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Chris Murphy, Published June 05 2013

Spuds' Lawrence enters state track meet with momentum

Moorhead - Track and field was supposed to be something in the offseason that kept Moorhead junior Brett Lawrence in shape for football and basketball.

After all, no one expects the 6-foot-5 guy to stick with the sprinters. Lawrence does more than stick with them.

He passes them.

Lawrence broke a Minnesota Class 2A, Section 8 record that hadn’t been touched in more than two decades when he ran the 400 meters in 48.83 seconds. Lawrence will walk on to the Hamline track at the Class 2A state meet Friday and Saturday with the second-best time of any qualifier in the 400.

Not bad for a football and basketball player who does track in his spare time.

“It’s always been football, basketball and then track,” Lawrence said. “I love sports and I love track, but it’s definitely my third in the ones that I play. My dad always said, ‘You want to get faster for football and basketball, so why not compete while you’re doing it?’”

The section title was redemption for Lawrence. Last season, Lawrence missed out on qualifying for state for the first time by 0.46 seconds. He finished third behind Monticello’s Sam Johnson (50.73 seconds) and Rocori’s Jake Huber (51.28).

This season, he put them and former Spuds runner Scott Beadle’s 1992 record of 48.91 seconds behind him. With the wind blowing right at him, Lawrence turned on the jets in the final 100 meters, topping Johnson by 0.28 seconds and Huber by 1.30 seconds.

Lawrence had never broken 50 seconds. He destroyed 50 seconds at the section meet and he didn’t even know it.

“My goal all season was to win the section title and I wasn’t going to lose it coming that close,” Lawrence said. “Someone told me they thought I broke 49 seconds and I said, ‘No way.’ I’ve run races where I thought I did really well and it was over 50. In my mind, I was thinking 49.8, but I was a second faster.”

Lawrence didn’t find out his time until a good 30 minutes after the race when it was announced with him standing on top of the award stand. His face may not have shown it, but inside Lawrence was excited.

“In my mind, I was so jacked up, but I try to stay laid back and cool on the outside,” Lawrence said. “I kind of act like I’ve been there even though I haven’t.”

Moorhead track and field coach Jon Moe certainly isn’t taking the credit for Lawrence.

“You can’t give coaches any credit,” Moe said. “He’s been right at 50 seconds since late April. In a headwind a guy at 6-foot-5 doing what he did is just amazing. He put something down at the end. You aren’t supposed to have any energy at that point.”

State track is somewhere Lawrence has not been before. It will be hard to avoid the reality of what he’s up against with the defending 400-meter state champ East Ridge’s Nathan Roese in the lane right next to him. Lawrence has a pretty simple game plan.

“Get out and run fast,” Lawrence said. “(Breaking the section record) gives you confidence you can always run like that, but everyone down there is fast. Even if my time is better than theirs right now, it’s just for seeding. There’s good competition everywhere.”

Track may be Lawrence’s third sport, but not many high schoolers would spend a summer day at 9 a.m. running in the rain on a wet track for something they didn’t care about, as Lawrence was doing two days before the state meet.

“It started as something to stay in shape for football and basketball, but the last two years I’ve kind of gotten into it,” Lawrence said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Chris Murphy at (701) 241-5548

Here is a list of area athletes who have qualified for the Minnesota State High School Track and Field Meet to be held Friday and Saturday at Hamline University in St. Paul:


3,200 meter relay

(Top time: Winona Cotter, 8:06.08)

Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton (Bailey Crook, Tony Santos, Ryan Leach, Alex Fuchs), 8:52.07; Perham (Billy Beseman, Balton Dahms, Nick Carignan, Brady Speicher), 8:18.72.

110 meter hurdles

(Top time: Jon Tollefson, St. Croix Lutheran, 14.47)

Kurt Fritze, Park Rapids, 16.78; Phillip Teeples, Hawley-Ulen Hitterdal, 16.60; Gabriel Grassi, Frazee, 15.60.

100 meter dash

(Top time: C.J. Moise Damey, Prairie Seed, 10.97)

Michael Whitney, Breckenridge-Campbell-Tintah, 11.45.

800 meter relay

(Top time: Byron, 1:30.53)

Ottertail Central (Noah Thompson, Collin Dague, Petric VanErp, Keith Stueve) 1:33.09; Pelican Rapids (Colton Mickelson, Robert Mazariegos, Carlos Gutierrez, Arturo Saavedra) 1:34.15.

1600 meter run

(Top time: Charlie Lawrence, Foley, 4:21.42)

Keeghan Hurley, Perham, 4:36.32; Jayden Cullen, Perham, 4:42.15.

400 meter relay

(Top time: Byron, 44.17)

Breckenridge-Campbell-Tintah (Josh Petersen, Conrad Kondos, Devin Larson, Michael Whitney) 45.30.

400 meter dash

(Top time: Kendall Strandlund, Christ’s Household of Faith, 49.39)

Austin Carlson, Park Rapids, 51.92.

300 meter hurdles

(Top time: Mitchell Kollodge, Albany, 40.31)

Collin Dague, Ottertail Central, 41.98; Kurt Fritze, Park Rapids, 42.75.

200 meter dash

(Top time: Tyler Beehler, Foley, 22.19)

Michael Whitney, Breckenridge-Campbell-Tintah, 23.11; Austin Carlson, Park Rapids, 24.08.

1600 meter relay

(Top time: Madelia-Truman, 3:26.13)

Park Rapids Area (Jacob Waggoner, Kurt Fritze, Bryce Brevitch, Austin Carlson) 3:37.03; Pelican Rapids (Robert Mazariegos, Luis Martinez, Carlos Gutierrez, Arturo Saavedra) 3:31.88.

3200 meter run

(Top time: Ian Torchia, Rochester Lourdes, 9:38.23)

Keeghan Hurley, Perham, 9:41.76; Brady Speicher, Perham, 9:47.70.; Isaac Overmyer, Park Rapids, 10:28.95.

Pole vault

(Top vault: Tyler Tappe, Pequot Lakes, 15-3)

Eli Beachy, Perham, 13-0.

High jump

(Top jump: Matt Neururer, Pillager, 6-8)

Daniel Schack, West Central Area, 6-1; Michael Tollefson, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 6-3.

Long jump

(Top jump: Brian Huber, Staples-Motley, 21-10¾)

Taylor Beyer, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 19-8¾; Petric VanErp, Ottertail Central, 21-7½.

Shot put

(Top throw: Evan Bain, Lewiston-Altura, 53-2)

Derek Johnk, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 45-9; Steffan Stroh, Ottertail Central, 51-6.


(Top throw: Dustin Gill, LeSeuer-Henderson, 160-01)

Kal Handyside, Mahnomen-Waubun, 126-11; Derek Johnk, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 134-11; Steffan Stroh, Ottertail Central, 153-01).

Triple jump

(Top jump: Devin Strack, Pillager, 43-9)

Matt Moberg, Moorhead Park Christian, 42-4½; Petric VanErp, Ottertail Central, 43-2.


3200 meter relay

(Top time: Watertown-Mayer, 9:44.97)

Perham (Ciarrin Covington, Racole Karels, Lizzie Fudge, Sydney Karels) 10:12.69.

100 meter hurdles

(Top time: Carolyn Nye, Blake School, 15.42)

Megan Grimes, Park Rapids, 16.26.

100 meter dash

(Top time: Jacquelyn Bedingham, Minnehaha Academy, 12.63)

Mady Vaudrin, Park Rapids, 12.78.

800 meter relay

(Top time: Chatfield, 1:46.32)

Park Rapids Area (Sarah Harshman, Grace Bateman, Mady Vaudrin, Megan Grimes) 1:50.45.

1600 meter run

(Top time: Clare Flanagan, Blake School, 4:50.54)

Brynnan Covington, Perham, 5:24.23; Megan Olson, Park Rapids, 5:32.34.

400 meter relay

(Top time: Osakis, 50.55)

Park Rapids Area (Sarah Harshman, Abby Mueller, Paige Hill, Mady Vaudrin) 51.92.

400 meter dash

(Top time: Madalyn Kammer, Chatfield, 58.68)

Lydia Rutten, New York Mills, 1:00.43; Lilly Anderson, Hawley-Ulen-Hitterdal, 1:02.31.

300 meter hurdles

(Top time: Taylor Grandgenett, Blue Earth, 45.13)

Sydney Larson, Moorhead Park Christian, 49.94; Grace Bateman, Park Rapids, 49.47.

800 meter run

(Top time: Emi Trost, Cannon Falls, 2:13.47)

Kylee Fernholz, West Central Area, 2:22.51.

200 meter dash

(Top time: Kaija Crowe, Milaca, 26.04)

Sommer Haugrud, Pelican Rapids, 26.96; Abby Mueller, Park Rapids, 26.86.

1600 meter relay

(Top time: Blue Earth, 4:00.32)

Park Rapids Area (Megan Grimes, Tori Hilmanowski, Abby Mueller, Grace Bateman) 4:19.72.

3200 meter run

(Top time: Clare Flanagan, Blake School, 10:38.74)

Sydney Karels, Perham, 12:10.10.

Pole vault

(Top vault: Carolyn Nye, Blake School, 11-8)

Mandy Mercil, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 9-0.

High jump

(Top jump: Emma Lange, Caledonia, 5-4)

Miki Lee, Norman County, 5-3.

Long jump

(Top jump: Jada Carr, Russell-Tyler-Ruthton, 17-8½)

Morgan Nepstad, Moorhead Park Christian, 16-3½; Caroline Jansen, Ashby-Brandon-Evansville, 16-11.

Shot put

(Top throw: Katelyn Weber, St. Clair, 41-6)

Megan Biegler, Ottertail Central, 35-6; Mandy Mercil, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 35-10¾.


(Top throw: Katelyn Weber, St. Clair, 130-09)

Miranda Lockhart, Perham, 116-02.

Triple jump

(Top jump: Niara Hill, 38-2¾)

Keary Stanger, Norman County, 34-1½.


3200 meter relay

(Top time: Eden Prairie, 8:00.96)

Moorhead (Luke Lillehaugen, Matthew Lillehaugen, Ezra Olson, Josh Young) 8:05.57.

100 meter dash

(Top time: Odell Howard, Fridley, 10.74)

Brady Anderson, Moorhead, 11.59.

400 meter dash

(Top time: Michael Smith, Wayzata, 48.52)

Brett Lawrence, Moorhead, 48.83.

3200 meter run

(Top time: Eric Colvin, Stillwater, 9:03.86)

Connor Danielson, Fergus Falls, 9:50.15.

Pole vault

(Top vault: Mitchell Valli, Buffalo, 15-7).

Ryan Rogness, Moorhead, 12-5.


3200 meter relay

(Top time: Minnetonka, 9:22.39)

Moorhead (Taylor Janssen, Mallori Johnson, Mackenzie Kelly, Avery Selberg) 9:30.19.

800 meter relay

(Top time: Blaine, 1:42.32)

Detroit Lakes (Addie Kay Johnson, Allison Berg, Kyley Foster, Lindsey Heinecke) 1:44.79.

400 meter relay

(Top time: Hopkins, 48.58)

Moorhead (Marissa Wong, Katie Olson, Cassidy Nelson, Erica Ulberg) 49.95.

400 meter dash

(Top time: Megan Linder, Cretin-Derham Hall, 56.56)

Lindsey Heinecke, Detroit Lakes, 58.71.

300 meter hurdles

(Top time: Meleah Biermaier, Thief River Falls, 43.71)

Mallori Johnson, Moorhead, 45.17.

800 meter run

(Top time: Stephanie Knight, Orono, 2:14.79)

Taylor Janssen, Moorhead, 2:20.34.

Shot put

(Top throw: Maggie Ewen, St. Francis, 47-2)

Shay Nielsen, Detroit Lakes, 38-7½.


(Top throw: Maggie Ewen, St. Francis, 158-07)

Kristin Drechsel, Moorhead, 120-02.

Triple jump

(Top jump: Mia Barron, Minnetonka, 38-9¼)

Brianna Rasmusson, Fergus Falls, 35-1.