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Indoor Track: Ryan Forsyth holds on to win thrilling 1,600, but Arundel boys win county championship

Severna Park’s Ryan Forsyth hasn’t been challenged much during the indoor track season.

Primarily running the 3,200, he’s won each race with plenty of room to spare. But running the 1,600 in the Anne Arundel indoor track and field championships at the Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex on Tuesday gave him a tough test.

During the last lap of the 1,600, South River’s Brent Musselman pulled up just behind Forsyth in an attempt to pass him. Having avoided tight races all year, Forsyth did just enough to keep his lead, crossing the finish line with a time of 4 minutes, 23.67 seconds. Musselman was second with 4:23.98.

“On the last straightaway, I could hear Brent breathing on me,” Forsyth said. “There’s no bigger motivator then having someone right behind you.”

Forsyth’s Falcons ended their day in second place with 105 points. They were bested by Arundel’s boys, which scored 31 points in the final three events to complete a come-from-behind victory with 109 points.

Arundel was aided early in the 55-meter dash as Jeremy Bamgbade claimed first place with a listed 7.00, due to a timing error (he ran a 6.77 in the preliminary). Bamgbade crossed the finish line in first place despite feeling his lower back tighten near the end of the sprint.

“I had to push it,” Bamgbade said. “Around 40 or 50 meters, I felt it. But I’ve always wanted to be a county champ. This is a dream come true.”

South River’s 4x800 relay team (Matt Long, Stephen Dambra, Stephen Kulick and Musselman) set a county record with a collective 8:17.06. Meade’s Wendell Reed claimed wins in the 300 (36.89) and the triple jump (40-4).

“I was really nervous when I first came out here,” Reed said of his 300 race. “I didn’t know what to expect. I just tried to run it and keep the lead and finish first.”

Reed was also on the first-place 4x400 relay team (3:35.85) with John Robinson, Deshawn Lewis and Anthony Paul. Paul won the 500 title by running a 1:07.7.

Severna Park’s girls won the county championship with 119.83 points, edging South River’s 117. The Falcons got a huge lift with 18 points in the 3,200 thanks to Julie Koffler (11:49.32) and Rebecca Bosanko (11:52.27) placing first and second.

The Arundel girls’ 4x200 relay team (Vanna Lewis, Marvina Flythe, Asya Proctor, Elise Bratton) set a county record with a 1:46.61.

Entering the home stretch of the race, Bratton said breaking the record entered the forefront of her mind.

“I started thinking about the school and county record and how we needed to beat it,” Bratton said. “When I came to the straightaway, I knew it was over.”

Clarksburg’s Pyles claims four Montgomery County titles

Alexus Pyles had a grand day at the Montgomery County indoor track and field championships, helping Clarksburg win the team title.

The sophomore claimed four wins, setting personal bests with her marks in the 55 hurdles (8.28), long jump (17-4.25) and triple jump (36-5). She also won the high jump with a 5-2.

“I’ve been putting in a lot of extra work, a lot of it being with my starts because in the past I haven’t had good starts,” Pyles said. “I’m just working on starts, being quick over the hurdles and using my arms in tightly.”

Pyles’s contributions played a major role in getting Clarksburg its 66 points. The Coyotes also got a first-place finish in the shot put from Claudia Ababio, who set a new meet record with a throw of 42-6.

Churchill, which finished second with 52 points, saw junior Lucy Srour have a stellar outing with two wins in the 800 (2:21.9) and the 1,600 (5:14.0).

Paint Branch won the boys’ team title with 92 points. The Panthers’ 4x400 relay team (Noel Njem, Oliver Lloyd, DeWayne Haamid and Clifton Green) set a new meet record with a 3:29.89. Paint Branch also got wins from Devonte Johnson in the shot put (51-9.5) and Green in the long jump (20-2.5).

After winning the Montgomery County cross-country title in the fall, Poolesville’s Chase Weaverling claimed the county’s top distance crown in the 3,200, running a 9:32.0.

“I tried some new things where I would surge on the back stretch so my time wouldn’t drop off later in the race,” Weaverling said.



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