15 girls to watch in southeastern Minnesota track and field

Highlighted by GMLOKS sprinters Anika and Chantle Reiland, southeastern Minnesota has plenty of big-time girls track-and-field talent.

Section 1A Track & Field Finals At Triton
GMLOKS' Anika Reiland (center) and Chantle Reiland (right) run in the girls 100m during the section 1A finals at Triton High School in Dodge Center, Minnesota on Thursday, June 02, 2022. The pair finished first and second with respective times of 12.90 and 13.03.
Tucker Allen Covey / Post Bulletin file photo

Anika Reiland, Sr, GMLOKS: Reiland is certainly the top sprinter in Section 1A. She’s earned that tag after having finished second at state in the 100 last year (12.48) and second in the 200 (25.83). Anika set the 200 section-meet record with a winning time of 25.57.

Chantle Reiland, So., GMLOKS: The cousin of Anika Reiland, Chantle has more than lived up to the family name. She was one spot behind Anika at state in the 100 (12.65), Both Anika and Chantle were also both members of GMLOKS’ state champion 4x200 relay team (1:45.03).

Katrina Sortland, Sr., Zumbrota-Mazeppa: Katrina has seemingly forever been one of the top middle distance runners not just in Section 1A, but the state. She landed second at state last year in the 800 (2:17.48).

Natasha Sortland, Sr., Zumborta-Mazeppa: Natasha is the other half of the Sortland twins combination. And like Katrina, she is as good as it gets in Section 1A in her top races, the 1,600 and the 3,200. Natasha was second at state last year in the 1,600 (5:07.37) and third in the 3,200 (11:05.75).

Lexy Foster, Jr., GMLOKS: Foster is a favorite to win a state first-place medal this season. She was third in the shot put last year at state with a 39-feet-7 3/4 distance and both the finishers above her have graduated.


Hayley Lentsch, Jr., Kenyon-Wanamingo: Lentsch figures to be a serious contender for a top-two state finish this year in the long jump. She squeezed out a third place last year, going 17-8 at state.

Reese Koenen, Jr., Pine Island: Koenen dipped below 60 seconds in the 400 at last year’s state meet, timed in an excellent 59.34. She might just be getting started.

Annaka Forsberg, Jr., Blooming Prairie: Forsberg was the odds-on favorite to win the state high jump last year and then she went out and did it, clearing a fantastic 5-feet-6. Her best mark of the season was an inch better than that, 5-7.

Paige Halder, Jr., Byron: Halder is one of the best all-around track and field performers in the state. A year ago in the state meet she was second in the 400 (58.01), ninth in the 200 (26.68) and helped her 4x200 relay team to a seventh-place finish. She is also an excellent high jumper.

Class AA Track and Field State Finals
Byron's Paige Halder takes in the girls 400 during the Class AA state track and field meet St. Michael-Albertville High School in St. Michael on Saturday, June 11, 2022.
Tucker Allen Covey / Post Bulletin file photo

Shay Berlin-Burns, Jr., Winona: Berlin-Burns emerged as a star thrower last year. At state, she was second in the discus with a 119-10 effort. She threw it 122-1 at sections. Berle was also a state qualifier in the shot put with a 36-3/4 section heave.

Lauren Rott.jpg
Plainview-Elgin-Millville's Lauren Rott has committed to the University of St. Thomas for track and field.
Contributed / Melissa Rott

Lauren Rott, Sr., Plainview-Elgin-Millville: Rott is one of the top throwers around. She threw the discus 130-5 in the Section 1AA meet for first place. Rott will continue her college throwing at the University of St. Thomas.

Haylie Strum, Sr., Stewartville: Strum is known as one of the top basketball players in the state. The senior is also one of its best hurdlers. Strum finished fifth in the Class AA state meet in the 300 hurdles last year (45.48).

Madison Habberstad, Sr., Century: Habberstad sailed 17-feet-5 1/2 at state last year in the long jump, good for sixth in the Class AAA state meet. Habberstad is also one of the state’s top pole vaulters (ninth last year, 10-6; 10-9 in section meet) and an excellent sprinter.


Nationals Track Photo.jpg
The Century 4x100 relay team, from left, of Megan Lund, Maddy Habberstad, Sarrah Lindner and Favor Omoijuanfo competed in the Nike Outdoors Nationals on Sunday, June 19, 2022, in Eugene, Ore. The Century foursome finished fourth in the race.
Contributed photo

Megan Lund, Jr., Century: Lund is one of the best sprinters in southeastern Minnesota. The junior won the 100 and 200 in last year's Big Nine Conference meet and also anchored Century's state champion 4x100 relay team.

Hannah Hanson, Sr., Mayo: Hanson might be the best all-around athlete in southeastern Minnesota. Track and field is part of her trifecta, along with volleyball and basketball. Hanson is among the state’s elite hurdlers. She was fourth among a packed field at state last year in the 100 hurdles (14.33) and fifth in the 300 hurdles (44.39). Hanson is also among Section 1AAA’s top long and triple jumpers.

Class AAA Track and Field State Finals
Mayo High School's Hannah Hanson takes part in the triple jump competition during the Class AAA state track and field meet at St. Michael-Albertville High School in St. Michael on Saturday, June 11, 2022.
Tucker Allen Covey / Post Bulletin file photo

Pat has been a Post Bulletin sports reporter since 1994. He covers Rochester John Marshall football, as well as a variety of other southeastern Minnesota football teams. Among my other southeastern Minnesota high school beats are girls basketball, boys and girls tennis, boys and girls track and field, high school and American Legion baseball, volleyball, University of Minnesota sports (on occasion) and the Timberwolves (on occasion). Readers can reach Pat at 507-285-7723 or
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