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Sports
Matt Thier, Alex Holmes both place high in Section 3A Meet

Eight other Raider boys compete well as 2014 track season concludes

June 4, 2014

  Matt Thier placed fourth in the discus with a toss of 132- 6 at the Section 3A meet. 
  FULDA FREE PRESS/Sheila Crowley
FULDA FREE PRESS/Sheila Crowley
Matt Thier placed fourth in the discus with a toss of 132- 6 at the Section 3A meet.
 Brian Fenske earned 11th place in both the 100 meter dash and 400 meter dash. 
  FULDA FREE PRESS/Sheila Crowley
FULDA FREE PRESS/Sheila Crowley
Brian Fenske earned 11th place in both the 100 meter dash and 400 meter dash.
 Alex Holmes pole vaulted to a fifth place finish and improved his height by six inches with a jump of 11-1. 
  FULDA FREE PRESS/Sheila Crowley
FULDA FREE PRESS/Sheila Crowley
Alex Holmes pole vaulted to a fifth place finish and improved his height by six inches with a jump of 11-1.
By Les Knutson

Sports Writer
Fulda scored nine points in the boys’ division of the Section 3A high school track and field meet at Redwood Falls last Thursday, May 29, as juniors Matt Thier and Alex Holmes each placed among the leaders in their respective events.

Eight other Raider boys also competed well in the high-caliber meet, which featured the top performers from four sub-section qualifying meets the previous week.

Thier, the Sub-Section 10 silver medalist in the discus, came home with Fulda’s highest-placing performance at the Redwood Valley track and field complex as he whirled the platter a distance of 132 feet, six inches --- good enough for fourth place (five points) among the 16 qualifying throwers.

His throw exceeded his 127-0 sub-section mark by five-and-a-half-feet and nearly placed him third in the event, missing by just six inches to Jackson County Central’s Brandon Schmit (133-0). Luverne’s Cody Rofshus (153-9) and JCC’s Nolan Hohenstein (143-8) advanced to the state meet with the top two distances.

“Matt came on well as the season progressed, showing good consistency in the discus,” declared FHS head coach Brad Holinka. “Getting fourth in the section is really very good.”

Holmes, the Sub-Section 10 gold medalist in the pole vault, improved six inches from his height of 10-7 (at Luverne, May 21) and cleared the bar at 11-1 at Redwood, placing him fifth (four points) among a field of 17 competitors.

“Alex had a good season vaulting and has plans to improve his strength this summer, which will give him the potential to become very good next spring as a senior,” exclaimed Holinka. “He had some nice vaults at Redwood Thursday.”

While Thier and Holmes were the only Fulda boys to place among the top eight and score points for the Raiders in the section meet, the rest of the 10-member FHS contingent performed well in the events they qualified to compete in.

Senior Matt Kunerth just missed scoring by one place as his leap of 39-1 was the ninth-best in the triple jump. He was, in fact, only seven inches from fourth as the best distances for places four through eight were 39-8, 39-5.5, 39-5.25, 39-5 and 39-4.5, respectively.

Kunerth improved nine inches from his sub-section jump of 38-4 and moved up four places from his projected finish, based upon the rankings from the four sub-section meets.

“Matt Kunerth did a nice job for us, competing in several different events through what was a very solid high school track and field career,” praised Holinka. “We will miss his leadership and versatility next year.”

Sophomore Brian Fenske had a busy day at Redwood, competing in four events after producing 26 points with four qualifying performances in the Sub-Section 10 Meet.

Fenske finished 11th in the Section 3A Meet in both the 100 meter dash (12.35) and 400 meter dash (54.68), was 13th in the long jump (18-1.5) and 14th in the 200 (24.28).

“Brian is a great competitor and has a great future ahead of him with two more seasons of high school track and field,” summed up Holinka about Fenske’s outstanding season for the Raiders.

Junior Tom Salentiny had the 12th-best distance in the shot put (40-10.75), freshman Isaiah Olsem finished 14th in the 3200 (11:20.18) and junior Bennett Appel was 16th in the 110 meter high hurdles (18.33), completing Fulda’s individual events in the boys meet.

One Raider relay team --- the 4x800 --- qualified to compete at Redwood Falls. A trio of freshmen --- Jon Gehl, Jorge Cardenas and Olsem --- along with junior Brett Cuperus clocked a time of 9:56.40 and finished 13th in the meet’s opening event.

“It was a good experience for Tom, Bennett, Jon, Jorge, Isaiah and Brett to compete at the section level against great competition,” concluded Holinka. “We have a lot of kids who are already looking forward to next season.”


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