The Interhigh League girls track and field program has been reduced, as far as real competition is concerned, to a mere three-team affair. Because of the lack of coaches and student interest, participation in girls track in the D.C. Public Schools has fallen off drastically.
In last week's outdoor championships, Ballou compiled 182 points to win its third consecutive title with ease. H.D. Woodson was second with 122 and much-improved Anacostia third with 60. McKinley had 38 and Coolidge 34 points.
Theodore Roosevelt, Spingarn and Eastern failed to score as many as 10 points and Wilson, Cardozo and Dunbar didn't even field teams.
Many of the races were not the least bit competitive. Ballou, Woodson and Anacostia earned many points simply because they entered bodies in the races. For instance, in the 3,200-meter run, Ballou had three entrants who merely jogged the eight laps and placed one-two-three. Anacostia, Woodson and Coolidge had one runner each in the race.
In the 110-meter hurdles, there was only one heat because only six girls entered. In the 300 hurdles, five girls entered and three of them were from Anacostia.
"I don't expect to do much (in any races) because I have only a handful of 10th-graders," said Harry Stanton, who took over the coaching of the girls and boys teams just over a month ago. "The girls have improved each meet and will be better next year. You just can't get girls to come out for track."
Ballou's Lynda Tolbert closed out her high school track career with another four-victory afternoon at the Interhigh championships. Tolbert won the 110 hurdles, the 100- and 200-meter dashes and the long jump. This was the fifth time this year she won four events in a meet.
In the junior high girls championships, Douglass, which has produced many of the runners presently at Ballou, gained its third championship in four years. Coach Darryl Smith's talented team amassed 115 points, 29 more than runner-up Rabaut. Anacostia's ninth grade had 80 points.
Douglass' top performers were Sabrina Williamson, who won the long jump and was second in the discus and high jump; Tonique Washington, first in the 110 hurdles, second in the 100-meter dash and second in the 300 hurdles; and Menuel Jones, first in the 800 and third in the 1,600.
Eastern won the Interhigh League girls softball championship and earned the top seed in this week's tournament at Guy Mason Field. The Ramblers, coached by Pat Shepherd, finished 10-0 in league play. Second-team all-Met Daisy Williams, the lone senior on the team, was batting nearly .600 going into the playoffs. Williams, junior catcher Tracy Manning and sophomore pitcher Helen Turner are the top Rambler players.
Also making the playoffs were Ballou, Wilson, Coolidge, H.D. Woodson and Theodore Roosevelt.
The Jesse Owens track and field games for the D.C. metropolitan area will be held June 15 at Gallaudet College. Registration will be at 1 p.m. with the events immediately following.
There will be 10 events for boys and girls ages 7-14. Residents of Washington, Maryland and Virginia are eligible.
For further information, contact Joe Walker at the Benning Park Recreation Center, 767-8273.