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Shane Streich, left, and Keeghan Hurley ran to a photo finish in the state 1,600m final. Robert Williams/FOCUS

Perham's Hurley takes second place in 1,600 meters at state meet

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ST. PAUL – It was fitting that the first thing Perham senior Keeghan Hurley did after finishing second in the 1,600-meter run at Saturday’s Minnesota Class 1A state track and field meet was put on his Southern Utah University hat.

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His time running at Perham had come to an end and in seven days his training begins to fulfill his dream to become an All-American and eventually an olympian.

“I think I’ll run a victory 12-mile run tomorrow,” Hurley said with a laugh. “Right now, I’m just trying to soak it all in. It’s a very special moment. It’s the close to a high school career and I think it’s been a successful one. There’s nothing I regret. I’m going to go to the next level now.”

There was a bittersweet feeling to Hurley’s final race. He dropped four seconds in his mile, broke a Class 1A state meet and school record, only to have the defending state champion, Shane Streich, of Waseca, immediately take that away with a run 0.16 seconds better than his 4 minutes, 13.96 seconds. His race put Perham in first for the team title, but the Yellowjackets saw that fall in the final events, finishing tied for third, three points behind Minnehaha Academy’s 40 points and six points behind Foley’s 43.

It wasn’t a storybook ending to a career which featured nearly 40 section and state medals, but it didn’t stop Hurley from smiling ear to ear after he crossed the finish line.

“I think I’m fast and I have a kick, but he had a little bit more than me. He had that little extra gear,” Hurley said. “I love races like that, having to go all the way to the line and test other athletes and see what you can get out of them. I challenged Shane all the way to the line. It was a great way to end my career.”

Teammate Billy Beseman ran in the pack finishing fifth with a time of 4:22.59.

Perham Relays in action

Both Perham 4x800m relay teams fared well in their respective heats. The girls team placed 14th overall and fourth in the first heat (10:08.06). Seventh-grader Caitlin Covington got Perham off to a nice start with Perham in second position. The handoff was less than perfect to sister Brynnan Covington pushing Perham back to eighth, but the talented freshman made quick work after being passed and got the Yellowjackets to third place after her 800m. Sophomore Sydney Karels handed to anchor Lizzie Fudge, the team’s lone senior, in fourth place, which Fudge held for her final two laps in a Yellowjacket jersey.

The boys 4x8 team of three seniors Chris Knutson, Leighton Covington, Jayden Cullen and eighth-grader  Carson Spiecher placed third in their heat and 10th overall in a time of 8:23.31.

Knutson started the race handing the baton to Speicher in fourth place. Speicher held that spot handing to Covington, who pushed Perham into third place. Cullen was passed in the first turn by Canby/Minneota/Lincoln junior Travis Dinius, but regained position keeping Perham in a third place heat finish.

Three area athletes finish second at state 

Whereas the sun was setting on Hurley’s high school career, the career of Norman County’s Morgan Miller was just beginning to shine on Saturday. The sophomore took second in the 400-meter dash with a run of 58.24 and sixth in the 200 with a 26.44.

Miller could get used to this whole state track thing.

“I came in here and ran my best races and it’s just awesome,” Miller said. “The track is so fast and the atmosphere is great. It gets your adrenaline going.”

Pelican Rapids senior sprinter Austin Carlson and Ashby-Brandon-Evansville triple jumper Caroline Jansen went out with a bang in their final trips to state, as Carlson took second in the 400 with a 49.98 and Jansen took second in the triple jump with a jump of 36 feet, 2 inches.

Carlson had back-to-back 13th-place finishes in the 400, so not only did he get to take one of the bigger steps on the podium, he got to take his first step.

“I wanted to be in the top five, but second place amazes me,” said Carlson, who will run at the University of Minnesota-Duluth next year. “It’s a tearjerker to be my last race for my hometown. The whole senior year and last race thing put me over the edge to get to the podium.”

Jansen took third in the triple jump at state last season and ended her triple jump career, fittingly, with a jump in the rankings.

“I’m glad I was able to make it up that high this year,” Jansen said. “It’s bittersweet to move on from my team and my coaches, but I’m excited.”

Boys 1A Team scores: 1, Foley 43. 2, Minnehaha Academy 40. 3t, Waseca 37. 3t, Perham 37. 3t, St. Croix Lutheran 37. 6, Rochester Lourdes 30. 7, Ottertail Central 27. 8, Luverne, 30. 9, Chatfield 24. 10t, Pequot Lakes 21. 10t, Rushford-Peterson-Houston 21. 10t, Prairie Seeds Academy 21. 10t, Holy Family Catholic 21. 14 Byron, 20. 15, Pine Island 19. 16. St. Cloud Cathedral 18. 17, Fairmont 17. 18t, Breck 16. 18t, Park Rapids 16. 20t, Mounds Park Academy 15. 20t, Redwood Valley 15. 22t, Rush City 14. 22t, Bethlehem Academy 14. 22t, Jordan 14. 22t, Mesabi East 14. 26, Caledonia-Spring Grove 13. 27t, Chisholm 12. 27t, Rockford 12. 29, New London-Spicer 10.50. 30t, St. Clair 10. 30t, Plainview-Elgin-Millville 10, 30t, Maple Lake 10, 30t, Watertown-Mayer 10. 30t, Nevis 10. 35t, Cotter 9. 35t, Windom 9. 37t, Community Christian 8. 37t, Martin County West 8. 37t, LeSueur-Henderson 8. 37t, Minnesota Valley Lutheran 8. 37t, Park Christian 8. 43, Belle Plaine-Holy Family 7. 44t, Montevideo 6. 44t, St. Paul Academy and Summit 6. 44t, Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley 6. 44t, Hayfield 6. 48, West Central Area, 5.50. 49t, Tri-City United 5. 49t, Holdingford 5. 49t, St. Peter 5. 49t, Bertha-Hewitt-Verndale 5. 49t, Jackson County Central 5. 49t, La Crescent 5. 55, St James 4.50. 56t, Mountain Lake 4, 56t, Greenway-Naswauk-Keewati 4. 56t, East Grand Forks 4. 56t, South Ridge-Cherry-N 4. 56t, New Richland-H-E-G 4. 56t, Lake City 4. 56t, Albany 4. 63t, Litchfield 3. 63t, Proctor 3. 63t, Crosby-Ironton 3. 66t, Stewartville 2. 66t, Royalton 2. 66t, Central Minnesota Christian 2. 66t, Red Lake County 2. 66t, Esko 2. 66t, BOLD-BLH 2. 72t, G-F-W 1. 72t, Annandale 1. 72t, New Life Academy-Bethany 1. 72t, Glencoe-Silver Lake 1. 72t, Minnewaska Area 1. 77, Long Prairie-Grey Eagle 0.50

100: 1, Tollefson, St. Croix Lutheran, 14.36.

200: 1, Beehler, Foley, 21.93.

400: 1, Webb, Minnehaha Academy, 49.34. 2, Carslon, Park Rapids, 49.38.

800: 1, Streich, Waseca, 1:55.14.

1,600: 1, Streich, Waseca, 4:13.80. 2, Hurley, Perham, 4:13.96. 5, Beseman, Perham, 4:22.59. 12, Overmyer, Park Rapids Area, 4:28.96.

110 hurdles: 1, Tollefson, St. Croix Lutheran, 14.36. 7, Moberg, Park Christian, 15.81.

300 hurdles: 1, Tollefson, St. Croix Lutheran, 38.32.

400 relay: 1, Foley (Kurth, Kelvington, H. Beehler, T. Beehler), 43.29.

800 relay: 1, Rochester Lourdes (Steinmetz, K. Carstens, Streit, M. Carstens), 1:30.03. 8, Ottertail Central (Ukkelberg, Peterson, Stueve, VanErp), 1:33.19.

1,600 relay: 1, Rochester Lourdes (Steinmetz, K. Carstens, M. Carstens, Streit), 3:21.41.

3,200 relay: 1, Mounds Park Academy (Dahlberg, Gardner, N. Ferlic, E. Ferlic), 8:04.72. 10, Perham (Knutson, Speicher, Cullen, Covington), 8:23.31. 13, Ottertail Central (B. Himmelspach, Ranstad, Frost, L. Himmelspach), 8:29.69.

High jump: 1, Culbert, Chisholm, 6-08. 7t, Schack, West Central Area, 6-0. 17, Nickel, Park Christian, 5-10.

Long jump: 1, Hull, Jordan, 22-05. 5, Ukkelberg, Ottertail Central, 21-09. 7, Schack, West Central Area, 21-6 ¾. 16, VanErp, Ottertail Central, 19-4 ¼.

Discus: 1, LaPlante, Chatfield, 162-08. 16, Handyside, Mahnomen-Waubun, 125-11.

Girls 1A Team scores: 1, Minneapolis Edison 40. 2, Belle Plaine-Holy Family 32.75. 3, Holy Family Catholic 31. 4, Osakis 29. 5, Plainview-Elgin-Millville 24.75 6t, Norman County 24. 6t, St. Clair 24. 6t, Redwood Valley 24. 9, Pine Island 21. 10t, Watertown-Mayer 20. 10t, LeSueur-Henderson 20. 10t Pequot Lakes 20. 13, Concordia Academy-Roseville 19. 14t, Mayer Lutheran 18. 14t, Lac qui Parle Valley-Dawson-Boyd 18. 14t, Zumbrota-Mazeppa 18. 14t, Paynesville Area 18. 18, Luverne 17. 19t, Lake City 16. 19t, Tri-City United 16. 21, Breck School 15. 21t, Staples-Motley 15. 23t, International Falls 14. 23t, Ashby/Brandon/Evansville 14. 25t, Mesabi East 13. 25t, Trinity School River Ridge 13. 27t, Cannon Falls 12. 27t, Annandale 12. 27t, La Crescent 12. 27t, New Richland-H-E-G 12. 27t, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa 12. 27t, Central Minnesota Christian 12. 27t, BOLD/BLH 12. 27t, Waseca 12. 35t, Albany 11. 35t, Adrian 11. 35t, Blue Earth Area 11. 35t, Rushford-Peterson/Houston 11. 39t, Martin County West 10. 39t, LCWM-Nicollet 10. 39t, Chatfield 10. 39t, Fairmont 10. 43t, Sleepy Eye Unified 9. 43t, Long Prairie-Grey Eagle 9. 45, Tracy-Milroy-Balaton 8.75. 46, Schaeffer Academy 8. 46t, Norwood-Young America 8. 46, Minnehaha Academy 8. 46t, Esko 8. 46, Pipestone Area 8. 51t, East Grand Forks 7. 51t, Russell-Tyler-Ruthton 7. 53t, St. Paul Academy & Summit 6. 53t, Montevideo 6. 53t, United North Central 6. 53t, Lanesboro-Fillmore Central 6. 53t, St. Croix Lutheran 6. 58t, Mounds Park Academy 5. 58t, Caledonia-Spring Grove 5. 58t, Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City 5. 58t, Rush City 5. 58t, Jordan 5 58t, Waterville-Elysian-Morris 5. 58t, St. Cloud Christian 5. 65t, Byron 4. 65t, Benson-KMS 4. 65t, St. Cloud Cathedral 4. 65t, Foley 4. 65t, Park Christian 4. 65t, Roseau 4. 71, Bagley-Fosston 3.50. 72t, Melrose Area 3. 72t, Barnesville 3. 72t, Mountain Lake Area 3. 72t, Sibley East 3. 72t, Grand Meadow-LeRoy-Ost-So 3. 77, Milaca 2.50. 78t, New York Mills 2. 78t, Rockford 2. 78t, Moose Lake-Willow River 2. 81t, Park Rapids 1. 81t, Litchfield 1. 81t, Cromwell 1. 84, West Central Area School 0.75.

100: 1, Lewis, Minneapolis Edison, 12.36.

200: 1, Lewis, Minneapolis Edison, 25.06. 6, Miller, Norman County, 26.44.

400: 1, Gatz, Belle Plaine-HFA, 57.85. 2, Miller, Norman County, 58.24. 6, Nepstad, Park Christian, 58.65. Rutten, New York Mills, 58.82.

800: 1, Miller, Watertown-Mayer, 2:14.39.

1,600: 1, Huhnerkoch, Redwood Valley, 5:03.02.

100 hurdles: 1, Beachy, Staples-Motley, 14.90.

300 hurdles: 1, Bierman, La Crescent, 45.13.

400 relay: 1, Pequot Lakes (Allen, Rudlang, Bermel, Lane), 49.46.

1,600 relay: 1, Osakis (Hoglin, Szech, Jones, Sadlemyer), 3:58.46.

3,200 relay: 1, Waseca (Novak, Highum, Breck, Obrien), 9:31.57. 9, Park Rapids (Kantonen, Hilmanowski, Olson, Overmyer), 9:52.90. 14, Perham (C. Covington, B. Covington, Karels, Fudge), 10:08.06.

Triple jump: 1, Hill, Breck, 37-3. 3, Jansen, Ashby-Brandon-Evansville 36-2. 13, Stanger, Norman County, 33-11.

Shot put: 1, Weber, St. Clair, 43-02 ¾. 13, Meyer, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 34-11 ½.

Pole vault: 1, Lilja, BOLD-BLH, 10-09.

Focus Sports Editor Robert Williams contributed to this story and photos.

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Chris Murphy
Chris Murphy is the Minnesota preps and Fargo Force beat reporter for the Forum. He's covered high school sports in Chicago, North Dakota and Minnesota for the last five years and, for some reason, has been given awards for doing so. If reading him in the paper and online isn't enough, you can read more of him at the Forum Preps Blog: http://forumpreps.areavoices.com/  
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