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Track and field: 4x100, Horner finish on the podium at Class 2A finals

The 4x100-meter relay team of Cameron Marxen, Mason Carrier, Ethan Carrier and Hunter Zempel took eighth in Saturday's Class 2A final. Jerzie Horner also took eighth place in the pole vault.

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Detroit Lakes' Jerzie Horner finishes in eighth place in the pole vault at 9-feet, 6-inches at the Class 2A state championships on June 11, 2022 at St. Michael-Albertville High School.
Jared Rubado / Detroit Lakes Tribune
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ST. MICHAEL – Detroit Lakes senior Hunter Zempel didn't sign up for the 2022 track and field season. At least not right away.

At the beginning of the season, Zempel made a trip to Moorhead to watch what he thought was his former team compete. It led him to a podium finish with one of the fastest 4x100-meter relays in school history.

"I wasn't going to come out for track this year," Zempel said. "It's my senior year, and I wanted to take things easy. I never thought I would be going to state. I didn't even think I was going to run track, and now I'm at state. It's an amazing experience."

"I went to one of the meets at Concordia (Moorhead) to just go watch the team and support them. The coaches talked me into coming back. There I was, running the next day."

Zempel ran the third leg of the 4x100 with Cameron Marxen, Mason Carrier and Ethan Carrier. The three underclassmen and one senior clocked the eighth-best time (43.63) at the Class 2A state track and field finals on Saturday at St. Michael-Albertville High School.

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The Lakers qualified for finals with a time of 43.39, which was their season-best by a half a second and about 0.4 away from the school record.

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Detroit Lakes' Ethan Carrier finishes the 4x100-meter relay with a time of 43.63 at the Class 2A state championships on June 11, 2022 at St. Michael-Albertville High School. The Lakers finished in eighth place to land on the podium.
Jared Rubado / Detroit Lakes Tribune

"I can't tell you what it felt like to qualify for finals. It was indescribable,” Zempel said. "We were the underdogs coming out here. We had the 10th best time of all the teams coming in here, and we got to the finals. It's just a great way to end a senior year."

Zempel tempered his expectations at the Section 8-2A championships in Alexandria on June 4. He was elated when he found out he was headed to state.

"We just wanted to go out there and do our best," Zempel said of the Section 8-2A championships. "Whatever happens, happens. When (Ethan Carrier) finished in second for us, it was a feeling I'd never felt before. We were just so happy."

"They're amazing guys. They're the fastest kids I've ever run with. They're freaks. They're freaks of nature."

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Detroit Lakes' Cameron Marxen stretched before the 4x100-meter finals at the Class 2A state championships on June 11, 2022 at St. Michael-Albertville High School.
Jared Rubado / Detroit Lakes Tribune

Zempel can officially close the book on track and field. With Detroit Lakes heading into a new three-class era, with opportunities opening up for kids to experience section and state meets, he hopes to see the school's best 4x100-meter time fall after more than two decades.

"I hope they break the school record next year," Zempel said. "They're only sophomores and juniors, and they will find a good third leg. I'm happy I got to be a part of this with them. I think that's what I'm going to remember the most about track–running with the Carriers and Cameron. They're awesome kids, and I love them."

Horner and Marsh compete in the field

Jerzie Horner was the only other Laker to end up on the podium. Her pole vault height of 9-feet, 6-inches was good enough for eighth place in her first-ever state track meet.

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Brandton Marsh was just over a foot away from qualifying for finals in the long jump. His mark of 19-feet, 4.5-inches, was the 14th best on Saturday.

You can read about each of Horner and Marsh's journeys to state here .

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Detroit Lakes' Pete Paulson, left, and Bradnton Marsh watch the long jump finals after Marsh's 14th-place finish at 19-feet, 4.5-inches at the Class 2A state championships on June 11, 2022 at St. Michael-Albertville High School.
Jared Rubado / Detroit Lakes Tribune

Jared Rubado is the sports editor for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and the Perham Focus. He moved to the area in September of 2021 after covering sports for the Alexandria Echo Press for nearly three years. Jared graduated from the University of Augustana in 2018 with degrees in journalism and sports managment.
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