On Saturday, Oct. 5, the Pine City cross-country team traveled to the Swain Invitational in Duluth. This meet is one of the largest and toughest meets in the state. It is known for its long massive hills and typically wet/muddy course. This year was no different. The course was extremely wet and muddy due to all the rain and because of the conditions, times were between 1.5 to 2 minutes slower than normal.

“This is a very fun meet and weekend for our varsity runners as they are able to bond as a team and do other fun activities, going to places like Hartley Nature Park and stay the night at The Edgewater Waterpark and Hotel,” said coach Jared Clementson.

The Dragon girls team placed ninth out of 30 complete teams with a total of 290 points in a very competitive field. Sixth ranked Lake City won with 118 points.

“I was very impressed with our girls place as we are still not competing at 100%,” said coach Clementson

Alaina Steele was Pine City’s girls top runner, finishing 12th in a time of 22:01.1. She has been consistent throughout the season and as usual she ran a great race. Eva Johnson ran an incredible race and managed to move up throughout the race to place just behind Alaina in 14th with a time of 22:13.7. Arissa Rydberg continues to improve as she had her best race of the season, placing 32nd out of 208 runners with a time of 22:56.6. Emma Belsheim ran well and placed 111th with a time of 25:29.8. Grace Grubbs ran through some pain, due to a foot injury, to ensure the Dragons would have a scoring team, finishing 141st in a time of 26:30.8.

The Dragon boys team placed 21st out of 32 teams with a total of 516 points in a very competitive field. Ely was a surprise winner, beating out 10th ranked Lake City 152 to 166.

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