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Spread your wings and fly - Leopards boys win 2nd straight

May 27, 2007|By ANDREW MASON

BALTIMORE - Smithsburg seniors Jamal Campbell and Chad Brown almost could have won the Class 1A boys team title by themselves at the Maryland State Track & Field Championships at Morgan State University.

"Me and Chad, it was our last high school meet," Campbell said. "We wanted to try to win the thing."

With some help from their teammates, they did.

Campbell, who won the long jump when the meet began Thursday, won the 110-meter hurdles (14.99 seconds) and triple jump (44-0 1/4) and placed second in the 300 hurdles (40.24) Saturday, leading the Smithsburg boys to their second straight title and fifth overall.

"I didn't want to let the team down. I wanted to win all four," Campbell said. "But we still won. That's the important thing."

The Leopards finished with 89 points - 18 more than runner-up Digital Harbor.

Brown won his third straight title in the 100 (10.82) and placed third in the 200 (22.34) and fourth in the 400 (50.99).

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"The 200 was kind of disappointing," said Brown, who won the 200 last year. "But as long as my team wins the meet, it really makes no difference. It's great to close out my career with a team victory."

Clayton Rohrer also picked up a medal Saturday for the Smithsburg boys, placing third in the discus (130-0).

"Between Chad and Jamal, it was looking pretty good. And then everybody else stepped up to give us our surge," Smithsburg coach Ray Shriver said. "Every point was important.

"The boys have been focused all year to try to repeat. It's just a credit to their determination and their talent."

Two other Washington County boys captured titles. North Hagerstown senior Jarell Hasan won the Class 2A 100 (10.79) and 200 (21.70), and Williamsport sophomore Mike Lilley won the 1A 1,600 (4:29.59).

Hasan, a Shepherd University football recruit, continued to turn heads as a first-year track athlete.

"It's not about experience," he said. "It's about who has the most heart."

Hasan, obviously, is also loaded with natural talent.

"The speed stuff does just come natural, and I'm a competitor," he said. "If somebody runs fast, I'm going to try to run faster.

"I've just got to thank God for blessing me with the talent to play sports."

Lilley more than made up for his disappointing fifth-place finish in the 3,200 Thursday, holding off Northern Garrett's Ryan Bowser by 1.1 seconds for the 1,600 title.

"This is one of the best days of my life," said Lilley, who began the meet Thursday by running a leg of Williamsport's second-place 3,200 relay. "I've been working for this all season. Actually, I was aiming for the 3,200 title, but I hurt myself.

"After the 3,200 relay, I couldn't breathe. They said it was an abdominal strain. I was really upset. But warming up today I felt great, and I just went for it."

Lilley took the lead for good in the second lap.

"I was like, 'I've got nothing to lose. I'm only a sophomore. I might as well go for it,'" he said.

With a lap to go, Lilley had a 20-meter gap on Bowser, the reigning state cross country champ who's known for his ferocious kick.

"He made it close," Lilley said. "That's why I knew I needed to open it up, because if I was with him at the end, I wouldn't have stood a chance."

Williamsport, which finished fourth in the team standings, also got a second-place finish from Sean Dixon in the triple jump (43-6 1/2).

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