Large turnout has Roseville girls track thinking big

The addition of lacrosse as a spring high school sport has caused numbers to drop in other spring sports at some schools in Minnesota but the Roseville Area High School girls track and field team hasn’t felt the pinch. In fact, this season, the Raiders’ numbers are at an all-time high.

That increased participation has helped with Roseville’s depth and outlook.

“I am very optimistic,” said Roseville head coach Greg Ueland. “We think we have really solid depth.”

Ueland and his assistant coaches have 135 athletes out for the team this spring.

“That’s something that I and the other coaches are very proud of,” he said.

Ueland hopes that the increase in numbers and depth can help his team make a run at a berth in the state true-team meet.

“I think that the ultimate goal is making it to the state true-team meet,” Ueland said. “I don’t think there’s anything better than to qualify for the state true-team meet. That’s a huge goal for this team.”

The true-team format involves each school having three entrants in each event. As long as the entrant completes the race or records a distance or height, she earns points for the team. Depth is important in true team, whereas a handful of athletes with top performances can earn the state team title at the Minnesota State High School League state meet.

Roseville is looking to end a five-year drought. The Raiders’ last trip to the state true-team meet was in 2010.

It doesn’t help that Roseville occupies the same true-team section as Mounds View, a perennial state-championship contender. The Mustangs have ruled the true-team section for 11 consecutive years, leaving Roseville only the wildcard option to get to state.

This year won’t be much different as Mounds View is the defending state true-team champion and the favorite to make it a dozen section titles in a row.

In addition to true team, Ueland also wants to see his team fare well in the Suburban East Conference and Section 4AA meets and advance as many athletes as possible to the state meet. Roseville won the Section 4AA team title last season.

Roseville returns six athletes who competed at state in 2015. Freshman Erin Beer is back after qualifying for state in both the high jump and 100-meter hurdles.

“She can help us in a lot of different ways,” Ueland said of Beer.

Junior Teya Langston is also back after competing at state in the high jump. Senior Sarah Conlon went to state in the 3,200 meters last year and sophomore Allison Weiker was a state entrant in the pole vault.

Roseville also sent a 4x200-meter relay team to state and two of the four members are back this season. Sophomores Nicole Willmus and Megan Eklund return in search of two teammates to join the quartet.

“All of our relays are going to be strong,” said Ueland.

Another strength of this year’s team according to Ueland is its leadership. Five captains are set to lead the Raiders.

Those captains are seniors Kaylie King (pole vault, hurdles), Lindsey Lee (distance), Hanna Torvi (distance), Allison Arsenault (hurdles, jumps) and Akedia Jefferson (throws) and junior Kaia Porter (throws, sprints). Among them, Torvi has state meet experience from cross country and Nordic skiing and Lee has been to state in cross country.

“I feel like we have great leadership,” said Ueland.

The Raiders have a couple of events on the schedule this week, starting with the Suburban East Conference Relays, which they are hosting, on April 12. They then travel to Prior Lake for an invitational on April 14.

Roseville also hosts its annual Roseville Invitational on April 26. The Suburban East Conference championships are once again being held at East Ridge, which is also hosting the Section 4AA meet while Stillwater’s track and stadium undergo reconstruction.

 

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com or 651-748-7819. Follow him on Twitter @BMeyersNews.

2016 Roseville Area High School girls track and field schedule

April 12 

April 14 

April 19 

April 21

April 26

April 29 

May 6

May 10

May 20

May 24 

May 26 

May 31 

June 2 

June 10

June 11 

Suburban East Conference relays 

at Prior Lake

at Mounds View

at White Bear Lake

Roseville Invitational

Hamline Elite Meet 

at Wayzata

Section true team at Mounds View

State true team at Stillwater

Suburban East prelims at East Ridge

Suburban East finals at East Ridge 

Section 4AA prelims at East Ridge

Section 4AA finals at East Ridge

State meet at Hamline University

State meet at Hamline University

3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.

3 p.m.

3:45 p.m.

3:30 p.m.

5:30 p.m.

4 p.m.

3:15 p.m.

4 p.m.

3:45 p.m.

4:15 p.m.

3 p.m.

3 p.m.

9 a.m.

 9 a.m.

 

 

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