South River junior Kali Dawson had just finished the high jump at the Anne Arundel County championships at Northeast High School. She cleared 4 feet 10 inches, good for second place behind junior teammate Reilly Wagner’s 4-10, which Wagner won in a tiebreaker. Then it was onto the 100-meter hurdles, where Dawson was the favorite to win.
However, a miscommunication occurred and Dawson was held in the bullpen, preventing her from running her heat. Ten points for the Seahawks seemed lost all of a sudden. South River Coach Hugh Harris protested what happened, to see whether Dawson could run later in the meet by herself, with her time counting toward the event.
“I protested that it wasn’t her fault she wasn’t there,” Harris said. “One of the other coaches even said that he was there and that she was held [by the official].”
The meet officials agreed and allowed Dawson to run the 100 hurdles by herself. She ended up timing 15.66 seconds and took first place, securing those 10 points for the Seahawks after all.
“It was a little awkward, I’d say,” Dawson said. “It was definitely more mental than physical because I practice by myself. But at that point it wasn’t about me. I was just trying to get out there and do the best that I could, to get some points for the team.”
Those points contributed to a total of 120 on Wednesday, giving the Seahawks their first-ever girls’ county championship. Severna Park finished in second with 111.
“If we didn’t protest that and she wasn’t able to re-run her race, that pretty much would have been it,” Harris said.
The Seahawks’ girls also picked up first-place finishes from Wagner in the 300 hurdles (45.80), freshman Kelsie McGlynn in the 200 (26.23) and senior Carly Bunting in the 1,600 and the 3,200 (5:18.32, 11:32.76).
Arundel’s boys edged South River 116-114 in a meet that was close throughout. The Wildcats receiveda huge lift near the end of it on junior Isaiah Olugbemi’s final throw in the discus. In third place at the time, Olugbemi unleashed a throw that went 129 feet 11 inches, setting a personal best by over 12 feet. That moved Olugbemi into first, with Chesapeake sophomore Michael Parkent (125-11) and South River junior Daniel DuBeau (124-10) finishing second and third.
“When [Olugbemi] told me he won, I couldn’t believe it,” said Arundel Coach Ira Queen, who was watching the 4x100 and 4x400 relay races when Olugbemi won the discus. “He’s been good all season but I didn’t know he could pull it off. He’s got the potential and I think he finally got it together.”
While Harris believed Olugbemi’s throw was the boys’ meet’s deciding factor, Queen said his team wouldn’t have won without unsung contributions from three more of his athletes.
Junior Alex Laye picked up two points with a seventh-place finish in the 1,600 (4:41.03), junior Khalid Slocum got five points by finishing fourth in the triple jump (39-4 ¼) and senior John Dodd Jr. scored five with a fourth-place showing in the high jump (5-8). All three marks were personal bests.
“These guys did beyond the call of duty,” Queen said. “I was looking at the results last night and those were the turning point.”
South River senior Brent Musselman set a county meet record with a 4:15.64 run in the 1,600. Musselman upset Severna Park senior Ryan Forsyth, who finished second with a time of 4:18.06.
“To run that fast of a time, beat Forsyth and set a county record, it’s probably icing on the cake for him,” Harris said.
Aided by senior Kendra Meredith and its 4x200 relay team, the Northwest girls won the Montgomery County championships at Churchill. The Jaguars won with 75 points, besting Bethesda-Chevy Chase (71 ½) and Clarksburg (66).
Meredith was the lone member of the Northwest girls’ team to finish first in an event, which she did by posting a 17-6 ½ in the long jump. She added a sixth-place showing in the triple jump (35-4 ½).
The Northwest girls’ 4x200 team barely edged Magruder, clocking in at 1:43.68 to the Colonels’ 1:43.98.
Wootton’s boys team clipped Northwest by two points, winning 79-77, with Clarksburg placing third with 70½.
The Patriots were paced by senior Alan Banks, who placed first in the 300 hurdles with a 38.91, and senior Urgy Eado, who won the 800 (1:57.09) and placed third in the 1,600 (4:18.69). Northwest junior Diego Zarate won the 1,600 in 4:15.58, with Whitman junior Evan Woods finishing second (4:18.57).