Track: Andover, St. Francis earn state bids from Section 7AA meet

Andover and St. Francis will be represented at the state track and field meet after successful performances at the Section 7AA meet hosted by the University of Minnesota, Duluth May 29-June 1.

Forest Lake won the boys’ and girls’ team titles, The boys narrowly beat Andover 134-128.50 and St. Francis placed sixth with 44.50 points under what Andover boys’ coach said were cold and rainy conditions.

Andover jumper Nick Krouse
Andover jumper Nick Krouse

The Rangers girls held off Elk River by 11 points, 104-93. St. Francis scored a fourth-place finish with 68 points and Andover was 11th with 32.50 points among the 15-team field.

St. Francis

• Saints senior standout thrower Maggie Ewen set a new section meet shot put record of 47 feet, 2 inches, four inches farther than her distance set in 2011. St. Francis coach Andy Forbort said her goal is always to reach farther on her throws than the last time: “so she might get a little frustrated when that doesn’t happen but she’ll never make excuses, only work that much harder.”

St. Francis thrower Maggie Ewen
St. Francis thrower Maggie Ewen

Zimmerman’s Amber Magnessen was second in 37-10. Three Andover throwers placed among the top nine led by senior Marissa McNallan in sixth with a throw of 34-09, junior Hannah Wolfe seventh with a throw of 34-06 and senior Olivia Graham ninth with a throw of 32-04.

Ewen also won the discus title with a state qualifying throw of 158-07. She was five feet behind her 2011 record throw of 165-07. Ewen’s teammate, eight-grader Amanda Anderson placed fourth with a throw of 122-02, just more than five feet under the state qualifying distance.

McNallan was the top Huskies thrower with an eighth-place toss of 104-08.

• Junior Jessica Justin won the 200 dash with 26.15 to continue with a consistent theme of strong performances in the event from the North Suburban Conference meet through sections. A tight first 150 meters gave way to Justin’s strength and speed over the final 50 as she pulled away for the win. “It’s always enjoyable to watch her run so I’m glad she will get the chance to run at state where she will be surrounded by elite competition,” Forbort said.

• St. Francis sophomore Jonathon Santiago won the 300 hurdles in a state qualifying time of 39.36 to set up quite a state preliminary heat with the top three times this spring facing off. “He ran a tremendous race and showed his competitiveness by edging [Forest Lake’s] Walton at the line,” Forbort said.

Andover’s Grant Wood edged teammate Logan Brown for fourth place in the finals. Wood also placed fourth in the 110 hurdles in 15.79 and teammate Colton Syler was seventh in 16.05.

• Justin and Ann Hunt placed fourth and fifth in the triple jump, respectively.

• Ann Hunt placed second in the long jump with a leap of 16-02.25 and Andover freshman Madison Staggert reached 15-04.25 to place sixth.

The Saints coach added that he and the entire team was excited to start the section meet with Hunt qualifying for state. She’s a tremendous student-athlete “who strives and works for perfection in everything she does,” Forbort said.

He believes she can go even farther in elite company at state. Last spring she reached 16 feet and missed out on state.

• David Reese and Max Gust placed sixth and seventh in the 100 dash finals in 11.51 and 11.58, respectively.

• St. Francis’ 4×100 relay team of eighth graders Taylor Karasch and Emma Street with Hunt, a senior and Justin, a junior provided a good mix of ages and experience levels. It was the first time the foursome competed together and Forbort hopes the group will continue to lower its time heading into state.


• Andover senior Nicholas Krouse won the triple jump and qualified for state with a distance of 45-03. The final leap was exactly one foot off the meet record set by fellow Andover graudate Eyo Ekpo in 2009. Ekpo transitioned into a stellar track career at St. Thomas. Huskies high jumper Nick Macfarlane placed second clearing 6-0 as did Forest Lake champion Cody Walton who needed fewer jumps to clear the bar. Cameron Wold was third clearing 5-11 and teammate John Feigum was sixth clearing 5-06. Saints junior Jacob Snelling placed seventh with a 40-04 jump.

• Junior Christopher Larson won the 200 dash in 22.92. Larson also won the long jump reaching 20-05.50, while teammates Krouse finished third and Jacob McNallan placed sixth.

• Andover boys’ dominated the relay events winning twice with a runner-up finish in a third relay and set two new school records. The 4×100 with the team of Austin Lorch, Samuel LeClair, Chris Larson, Cameron Sanchez, Kyle Kettler and Nicholas Krouse won in 43.27 or seven-hundreths of a second off the state qualifying time. The Huskies 4×200 team of Lorch, LeClair, Larson, Krouse, Kettler and Patrick Etim won the event in a new school record time of 1:29.26. Andover’s 4×400 relay of Wood, Lorch, Etim, Cotter, Blake Wood and Logan Brown placed second to qualify for state in another school record of 3:25.38.

• Junior Chris Meados was edged by 0.11 seconds for the 1600 run title after winning it last spring. He finished in 4:28.66 while Forest Lake’s Jacob Jankowski won the race in 4:28.55. Meados finished third in the 3200 in 9:53.97 after winning the conference title earlier.

• North Dakota State recruit Steven Cotter won the 800 dash in a section record and new personal best time of 1:54.86. The previous time of 1:56.33 was set by Chisago Lakes Bill Bowers in 2000. Cotter is among the top distance runners of all time, holding all but one Andover’s distance record. “His 800 is the third fastest in the state right now and he’s coming off a podium finish at state last year,” head coach Mike Bobbe said. “He’s peaking at the right time and has an incredible kick and he doesn’t change his pace which makes him very strong in the 800 because he likes to lead from the start.”

Cotter plans to compete on the cross country and track teams at NDSU.

• Andover jumper Taylor Hedin won the high jump with a leap of 5-00, while teammates Andrea Duffney placed third (5-00) and Taylor Finnes tied for fourth clearing 4-10.

• Andover pole vaulter Kyle Synowczynski and St. Francis’ Mitchell Greene tied for third place clearing 11-06.

• Andover junior Maddie McKeefry placed ninth in the 1600 run in 5:27.93 and St. Francis senior Dakotah Bullen finished 12th in 5:37.25. Bullen placed fifth in the 3200 run in 11:56.29 and McKeefry was eighth in 12:02.66.

Legacy Christian

• Tim Davie placed second in the pole vault clearing 12-06 the Section 5A meet hosted by St. John’s University May 29.

• Peter Clausen was sixth in the 3,200 run in 10:08.90.

• Holt Wiczek placed eighth in the 400 finals in 53.82.

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