Work over the summer inside St. Michael-Albertville High School might include a new trophy case, as the Class of 2015 added yet another piece of hardware to the haul this season for the St. Michael-Albertville Knights.
The girls’ track team, fresh off winning the Section 5AA Championship last weekend in St. Paul, traveled to Hamline University again the morning after graduation and pulled in second place in the state, just 3.5 points behind Lakeville South, who took first. Chanhassen edged Eden Prairie for third.
The Knights finished with 46 points, led in large part by a relay team that didn’t taste defeat all season. The STMA girls’ 4×100 meter relay squad of Anna Keefer, Cherish Witherspoon, Katelyn Tschida and Whitney Perry cruised home in a time of 48.26 to take the state title in one of the weekend’s fastest races. The squad, which participated in meets from Duluth to Delano, St. Cloud to St. Paul, didn’t lose once in 2015. And all four runners – a sophomore, junior, freshman and junior, respectively – will be back for the Knights in 2016.
Not to be outdone is the school’s most decorated female distance runner, Rachel King, who will run for South Dakota State University next season. The future Jack was second in the 3,200 meters, finishing with a standout time of 10 minutes, 40.95 seconds. That run was more than 10 seconds faster than her Section 5AA championship run the weekend before, and would’ve set the Section 5 record.
King added a fifth place finish in the mile (1,600 meters), where she was joined by sophomore Lizzy Heil in the scoring column. Heil, a sophomore, placed ninth.
In the 400 meter run, Izzy Ferrozzo, sophomore, cruised into the final heat with one of the fastest times of the day. She came in seenth in the final, dropping nearly a half second from her prelim run, bringing in three points.
Keefer and Witherspoon, part of that historic relay team, also placed in the 200-meter dash, with Keefer in seventh and Witherspoon in ninth.
In the field, Keefer took home a bronze medal in the long jump, her second medal of the afternoon Saturday. And Perry, also part of the 4×100, placed seventh in the triple jump.
On the boys’ side, the Knights finished 19th overall, well behind the two frontrunners, Wayzata and Eden Prairie. But Chase Cayo earned a spot on the podium for the Knights, finishing sixth in the 3,200 meter distance run.
Josh Tracy, who nearly dropped a Section 5 record performance the week before in the 400 meters, finished in 48.65 Saturday for second place in the state and his first medal of the 2015 championships. The Knights’ 4×800 relay team closed out the scoring with a point in finals.
Section 5AA Meet
Back on May 28 and 29 at Hamline, STMA’s girls cruised the the 5AA title, racking up 195 points, more than 25 better than Mounds View in what was a two-team race for the gold. Champlin Park was third with 92 points.
On the boys’ side, Cayo and company finished sixth with 62 points. Blaine took the gold with 141.5.
The girls’ team rolled through the track events, with Perry and Keefer going 2-3 (second, third) in the 100 meters, Keefer and Witherspoon taking a 1-2 sweep in the 200 meters, Ferrozo capturing the 400 meter title (Grace Joslyn was sixth) and Heil third in the 800.
In distance runs, King was amazing, cruising to a win in the 3,200 and a record time in the mile final. Lizzy Heil was second in the mile, while Paig McAloon was fourth in the 3,200 (and she’s just a seventh-grader).
Paige Joslyn placed twice in the hurdles (100 and 300 meters) while Jenny Gibbs, a junior, was fifth.
And the 4×100 relay just did their thing, winning the 5AA title easily.
In the field, Jada Brown, senior, was third in the pole vault. Keefer took the bronze in the long jump. And Perry, Sophia Weston and McKenna Rogers took three of the top six spots (second, fourth and sixth) in the triple jump. In throws, Lena Wilson was fourth in the shot put and eighth in the discus.
On the boys’ side, Tracy sailed to the 400 meter win by nearly a .5 second wiht a time of 48.92.
Chase Cayo had an standout meet in his final sections, taking the mile by nearly two seconds and winning the two-mile run by more than 10 seconds.
And in the field, Andrew Puett, a senior, picked up a bronze in the discus.