Photo by Colin MurphyDemontay Snowden took the baton from Josh Krcik in the 4x200 relay at Chesapeake on April 4. Snowden, Krcik, Davon Carroll and TJ Benson set a school record in the event by clocking a 1:30.45 at Bullis on April 15.
Photo by Colin MurphyBrent Boyer (right) set a school record in shot put on April 15 at Bullis, throwing 55 feet, 4.5 inches. Boyer and teammate Ritchie Travers, left, have been one-two in shot put in the county ranks and are vying for the top two spots in discus as well.
Northeast Track And Field Boys Eye County, State Titles
The Northeast Eagles boys track and field team has somewhat quietly put together a legitimate contender for the county, region and potentially the state this spring.
In addition to taking first place out of 22 teams at the Screaming Eagle Invitational at Watkins Glen High School on March 25, the Eagles more recently took fifth place out of 49 public and private school boys teams from throughout the mid-Atlantic region at the extremely competitive Bullis Bulldog Invitational on April 15.
Powering the Eagles’ success has been a young, deep core of versatile athletes that is building up strength, speed and stamina in advance of the county championships at Northeast on May 10 and 11.
“This is probably the most complete team we’ve had,” said Northeast head coach Chris Dyke at the Anne Arundel Inter-County meet at Chesapeake High School on April 4. “We can score in every event. The practices and work ethic, it’s making all our other runners better. Right now, the goal is to win the county and the state. We have the top individuals, and there’s no reason why we can’t win the state. We’re within five to eight points of [reigning 3A state champions Oxon Hill of Prince George’s County]. It’s just a matter of where those five to eight points come from. Where can we can those five to eight points? But it’s what we tell them every day: Do your job. If everybody does their job, we’re right there.”
If it sounds optimistic, it’s with good cause, as the Eagles’ day at Bullis demonstrated. Northeast totaled 36 points to place fifth, getting standout performances from individuals and relay teams. Eagle senior Brent Boyer led the way with a record-setting day, throwing 55 feet, 4.5 inches to set a new school record, breaking the previous record of 53 feet, 11.75 inches set in 2013 by Nick Moorhead.
“I started working with college coaches, and it’s put me up from a 47 to a [55 this season], and I’m hitting higher every meet,” said Boyer, who also took eighth in discus. “I’m trying to hit 60 feet. That’s what the coaches are telling me. If I can hit 60, whatever place that gets me in the state, I’m happy with it.”
Teammate Ritchie Travers took seventh in shot put at Bullis, and Boyer and Travers together have been the county’s top performers in shot put and discus and figure to rack up huge points for Northeast at counties and beyond.
Davon Carroll clocked a 10.72 in the 100-meter final to place fourth, and with a sub-11-second time, he figures to be right there for a chance at the state crown come May.
The 4x200-meter relay team of Carroll, Josh Krcik, Demontay Snowden and TJ Benson ran a 1:30.45 to placed fifth and figure to win the event at counties. The 4x400 team of TJ Benson, Brayden Nungester, Kai Samuels and Snowden placed seventh in 3:34.41 and also figure to be the top county team.
Carroll also is in contention for a county crown in triple jump but will face competition from Severna Park’s Trevor Dearborn and Daniel Reise, while teammates Trey Fair (long jump) and Edwin Figueroa (pole vault) should pick up additional field-event points for Northeast.
With the athletes still developing in their top events and lineups shuffling around to maximize point totals, coach Dyke will look to his versatile roster to see how best to optimize. Carroll (100 and 200 open, triple jump, relays), Snowden (400, relays), Krcik (300-meter hurdles, relays), Benson (400, 800), Samuels (200 and 400), Nungester (800, long jump), Figueroa (300-meter hurdles), Anthony Vallinotti (100 and 200, relay teams), David Diaz (800-meter and 1600-meter runs), Ian McCullers (100, 110-meter and 300-meter hurdles), Demetrius Jones (long jump), DaShawn Branch (100 and 200), Dominic Keffalas (relay teams), Robert Massey (relays) and Nick Matteo (shot put) can all help push Northeast to a county title and perhaps further.
Snowden, a multi-sport athlete in track and football, said the team is supremely confident and working hard.
“It’s how we work in practice,” he said. “Our coaches push us to be the best, and we know that we’re the best. That’s what our mentality is, and we try to keep it that way. The goal is to win it all, to win everything.”