Marshall track team takes part in indoor meet in Mankato

The Marshall boys’ and girls’ track and field teams were back in Mankato Monday for their second indoor competition of the spring season. While they both picked up several first-place individual finishes at the three-team meet, the Marshall girls managed to take top honors as a team.

The Tiger girls had nine first-place finishes on their way to scoring 59 points. They beat second-place Mankato West by nine points, while Shakopee took third with 31 points.

Despite missing one of her top athletes, Maddie Verschaetse, due to illness, Marshall girls’ head coach Marie Sample said her squad put forth a strong performance against a couple of tough teams, one of which (Shakopee) is a Section 2AA opponent. She said the team looks to be building a strong foundation for the rest of the season.

“We only have seven juniors and seniors, so it’s kind of exciting with a new group of kids,” Sample said. “The seniors and juniors have been through so many transitions with new coaches so it’s good that we’re planning on being around for a long time to provide some stability and build a strong tradition.”

Sophomore Sarah Buysse had a great day on the track for the Tigers. She won the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.91 seconds and also claimed the top spot in the 200 dash (27.64) and the 400 dash (1:05.79).

Senior Sarah Andersen had a part in three first-place finishes as well. She won the long jump with a leap of 15 feet, 7.25 inches and also won the triple jump at 33-1.25. Andersen was also part of the winning 4×200 relay team along with Sophia Buysse, Kendra Soupir and Samantha Giannelli that won with a time of 2:01.31.

Marshall’s 4×800 relay team of Jenna Christianson, Claire Boersma, Jackie Turner and Nichole Sample took top honors with a time of 10:43.01. And in the field events, Jessica Oaxaca won the high jump (4-6) and Celeste Werner had the top throw in the shot put (28-4.5).

The Marshall boys scored 44 points to take third. Mankato West won with a score of 57.5 to edge Shakopee, which had a score of 54.

Marshall’s Danny West won the 60-meter high hurdles (9.51) and the 60-meter intermediate hurdles (9.36) for two of the Tigers’ first-place finishes.

Promise Nkwocha won the 400 dash for Marshall with a time of 55.2 seconds, and he also joined Ryan Schultz, Rhett Struve and Sam Marshall to win the 4×400 relay (3:53). Sam Marshall added a win in the 200 dash with a time of 24.4.

“We had a lot of firsts today,” Marshall boys’ coach Mike Jacobs said, “but these teams, and this is typical, still kind of manhandled us with their depth even though we scored a lot of firsts. Shakopee just has unbelievable numbers this year.”

Jacobs said the Tigers are battling the injury bug early in the season with a pair of freshman sprinters suffering setbacks and distance runner Blaine Moran still working his way back from a hockey injury. Distance runner Tanner Bukowski is also out as he is taking some time off following a state tournament run with the basketball team.

The Tigers are scheduled to be back in action April 4 with a meet in Montevideo.