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MVP's Berkeley Engelland included in star-studded special event races at 2022 Howard Wood Dakota Relays

This year's special events are the girls 800-meters and boys 200-meters.

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Mount Vernon/Plankinton's Berkeley Engelland (No. 4) leads a pack of runners at the Greenway Relay Track Meet in Mount Vernon on April 22, 2022.
Adam Thury / Mitchell Republic
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SIOUX FALLS — The 97th edition of the Howard Wood Dakota Relays is set to take place Friday and Saturday, May 6-7, with both the boys and girls annual special events set to take place Friday evening under the lights.

The invitation-only special events are an annual showing of some of the region's elite high school track and field athletes, and this year’s races are no exception, with the boys 200-meter and the girls 800-meter runs converging on Howard Wood Field.

Mount Vernon/Plankinton’s Berkeley Engelland headlines the event for Mitchell area athletes, slated to start in lane seven of the girls 800-meter special event. The MVP sophomore has been one of the most prominent area athletes since last season, separating herself from the pack throughout the 2021 season.

Engelland left last year’s Class A state meet with four total state championships, winning both the 400-meter and 800-meter dash while anchoring her relay team’s wins in the 4x400-meter and the 4x800-meter relays.

This season, she has picked up right where she left off, claiming 11 total first-place finishes over five different meets this season, while setting new personal records in the 100-meter (12.60 seconds), 200-meter (26.14 seconds) and the 800-meter (2:20.4), putting her in the top-10 for all three of those events.

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Engelland is one of eight scheduled competitors. Other South Dakota athletes set to compete are Yankton’s Sydnee Serck, Libby Castelli and Alea Hardie of Sioux Falls O’Gorman and Reese Luse of Colman-Egan. Ruth Pardy of O’Gorman is this year’s alternate on the girls side.

Out-of-state competitors include Madison Brouwer of Sibley-Ocheyedan High School (Iowa), Erin Palmer of Century High School (North Dakota) and Grace Drietz of Canby/Minneota High School (Minnesota).

The boys 200-meter special event features the likes of Spearfish’s Jaden Guthmiller, South Dakota’s top-ranked sprinter in both the 100-meter and 200-meter dash this season, Brandon Valley’s Julian Watson, the holder of South Dakota’s all-time 400-meter record holder (47.46 seconds), and Aberdeen Central’s Sam Rohlfs, a gifted sprinter who also holds the all-time state record for long jump (24 feet, 3/4 inch). Other South Dakota athletes in the event include Custer’s Blake Boyster, a Class A state champion in the 400-meter, Chester Area’s Jovi Wolf, the youngest member of the special event field as a sophomore, and Harrisburg’s Ben Stratman, a sprinter with top-10 times in the 100-meter, 200-meter and 400-meter runs in South Dakota this season. Harrisburg’s Tim Bishop is the alternate for the boys special event.

Quentin Lewis of Dickinson High School (North Dakota) and Dawson Hawkinson of Bismarck High School (South Dakota) are the lone out-of-state competitors on the boys side.

The girls special 800-meter run will be first, scheduled to begin at 6:35 p.m. on Friday, followed by the co-ed 1600-meter relay, then the boys special 200-meter run at 7 p.m.

The meet begins at 2 p.m. on Friday with the girls 100-meter hurdles prelims, with the meet concluding on Saturday.

Related Topics: TRACK AND FIELD
Dylan is sports reporter for the Mitchell Republic. A native of Michigan, he graduated from Central Michigan University with a bachelors of science in journalism before joining the sports staff in March 2022. He covers 35 high schools along with NAIA's Dakota Wesleyan, which are all within Mitchell Republic's 17 county coverage area. Before joining the Mitchell Republic, Dylan covered sports in Michigan for a year, coached baseball for the Lakeland High School freshman team in White Lake, Mich. and played baseball and basketball in high school.
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