max, Isaac

Max Nelson (9026) and Isaac Maruyama (9022) of the Bears churn toward the finish line in fifth and seventh place, respectively.

 

White Bear Lake boys cross country opened the season with a victory, placing first among 29 teams at the Rosemount Invitational on Friday.

In a two-mile event, the top five teams were the Bears with 77, Eden Prairie 107, Highland Park 109, Minnetonka 123 and Eagan 154. Highland is a section rival.

“I went into this meet thinking if we finished in the top four we would be in good shape — with six ranked teams in the race,” coach Dan Kovacich said. “But the boys ran really hard and wanted to win this meet.”

Bear senior Max Nelson placed fifth in 9:57, senior Isaac Maruyama seventh in 9:58, senior Logan Tanttu 14th in 10:14, junior Trevor Locke 19th in 10:21, and sophomore Ernie Mattson 32nd in 10:36.

Those were the five counting scores, while junior Ben McLaughlin was 48th in 10:47 and senior Sam Verkerke 12th in 10:55.

The coach noted that these were the fastest times in 10 trips to Rosemount during his 17 years as head coach.

“Our top three packed well together and four four to seven ran well,” the coach said. “We had a 38-second spread one through five. When you have that you will do well. Pack running will be the key for our success.”

The Bears will run the regular 5K length in their next outing at Anoka on Sept. 11.

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