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Track and Field: Lake City girls third at True Team

Lake City's Morgan Dammann (106) pulls away from Osakis' Samantha Jones to win the 800-meter run during Saturday's Class 1A True Team meet at Stillwater High School. (Republican Eagle photo by Joe Brown)1 / 3
Lake City's Taylor Heitman clears the bar on the high jump during Saturday's Class 1A State True Team meet in Stillwater, Minnesota. Heitman finished in a tie for fourth place with a height of 4 feet, 10 inches. (Republican Eagle photo by Joe Brown)2 / 3
Lake City's Madi Green (113) takes the baton during the second leg of the 4x800-meter relay during Saturday's Class 1A State True Team meet at Stillwater High School. The Tigers took second with a time of 10 minutes, 8.67 seconds. (Republican Eagle photo by Joe Brown)3 / 3

STILLWATER, Minn. -- For the fifth year in a row, the Lake City girls track and field team were at Stillwater High School, competing for a True Team title.

And midway through Saturday’s True Team meet, the Tigers were in a three-team race alongside Osakis and Luverne for the Class 1A championship.

“We were surprised with that, too,” Lake City head coach Meribeth Kozlowski said of Lake City staying in the top three. “The kids really performed all the way around. We had a lot of best times, best efforts, best throws. They came here to compete and they wanted to do well.”

Ultimately, the Tigers finished the day in third place with 360.5 points. Luverne won the True Team title with a score of 394.5, narrowly edging Osakis with 391.5. Blue Earth Area (356.5) and International Falls (331.5) rounded out the top five.

“Last year we were fourth. The year before, we were third,” Kozlowski said. “It was a good finish. We’re excited with it.”

Among individual performances, sophomore Morgan Dammann provided Lake City’s lone first-place finish on Saturday, winning the 800-meter run with a time of 2 minutes, 27.74 seconds, narrowly beating Osakis’ Samantha Jones’ time of 2:27.94.

“She really ran well. If we had been in a different heat, too, we would have seen a tighter finish and maybe a 1-2 (finish), too,” Kozlowski said. Along with Dammann, teammate Liv Kozlowski took sixth in the 800 at 2:31.44.

Meribeth added about Dammann, “She’s feeling really confident, and that’s great to see.”

In the high jump, Madi Green and Taylor Heitman were able to score 30.5 of the team’s points. Green placed third with a jump of 5 feet, and Heitman tied for fourth with a leap of 4-10.

“(Green and Heitman) are so consistent and they’ve been jumping well all year,” Kozlowski said. “We’re really lucky to have such strong high jumpers.”

The field continued to pay dividends for Lake City, as Grayce Adler took fifth in the long jump with a distance of 15-1 ½, and Julia Anderson placed sixth in the triple jump at 30-10.

The Tigers’ throwers also provided a spark, with Kathryn Haeska finishing fifth in the shot put at 32-9. Kristin Getschmann was sixth in the discus with a throw of 86-8.

“Our throwers really came through today,” Kozlowski said. “Kathryn almost hit her PR (personal record) with her shot put, and they both had nice discus throws, too.”

Lake City finished Saturday’s meet with a pair of second-place relay teams. The 4x100 team of Victoria Corey, Adler, Shannon Ting and Brandy White placed second in 52.76, and the 4x800 team of Liv Kozlowski, Green, Heitman and Dammann was second at 10:11.83.

The Tigers wanted to put the strongest relays possible on the track, but with the Section 1A Sub-Section 3 meet on Wednesday, Lake City did not want to have some of its athletes in three events.

“Some kids we tripled in events at the (True Team) section met, and we backed off on doing that again because we got sub-sections on Wednesday, so we had no idea what the impact would be here,” Meribeth said. “I think it was the right decision, so we’re happy with the way we finished.

Kozlowski continued, “Our 4x4 wasn’t loaded like we’ll load it for the sub-section. … Our 4x1 will change for the sub-section, and our 4x8, we were hoping for a faster time from those girls. I think we’ll get it in the next two weeks.”

Joe Brown

Joe Brown is the sports editor for the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Previously, he worked at the Marshall Independent and the St. Cloud Times. For updates on local sports, follow Joe on Twitter at @RE_JBrown.

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