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Cloquet runners excel at Nemadji

Sloppy and wet running conditions met cross country runners Thursday, Sept. 8, at the Nemadji Golf Course in Superior for the Superior High School Cross Country Invitational. In their first meet of the year, the Cloquet boys team overcame the slo...

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Isaac Boedigheimer starts strong and finishes strong at the Nemadji Golf Course in Superior last Thursday during the Superior High School Cross Country Invitational. The Cloquet senior was the overall winner and helped lead the boys team to their own first place trophy. Jed Carlson/Forum News Service

Sloppy and wet running conditions met cross country runners Thursday, Sept. 8, at the Nemadji Golf Course in Superior for the Superior High School Cross Country Invitational. In their first meet of the year, the Cloquet boys team overcame the slower conditions and came away with a solid victory, while the Cloquet girls team picked up a hard-fought second-place finish in their event.

“The course was definitely slower than last year,” said Cloquet coach Mike Bushey. “The temperature was in the high 70s, but the course was soggy and wet.”

Isaac Boedigheimer, one of the top runners in northern Minnesota, led the Cloquet boys and was the overall winner with a time of 16:59.5 which was almost seven seconds faster than runner-up Maury Miller of Ashland. Miller’s twin brother, Walker, finished third and Duluth East runner Andrew Arthur was fourth.

“The Millers continue to improve,” explained Bushey. “Their brother is a D1 runner and is doing well at that level so there appears to be some genetics. They are certainly the real deal.”

The top five runners’ scores count for each team and the Cloquet boys had stellar performances from Conner Denman who was fifth, Aidan Ripp with a sixth-place finish and both Jean-Luc Genereau and Parker Sinkkonen, who were 11th and 13th, respectively.
“Denman is coming off an Achilles injury from last spring at the state meet and is seeing good progression,” stated Bushey. “Ripp is improving to what we would expect to see from him this season and both Genereau and Sinkkonen have had huge improvements during the past year.”

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The ’Jacks boys easily took first place with a low score of 31 points. Ashland was second with 71 points. Duluth East (87), Superior (95), Northwestern (113), Lakeview Christian Academy (132) and Duluth Denfeld (175) rounded out the boys field.

Ashland won the girls overall team title with 57 points, but Cloquet was second with 62 points. The Superior Spartans were right on the heels of Cloquet with 63 points and a third-place finish, then Northwestern fourth with 72 points and Duluth East fifth with 82 points.

Izzy Sutherland of Duluth East ran a great race to win the girls race by 30 seconds over second place finisher Anja Maijala of Cloquet.

“I think it was a good solid effort by Anja who is coming off a stationary roller ski accident a few weeks back, so it is a good sign of progressing fitness for her,” commented Bushey. “Anja is fit and super strong. The training specificity will help her transition to some fast efforts later in the season.”

Cloquet runner’s Kelly Lorenz was ninth overall, Vanna Kelley was 13th and Elise Pickar finished 18th. Rounding out the scoring for Cloquet was Franny Slater with a 26th-place finish.

“This is as good a girls team as we’ve had in a number of years,” said Bushey. “This group is excited to work hard and to see where that work takes them."

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