You never realize how vast and lonely Byrd Stadium can be until you stage a women's track meet there on Easter.
Under a blazing sky and in front of 70 or so sunbathers, the ninth annual University of Maryland Women's Invitational flopped a bit, drawing slightly more than half its advertised 200 competitors from 30 teams.
"Well," said Maryland Coach Stan Pitts, casting an eye toward Morgan State, "at least the good teams showed up."
Show up the Bears did, claiming the three relay events they entered and three individual honors to beat Maryland, six victories to five.
Morgan State Coach Leonard Braxton, whose team finished third in the East Indoors, one behind Maryland, wasn't surprised at the Bears' showing against the Terps today. "Nobody out here today can beat us. We can handle them in the sprint events," he said. "It's the field and distance events where they give us trouble."
Morgan's Nellie Bullock led as competitors, winning the 100 and 200 meters and running on the victorious 440 and 880 relay teams.
Braxton's only disappointment came in the 400 when meet record holder Roberta Belle faltered midway and finished thrid. "Roberta didn't run a good race," said Braxton. "She didn't use her head."
Record-breaking performances were by high schooler Kim Gallagher, of Upper Dublin, Pa., in the 1500 meters (4:20,7) and Maryland's Mary Walsh in the 10,000 meters (34:13.8). Gallagher trimmed one-half second off the meet record. Walsh beat the old record by nearly three minutes.
Maryland's Marita Walton turned in the best field performances. After winning the discus in one throw, the 21-year old Irish National shot put champ (54-4), broke her own shot record by 2 1/2 ft. "The competition wasn't very pressing," said Walton, the defending Penn Relay discus and shot champion.