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Nordic Skiing: Brained boys, Flyer girls win at Arb

The Brainerd Warriors boys and the Little Falls Flyers girls continued their domination Friday in the Little Falls Invite at Northland Arboretum in Brainerd.

The Warriors senior Zean Baker won the 10.8-kilometer pursuit race with a time of 30:38 to lead the Brainerd boys to a 10-point victory over rival St. Cloud Tech.

For Baker it’s win No. 4 on the season. He was second after the opening 5.4-K classic portion, but was eight seconds faster than St. Cloud Tech’s Nick Proell in the freestyle to win the event.

“Zean was ready to go,” said Warriors co-head coach Mary Claire Ryan. “Our mission with Zean is to practice taking first place so it will be old hat when we get into the bigger meets. We had some good skiers today. For Zean to have these kind of results in our first real pursuit format race is good.”

Baker skied a classic time of 16:20. He clocked a 14:18 in the freestyle.

Noah Baker finished sixth in 32:00 followed by Gerrit Garberich’s eighth-place 32:24 and Connor Gunsbury’s 34:01, which placed him 14th. Ben Hanson finished 15th for the Warriors.

The Little Falls boys placed fourth and were led by John Gottwalt’s ninth-place 32:43.

The Little Falls girls team won by 19 points over second-place Brainerd.

But it was the Warriors’ Allison Kosobud who clocked the fastest time among area skiers with a second-place 35:30.

“She had a much better race then our Invite here Dec. 29,” said Ryan. “Her goal was to go out and win it, but to be right in there that tight with Callie Smith of Mora was nice to see. Maria Hauer normally places a little higher, but she wasn’t feeling well. But a race is a race and it’s all about who is ready and Ali was ready. She worked pretty darn hard. She had a great classic race to set herself up for the skate portion.”

Kosobud was tied with Smith after the classic with an 18:56. Her freestyle time was 16:34, which was 12 seconds behind Smith.

The Flyers were led by Mattia Hendrickson’s third-place time of 35:50. Hauer placed fourth followed by Kaitlin Geisenhof in fifth and Chelsea Rutz in sixth. Claire Gammon-Deering placed 20th for the Flyers.

“When Little Falls has five kids in a row like they usually do that’s pretty awesome,” said Ryan. “That’s every coaches dream. Anyone would love to have their girls finish in a row like that and so high up there. That’s pretty impressive. But we were happy with a lot of the results from our kids, too.

“We’re happy to have had a pursuit race to see how our kids manage it. We have another one and then it’s sections and state so the next two weeks is when it counts.”

Brainerd’s Gabriella Haire finished 10th, Sara Fairbanks was 12th, Victoria Johnson finished 13th and Sara Whiteman was 16th to help Brainerd top third-place Mora by four points.

Boys team scores: 1-Brainerd 377, 2-St. Cloud Tech 367, 3-Mora 366, 4-Little Falls 344, 5-Alexandria 324, 6-Detroit Lakes 290, 7-St. Cloud Apollo 250, 8-St. Cloud Cathedral 104, 9-Trek North 75, 10-Ottertail Nordic 63

Individual winner: Zean Baker (Brd) 30:38

Brainerd results: 6-Noah Baker 32:00, 8-Gerrit Garberich 32:24, 14-Connor Gunsbury 34:01, 15-Ben Hanson 34:07, 29-Sam Guida 35:42, 30-Evan Schreifels 35:50, 32-Sam Nesheim 36:32, 37-Robert Pike 37:13

Little Falls results: 9-John Gottwalt 32:43, 10-Mathew Massman 32:44, 12-Brian McNamara 33:32, 25-Gunner Kleinschmidt 35:02, 26-Isaiah Korver 35:13, 31-Ethan Crocker 36:20, 34-Michael Carll 37:06, 42-Nathaniel Warnke 37:30, 48-Seth Crocker 39:01, 52-Trent Peterson 39:45

Girls team scores: 1-Little Falls 386, 2-Brainerd 367, 3-Mora 363, 4-St. Cloud Cathedral 359, 5-Alexandria 307, 6-St. Cloud Tech 358, 7-St. Cloud Apollo 233, 8-Detroit Lakes 133, 9-Trek North 80,

Individual winner: Callie Smith (Mora) 35:18

Brainerd results: 2-Allison Kosobud 35:30, 10-Gabriella Haire 38:04, 12-Sarah Fairbanks 39:03, 13-Victoria Johnson 39:04, 16-Sara Whiteman 39:15, 33-Maren Hadrits 41:32, 35-Anne Grabowski 42:15, 40-Emily Nelson 43:40, 49-Katie Pernula 47:17, 51-Erin Peterson 48:24

Little Falls results: 3-Mattia Hendrickson 35:50, 4-Maria Hauer 36:19, 5-Kaitlin Geisenhof 36:40, 6-Chelsea Rutz 36:44, 20-Claire Gammon-Deering 39:33, 22-Josie Lange 39:50, 24-Kendal Hendrickson 40:36, 29-Amelia Kresha 40:51, 30-Chloe Houle 40:53, 31-Elizabeth Becker 41:07

Next: Brainerd, Little Falls at Bemidji Pursuit 10 a.m. Jan. 26.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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