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Indoor track: Getting their legs back under them

When asked what his team was able to do during the 10 days the region was buried under record snowfall, DeMatha Coach Anthony Bryant gave a look as if he thought the question was preposterous.

“Nothing,” Bryant said. “You can’t run in the halls, can’t go outside, can’t do nothing. And when you think [the snow's] over, here it comes again.

“Our training was exceptional going into Virginia Tech,” he added, biting his bottom lip, thinking about what could have been.

The Virginia Tech Invitational, where area athletes annually put their names atop national leader boards, was scheduled for Jan. 29-30, then canceled because of the snow. Saturday’s Georgetown Prep Private School Invitational in North Bethesda was the first time many area athletes were able to step onto a track in nearly two weeks, and, surprisingly, the results were more positive than negative.

Ambrosia Iwugo, a senior at Elizabeth Seton, fell into a sedentary lifestyle, spending time on the computer, sleeping and staring at a television. But when she finally got active on Saturday, she won the 300 by over two seconds in 40.31 seconds, a meet record. Her senior teammate, Adenike Pedro, said she was constantly on Facebook but still set a meet record in the long jump (18 feet 4.75 inches) and won the 55 (7.18 seconds).

Kristen Brown, a senior from Baltimore-area’s McDonogh, won the 55 hurdles in 8.01 seconds, the third-fastest time in the country. She said all she did during the snowstorms was “get fat. Just eat and sleep.”

Distance runners like Tom Harrison (St. Albans) and Corey Puffett (DeMatha), who went 1-2 in the 3,200, said they rode the stationary bike or ran on a treadmill in their homes to stay sharp. Others used more unorthodox methods.

Bill Ledder sprinted through the parking garage outside of his father’s job like it was his own personal hamster wheel. The result? The Gonzaga senior won the 1,600 in a meet-record 4:13.42. That is the 10th fastest time in the country this season.

It hurt him. After crossing the finish line, Ledder’s tongue fell out of his mouth and he doubled over, gasping for air.

DeMatha senior William Kellogg looked relatively comfortable after winning the 500 in 1:05.13, the fastest time in the country. His cool demeanor belied what he was feeling inside.

“I didn’t do anything” during the layoff, Kellogg said. “I wish I would’ve done something though because this hurts too bad.”

By Carl Little  |  February 15, 2010; 3:09 PM ET
Categories:  DeMatha , Elizabeth Seton  
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