PREP TRACK & FIELD: Trojan boys claim SWC titleWINDOM — Racking up a total of 29 top-eight finishes spread throughout all 18 events Thursday afternoon, the Worthington Trojans claimed their second consecutive Southwest Conference boys’ track and field team championship under nearly-perfect weather conditions at Eagle Field.
By: Lucas Knutson, Worthington Daily Globe
WINDOM — Racking up a total of 29 top-eight finishes spread throughout all 18 events Thursday afternoon, the Worthington Trojans claimed their second consecutive Southwest Conference boys’ track and field team championship under nearly-perfect weather conditions at Eagle Field.
Worthington, which also won the conference meet in 2006 before winning last year and this year, scored 153 points to edge Marshall’s second-place total of 150.83 points. The Trojans outscored the Tigers 17-8 in the final two events — the pole vault and the 4x400-meter relay — to capture the meet title for the third time in four years.
“That’s quite an accomplishment for our guys, and we had a lot of good performances today,” Worthington co-head coach Mike Traphagen said. “Every place in every event is important, and our guys gave it everything they had and competed very well. Our overall team depth was a key, as we scored points in all 18 events.”
Worthington scored 105 points in the 12 running events and 48 more in the six field events. Aduo Omot won a pair of individual events and also anchored the Trojans’ winning 1,600-meter relay team — which beat second-place Marshall by 2.85 seconds (3:30.48 to 3:33.33) — in the last event of the meet, helping secure the team title.
Worthington’s Joe Dickey (11 feet) and Will Dudley (8-6) placed third and eighth, respectively, in the pole vault. Those performances gave the Trojans seven key points, while Marshall did not score in that event.
The Trojans also had two scoring efforts in three other field events, plus a trio of finishers in the top eight in the triple jump. Worthington’s Brandon Berger (40-1), Will Collin (37-1.5) and Zach Houselog (36-0) went 2-6-8 in the triple jump.
Berger added a fifth-place finish in the long jump (18-3.75), while Mike Henrichs (5-10) and Mitch Weg (5-8) provided 14 points by placing second and third, respectively, in the high jump.
Worthington’s Max Pierson contributed a fifth- (44-7.5) and a sixth-place (121-3) finish in the shot put and discus, respectively, and Jalen Voss (sixth, shot put, 41-4.5) and Jake Steffl (eighth, discus, 112-5) each turned in a scoring performance, as well.
Omot sparked the Trojans on the track, first by winning the 400-meter dash in a time of 50.85 seconds. Then, a little bit later, Omot impressively went from third to first in the final 200 meters of the 800-meter run to win with a dazzling time of 1:58.81.
“It was a good day to run, and I’m happy we won the team title,” Omot said. “I was saving something for the end in the 800, and I had to work hard to beat those two guys.”
Redwood Valley’s Nate Thooft (second, 1:59.45) and Luverne’s Mubarik Musa (third, 2:02.12) held a slight lead on Omot for most of the race.
“That was a great race featuring some good runners,” Traphagen said. “Aduo had a strong finish to win it, and those extra points ended up being pretty big for us.”
The Trojans’ O.J. Ojullu wasn’t too far behind in that race and finished fourth with a time of 2:03.91. Earlier, Ojullu placed second in the 1,600 (4:34.99) — sparking a 2-4-6 finish for the Trojans, as Ethan Spittle (fourth, 4:43.77) and Aaron Grafing (sixth, 4:54.93) also ran well.
Spittle also ran a strong 3,200 and finished second (10:29.78), as he raced right with Marshall’s Grant Vankuelen (first, 10:29.51) for the majority of the race. Trojan Kreguto Okello was eighth with a time of 11:15.01.
Berger won the 110-meter high hurdles (15.81) and finished sixth in the 300-meter intermediates (43.96), while Casey Vis (100, 11.92) and Jeremy Clark (200, 23.73) each gave the Trojans a third-place performance.
Will Collin (fifth, 400, 52.75) had Worthington’s other individual scoring effort and was also a part of the Trojans’ winning 4x400 team (with Clark, Ojullu and Omot) and the second-place 4x100 team (1:34.23), joining Henrichs, Clark and Vis.
Following Worthington and Marshall in the team standings were Luverne (103.5), Redwood Valley (92), Pipestone Area (84), Jackson County Central (65.33) and Windom (33.33).
Musa won the 1,600 (4:31.34) for one of Luverne’s top performances, while Greg Muller won the 300 hurdles (42.13) and was second in the 110s (15.87). Sam Dooyema won the shot put with a toss of 49-4 for the Cardinals.
PA’s Eric Stark won the discus (155-1) and finished second in the shot put (46-3), while teammate Taylor Pals was third in the shot put (45-9).
Gathin Veldhuizen led the Arrows on the track, placing second in the 300 hurdles (42.37) and third in the 110s (16.23). Colin Cooper placed second in the 200-meter dash with a time of 23.43.
JCC’s quartet of Jon Troe, Matt Kocak, Marc Strom and Justin Cook won the 4x800-meter relay with a time of 8:40.93. Nathan Brandt had three top-four finishes for the Huskies, placing second in the 100 (11.91), third in the 400 (52.11) and fourth in the 200 (23.76).
Windom was led by Jesse LaMaack (third, 300 hurdles, 42.56; fourth, 110 hurdles, 16.31) and the duo of Robbie Anderson (second, 130-6) and Bryce Quiring (third, 129-4) in the discus.
Woelber wins four events, leads PA girls to second place
Pipestone Area’s Bree Woelber won all four of her events, leading the Arrows to a second-place team finish with 131.5 points.
Marshall won the girls’ title with 138 points, while Luverne (124), Windom (115), Redwood Valley (63.5), Worthington (61) and JCC (48) rounded out the seven-team standings.
Woelber won the long jump (17-10.25), the 100 hurdles (15.63), the 300 hurdles (45.31, new conference meet record) and the 200-meter dash (26.57) to lead the Arrows, who also won the 4x400 (4:15.10).
PA’s Trisha Sumption was a double-event winner, claiming the gold medal in both the discus (119-9) and the shot put (35-2-75). Among the other leaders for the Arrows were Ann Marie Dykstra (second, 3,200, 12:12.90), Amanda Schoonhoven (fourth, 1,600, 5:42.89), Jena Kozlowski (fourth, 400, 1:03.58) and Aubrie Ford (fourth, shot put, 31-10.75).
Luverne’s Katlyn Sawtelle captured the title in the pole vault (9-6) and was second in both hurdle races (100, 15.92; 300, 47.21). Alyssa Stegenga was third in the 300s (49.41), fourth in the 100 hurdles (16.62) and fourth in the triple jump (31-3).
The Cardinals, who won the 4x100 (53.90), also received third-place performances from Paige Nath (400, 1:03.42), Kaitlyn Wohnoutka (800, 2:32.90) and Makayla Hohn (3,200, 12:20.22).
Meredith Hentges and Lindsay Elston were Windom’s top performers. Hentges won both the 800 (2:28.81) and the 1,600 (5:28.40), while Elston won the high jump (5-2) and placed second in both the triple jump (33-2) and the long jump (15-7.5).
Hannah Steele also had a big day for the Eagles, claiming two silver medals with distances of 32-7 and 107-6 in the shot put and discus, respectively. Abby Luitjens was second in the 100 (13.42) and third in the 200 (27.74), and Emily Grandprey finished second in the 400 (1:03.02) for the Eagles, who won the meet-opening 4x800-meter relay in a time of 10:14.70.
Worthington’s Sarah Cham, who placed third in the 100 hurdles with a time of 16.14, was the winner in the triple jump with a leap of 36-1. She was also a part of the Trojans’ second-place team (10:24.93) in the 4x800, joining Sarah Suby, Megan Juber and Kaitlin Gerber.
Gerber, who took the Trojans from fifth to second with a strong final leg in that race, placed second in the 1,600 with a time of 5:32.69. Anneli Dudley, who placed eighth in the 200 (28.63), turned in a second-place finish in the pole vault (9-6) for the Trojans.
Suby (800, 2:35.33) and Marin Korthals (shot put, 31-8) each had a sixth-place finish for Worthington, Nicole Ektnitphong was seventh in the 100 hurdles with a time of 17.84, and both Juber (1,600, 6:00.77) and Stephanie Jaycox (3,200, 13:19.35) had an eighth-place effort.
JCC’s Jasmine Timko finished second in the 800 (2:29.62), Tracey Steffen took third in the pole vault (7-0), Courtney Donnelli was third in the 100 (13.61) and fourth in the 200 (28.01), and Kateyan Ruby placed third in the shot put (31-10.75) and fourth in the discus (101-8).