:37.32) and Smithsburg the 3,200 relay (8:36.07).

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