The Free Press, Mankato, MN

March 25, 2013

West's Rotchadl leads strong girls 4x100 relay

By Jim Rueda
The Free Press

— The next few months may tell a lot about Brooke Rotchadl's future.

The Mankato West senior began her final season of high school track at a triangular inside Minnesota State's Bud Myers Field House on Monday. How her season unfolds may have a bearing on whether or not she tries to compete in college. The sprinter has narrowed her college choices to Bethel, Gustavus Adolphus and Hamline and says Bethel is the front runner.

"That's the way I'm leaning right now," she said. "I think the option to go out for track would be there at Bethel but I'm not sure yet if that's what I want to do. I'll look at it again after this season."

In the meantime, Rotchadl expects to do well on at least one West relay team this spring. She just missed going to state on last year's 4x100-meter relay and the Scarlets return three runners off that squad -- Rotchadl, Taylor Amundson and Sierra Sandeen.

"Maddy Maruska was our other runner but she tore her ACL and I don't think she'll be back this year," Rotchadl said. "It's too bad because we were only five-hundredths of a second behind the team that qualified for state.

The relay's time of 50.33 was just one-tenth of a second off the school mark as well.

"If we can make it to state this year we should have a shot at the school record," she said. "That's one of our goals."

Rotchadl said her best events are the 4x100, the 4x200, the open 100 and the open 200. She also occasionally does the triple jump. The senior first went out for track in seventh grade simply because she enjoys running.

"The truth is I'm not very coordinated," she said. "Running was something I could do where I didn't have to have a lot of other skills to go with it."

Rotchadl competed in two events Monday. She placed third in the triple jump (28-feet-7) and was second in the in the 4x400-meter relay. She joined with Lexi Amundson, Katie Esslinger and Sundeen for a time of 4:47.51.  

The Scarlets had two individual champions Monday in Sundeen and Taylor Amundson. Sundeen won the 60-meter hurdles in 10.12 and Taylor Amundson captured the pole vault at 8-feet even.

The runners-up for West were Taylor Amundson and Sandeen in the 60-meter dash (8.36); Sandeen again in the long jump (14-feet-5.5); Savannah Friesen in the 400 meters (1:09.48); Taylor Amundson again in the 200 meters (27.92); and Anna Lieske in the triple jump (33-1.25).

West's 4x200-meter relay of Allison Peters, Maria Soroka, Summer Boettcher and McKenna Peters placed second in 2:04.42.

Marshall won the team title with 59 points. West was second (50) and Shakopee was third (41).