Mid-Shore nets host of run­ners-up

KI’s Tvelia top six in three events; QA’s John­son eighth in girls’ 200

Record Observer - - Sports - By WIL­LIAM HAUFE bhaufe@star­dem.com

BAL­TI­MORE — North Caro­line High’s Emily Lewis may re­mem­ber her first state meet with a smile af­ter her sec­ond­place fin­ish in the 300 in­ter­me­di­ate hur­dles.

North Caro­line’s Jamion Franklin may re­flect fondly on his sopho­more year at states, af­ter un­load­ing a school-record and ca­reer-best throw on his fi­nal at­tempt in the dis­cus to take run­ner-up hon­ors.

But the mem­o­ries from this year’s state track and field cham­pi­onships Satur­day at Mor­gan State Univer­sity’s oven-like Hughes Sta­dium may linger with Colonel Richard­son High’s Eric Joseph longer than any­one else. Joseph was beaten by a frac­tion of a sec­ond in the Class 1A boys’ 100-me­ter fi­nal, then got edged at the fin­ish line by a sliver a sec­ond time by Brunswick’s Erik Jones in the 1A 4x100 re­lay, leav­ing him with a pair of run­ner-up fin­ishes and pos­si­ble mo­ti­va­tion for next year.

“The kid that beat him, he was there last year, and I think he lost the same way Eric lost this year to him,” Colonel Richard­son head coach James Jack­son said of Jones.

Joseph got off to a poor start in the 100-me­ter fi­nal, but re­cov­ered to close on Jones, only to get nipped at the fin­ish line — Jones clock­ing a win­ning 11.12 sec­onds to Joseph’s 11.22.

“I had a ter­ri­ble start but I’ve got good ac­cel­er­a­tion so I came back up,” Joseph said. “I al­most passed the kid at first, but then he kind of got me a lit­tle bit to­ward the end.”

Joseph and Jones du­eled a sec­ond time about five hours later on the an­chor leg of the 4x100. Colonel’s third leg, Stan­ley Pierre-Louis, may have held a slight lead when he handed the ba­ton to Joseph. It didn’t take long be­fore Joseph and Jones were again side by side. But half­way down the straight­away, Joseph said he felt a twinge in the ham­string that dropped him to the ground at the fin­ish line of last week’s 1A East Re­gion pre­lim­i­nar­ies in the 200.

Joseph and Jones ac­tu­ally rubbed into each over the fi­nal 10 me­ters be­fore Jones out­leaned Joseph, who crossed the fin­ish line then fell on the track. Brunswick won in 44.29, while Colonel’s Cloder­son Charles, Robert Thomp­son, Pierre-Louis and Joseph were sec­ond in 44.37.

“I had him un­til my leg started tug­ging to­ward the mid­dle of the (straight­away),” Joseph said. “I tried to push through it so we could get first, but we ended up get­ting sec­ond. I’ll get it next year def­i­nitely.”

What Colonel Richard­son did get was a fourth-place fin­ish in the 1A boys’ com­pe­ti­tion with 45 points, fin­ish­ing be­hind cham­pion Fair­mont Heights (96), Smiths­burg (63) and North­ern Gar­rett (56).

“For this team, fin­ish­ing fourth over­all? I wasn’t ex­pect­ing that,” Jack­son said. “(That’s not bad) for a small team from a small school. But I had a pretty bril­liant type of group of guys. They worked hard all year.”

Colonel’s sur­prise fin­ish was boosted by its 4x400 re­lay (Brock­man Har­ris, Richard­son Rene, Pierre-Louis, Mar­cus John­son) plac­ing third in 3:34.10, sopho­more Dar­rion Speller’s fifth-place in the 110 high hur­dles (16.70) and sixth-place in the triple jump, and Charles’ fifth-place ef­fort in the triple jump — both jump­ing 40 feet, 9¼ inches.

Franklin had rea­son to jump for joy af­ter Thurs­day’s third­place fin­ish in the 2A boys’ shot put. Never in con­tention in last year’s dis­cus af­ter scratch­ing on all three of his at­tempts, Caro­line’s sopho­more uncorked a toss of 139feet plus on his open­ing toss yes­ter­day, which helped earn him a spot in the fi­nals.

“When Jamion went to Gil­man he called me and asked

me if he came back did I think he would have a shot at plac­ing in the shot put and disc,” North Caro­line boys’ head coach Rob Thomas said of Franklin, who played foot­ball at the Bal­ti­more pri­vate school this past fall be­fore de­cid­ing to trans­fer back to North Caro­line. “And I told him, ‘Look what you did as a fresh­man. The door is wide open.’”

Still, Franklin was sit­ting in fourth place when he spun and re­leased his run­ner-up throw of 158-8.

“My last throw, I had noth­ing to lose. Just left ev­ery­thing out there,” Franklin said. “I was ner­vous be­cause last year I scratched all three times in the cir­cle. But my mind­set was just to give it my all.”

Franklin im­proved his foot­work and slowed him­self to a more com­fort­able pace in the cir­cle this sea­son. As soon as he re­leased his fi­nal throw, he knew he had some­thing spe­cial.

“It left my hand and I just looked at the height on it and I was like, ‘That’s a good one,’” Franklin said. “Feels great. Two feet away from get­ting first (La Plata’s Alexan­der Devine won with a 161). That was my PR (per­sonal record) on the sea­son. I had two PRs to­day. But 158-(10). That’s in­cred­i­ble.”

A fresh­man, Lewis was feel­ing pretty good about her­self af­ter tak­ing sec­ond place in the 2A girls’ 300 hur­dles.

“I was re­ally ner­vous for the 300 hur­dles be­cause there was a girl with a re­ally good time — 44 sec­onds,” Lewis said of Lackey’s Syd­ney Wil­liams. “And my best is like 46.”

Though Wil­liams made up the stag­ger on Lewis and the field, on the way to a win­ning time of 45.56, Caro­line’s fresh­man didn’t fall any fur­ther back in fin­ish­ing sec­ond with a 46.95, while Eas­ton’s Molly Ford took fourth in 47.75.

“I knew she was go­ing to catch me, but I kept push­ing,” Lewis said of Wil­liams. “I still came in sec­ond, but it was as good race. I tried to push through the whole way. It feels awe­some. And I’m hop­ing I can get first next year.”

Lewis could have plenty of com­pany in the push for first next year. Among that small crowd could be Kent Is­land ju­nior Emma Tvelia, who was sixth in the 2A girls’ 1,600 (5:13.09), fifth in the 400 (school-record 59.02) and then used a big surge to fin­ish fifth in the 800 (2:18.97).

“The first lap was crazy fast,” Tvelia said of the 800. “They prob­a­bly went out in 1:02. I didn’t want to go out that fast my first lap be­cause I knew I would burn out on the sec­ond.”

But as the race hit the back­stretch on Lap 2, Tvelia, run­ning last, moved past three run­ners, worked through the fi­nal turn, then de­liv­ered a big fi­nal kick.

“I started pick­ing up and I saw they started slow­ing down right here,” said Tvelia, point­ing to­ward the back­stretch of the track. “This is my last race (of the sea­son) and like I’m go­ing to give it ev­ery­thing I’ve got. So I started pass­ing peo­ple with like 300 to go. And made my way up to fifth.”

Eas­ton se­nior Kathryn Gearhart punc­tu­ated her first, and only, out­door track sea­son with a per­sonal-record 5:06.36 in the 1,600 me­ters, fin­ish­ing fourth — two spots ahead of Tvelia, and four ahead of North Caro­line se­nior Chris­tine Sturm, who set a school-record with her 5:20.49.

“It’s a PR. I’m pretty happy,” Gearhart said. “Look­ing back at it, there’s cer­tain things I should have done dif­fer­ently. The sec­ond lap I should have prob­a­bly pushed a lit­tle more; third lap, too. Other than that, I was pretty happy with that.”

Cam­bridge-South Dorch­ester’s Matt Ko­let­sky was even with the field as it came off the turn in the 1A boys’ 400 me­ters, be­fore fin­ish­ing fifth in 51.50. North­west­ern’s Ajahn Venry won in 50.71.

“He’s be­come a great leader; he’s be­come a great ex­am­ple for the boys,” Cam­bridge-SD head coach Lois Narr said of Ko­let­sky, who also placed fifth in the 800 with a 2:00.85. “He’s our cap­tain, and he’s a true cap­tain. He’s given 110 per­cent in work­outs. He’s al­ways pos­i­tive. And to­day in this heat, he’s given 110 per­cent to his race. It didn’t re­ally work out for him to­day, but I could see he gave it ev­ery­thing.”

Notes: North Caro­line’s girls’ 4x400 re­lay of Katie Saathoff, Kyra Schul­ties, Lewis and Lizzy Wal­ston fin­ished fifth in a school-record 4:06.44. … Cam­bridgeSD’s Ian Ma­son was fifth in the 1A boys’ pole vault (11-6). … North Caro­line’s An­ton Black was sixth in the 2A boys’ 200 me­ters (23.21). … Cam­bridge-SD’s Trevor Good­win was 10th in the 1A boys’ 1,600 (4:43.51) . ... North Dorch­ester’s Ja­maya Con­away was sixth in the 1A girls’ 100 hur­dles (18.09) . ... Kent County’s Ka­reem Perkins fin­ished third in the 1A boys’ triple jump (41-5¾) . ... Queen Anne’s Keashia John­son (26.75) was eighth in the 2A girls’ 200.

Fol­low me on Twit­ter @Bil­l_Haufe. Email me at

bhaufe@star­dem.com

PHOTO BY WIL­LIAM HAUFE

Kent Is­land’s Emma Tvelia works through the first turn dur­ing the 2A girls’ 400 me­ters Satur­day at the state track and field cham­pi­onships. Tvelia fin­ished fifth in a school-record 59.02.

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