April 3, 2010
BLUFFTON — Balance is a good thing.
This seems to be a trait for the Lima Senior boys track team this spring.
The Spartans not only scored well in the sprints in Saturday’s Spartan Invitational, but they also looked strong in the field events, finishing third out of 10 teams. The invitational was at Bluffton University.
Toledo St. John’s won the boys invitational with 150.5 points. Brunswick finished second (105), while Lima Senior was third (78). Toledo St. Francis was fourth (76).
On the girls side, Lima Senior finished seventh out of seven teams.
Even before the athletes hit the track for the running events, Lima Senior scored 35 points in their field events.
Lima Senior coach Stephen Carter said this year’s boys squad has a little different makeup than the past teams.
“This is the best we’ve done in field events for quite some time,” Carter said. “This year, we’re a little more spread out. We’re still trying to learn who can do what. The key is to keep them healthy.”
Marquez Williams led the way in the field events for the Spartans, winning the long jump with a mark of 20-feet, 9-inches. Teammate David Desenberg finished second in the high jump, with a personal-best clearance of 6-2. Darenton McLellan — a discus state qualifier last year — scored big for the Spartans, finishing second in the discus (147-9) and fifth in the shot put (46-1).
Desenberg said the windy conditions Saturday made his specialty, the high jump, a little more challenging.
“It (the wind) was a big factor,” Desenberg said. “I just put a little extra speed into my jump.”
Desenberg, who also competes in the hurdles and sprint relays, said his favorite event is the high jump. Last year, Desenberg made it to regionals in the high jump.
“I like to concentrate more on the high jump,” Desenberg said. “I usually will spend an hour after practice working on it.”
In the running events, Marc Johnson led Lima Senior with victories in both the 100- and 200-meter dashes.
Johnson, who will be playing football at Urbana University next fall, said he is focused on getting to the next level this spring. Last season, Johnson made it to the regional meet in both events.
“I’ve really been working hard,” Johnson said. “I stay after practice and run stairs and I work on the (starting) blocks.”
For the Lima Senior girls, DaNaja Houston had the best performance, finishing fifth in the 400-meter dash (1:08.21). Teammate Chari Mault scored in both the 1,600 and 3,200 for the Spartans.
Carter said he was pleased at the way his boys team performed on Saturday.
“This is one of the best finishes for us (Spartan Invitational) in a long time,” Carter said.