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History at Howard Wood (Laura Roesler)

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We don't often profile athletes from North Dakota, but after her performance at the Howard Wood Dakota Relays, we just had to make Laura Roesler of Fargo South our Taco John's Athlete of the Week.

In this region, the Howard Wood Dakota Relays stand tall as one of the oldest, most competitive track meets around.  They have seen scores of great runners, including future Olympians like Bob Hayes.  So to make history at the meet is quite an accomplishment.  That's exactly what Laura Roesler of Fargo South has done after winning three straight high school girls special events.

"It's cool to have the opportunity and they keep inviting me back, which is awesome," said Roesler.  "The only disappointment I have is my freshman year, that 800, but I'm actually happy I got to run two laps here."

Roesler ran those two laps faster than any other woman in the history of the 86 year-old meet.  That includes high school and college athletes.  Her time of 2:05.76 in the 800 meters was also the fastest time this year by a high school girl.  Still, Roesler felt she could have been faster.

"I was kinda nervous at first and my legs felt a little dead from the car ride and stuff, so I was being conservative about how I felt," said Roelser.  "I should have just trusted myself and went when I was supposed to, but I'm happy with it."

Over the past three years, Roesler has dominated the special events at Howard Wood.  In 2008, she set a meet record in the 400 and in 2009, she won the 200.

In the 800, Roesler's fastest time is 2:03.08, which makes her a national star in high school track.  She won the event at the 2009 Nike Indoor Nationals and will be attending track-and-field-crazy Oregon next year.  For now though, she says she is still working on getting faster.

"This is all working towards my summer goals and my summer goals for times, that's when I really specialize in the 8, so these are all building blocks," said Roesler.  "The sprinting and the miles I do during the year, it's all for that."

The Dakota Relays have seen all sorts of great athletes.  Laura Roesler is the latest, and undoubtedly one of the greatest.
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