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Champions return to defend 32 titles at state track & field meet
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sports Morris, 56267
Morris Minnesota 607 Pacific Avenue 56267

Twenty-two individual champions and representatives from 10 relay teams that won gold medals last year have qualified to defend those titles this Friday and Saturday, June 7 and 8, when high school athletes gather at Hamline University in St. Paul for the 2013 State Track and Field Meet.

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Preliminaries in track events for both classes will be conducted on Friday, as well as a few finals. All of the 3,200-meter run events will be finals only on Friday, as will be some field events. Friday’s schedule begins at 9:00 a.m. with the Class AA competition. The Class A events are scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m., but possibly may start later depending on the pace of the Class AA meet. The same schedule will be followed on Saturday.

Class A Girls Highlights

Champions return in eight individual events and all four relays.

Clare Flanagan, a junior at The Blake School of Minneapolis, is looking for her second consecutive title in both the 1600- and 3200-meter runs. She also has the fastest qualifying time in both events: 4:50.54 in the 1600 and 10:38.74 in the 3200.

Sommer Haugrud, a Pelican Rapids senior, will defend her 200-meter dash title. Senior Kaija Crowe of Milaca owns the fastest qualifying time of 26.04.

Senior Katie Shepardson of La Crescent returns in search of more gold in the 800-meter run. Cannon Falls junior Emi Trost owns the best qualifying time of 2:13.47.

In the 100-meter hurdles, Staples-Motley junior Jaelin Beachy will race for a second consecutive title. Carolyn Nye, a sophomore at The Blake School, has the best qualifying time of 15.42. Nye also returns to defend her own title in the pole vault. She set a new Class A record of 11-07.00 at the 2012 state meet and qualified with the best vault of 11-08.00 this year.

Junior Carlie Wagner of New Richland-H-E-G returns for a second shot at the high jump title. She will face tough competition from Caledonia/Spring Grove senior Emma Lange who qualified with the best jump of 5-04.00.

Junior Danielle Wubben of Central Minnesota Christian of Prinsburg is the final returning champion. She is seeking her second consecutive title in the long jump. Junior Jada Carr of Russell-Tyler-Ruthton holds the best qualifying distance of 17-08.50.

The Osakis Silverstreaks return to defend their titles in both the 4x200- and 4x400-meter relay races. Chatfield has the best qualifying time of 1:46.32 in the 4x200 and Blue Earth Area owns the fastest qualifying time of 4:00.32 in the 4x400. Osakis is also angling to upset the defending champions from Byron in the 4x100 race. The Silverstreaks enter with the best qualifying time of 50.55.

 Watertown-Mayer is the final returning relay team. The Royals are looking for their second consecutive title in the 4x800 and come in with the fastest qualifying time of 9:44.97.

Class A Boys Highlights

Five individuals and representatives of one relay team are returning to defend titles.

Michael Whitney, a senior at Breckenridge/Campbell-Tintah, returns to defend his titles in both the 100- and 200-meter dashes. Sophomore CJ Moise Damey of Prairie Seeds Academy of Brooklyn Park has the fastest qualifying time of 10.97 in the 100, and junior Tyler Beehler of Foley owns the best qualifying time of 22.19 in the 200.

Junior Jason Montonye of Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley is looking for his second consecutive title in the 800-meter run and senior Charlie Lawrence of Foley is searching for more gold in the 3200-meter run. Neither owns the best qualifying time in their respective event; Waseca sophomore Shane Streich qualified in the 800 at 1:57.58 and Rochester Lourdes junior Mike Torchia qualified in the 3200 at 9:38.23.

Senior Grant Krieger of The Blake School of Minneapolis and senior Steffan Stroh of Ottertail Central are the final returning individuals. Krieger is looking for his second consecutive title in the pole vault while Stroh is in the hunt for his second consecutive crown in the discus. Tyler Tappe, a junior at Pequot Lakes, has the highest qualifying vault of 15-03.00. Senior Dustin Gill of LeSueur-Henderson has the best qualifying throw of 160-01 in the discus.

Madelia/Truman’s 4x800-meter relay team returns for more gold. Its qualifying time of 8:15.24 is more than nine seconds slower than the top qualifying time of 8:06.08 belonging to Cotter of Winona.

Class AA Girls Highlights

The Class AA girls field is well represented with previous title holders. Defending champions in eight individual events return and representatives from three medal-winning relay teams will be competing.

Senior Taylor Anderson of Hopkins, who set the All-Time State Meet record of 11.71 last year, returns to defend her title in the 100-meter dash. Wensia Johnson, a ninth-grader from Alexandria, has the fastest qualifying time of 12.03.

Junior Megan Linder of Cretin-Derham Hall of St. Paul returns in search of more gold in the 400-meter dash. She also owns this year’s best qualifying time of 56.46.

Titles in the 1600- and 3200-meter runs may belong to Shakopee senior Maria Hauger, having won both last year, but she does not have the best qualifying time in either event this year. St. Michael-Albertville sophomore Rachel King qualified with the best time of 5:03.71 in the 1600, and Eagan senior Danielle Anderson qualified with the fastest time 10:46.76 in the 3200.

Meleah Biermaier, a ninth-grader from Thief River Falls, returns to defend her title in the 300-meter hurdles with the fastest qualifying time of 43.71.

Eden Prairie senior Taylor Johnson qualified to defend her triple jump title, but was more than two feet off the best qualifying jump of 38-09.25, which belongs to Minnetonka junior Mia Barron.

Maggie Ewen, a senior at St. Francis, is the final returning individual. She is looking for her fourth consecutive discus title and her third consecutive shot put title. Ewen set the All-Time State Meet record of 171-09 in the discus last year and she owns the best qualifying distance of 158-07 this year. Her qualifying put of 47-02.00 is also the best in the shot put competition.

The Hopkins Royals are looking for their third consecutive title in the 4x100-meter relay. Last year’s team of Judaisha Roach-Jackson, Taylor Anderson, Dami Manuel-Moore and Elise Anderson set a new All-Time State Meet record of 47.73. The Royals enter this year’s meet with the best qualifying time of 48.58.

The defending champion Minnetonka Skippers return a relay team to both the 4x400- and 4x800-meter events. The Skippers also own the fastest qualifying time in each event -- 3:57.08 in the 4x400 and 9:22.39 in the 4x800.

Class AA Boys Highlights

 Many new champions will emerge, with only two relays and one individual qualifying to defend 2012 titles.

Senior Nathan Roese of East Ridge of Woodbury will defend his 400-meter dash title. Junior Michael Smith of Wayzata has the fastest qualifying time of 48.52.

The 4x200-meter relay team from North of North St. Paul is looking to defend its 2012 title. Last year’s squad of Andy Giovinazzo, Quentin Mann, Akeem Sirleaf and Travis Griffin set a new All-Time State Meet record of 1:27.23. Wayzata owns this year’s best qualifying time of 1:26.96.

Wayzata returns in search of a second consecutive gold medal in the 4x400-meter relay, but East Ridge boasts the fastest qualifying time of 3:20.74.

Track Events to be Streamed Live

The track events will be streamed live by GrandStadium.tv. The webcast can be viewed free. Find the link at www.Prep45.com. Field events will also be taped and highlights will be available for on-demand viewing within a week of the completion of the meet.

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