Tigers power through wind in Burnsville

Published 11:20 pm Thursday, September 29, 2011

Albert Lea’s Emma Behling, left, runs Thursday during a cross country race in Burnsville. -- Bryce Gaudian

The Albert Lea cross country team had an extra opponent Thursday — the wind — in the 12-team Burnsville Blaze Invitational.

Chrissy Monson finished second as the Tigers girls’ team placed fifth, and the boys were led by Issac Staat and Luc Malimanek in a ninth-place finish.

“It was a tough day to run but I was proud for how all the runners handled the wind,” Tigers coach Jim Haney said. “They ran like a team that is growing in confidence and experience.”

Monson finished the race in 14 minutes and 57.2 seconds, more than 54 seconds behind defending state champion Maria Hauger, of Shakopee. Haney said Monson ran a strategic race against four of the top 10 runners in the state.

“Chrissy took an aggressive approach in the final 1,000 meters,” Haney said. “She had a very impressive time with the weather conditions.”

Monson was followed by ninth-grader Haley Harms, who finished 12th overall in 16:08.7.

“Harms continued to be a solid No. 2 runner,” Haney said. “She has had an outstanding season and she is looking forward to the next few races to continue the impressive season she’s had.”

Rounding out the top five girls runners were Morgan Haney, Riley Schultz and Emma Behling.

The boys’ team was led by Staat and Malimanek, who finished in 27th and 41st place, respectively, but was a total team effort. The Tigers ran as a pack and

Albert Lea’s Blair Bonnerup, left, placed 43rd overall Thursday at the Burnsville Blaze Invitational. -- Lon Nelson

the top five runners all finished within 36 seconds of each other.

“The boys hung tough and showed a great deal of heart as they attacked a course that was hilly with 40 mph winds,” Haney said. “But it was the same for everybody who ran the race.”

Rounding out the top five boys runners were Blair Bonnerup, Brandon Bonnerup and Jay Skaar.

See the Scoreboard for complete results.

The Tigers compete again at 4 p.m. Thursday at Owatonna Brooktree Golf Course.

Thursday’s results

Burnsville Blaze Invitational

Boys’ race

1. Owatonna 53

2. Mahtomedi 53

3. Burnsville 57

4. Rochester Century 128

5. Minnetonka 166

6. Maple Grove 171

7. East Ridge 197

8. Northfield 210

9. Albert Lea 225

10. Shakopee 230

11. Richfield 261

12. South St. Paul 317

Albert Lea results

27. Issac Staat 18:04.3

41. Luc Malimanek 18:18.7

43. Blair Bonnerup 18:22.9

53. Brandon Bonnerup 18:34.3

61. Jay Skaar 18:40.4

78. Andy Christian 19:23.8

81. Sergio Chavez 19:55.9

Girls’ race

1. Shakopee 59

2. Owatonna 98

3. Visitation 115

4. Mahtomedi 118

5. Albert Lea 125

6. Burnsville 153

7. East Ridge 171

8. Northfield 172

9. Rochester Century 182

10. Maple Grove 221

11. Richfield 258

12. South St. Paul 380

Albert Lea results

2. Chrissy Monson 14:57.2

12. Haley Harms 16:08.7

34. Morgan Haney 16:55.0

38. Riley Schulz 17:07.1

39. Emma Behling 17:09.2

46. Rachel Kenis 17:15.7

63. Ashley Tewes 17:39.8