Continuing to shine
Lackey girls dominate sprints, relays at quad meet
Cooler temperatures greeted the hundreds of athletes who arrived at McDonough High School on Wednesday afternoon for their Southern Maryland Athletic Conference outdoor track and field meet, but it hardly proved detrimental.
One day before signing her National Letter of Intent to attend Temple University, Lackey High School senior Sydney Williams tuned up for next weekend’s Penn Relays by capturing the 100-meter hurdles and 200 dash and she also anchored the 400 relay that included Erin Pearson, Destiny Thompson and Dominique Jeffery. Thompson also won the 400 run, edging Leonardtown’s Renee Nosko.
Official times and team scores were not made available by press time.
“It was a good meet,” Williams said. “I wanted to PR and keep working on getting ready for Penn Relays and SMAC [championships, scheduled for May 9 and 10 at Huntingtown High School]. I had a good race in the 200 and or relays were good. I had visited other schools, but after I visited Temple I fell in love with the campus and I didn’t go on any more visits.”
Williams narrowly won the 200 over Leonardtown junior Leya Essex, who won the 100 and ran the second leg of the 400 relay that finished second to Lackey’s quartet. Essex has enjoyed a banner season this spring for the Raiders and is among the squad’s budding stars, evidenced perhaps more in her narrow setback to NCAA Division-I
bound Williams than in her tally in the 100.
“I’m hoping to get 24.84 in the 200,” Essex said. “That would qualify me for nationals and that’s where I would like to go. Sydney is really fast and I was just hoping to stay close to her. Our relay ran really well. Now we want to get ready for SMAC and then see what we can do at regionals and states.”
While Essex is among the sport’s budding stars, Northern’s distance specialists Molly Barrick, Abby Sweeney and Claudia Dolan secured the top three spots in the 1,600 and later Sarah Deresky, Barrick, Sweeney and Dolan swept the top four spots in the 800. The Patriots’ wealth of talent would later extend beyond that quartet.
“It was definitely a lot cooler today, but I prefer the cold weather,” Deresky said. “I knew Molly was right behind me pushing me, so I really could not let up. We have a lot of really talented runners on this team and it’s great to have that type of competition every day. It definitely makes us all better.”
Although she was not a factor in the 800 dominated by her teammates, Northern junior Kaitlyn Delamer led throughout to prevail in the 3,200 by a comfortable margin. Delamer has already committed to the University of Alabama for academics.
“One thing that really helps is the training and conditioning that we get from coach [Josh] Dawson,” Delamer said. “We also have a lot of really good runners on the team and those other girls really push me to get better. Today, I just wanted to stay on pace. I was able to break 13 [minutes], but by SMAC and regionals I want to go 12:10.”
Northern senior Charlie Sweeney continued his dominance of the distance events in SMAC events by capturing the 1,600 and 3,200 runs. Sweeney pulled away from Leonardtown senior Sam Katulich in the 1,600 then disposed of teammate Greg Oldham in the 3,200, much to the pleasure of Patriots head coach Josh Dawson who shouted encouragement to his runners from the infield.
“It was a great meet for a lot of our runners today,” Dawson said. “We want to keep improving as we head into the SMAC meet and then the [Class 3A South] regional meet [May 17 and 18 at Watkins Mill High School in Montgomery County] and then the [3A] state championship meet [May 25 and 26 at Morgan State University in Baltimore]. A lot of our boys and girls have been steadily improving over the course of the season and their hard work shows in the results.”
Lackey High School’s Destiny Thompson, center, pulls away from Leonardtown’s Renee Nosko, right, to prevail in the girls 400-meter run on Wednesday afternoon at McDonough High School in Pomfret.