2021 state champions among winners
Hamline Elite Meet organizers are looking to bring together the best of the best in Minnesota high school athletics, and a number of South Suburban Conference athletes didn’t seem out of place.
Highlights included victories for competitors from SSC Rosemount, Farmington, Lakeville North and Burnsville on April 29 at Hamline University’s Klas Field. The invitation-only meet brings together the best performers from the three entry classes and allows them to compete against each other. Many of the same athletes will appear at the Minnesota State High School League Championships in June, but will be split between three entry classes.
With the exception of the 100 meter dashes for boys and girls, there are no preliminaries at the Hamline Elite Meet, meaning some track events had a selected pool of nine athletes.
Rosemount’s Jordan Hecht, the 2021 Class AA Women’s Discus Champion, won this event in the elite meet. Ireland’s Ava Cinnamo, the Class AA champion in the 100 and 300 hurdles, finished second in those events last week but won the triple jump. Burnsville senior Zoie Dundon remains the runner to beat in the 800 meters in the big school class after winning the event in Hamline.
On the boys side, winners included Ramy Ayoub senior of Farmington in the 800m and Andrew Casey senior of Lakeville North in the 1600m. Casey also raced for a northern team that won the 4×400 relay.
Dundon of Burnsville won the 800m in 2 minutes 14.16 seconds, about two seconds ahead of junior Wayzata Teegan Anderson. Hopkins ninth-grader Sydney Drevlow, who was second to Dundon at the state last year, did not participate in the elite meet.
The Rosemount team of sophomore Catelyn Ketterling, senior Jenna Johnson, junior Shay Payne and junior Mya Cinnamo finished first in the 4×200 relay in 1:44.30, about half a second faster than an Edina team anchored by 2021 state three-event sprint champion Maddie Dahlien.
Rosemount senior Ava Cinnamo cleared 39 feet 8.5 inches to win the triple jump. His last of six attempts was his best, although Cinnamo already had a good lead going into the final round.
In the Elite Meet hurdles, Ava Cinnamo took second place in the 100 in 14.28 seconds, second to Ava Fitzgerald senior of Roseville, whose time was 14.26. Cinnamo ran 44.55 in the 300 hurdles to place second.
Eastview senior Ashley Granger was invited to the Elite Meet 100th women’s sprint preliminaries but did not reach the final.
Farmington runner-up Mackenzy Lippold cracked the top 10 in the 3,200m, taking ninth place in 11:26.50.
The South Suburban Conference teams finished second and third in the 4×400 relay, with the Farmington group of junior Ava Sullivan, eighth Vanessa Ogumanam, seventh Lauren Lansing and second Marianah Scott finishing in 4:04.24 to be finalists. Mya Cinnamo, Johnson and seniors Logan Kamiel and Taylor Heimerl finished third in 4:05.69.
Hecht finished first in the discus and second in the shot put at the 2021 state meet in her first season as a pitcher. The Rosemount Junior just got better. She threw 143-10 on the discus at the Elite Meet, more than 13 feet better than second and more than 9 feet better than her game-winning throw at state last year. Hecht finished third in the Elite Meet shot put with 40-1.75, just 4 inches from first place.
Rosemount senior Ava Webster also ranked in both shots, finishing fourth in shooting at 37.250 and eighth in discus at 111-9.
Lakeville South’s Sylvia Stephenson (5-2) and Farmington’s Julia Gordon (4-10) were sixth and eighth in the high jump, and Eastview’s Robyn Dayton was 10th in the long jump with 15-10, 25.
Casey of Lakeville North has the best 1,600-meter time in the state after winning the event at the Hamline Elite Meet in 4:16.35, about 1.3 seconds ahead of Forest Lake senior Daniel Vanacker. Casey finished ninth in the state in the 1,600 last season, but all eight runners who finished ahead of him were seniors.
Casey, who recently broke his school record in the 400 meters, put that skill to good use in the second leg of the 4×400 relay. Blake Licht, Parker Malmgren and Bryce Stachewicz, all juniors, won the event in 3:25.27, with runner-up Forest Lake finishing less than a second behind.
Ayoub was the 800 favorite in the 2021 State Class AA meet but had to pull out of the final due to a leg injury. In last week’s Elite competition, Ayoub brought it home in 1:56.08, with Lakeville North’s Stachewicz second in 1:56.62. Stachewicz finished second in the 800m at last year’s state meet. Will Skelly, who won the event at State in 2021, did not run the 800 at the Elite Meet.
The Rosemount team of Vicar Pyne, Vincent Pyne, Kade Gilbertson and Miles Townsend sprinted to victory in the 4×100 relay in 42.53 seconds, 0.03 ahead of second-placed Moorhead. Gilbertson is a junior and the other three Irish relay runners are seniors.
Christian Belt senior of Burnsville and Jonathan Shrum junior of Farmington reached the 100m final, with Belt placing fourth in 10.82 and Shrum eighth in 10.90. Spectrum senior Max Reis won in 10.41, setting a meet record.
Reis also won the 200, an event where Apple Valley runner-up Dwyne Smith Jr. placed ninth in 23.27. Smith added a third place finish in the 400 in 49.16.
Burnsville senior Thomas Dundon finished 11th in the Elite Meet 800 in 2:00.28
Three Lakeville runners were invited in the 3,200m, with Lakeville South senior Matthew Whittaker placing 10th in 9:41.56. Ethan Kimmel (9:50.04) and Nicholas Angell (9:53.32) of Lakeville North finished 13th and 15th.
Lakeville South received an invitation to the 4×100 relay, with Camden Dean, Connor Cade, Reece Volk and Carson Hansen finishing sixth in 43.54.
The Farmington team of Shrum, Abdisa Ayana, Brandon Everett and Rodrick Finley finished seventh in the 4×200 relay in 1:32.41. Ayana and Finley are back from the Tigers 4×200 State Championship relay in 2021. Finley, Ayana, Riley Hanson and Ayoub placed fourth in the Elite Meet 4×400 relay in 3:28.22, less than three seconds behind first . In the 4×800 relay, Farmington’s Riley Hanson, Zach Hanson, Mason Sullivan and Austin Alexander finished 12th in 8:31.67.
Belt was one of two Burnsville athletes invited to the Elite Meet long jump and placed sixth at 20-10. Gavan Bakke, a sophomore, finished 12th at 19-4.
Rosemount junior Hayden Bills, a two-time throwing medalist at the 2021 State meet, won the drive at Hamline with a throw of 162-1. He beat second Ethan Fischer from Maple River by an inch. Bills also took second place in the shot put at Hamline with 58-5.5. That’s more than 5 feet longer than his fourth-place throw at the state in 2021. Hamline Elite Meet winner Tony Nelson of Tracy-Milroy threw 64-5.5 to break the record for the event.
Rosemount pitchers Weston Ebner (10th in the shot put, 49-4) and Samuel Reiland (eighth in the discus, 129-7) also competed at Hamline last week.
A unique event at the Hamline Elite Meet, the 4×400 Mixed Relay, attracted teams from nine schools. Two boys and two girls from each school organized the event. Chaska placed first in 3:43.01 while the Lakeville North group of Malmgren, Licht, Aubrey Brown and Sierra McCuddin finished fifth in 3:52.45.