Riders Move Outdoors with Two Meets at Davies
The Grand Forks Sertoma meet is held annually at Cushman Field. On rare occasions, the meet has to be moved indoors or to a new facility. A glacier covering most of the south turn on the track forced the meet to be held at Fargo Davies HS, home to the only clear track in the area. Minus Devils Lake and the Fargo South boys team, the entire EDC was present. On a beautiful day in Fargo, the Riders surprised the field with a team victory. The East Region meet will be a dogfight this year, with the top 6-7 teams all showing potential to end up on top.
Sertoma Team Scores
1) Red River 140.5
2) West Fargo 128
3) Davies 118.5
4) West Fargo Sheyenne 109
5) Shanley 80
6) Fargo North 61
7) Grand Forks Central 30.5
8) Wahpeton 23.5
9) Valley City 11
Three Relays Qualify
Not since 2013 have the RR boys qualified the 4×800 relay by time. After breaking the indoor school record, the D-Krew/Mid-D-Krew has been hungry to officially qualify. In their first chance Tuesday, they did just that. Marcelles “Startwell” lead off with a PR split, breakout sophomore star Mustafe Abdi and senior Zach Simon both ran solid, while senior Jake Arason dipped under the 2:00 barrier for the first time in his career. In the end, they totaled 8:17.48, under the State Qualifying Standard (SQ) of 8:24.24.
In their first crack at the 4×200 relay, the team of senior Zack Topping, senior Austin Oehlke, junior Brady Dvorak, and senior Cheyenne Hare booked their tickets to Bismarck, stopping the clock at 1:33.92. The performance is under the SQ time of 1:34.24.
The 4×100 relay team returned both the first (Topping) and third (Ethan Brandvold) legs from their 6th place state team in 2018. With Oehlke running second and Hare anchoring, the quartet ran 45.13, under the SQ mark of 45.44.
Rohloff Ties Junior Record
At the EDC Indoor meet, junior Kaden Rohloff made attempts at the junior class record of 13’9. On Tuesday, he cleared that height to tie 2013 state champion Cole Kringstad. He placed second in the meet to West Fargo athlete Nick Gaebe.
Klefstad Qualifies in Javelin
Senior Brett Klefstad, 4th place in the 2018 State Meet in the javelin throw, will return to Bismarck for the 2019 State Meet after he bettered the SQ standard of 160’0. Reaching 163’2, he placed second. In the shot put, he was near the SQ mark of 48’6 with a toss of 47’9.5 (also in second place). Senior Cade Johnson also had a strong day in the shot put circle, hitting 45’4.5 in fourth place. Sophomore Tyler Larson was the top Rider discus thrower, hitting a new PR of 121’6 to place third overall. Look for big things from these athletes the rest of the season.
McHenry Impresses in Outdoor Debut
Freshman Hunter McHenry has made a name for himself this school year, with noticeable performances in both cross country and indoor track. In his first date with the outdoor 1600m, McHenry fought off a number of charges from Davies senior Jack Boub to place first in 4:45.06. The performance is #4 All-Time for 9th graders at RRHS. Sophomore Ryan Prusak (5th-4:52.90), 8th grader Matt Rongitsch (6th-4:57.11), and senior Thomas Hugo (8th-4:57.45), All-Conference EDC XC athletes in 2018, also scored for the Riders. In the 3200m, McHenry’s fifth-place time of 10:19.61 moves him to #3 All-Time on the Freshmen lists. Also scoring huge team points were the members of the aforementioned 4×800 team, who ran the 800m and placed 2-5 in the event. Arason (2nd-2:03.12), Sartwell (3rd-2:05.43), Abdi (4th-2:05.92), and Simon (5th-2:06.10) combined for 23 team points in the 800m alone. Adding in the 4×800, the half-mile distance scored 33 points for the Riders.
Anderson and Enerson Qualify in the Hurdles
Junior Keandre Anderson, in his first outdoor 300m hurdle race, earned a trip to the State Meet with a time of 42.34. This betters the SQ mark of 42.44. Fellow junior Bryce Enerson was fourth in a season-best time of 43.36, which is a Provisional Qualifying mark. The provisional standards, new in 2019, will be used to fill lanes at the state meet if not enough athletes reach the automatic standard. In Enerson’s specialty event, the 110m Hurdles, he qualified for State with a strong time of 15.63. The SQ standard is 16.14
Eagle Relays Recap
In the five-year history of the Fargo Davies Eagle Relays, the Red River boys have never lost the meet, nor have they lost the 110m Shuttle Hurdle Relay. The Roughriders take great pride in both of those streaks. In order to succeed in a meet format such as the Eagle Relays, a team must have depth and athletes willing to place the team above themselves. This meet features a number of relays not normally contested during regular track meets. In the field events and the three track events that aren’t relays (1600m, 3200m, 300m Hurdles), performances from each school are added together to form one team score in each event. It rewards overall team depth, as having one superstar in an event will not guarantee you team points at this meet. On Thursday, the Riders repeatedly saw athletes put the team first, competing in events/positions they do not normally do. Despite the tremendous efforts put forth by the team, both winning streaks came to an end Thursday. Sioux Falls Lincoln, the three-time defending AA Champion of South Dakota, put its depth on full display by rolling to the team title (154 pts). The Riders scored 86.5 points in third behind Western powerhouse Bismarck Legacy (92 pts).
Eagle Relays Team Scores-
1) Lincoln High School 154
2) Legacy High School 92
3) Grand Forks Red River HS 86.5
4) Fargo Davies High School 86
5) West Fargo Sheyenne HS 76.5
6) West Fargo High School 75.5
7) Moorhead High School 64.5
8) Grand Forks Central HS 59
Rohloff Soars to Junior Record
Kaden Rohloff, two days removed from tying the junior class record at 13’9, cleared 13’10 on Thursday to win the pole vault. The mark is a new junior record and the #3 jump All-Time for RRHS. Collectively, the trio of Erik Walker (10’6) and Justin Erickson (8’6) placed second overall. Erickson exemplified the team attitude during this meet. Retiring from the pole vault last spring after a few college tries with the event, he came out of retirement with the explicit goal of making opening height and helping the team score some much-needed points. He did exactly that Thursday, despite the fact that it conflicted with the javelin, his main event. A great team sacrifice from the junior captain.
Arason Qualifies in 3200
Highlighting the distance runners Thursday was Arason, who will return to Bismarck for the 3200m run, an event he competed in at last year’s state meet. Fighting a brutal headwind on the backstretch, he completed 8 laps in 9:59.81, which is under the SQ mark of 10:05.24. McHenry (10:18.47) and Simon (10:20.50) placed 4th and 5th to round out the scoring in the 3200m team race, bringing 10 team points to the Riders. Arason and Simon teamed with Sartwell and Mohamud Yahye in the distance medley relay (1200, 400, 800, 1600), finishing 3rd behind tough teams from Lincoln and Moorhead. In the 1600m team race, Mustafe Abdi placed fifth (4:43.35) to lead the team. Prusak (4:54.08) and McHenry (5:00.15) completed the trio, which placed fourth overall.
For the third consecutive year, the boys flexed their sprinting depth and won the 8×200 relay. Team members included Topping, Brandvold, Oehlke, Hare, Nate Hollingshead, Nate Pressnell, Alessandro Kroeger, and Bikash Pathak. Their time of 3:17.42 is the third fastest in school history.
Wind Wreaks Havoc on Sprint Relays
The team managed one practice with 4×100 and 4×200 handoffs before the meets this past week. Strong winds illustrated that fact on Thursday, as both the 4×100 and 4×200 teams struggled in their handoffs. The 4×100 team (Topping, Oehlke, Brandvold, Hare) ran nearly 1.5 seconds slower than Tuesday in 46.54. Despite this, the performance was good enough for third place. In the 4×200, poor handoffs doomed the Riders, as they placed 7th in 1:39.00. In the sprint medley relay (100, 100, 200, 400), 8th grader Lukas Heydt and junior Michael Nottestad ran 100 legs, junior Tanner Bernhardson split a strong 200 leg with the wind, and senior Nate Tabor ran a solid 400 leg to finish in 8th (1:48.84).
Shot Put Trio Places Third
Seniors Klefstad (5th-47’6.5), Johnson (8th-44’10), and junior Cole Ogren (40’4.5) placed 3rd collectively in the shot put. The javelin trio of Klefstad (4th-154’3), Ogren (6th-145’5), and Johnson (8th-140’8.5) also placed third overall. Tyler Larson again was the top discus thrower at 116’7. Seniors Evan Hutchison (102’2) and Luke Anderson (88’10) finished the scoring to place eighth in the discus.
Shuttle Hurdle Dynasty Comes to an End
Since the inception of the Eagle Relays in 2014, Red River had never lost the 4x110m Shuttle Hurdle Relay. For this year’s edition, a number of quality hurdlers were left unable to compete for a variety of reasons. As a result, promising 8th grader Lukas Heydt and senior captain Zack Topping volunteered to join returning champions Bryce Enerson and Tanner Bernhardson. Topping, the vertically challenged former Schroeder Middle School 100m Hurdle School Record Holder, had not actively hurdled since flirting with the 300m hurdles in 9th grade. He had never hurdled at the high school 39” height. Despite all of these setbacks, Topping took one for the team and braved the stiff headwind, as did Bernhardson. They battled bravely, with Topping even looking like a real hurdler over a few flights. Dubbed by Moorhead Head Coach Ron Davies as the “most vocal hurdler [he] had ever seen,” Topping impressed many with his verbal grunts, yells, phrases, and laughs mid-race. With the wind at his back, Heydt also impressed with a 17.3 split. Enerson, taking full advantage of the tailwind, ran the second-fastest split in school history with a 15.1 clocking. Their total time of 1:09.32 put them in third place behind Lincoln and Sheyenne. The time is the fourth-fastest in school history.
After a widely popular debut in 2018, the Coaches Relay was brought back once again, despite most coaches pleading against the likely rupture of whatever is left of their hamstrings. As pointed out near-daily by the current team of athletes, the RR coaches had a disappointing 4th place finish in 2018. The team made some changes to the lineup, inserting Coach Dorsey in the 200 leg and moving Bakke to the second 100 leg. Coach Eckert got off to a blistering start, eating up the curve like Zack Topping and a post-meet Arby’s meal. Bakke proceeded to execute a handoff exactly the way he instructs the team not to. Despite the poor exchange, the team stayed in first after Bakke crawled to Dorsey, who was waiting at the exchange zone somewhere near Harwood (seemingly). Dorsey clocked off a fine 200 split, getting the baton to Dafoe in second place. Learning his lesson from last year, Dafoe cooled his jets and saved some juice for the backstretch, finishing in a strong split of 58.5. Although the team finished, again, in fourth place, team members were pleased with the non-rupture of any body parts. Also, it’s hard to be disappointed after watching the Lincoln coach’s herculean effort. The video, posted on Twitter by the Lincoln Track account, has been viewed over 230,000 times (and counting). Check it out here.
Meet Results-CLICK HERE
Updated Point Totals and Top Marks-CLICK HERE
Meet Photos-CLICK HERE
Next up for the Riders is the Dual vs. GFC on Monday, April 22. Check out the schedule here.
As always, you can follow the team on Twitter (@RRTFXC) and Instagram (@rrtfxc).
“Topping looked better than any other team’s fourth guy!”
-Delmore, on Zack’s performance in the shuttle hurdle relay
“This past meet showed what this team is capable of accomplishing even with the short depth in certain events. Attending a unique meet like this really brought our team together and I can’t wait to see what we are able to do with a full, healthy roster.”
-Senior captain Austin Oehlke
“Holy $***, they are actually fast!”
-Sophomore female distance runner, watching the coaches relay