Olsons lead Bengal runners at season-opening races

Just before the temperatures went from uncomfortably hot to downright dangerous, cross country teams hit the trails at Northwoods Park in Brooklyn Park for the Rebel Northwoods Invite Aug. 23.

Blaine eighth grader Ben Olson placed second overall and guided the team to the title at the all-ages Rebel Northwoods Invite Aug. 23. Photo by  Nick Clark

Blaine eighth grader Ben Olson placed second overall and guided the team to the title at the all-ages Rebel Northwoods Invite Aug. 23. Photo by Nick Clark

The two-mile course offered a good first meet for Blaine which won the boys’ team title over Rogers by 14 points.

The Bengals ran an outstanding race as a team, its five scoring runners finishing among the top nine overall positions.

Eighth-grader Ben Olson placed second overall in 10:41.1 or 1.7 seconds behind Orono senior champion Keith Ketola.

Blaine’s second through fifth runners finished within 21 seconds of each other with senior Eric Hiel placing fourth overall, juniors Ryan Morff and Peter Caron seventh and eighth, respectively and senior Oliver Houghtling ninth in 11:21.4 out of 82 runners.

Orono finished third as a team and Champlin Park placed fourth.

Girls

On the girls’ side, Ben Olson’s younger sister, Sarah Olson led the Bengals with a fifth-place finish in 12:57.2. Orono swept the top two spots led by sophomore Sarah Harrison’s winning time of 12:37.0.

Blaine seventh grader, Sarah Olson placed fifth overall to lead the Bengal girls’ team.  Photo by Nick Clark

Blaine seventh grader, Sarah Olson placed fifth overall to lead the Bengal girls’ team. Photo by Nick Clark

Blaine senior Emma Cherney placed 16th in 14:13.9, junior Hanna Stratton was 18th in 14:21.7, sophomore Abbey Durand was 21st in 14:29.0 and sophomore Hannah Habermann was 22nd in 14:32.9.

As a team, the Bengals finished fourth with 82 points, 28 points behind third-place Rogers and 29 points behind runner-up Champlin Park. Orono won the team title with 32 points.

Jason Olson is at
jason.olson@ecm-inc.com

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