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Truedson breaks school record at Hamline

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ST. PAUL -- A nasty backwind didn't stop Jenna Truedson from setting a new Bemidji High School record Friday night. But it just might have cost her first place.

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Although Truedson ran the 1,600-meter run in a school-record time of 5 minutes, 0.45 seconds at the Hamline Elite Meet in St. Paul, Prior Lake's Taylor Scholl beat her by tenths of a second to claim first place.

"She was battling the last 200 meters with one girl, but then (Scholl) went around her in the last few yards to beat her," BHS girls track coach Chris Lehman said. School ended up with a time of 4:59.83 to take first place.

Still, Lehman wasn't disappointed with Truedson's running.

"Our goal was to get under 5 (minutes)," he said. "She nearly got there, and still ended up setting the school record. With that huge back wind, that's a great job."

Truedson wasn't the only Lumberjack athlete to compete Friday. The girls track team sent a number of representative, all of whom fared very well against some of the best competition in the state.

Maea Wall finished eighth in the 400 with a time of 1:00.09 -- right around her normal time.

"That's right where she's at," Lehman said. "You're not going to run very spectacularly with that wind, but she did a nice job with it."

The two girls relay teams -- the 400 and the 800 -- also ran well despite the wind.

In the 400, the team of Truedson, Wall, Claire Laakso and Megan Serratore took eight with a time of 4:07.25. Lakeville South won the race in 4:00.08.

The 800 relay team, comprised of Serratore, Jenna Truedson, Kim Truedson and Dani Gronhovd, took 11th place in 10:03. Minnetonka blazed to a 9:24.00 win, a new meet record.

Allie Heifort closed out the girls side of the competition in the discus, throwing the disc 121 feet, 8 inches. Maggie Ewen of St. Francis had the far throw of 154-7.

The Lumberjack boys had one team at the meet, racing in the 400-meter relay. The team of Nick Gubbels, Gunnar Nelson, Tyler Guest and Scott Hulsebus took eighth with a time of 3:30. Minnetonka won the race in 3:22.07.

"It was good for our kids to get down here and compete against state competition," Lehman said. "They're pretty young, so this was a good experience for them.

"The conditions were less than ideal, but they ran really well."

The Lumberjack boys return to the track Tuesday, when they'll travel to the Grand Rapids Invitational. Both the boys and the girls will run in the Detroit Lakes Invitational on Thursday.

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Jack Hittinger
Jack Hittinger is a sports reporter for the Bemidji Pioneer, focusing on Bemidji State but also covering area high schools. He hails from the Great State of Michigan. Read his Bemidji State blog at http://thebeaverblog.areavoices.com/ and follow him on Twitter at @Jackhitts.
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