Track girls move up SEC pack

Third-place effort is program’s best in 10 years

The Forest Lake girls’ track and field program has moved up the pack in the Suburban East Conference. The Rangers placed third at the SEC Championships at East Ridge last week.

Along the way, Jessica Dhaene set the school record in the 300-meter hurdles and Bailey Norby eclipsed her recently set school record in the shot put.

“We were extremely pleased with all facets of events,” said coach Eric Kaluza. “It’s the highest finish in a decade and having Bailey and Jessica set school records was icing on the day. We’re proud of them and are looking forward to regions.”

Stillwater scored 177 points to beat Mounds View by 14 and keep the Mustangs from defending their title. Forest Lake finished with 148 points, which is over twice of what it accumulated while placing seventh in 2011.

Dhaene, a junior, was among several girls to set personal bests during Friday’s finals. She did so in both the 100 hurdles, where she took second in 15.73 seconds, and in the 300 hurdles, where her record run of 45.81 earned first place.

Junior Adele Hansen joined Dhaene in the 100 finals and placed ninth in 16.95.

Norby’s effort of 39-10 in the shot put was nearly five inches longer than the record she established at the prior meet. It was also the team’s highest scoring event, as Sam Anderson took third (38-10 1/2), Sam Motz eighth (35-8) and Alex Howard ninth (34-10).

Anderson added a second-place finish in the discus (129-07) and was joined in the finals by Gena Baklund, who took ninth with a personal-best throw of 109-8.

Forest Lake scored 18 points in the mile run. Seventh-grader Allie Bartlett raced to second place in 5:12.95 and eighth-grader Emma Benner took fourth in 5:20.02, both personal bests. Seventh-grader Miranda Overland placed eighth in 5:27.01.

Bartlett was also second in the 3200, finishing in 11:17. Benner came in seventh in 11:42, another personal best.

Rounding out the individual track events, seventh-grader Maria Valentin took fifth in the 800 with a personal-best time of 2:21.72. Senior Holly Winberg added an eighth-place finish in 2:26.15.

Three high-jumpers scored for Forest Lake. Junior Taylor Moore led the way in third place by clearing 5-0. Ninth-grader Sarah Jaeb also cleared that height and took sixth, while junior Rachel Shumaker was seventh at 4-10.

Sophomore Katie Dison took fifth in the pole vault (9-6) and ninth-grader Cassidy Baker took sixth (9-0).

Triple-jumper Caitlin Freer leapt to third with a personal best of 35-0 1/4. Eighth-grader Abby Jungwirth also had her best result and finished fifth (34-6). Senior Kayla Suess took eighth in the long jump at 16-8 1/2, a personal best.

Those earning all-conference honors included: Dhaene, Bartlett, Benner, Moore, Freer, Norby and Anderson. Individual honorable mention competitors included: Valentin, Winberg, Overland, Hansen, Jaeb, Shumaker, Dison, Baker, Suess, Jungwirth, Baklund, Motz and Howard.

The Section 7AA meet takes place this Wednesday and Saturday in Princeton.