By Victoria Dahlin
Both the Viking boys and girls track teams defeated Benilde-St. Margaret’s and Fridley at the triangular held at Fridley, April 24.
The North Branch boys team totaled 67 team points to win, ahead of Benilde-St. Margaret’s with 64 and Fridley with 55.
Taking firsts for the boys were the 4x200m relay team (Tony Denn, Rance Ashley, Matthew Marrin, Cade Chouinard), 4x400m relay (Brandon Thauwald, Matthew Marrin, Tyler Knobbe, Seth Eastwood), Austin Wek (100m hurdles, 300m hurdles), Kyle Crowell (800m run) and Ashley (high jump).
“By far the best weather day of the season for a track meet,” said Coach Norm Nagel. “Both of our 100 and 300 meter hurdlers did very well. Pole vaulter Carl Neumann matched his personal best at 13’6”. Overall, I am very happy with the boys’ performance by taking first place. They continue to show improvement week to week.”
The Viking girls tallied 76.5 points to place ahead of the Red Knight with 61.5 and the Tigers with 45 total points.
Winning events for the girls were the 4x200m relay team (Maddy Kunshier, Rebecca Ramberg, Kadie Mattson, Cassie Kunshier), Mattson (200m dash), M. Kunshier (400m dash), Haley Huset (1600m run), Rhianna Rinke (3200m run), Rebecca Ramberg (triple jump), Kassie Salo (pole vault) and Catherine Larson (discus).
“The girls are getting very strong in the running events and showing much improvement in the field events,” said Coach Nagel. “Leading the way was Haley Husett and the 4×200 relay. Also, the pole vaulters swept the top four places. I am very pleased with the girls’ performances. They are working hard and have great attitudes.”
The Viking junior varsity boys and girls track teams competed in an invitational at Cambridge-Isanti High School last Friday with the boys winning over eight teams and the girls taking second only to Forest Lake out of nine teams.
Commented Coach Nagel:
“The best performance out of the boys so far this season. We are very young, but very talented. I am very proud of our relay teams as they nearly swept all of the events. Taking first place in the 4×100 relay was Tony Denn, Jack Tholen, Sean Foy and Arik Steele. The 4×200 relay placed first ( Brandon Thauwald, Tony Denn, Jack Tholen and Max Southbloom).
“The 4×400 placed first (Arik Steele, Brandon Thauwald, Austin Wek, and Riley Jacobson). The 4×800 placed third. Taking first place in the 100 and 200 meter dash was ninth grader Matthew Marrin. In the 3200 meter run, Kyle Granger came in second and Noah Hubbard took fourth place. We were strong in the triple jump with Jack Klun taking first and Tennie Jacobson placing fourth, and Max Southbloom taking fifth place.
“The girls took a lot of first and second place finishes, but need to work on earning the lower finishes also. Those points will add up down the road. Kadie Mattson had a great day winning the 200 meter dash, high jump and taking second place in the 400. Seventh grader, Rhianna Rinke ran her personal best in the 1600 meter run. The interesting race that day was the 800 meter run with Maddie Kunshier running it for her first time and placing second place and pushing Haley Huset to a first place finish. It was a fun race to watch.
“It was an exciting night for all of the JV girls. This was a great meet to prepare for the True Team meet in Grand Rapids. I can’t wait!”
The North Branch boys and girls track teams will compete in a meet at Chisago Lakes Area High School in Lindstrom at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 2 before traveling to Grand Rapids High School to compete in the True Team Section Meet at 3 p.m. Tuesday, May 8.