Woodbury track & field: Lots of Royal blue at state meet
For Royals fans, it was a great day at the track.
The Woodbury boys and girls track and field teams are sending five individuals and two relay teams to the 2012 Minnesota State Track and Field meet this year.
Based on their finishes at the Section 4AA Championships held last week at Stillwater High School, Woodbury's Abiola Abodunde, Davis Johnson, Matthew Waterhouse, Lisa Huska and Wakpor Ighovojah are all headed to the state meet, along with the Royals boys 400-meter and 1600-meter relay teams.
Overall, the Woodbury girls took third place in the Section 4AA championships and the Royals boys earned fifth place with 96 points. Stillwater won both section titles. The Ponies boys had 137 points and the girls scored 156 points.
Abodunde, a junior, led the way for the Royals, qualifying for state in three events - the triple jump, the 400-meter relay and 1600-meter relay.
Woodbury is sending two relay teams to state this year - the Royals 400-meter relay team of Quaran Al-Hameed, Abodunde, Dimeji Iselewa and Kyle Haugen earned a state berth by beating the qualifying time of 43.33 seconds with a 43.18 time in the section finals, taking third place. Also, the 1600-meter relay team of Waterhouse, Johnson, Abodunde and Haugen qualified for the state meet by winning the Section 3AA title with a time of 3:21.79 - just back of its season-best 3:21.62, which is the second-fastest time in the state this year. Abodunde also earned a trip to state in the triple jump by taking second place with a qualifying jump of 44 feet, 10.50 inches - just back of the winning jump of 45-00.75 by St. Paul Central junior Elijah Campbell.
Also, individually, Johnson, a senior, won the Section 4AA 300-meter hurdle championship with a time of 38.87 seconds, which is the fifth-fastest recorded time in the state this year. Johnson also just missed a state berth in the 110 hurdles, taking fourth place with a time of 15.23. The state-qualifying time was 15.16. Also, Waterhouse, a junior, took second place in the 400-meter dash to earn a trip to the state meet. His time of 50.06 was just back of the winning time of 48.68 by East Ridge's Nate Roese.
For the Woodbury girls, Huska - a junior - won the 300-meter hurdle section championship to qualify for the state meet. Huska's time of 45.72 beat Stillwater's Shelby Litchy (45.97) and was the fifth-best recorded time in the state this year. Another junior, Ighovojah, took second place in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.49 to earn a trip to the state meet. She finished just behind Stillwater's Brooke Hunter (15.32). Ighovojah also finished in fourth place in the long jump with a leap of 16 feet, 5.25 inches and took ninth place in the high jump, clearing 4 feet, 10 inches.
A number of individuals just missed the state meet. For the girls, Woodbury freshman Christina Doherty took third place in the 400-meter dash with a time of 1:00.19. The qualifying time in the event was 57.20. Woodbury senior Emily Twohig took fourth place in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:23.14. The state-qualifying time was 2:17.17. In the triple jump, Woodbury senior Kat Herzberg took fourth and junior Maddie Haut earned fifth place with marks of 34 feet, 11.5 inches and 34-09.75, respectively. The state-qualifying mark in the event was 36-01. Woodbury sophomore Allyson Rock earned fifth place in the discus toss with a heave of 111 feet, 10 inches. The qualifying distance was 126-08. In addition, Woodbury freshman Manasa Melachuri took 11th in the 3200-meter run with a time of 12:13.83, Woodbury junior Devan Roman reached the finals and placed ninth in the 300 hurdles with a time of 49.29 and junior Taylor Malmgren finished in 10th place in the high jump, going over 4-8.
For the boys, Woodbury junior Josh McClain finished in fourth place in the discus throw with a heave of 144 feet even and took eighth in the shot put with a heave of 44 feet, 8.50 inches. Woodbury's Ethan Turner tied for 10th in the high jump, clearing 5 feet, 9 inches and was 12th in the long jump with a leap of 19 feet, 11 inches. Woodbury sophomore Taylor Voit reached the 800-meter run finals, taking 12th with a time of 2:08.27. Freshman Nick Wareham and senior Luke Wittman took 11th and 12th, respectively in the 3200-meter run with times of 10:17.90 and 10:18.87 and Woodbury senior Sam Evans took 15th in the 1600 with a time of 4:42.55.
The 2012 State Track and Field Meet will be held Friday and Saturday, June 8 and 9 at Hamline University in St. Paul. Class AA prelims and triple jump prelims and finals will begin at 9 a.m. Friday. Event finals begin Saturday at 9 a.m.
The Stillwater boys won the 2011 Minnesota State High School League Track and Field Championships with 47 points, followed by runner-up Wayzata with 43 points and Eden Prairie and Park with 42 points each. Hopkins won the girls state championship title with 84 points, followed by Alexandria with 48 points and Apple Valley with 35 points.
At the state meet, teams are awarded points and All-State honors for finishing in the top nine places in each event. A first place finish garners 12 points, second place gets 10 points, third place earns eight points, and so on. The ninth place finisher earns one point.