The Tanager track and field team had a quick turnaround from their first meet as they had another the following day. Vermillion went to the Elk-Point Jefferson Invitational on Tuesday of last week.

“The Tanagers are ready to compete this season,” said head coach Lenni Billberg. “We have several seasoned veterans on our squad that have always played backup roles in relays, but 2019 has become their break out year.”

The Tanagers had two state qualifiers in their second meet of the season.

Junior Lexi Saunders qualified for state in the girls long jump by one inch with a distance of 16-3, earning the gold at the invitational. Senior Fatima Alemam finished third at 15-7.

Saunders also placed third in the triple jump at 30-5.25.

Sophomore Tommy Nikkel finished first and qualified for state in the 400-meter dash by one second with a time of 51.26.

Senior Rachel Brady earned gold in the 800 with a time of 2:38.16. Sophomore Taryn Whisler came in second at 2:43.35.

Whisler was also first in the 1600 with a time of 6:01.08.

Sophomore Riley Ruhaak placed third in the 800 at 2:15.10. Senior Ben Finnegan finished in a close fourth at 2:16.40.

Senior Kenna Druecker earned the silver in the 200 at 28.70. Sophomore Ellie Schroeder finished third with a 29.29 dash.

Brady and sophomore Mack LaBrune finished second and third in the 400. Brady finished with a 1:03.54, and LaBrune crossed the finish line at 1:04.68.

The girls’ 4x100 relay earned the gold with Schroeder, Saunders, Druecker, and LaBrune at 52.97.

The boys’ 4x400 placed first at 3:41.34 with sophomores Bryce Stockwell, Hunter Lavin, Nikkel, and senior Justin Sorensen.

The boys’ 4x800 relay also swept the competition to finish first with sophomore Jakob Dobney, Lavin, senior Andreas Lindstad, and Sorensen at 8:53.34.

The boys’ medley relay placed third with freshmen Kaleb Preister, Hari Kada, eighth-grader Jack Freeburg, and junior Evan Rasmussen at 4:26.24.

The Lady Tanagers also finished third in both the medley and 4x400 relay.

The medley had a time of 5:14.07 with freshmen Kenzie Kerkman and Alexa LaCognata, plus sophomores Sadie Pederson and Amber Schulz.

The 4x400 was composed of Saunders, Schulz, K. Kerkman, and junior Morgan Kerkman. They finished at 4:51.08.


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