Led by Kai Roper's win in the 400 meters and a strong performance in the 4x400 relay, DeMatha had a strong start to the outdoor track season at the Morgan State High School Invitational on Saturday.
Roper won the 400 in 48.80 seconds, winning a tightly contested race against Eleanor Roosevelt senior All-Met Romaine McKay, who clocked a time of 48.85 seconds. Roper was also part of the Stags' 4x400 relay, which won in 3 minutes 17.58 seconds, more than two seconds better than C.H. Flowers (3:19.98), which came in second.
The performance in that relay should put the Stags among the nation's best heading into the Penn Relays, which begin April 28, but whether the Stags will be able to shoot for a Championship of America is up in the air still. Because DeMatha is not sanctioned by the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association, schools from some states, including New York, may not be allowed to compete against the Stags.
DeMatha Coach Anthony Bryant said this week that, as of Monday, DeMatha was still not on the list of sanctioned teams.
Other strong performance by the Stags included Geoffrey Daley, who was second in both the 100 hurdles (15.32 seconds) and the 400 hurdles (58.03).
Most of the other elite performances at the meet, which was held at the facility where the Maryland state championships will be held May 26 to 28, belonged to the Roosevelt girls.
Sophomore Tameka Jameson won the 800 meters with a time of 2:15.48, while junior Patricia Anyanwu was second in the 400 hurdles and fourth in the 400. Freshman Dominique Lockhart was second in the 1,600 meters, running a time of 5:03.06 and losing by four one-hundreths of a second to Bay Shore's Maryliz McCurdy.