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Alpine skiing: Stone sisters, Linnerooth break school records

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Savannah Stone, Thor Linnerooth and Alex Stone entered the record books of the Brainerd Warriors Alpine program Thursday following their performances in the Section 5 meet at Afton Alps.

In addition to the Stone sisters and Linnerooth, the Warriors qualified senior Mara Williams for Wednesday’s state meet at Giants Ridge in Biwabik.

Savannah Stone became the first Warrior girl or boy to qualify for state four times. Linnerooth joined Andy Rangen (1995 and 1996) as the only two-time Warrior boys state qualifier. And, seventh-grader Alex Stone became the youngest Warrior boy or girl ever to qualify for state.

Savannah Stone tied for fourth in the girls race with a time of 1:02.63. After her first run she was in seventh place but on her second run she moved up three spots.

“We were concerned because Savannah really hasn’t trained for about two weeks,” Warriors coach Jim Ruttger said. “She’s had a high ankle sprain, and she’s had a lot of pain to deal with. She took a couple runs (Wednesday) on the course, and we were not sure until (Wednesday) whether she could race today.

“She was not quite 100 percent, and was maybe a little more tentative on her first run. Her second run was really a clean run. We saw what she’s more capable of.”

Linnerooth finished ninth in the boys race after placing 13th in his first run. The senior will make his second straight trip to state.

“Thirteenth would have qualified him for state, but he wasn’t settling for that,” Ruttger said. “He wanted top 10 and he nailed his second run.

“He nailed his two runs today, and did what he needed to do, and he’s going to state.”

Williams finished 16th in the girls race. The senior will make her first trip to state.

“Mara’s just been skiing phenomenal the last few weeks,” Ruttger said. “She had three wins in our regular season. You just want your seniors to ski well at sections. All you hope for is they ski the best they can. Mara had two great runs today. To cap her long career with a trip to state was just a great result.”

Alex Stone finished 19th to grab the final girls individual qualifying spot.

“She’s the youngest state qualifier we’ve ever had as an individual,” Ruttger said. “As a seventh-grader, that’s a huge accomplishment. That really bodes well for the future of our team.”

The Warrior girls team finished fifth, behind four metro schools.

“Only 7.5 points separated third through fifth place,” Ruttger said. “We were pretty happy with that result. When you consider we did that with a seventh-grader, two eighth-graders and a ninth-grader, out of our six skiers, for a young squad that’s a great result.”

The Warrior boys team finished 10th with Taylor Finger the closest behind Linnerooth in 38th place.

The top two teams, and the top 10 individuals not on those two teams, advanced to state.

Boys team scores: 1-Minnetonka 362.0, 2-Hopkins 351, 3-Orono 341, 4-Blake 320.5, 5-St Cloud Area 312, 6-Benilde St. Margaret’s 280.5, 7- Wayzata 263, 8-Lakes Area 259, 9-Breck 249, 10-Brainerd 236, 11-Maple Grove 204, 12-Armstrong 167, 13-Mound Westonka 157, 14-Annandale 143, 15-Robbinsdale Cooper 113, 16-Waconia 77

Section champion: Brett Bremer (Hopkins) 58.74

Brainerd results: 9-Thor Linnerooth 1:00.67, 38-Taylor Finger 1:09.33, 51-Ben Thoele 1:16.76, 58-Gabe Gibson 1:21.59, 68-Grant Madison 1:28.20, Garett Lee DNF

Girls team scores: 1-Minnetonka 265.5, 2-Blake School 243, 3-Orono 230, 4-Benilde St. Margaret’s 227, 5-Brainerd 222.5, 6-Wayzata 194, 7-St Cloud Area 158, 8-Maple Grove 124, 9-Armstrong 94, 10-Hopkins 91, 11-Breck 71, 12-Mound Westonka 63

Section champion: Rosie Hust (Orono) 1:01.32

Brainerd results: 4-(tie) Savannah Stone 1:02.63, 16-Mara Williams 1:07.58, 19-Alex Stone 1:09.68, 30-Hannah Moen 1:12.44, 34-Ashley Fitterer 1:13.70, 35-Emily Aga 1:15.24

Next: State meet, Giants Ridge, Biwabik, first run 10 a.m., second run 1 p.m., Wednesday.