Holy Family girls post best team finish in school history

Erin Brown competes in the hurdles.
Erin Brown competes in the hurdles.

It takes longer to blink.  It takes longer to gasp, and it takes longer to even utter a single word.  That’s how close the Holy Family Catholic girls’ 4×800 meter relay team came to a state championship at last weekend’s MSHSL State Track and Field Championships hosted by Hamline on June 6-7.

The quartet of senior Molly Eastman, sophomore Maria Eastman, senior Eileen Curran, and sophomore Allie Bodin posted three personal best legs, before Bodin raced the Waseca team to the finish line, just narrowly finishing second in 9:32.16, behind Waseca’s 9:31.57. The Fire’s time established a new Holy Family school record by over five seconds.

The Fire girls’ would go on to their highest team finish in school history, finishing third with 31 points behind state champion Minneapolis Edison and runner up Belle Plaine.

“What a great finish to a great year for them {Holy Family girls’ team],” head coach Ian Parzyck said. “To see them hoist that 3rd place trophy was a great moment for them, and we are very proud of them.”

Junior hurdler Erin Brown finished fifth overall in the 100-meter hurdles with a 15.51 time, after running a 15.36 in the preliminaries. Staples-Motley senior Jaelin Beachy won the title in 14.90.

Chazz Johnson runs in the preliminary heat of the 100 meter dash on Friday, June 6.
Chazz Johnson runs in the preliminary heat of the 100 meter dash on Friday, June 6.

Brown also competed in the 300 meter hurdles, finishing in 46.47 and snagging a finals spot, where she finished eighth in 47.59. La Crescent senior Brielle Bierman won the 300s in 45.13.

Junior sprinter Claire Oberle became the most decorate Holy Family sprinter in school history by landing on the podium in both the 100 meter dash and the 4×400 relay. Oberle was fourth in the finals of the 100 in 12.72, after posting a 12.48 in prelims. Minneapolis Edison’s Jia Lewis won the title in 12.28.

Oberle then teamed up with seniors Eileen Curran and Michaela Rasmussen, and Bodin for the 4×400 for Friday’s preliminaries and finished with a season best 4:03.63. In Saturday’s finals, the Holy Family team came from behind

to finish third in 4:02.81, just missing the HFCHS record set in 2013.

Counting relay individuals, the seven girls from Holy Family received 11 All-State awards.

“The nice thing about this weekend besides the third place team trophy and a spot on the podium was the fact that every Holy Family Catholic athlete who competed this weekend came home with an All-State medallion,” Parzyck said.  “Everyone from Holy Family went home happy.”

Junior Chazz Johnson was the Fire’s lone representative on the boys’ side of things, competing in three events and carrying himself to an 11th place team finish by scoring 21 points.

“Chazz was a one-man point scoring machine for us,” Parzyck said.  “There were only a couple other athletes who scored more points at state this season. And the fact that he was almost able to place in the top 10 in the State Class A team standings by himself was truly remarkable.  We were proud to see him on the awards podium, not only once, but three times this weekend.”

Johnson first competed in the 100 meter dash, narrowly snagging the last finals spot in 11.29 seconds. In the finals, he finished third.

Johnson also ran the 200 meters, finishing fourth in his heat and grabbing a finals spot. In the finals, he finished seventh in 23.28 seconds

“Though it was close a couple of times in the preliminary rounds, Chazz was able to compete well enough to set himself up perfectly for Saturday’s competition, competing in all 3 events,” Parzyck said.  “It was what we hoped would happen for him, and it couldn’t have played out any better for him on Friday.”

Johnson had his best event of the meet in the long jump, easily qualifying for the finals and eventually finishing second with a jump of 22 feet, 3.75 inches. Jordan senior Casey Hull won the title at 22-05.00.

“What a great day for a tremendously talented athlete,” Parzyck said. “We are very proud of him, and his accomplishments.”

In all, Holy Family athletes earned 14 All-State awards among eight athletes, with All-State efforts in eight or their nine competing events.