• 84°

Showing speed; GMLOKS relay teams wraps up 3rd place finish

ST. PAUL — The Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland/Southland girls track and field team has had plenty of speed to burn this whole spring and they put it on full display at the Minnesota Class A State Track and Field Meet at Hamline University Saturday.

Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland/Southland’s Lauren Buchholtz (middle) blazes down the front straightaway towards the finish of the 4 x 200 relay finals at the Minnesota Class A State Track and Field Meet Saturday at Hamline University in St. Paul. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

The GMLOKS 4 x 200-meter relay team of Katelyn Luthe, Emily Hovden, Riley Queensland and Lauren Buchholtz finished in third place with a time of 4.46.55 as it edged out Holy Family Catholic by .005 of a second. Hovden said GMLOKS had a do-or-die attitude after the relay team took ninth last year at state.

Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland/Southland’s Riley Queensland nears the exchange with teammate Lauren Buchholtz in the 4 x 200-meter relay finals at the Minnesota Class A State Track and Field Meet Saturday at Hamline University in St. Paul. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

“This was our last meet of the year and if we ended up passing out at the end, it would be worth it,” Hovden said. “Because getting third is just amazing. Going from ninth last year to third this year is a big, big upgrade.”

Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland/Southland Emily Hovden takes the handoff from teammate Katelyn Luthe in the finals of the 4 x 200-meter relay at the Minnesota Class A State Track and Field Meet Saturday at Hamline University in St. Paul. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Luthe, a senior, was a bystander last year, and this season she made big improvements to give the team a lift.

“This is the best track year I’ve ever had. Everything that could’ve happened did,” Luthe said. “I’ve improved a lot, I love my teammates and I loved coming last year to support them. This year getting third was icing on the cake.”

Pequot Lakes won the race with a time of 1:44.23.

Drew Lewison, a GMLOKS junior, found out what it took to get on the podium at state as he finished fifth in the 300-meter hurdles. Lewison finished with a burst over the final 60-meters to climb up in the field and finish with a time of 39.86 seconds.

Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland/Southland’s Drew Lewison clears a hurdle in the finals of the Minnesota Class A State Track and Field Meet at Hamline University in St. Paul on Saturday. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

“You’ve just got to give it your all and go as hard as you can,” Lewison said. “It was really exciting getting to state and getting on the podium for the first time. Being able to make it to the finals was a really big thing for me. Now I’m thinking about things I can improve on to better myself.”

Lewison said his first state meet came with a lot of nerves, but he’ll be a lot more relaxed if he makes it next season.

“It was a lot different than any other track meet I’ve been to. Next year, I’ll be a lot less nervous,” Lewison said.

Reid Pierzinski of Pequot Lakes took first in the 300-hurdles with a 38.60.

GMLOKS senior Peter Torkeslon was hoping to get on the state podium for the second straight year after he took third at state last season. This time around, Torkelson was boxed in a pack of runners and he couldn’t find a way out.

Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland/Southland’s Peter Torkelson is bunched up with the main body of runners in the 1,600-meter run at the Minnesota Class A State Track and Field Meet Saturday at Hamline University in St. Paul. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

He finished in 11th place with a time that was 15 seconds slower than his seed time.

“I couldn’t get out of the box,” Torkelson said. “I tried and I almost ended up tripping again and I think that really got to me. I wish I could’ve done something better, but it’s what I was given.”

Declan Dahlberg of Mounds Park Academy took first in the 1600-meter run with a 4:24.32.

GMLOKS RESULTS

4 x 200-meter relay: Katelyn Luthe, Emily Hovden, Riley Queensland, Lauren Buchholtz (third, 1:46.55)

1600-meter run: Peter Torkelson (11th, 4:36.41)

300-meter hurdles: Drew Lewison (fifth, 39.86)