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Kelley sisters lead strong Cloquet team

Section 7AA has finally found a sprinter who can keep up with Cloquet junior Kendra Kelley: Cloquet freshman Katelyn Kelley.

The pair finished 1-2 in the girls' 100-meter dash Tuesday, sparking Cloquet to wins in the boys and girls competitions in the Section 7AA True Team championships in Cloquet.

"That's huge because these are the teams we'll compete against to get to state," coach Tim Prosen said. "I'm very proud of the efforts of all the team members."

The Kelleys' 100-meter sweep gave Cloquet 51 team points and was a huge step toward their victory. Unlike in traditional track meets, which give points only to the top finishers in each event, a True Team event assigns a point value for everyone entered in every event.

Kendra Kelley completed a trifecta Tuesday by winning the 200- and 400-meter dashes as well, finishing 1-2 with senior Erin Turner in the 400. She also won the long jump to finish her day as a quadruple winner.

Harmony Tracy and Lauren Cawcutt finished 3-4 in the 1,600 meters, earning 47 team points. Cawcutt was third in the 3,200 meters and junior Kelly Lorenz was third in the 100 and 300 hurdles.

The girls also enjoyed their traditional success in the weight events. Maddie Dostal and Makayla Suominen were 3-4 in the shot put and Suominen added a second place in the discus.

Prosen was quick to credit assistants Tim Anderson and Andy Elias for their work with the team.

"We've got a great culture here," he said. "The coaches have been terrific, we've had some great additions and it's leading to a successful season so far."

Cloquet's team score of 750 points easily outpaced second-placed Chisago Lakes Area, which finished with 649. Esko finished 11th in the 13-team girls' field, with each winner scoring 26 team points.

On the boys' side, Aahsan Maigag took fourth in the 100 meters and eighth in the 200 meters, with Nathan Hammond seventh in the 400. Blaine Bong took the 800 meters with Logan Dushkin sixth. Blake Desmond was seventh in the 1600 meters and Jordan Allen finished fourth in the 3,200-meter run.

Kirk Keinanen was fourth in the 110 hurdles, and Alex Leuzzo and Nicholas Litke finished a 1-2 Cloquet sweep in the 300 hurdles, earning 47 team points. The 1,600 relay team won by seven full seconds over Hermantown, with Leuzzo adding more points by finishing fourth in the long jump and winning the triple jump with teammate Riley Leslie third.

Dylan Lauer doubled in the weight events, winning both the shot put and discus by comfortable margins. Cloquet's team score of 588 points was 45 points ahead of second-place Grand Rapids, with Esko sixth in the 12-team field. Individual winners earned 24 team points.

For Prosen, the event showed how far his team has come and also showcased the leaders it has generated.

"I couldn't do a lot of the coaching things I usually do because as the host, I was running the meet," he said. "That meant the assistants did a lot of work, but we had so much going on some of the upperclassmen assumed some of the coaching duties.

"That was a great thing because the younger kids listened to them and they all did a great job," Prosen added. "There's a lot of respect in this program for everyone involved and it's just a great group of young people."