Vikings eighth grader Rhianna Rinke won the girls race, while both the girls and boys cross country teams placed second at the Pine City Invitational last Thursday.
Rinke took first with a new personal best time of 14:59 out of 73 competitors in the 4000m race.
Teammates Casey Hovland came in third; Cassidy White, 18th; Alyssa Ramberg, 29th; Claire Schraufnagel, 39th; Laura Dolezalek, 45th; and Megan Piotrowski, 53rd.
Kyle Crowell was the first Vikings boy to cross the finish line, coming in 10th out of 72 competitors in the 5000m run.
Jake Petrik placed 12th; Kyle Granger, 17th; Alex Fitcha, 26th; Josh Petrik, 30th (new best personal time 20:38); Sam Peltier, 49th; and Noah Hubbard, 52nd.
“It was a beautiful day for racing,” said Coach Anna Geary. “The North Branch area cross country team proved they are going to surprise us this season. Team places went very well all around, and individual places and times were promising. Rhianna Rinke, Ean Charpentier (junior varsity) and Haley Huset (junior varsity) all won their races.
“There were many personal records set by the kids. Senior Jake Petrik had his all-time best race during the partly cloudy and cool racing weather. Congrats to Jessica Gonzales and Colby Weber who competed in their first cross country races ever,” Geary added.
The North Branch boys and girls cross country teams will host an invitational at North Branch Golf Course at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14. Following the team races, there will be 1k and 2k fun runs free of charge and open to all fans, at the team’s only home meet. The Vikings will then travel to Hudson Middle School for an invitational at 3:45 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 18.