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Boys track: Irish repeat as section track champions

With the recent success the Rosemount boys track and field team has enjoyed at the state meet, Irish coach Jay Hatleli knows exactly what it takes to compete at the biggest meet of the season.

If Rosemount's efforts at last week's section championships are any indication, Hatleli knows the Irish have a chance to do something special this week.

Rosemount became repeat section champions last week, scoring 131 team points at the Class 2A, Section 1 meet. The Irish advanced 11 athletes to this week's state meet to compete in 10 events. Four other athletes will be available as relay alternates.

The state meet will be tomorrow and Saturday at Hamline University.

"It's the most athletes we've ever had qualify for the state meet in a season," Hatleli said.

Among the qualifiers, Zach Vraa, Shane McCallum, Brandt Berghuis, Chandler Dye, Goaner Deng, Andrew Hausmann and Myles Phillips, Chris Mergens, Andrew Anderson and Jonathan Sampers all return for the second straight year.

"Everyone has a legitimate chance to place, if not win," Hatleli said. "If things go well, we could have another great couple of days at the state meet."

Vraa continues to add to his high school resume. The senior won the 110- and 300-meter hurdles. His time of 14.32 seconds in the 110 high hurdles set a new Class 2A, Section 1 record and was a U.S. Juniors qualifying mark. He crossed the line in 39.72 seconds to win the 300 hurdles.

Vraa is also a member of the 4x200 relay team.

Rosemount placed second in every relay.

The Irish finished second in the 4x200 with Vraa teaming up with Deng, Clayton Notch and Hausmann. Deng, Hausmann, Dye and John Evenocheck combined in the 4x400.

Phillips, Hausmann, Colton Crow and Notch comprised the 4x100. Sampers, Mergens, Evenocheck and Dye teamed up in the 4x800.

Brandon Wolf provided Rosemount's third section individual title. He cleared 6 feet, 3 inches to win the high jump.

While the Irish had three winners, there were several second-place efforts as well.

Deng was second in the 400 with a time of 49.79 seconds.

Dye was second in the 800 in 1 minute, 57.92 seconds. Mergens was seventh in the 800.

McCallum finished second in the 1,600 in 4:25.73.

Hausmann added a second-place finish in the triple jump, clearing 42-5. Marius Lewis added more team points, finishing fourth in the triple jump.

Berghuis was just fifth in the shot put, but he had a state-qualifying throw of 55 feet. He also placed fourth in the discus.

Tyler Rich and Conor Manning backed up Vraa's winning efforts in the hurdle events. Rich was sixth in the 110 hurdles, while Manning placed third in the 300 hurdles.

Notch crossed the line in fifth in the 200.

Nathan Rock finished sixth in the 3,200. Tony Marthaler was sixth in the pole vault.