The 2022 girls track and field team holding up a trophy and smiling

With four spring girls' sports, five spring boys' sports and 46 student-based interest clubs and co-curricular activities at Spring Lake Park High School, our students found opportunities to connect and compete. Exploring common interests and passions outside the classroom helps students discover themselves and prepare for their next steps.

“This spring, I really saw our students having great experiences, learning life lessons and finding connections all while pushing themselves to be the best they can be in their respective sport, club or activity,” says Will Wackman, Director of Athletics and Activities. “It’s amazing to see what these students can do and what they have to offer and a lot of it stems from the opportunities they are given to pursue their interests.”

There were many shining moments this spring season from high school students involved in athletics, co-curricular activities and fine arts. Check out the highlights.

Athletic team and individual highlights

  • Adapted Bowling – 4 bowlers competed in the MSHSL State Tournament
  • Adapted Softball (co-op with Centennial) – MSHSL State Consolation Champions
  • Boys Golf
    • Northwest Suburban Conference Champions
    • Section 5AAA Champions
    • Sophomore Jake Birdwell – Northwest Suburban Conference Golfer of the Year
  • Girls Golf – May Richmond and 8th grader Grace Johnson competed  both days at the Section 5AAA Girls Golf tournament
  • Boys Lacrosse – Advanced to section finals
  • Boys Tennis – Head Boys Tennis Coach, David Kuether, named Section 4AA coach of the year
  • Track and Field
    • Girls and Boys team placed 1st at the Don Fineran Invite
    • Girls Track and Field team are the Northwest Suburban Conference Champions for the second straight year
    • 9 students qualified for the state meet
      • Victoria LaBerge placed 2nd in the triple jump and earned all-state
      • Ashley Stewart placed 4th in the discus and earned all-state
      • Sebastian Santaigo placed 4th in the pole vault and earned all-state
      • Aaron Chanthanavong placed 7th in the shot put and earned all-State
      • Issac Ononiwu placed 9th in the high jump and earned all-state
      • The girls 4x100 relay team finished 7th and earned all-state – Tori LaBerge, Addison Stephani, Brianna Finnegan and Malaya James
  • 18 Student-athletes signed their national letters of intent to continue their education and play their sport at the collegiate level
  • Our 2022 Athena Award Winner was Senior Kaitlyn Finnegan
  • 2022 MSHSL Triple "A" Award winners were seniors William Privratsky and Chloe Sroga
  • 29 students were Northwest Suburban Conference all-conference honorees

Clubs and Co-curricular team and individual highlights

  • Rocket League – won 1st place in the Minnesota Varsity League (MNVL) state championship
  • SLP Green Club – Celebrated Earth Day by picking up trash around the high school and surrounding community
    • Seven students competed in the state competition
    • Four students qualified for the National Leadership Conference this summer in San Diego
    • The chapter was awarded four national awards: Financial Fitness - 1st place and $1000; Families Acting for Community Traffic Safety (FACTS) - 1st place and $1000; State winner for FACTS - 5th year in a row and $500; and Stand Up Against Bullying – 2nd place and $500
  • Robotics – Unveiled their robot at the state competition at the University of Minnesota in April
    • 363 Project - 330 sandwiches fundraised and made for local homeless
    • $6,768 was raised in 2022 for Adopt-A-Family which helped purchase gifts for 80 children. Since 1996, OEC has collected $102,996.70 for Adopt-A-Family
  • DECA – Sophomore Sophie Shimabukuro attended the DECA ICDC Conference in Atlanta, GA where she earned entrance into the Thrive Academy by completing two DECA Chapter Campaigns
  • Speech – Senior Obelyn Smith placed 2nd in Discussion at the State Speech Meet
  • Boys Volleyball – advanced to the state tournament

Fine Arts highlights

  • Band and Choir - 14 seniors committed to continuing their involvement in band or choir at the collegiate level
  • Choir - SLPHS choir students participated in the Minnesota State High School League Vocal Solo and Ensemble Contest. Each student worked up a solo and sang for a judge to receive coaching and a rating. All students received one of the top two ratings
  • Theater – The spring musical performance “Oklahoma!” earned six outstanding awards by the Hennepin Theater Trust
  • MSHSL Art winners – Students earned 1 spotlight, 3 superior and 10 excellent awards

The importance of extracurriculars

This spring season, athletic and activity coaches, advisors and students found joy in the experiences they had all while finding success and learning life lessons along the way.

Sara Hale, co-head varsity track and field coach, helped coach 200 students in grades 7-12 this year and said there isn’t a part of the sport that doesn’t benefit each student.

“Oftentimes, kids have a passion for athletics more so than any other area of their life,” she says. “It’s always amazing to see the different personalities in some of our kids on the track compared to in the classroom. It’s like a flip switch, and because they care, they will do anything to find success. Athletics helps build trust and instill a sense of self-belief, that if they can accomplish something on the track, they can accomplish hard things in school and in life.”

Each season, the track and field team selects a word to live by. This year, the word was consistency.

Athletes were told that it wasn’t just about getting a new personal record or having the best practice every day, but about showing up when they don’t want to, working hard when they’re tired and being accountable for the things they can control.

“When we consistently show up, work hard and take care of our own business, we are better for ourselves and for our team,” Sara says. “Consistency is about working hard to get a little better every day on the track, in the weight room, in the classroom, at home, with friends and beyond. Good choices shouldn’t just happen in one place, but consistently across all areas of life and that is something we as coaches hope we instilled in our athletes this year.”

Senior Brianna Kiriago, captain of the track and field team, boys’ basketball manager, National Honor Society and student council member, says she is thrilled with the opportunities she had and the people who pushed her to her highest potential.

SLP, both my coaches and teachers, saw a spark within me indicating that I could bring myself to a higher potential and that ignited a fire within myself to always push myself beyond my limits anywhere. Brianna Kiriago, Class of 2022

Brianna plans to take all she’s learned throughout the years and continue to push herself as she heads to the University of Wisconsin-Madison to study Global Health with a pre-med track this fall.

That’s a wrap 

With the spring season ending, that’s a wrap on athletics and activities for the 2021-2022 school year.

“It was a spring for the books and I’m proud of each and every student for what they accomplished this year,” says Will. “I can’t wait to see what next year brings.”

Check out winter highlight photos

Spring 2022 Athletics and Activities