Hasz sisters bring sibling competition to Division I races

Bethany Hasz finished 11th and Megan Hasz finished 13th in the team’s most-recent race.

Megan Hasz competes at the Roy Griak Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 23 at the Les Bolstad Golf Course in St. Paul.

Courtney Deutz

Megan Hasz competes at the Roy Griak Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 23 at the Les Bolstad Golf Course in St. Paul.

Anthony Bryant

The Hasz sisters have a different kind of competition: they compete to see who can outrun the other.

Bethany and Megan Hasz are sophomore cross country runners for the Gophers from Alexandria, Minnesota, who aren’t just sisters, but twins. While they love the sport, the chance at beating their sister just makes it that much better.

“We’re definitely competitive,” Bethany Hasz said. “I’m happy for her when she wins. I just prefer to win.”

All you have to do is look at their high school career to see the sibling rivalry. As sophomores competing in the four-kilometer race, Bethany Hasz finished first and won the Minnesota Class AA State Cross Country Championship, while Megan Hasz placed right behind her in second. 

As juniors competing in the 4-kilometer race, it was Megan Hasz’s turn to win state; Bethany Hasz followed up with second. In their senior year, the two switched roles again, with Bethany Hasz beating Megan Hasz in their 5-kilometer state race. Track and field is the same story, wherever the Hasz sisters raced, it was obvious the race was between them, and no one else.

“She beats me as much as I beat her,” Bethany Hasz said. “There’s not much to brag about.” 

Her sister shared the same feelings. Though they’re competitors who want to win, neither one competes out of spite.

“It’s a supportive competitiveness,” Megan Hasz said. “It’s out of love.”

After graduating high school, the two laced up their shoes and made their way from Alexandria, Minnesota to Minneapolis, joining Minnesota’s cross country team. As freshmen, the competition got tougher, and the two worried about each other. 

At the NCAA midwest regional, Megan Hasz got ninth, and not long after Bethany Hasz came running through the finish line in 12th. Even cross country history couldn’t separate the two, who had gone back and forth all season long. Megan Hasz currently ranks 18th on Minnesota’s all-time top-50 6-Kilometer performers list, while Bethany Hasz ranks tied for 29th. The place where they raced had changed, but the narrative remained the same.

“It’s been remarkable how consistent they switch back and forth,” said head coach Sarah Hopkins. “I give them a lot of credit. I don’t know if I could do that with any sibling, let alone a twin. To be together all the time, in the same classes, the same sport, and to compete at a high level without going at each other’s throats.”

Megan and Bethany Hasz are currently competing in their sophomore season, and even in 2017, it seems like the two can’t get away from each other. Just last week at the 32nd Roy Griak Invitational, Bethany Hasz placed 11th and Megan Hasz finished four seconds later in 13th. It was the same old same old; another race to sum up their relationship on the course.  

“I think they’re realizing they can even be another level better,” Hopkins said.