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April 15, 1993|KIM KUTCHER

The Foothill boys' 1,600-meter relay team, which has the fourth-best time in the Southern Section this season, hasn't been seen lately.

The team of Tad Heath, Mike Lynch, Don Oliver and Ethan Taub circled the track in 3 minutes 23.1 seconds at the Katella Relays on Mar. 20.

The quartet hasn't run together since. It even missed the prestigious Arcadia Invitational on Saturday, which featured many of the top teams from southern California.

Jerry Whitaker, the Foothill boys' coach, said the Knights have had beset by injuries.

Heath, who ran a personal best of 1:53.54 in the invitational 800 meters at Arcadia, is healthy. So is Lynch, who competed in the open 800 meters at Arcadia. But Lynch was out for a short time because doctors suspected he had a hernia--which he didn't.

Oliver hurt his leg playing basketball and will run for the first time in two weeks in Foothill's dual meet against Santa Ana Valley on Thursday.

And Taub, the anchor runner, is recovering from a hamstring injury.

"We are just trying to get them back healthy again," said Whitaker. "We are bringing Taub back slowly. He's not anywhere near the point where he can be put in the relay."

Whitaker said he will run a 1,600 relay team at the Orange County Championships April 24, regardless of whether it includes his top four runners.

"I believe we can still run under 3:25 without Ethan (Taub), " he said. "But we figure we do lose a bit."

Whitaker has alternates Brian Adams, Matt McCormick and Mike Boyes from which to draw, but he is looking forward to when Heath, Lynch, Oliver and Taub get together again.

"We're looking at a group, if we can get them healthy, that will run 3:15," he said.

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