Wayzata girls have new track coach

Sports Editor

Pierskalla is a former U of M vaulter

During her high school and college careers as a track and field athlete, Alicia Pierskalla accomplished a lot more than most athletes.

At Armstrong High, she was an outstanding hurdler, who also set a state record in the pole vault. In college, at the University of Minnesota, she focused on vaulting an eventually achieved a career best height of 14 feet, 5 inches.

High-jumper Lena Abara of Wayzata clears the bar at 4 feet, 6 inches during competition in the Lake Conference Relays April 11 at Eden Prairie’s Aerie Stadium. (Sun Sailor staff photo by John Sherman)
High-jumper Lena Abara of Wayzata clears the bar at 4 feet, 6 inches during competition in the Lake Conference Relays April 11 at Eden Prairie’s Aerie Stadium. (Sun Sailor staff photo by John Sherman)

As Wayzata’s new head girls track and field coach, Pierskalla hopes to continue the great tradition that developed under Lori Cade, who coached the Trojans for 26 seasons. Cade, who will retire from teaching this year, is on the staff and helping Pierskalla with the transition.

“Lori has supported me in terms of organizing practices and making the lineups for meets,” said Pierskalla. Cade also understands the challenges of working with more than 100 athletes and making sure that everyone has access to the coaching staff.

Pierskalla’s debut at the Lake Conference Relays April 11 was sensational.
Coming off of spring break, the Trojans won the Lake Relays with 120 points. Minnetonka was second with 113.

“We had all new relay teams out there, and I’m happy that no one dropped the baton,” said Pierskalla.

Wayzata took first place in the 800-meter sprint medley relay with the fast foursome of sophomore Teresa Bowman and ninth-graders Meredith Hedtke, Olivia James and Anna Bartels.

The Trojans added a third place in the 4×100-meter relay with sophomores Bowman, Kendra Egwim and Jordan Hedtke and junior Sophie Triplett.

Wayzata sophomore Lauren Bourland won the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.66 seconds.

In the weight events, the Trojans were outstanding. Junior Ammie O’Connor placed second in the shot put and third in the discus, while junior classmate Carissa Travis was third in the shot and fourth in the discus.

Junior Madeline Tapper also had a big day in the field events, taking second place in the long jump and fourth place in the triple jump. Trojan senior Angela Ku tied for third place in the pole vault.

Triplett and Jordan Hedtke had a 2-3 finish in the 100-meter dash and Wayzata’s distance leader, senior Jaycie Thomsen, finished third in the 1,600-meter run. Ninth-grader Emma Atkinson added a fifth place in the 3,200.

“The distance events went well for us, and we had some strong performances in the shot and discus,” said Pierskalla. “I had not had a chance to scout the other teams, but I knew Edina and Minnetonka would be strong. The one thing that helped us is that we have a lot of depth.”

Next for the Trojans is a trip to the Shakopee Relays, which will begin at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, April 20, at Shakopee West Junior High.

Contact John Sherman at [email protected]