Conference meet

Brayden Bradway, Ethan Hall, and Dylan Salewski at the conference meet.

The Osceola boys cross country team hadn’t won the Middle Border Conference championship since 2016. 

The 2021 edition was bound and determined to end the streak at four. 

With five runners placing in the top 12, the Chieftains cruised to the conference title with 33 points at Osceola Oct. 14. Prescott was second with 54 and Altoona took third with 70. 

“It was well earned and well deserved,” Osceola coach Rachael Robinson said of the title.

Quinn McDonald was the individual champion with a time of 16 minutes, 35.3 seconds, 16 seconds faster than Prescott’s Tyler Loucks. Ellsworth’s Alex Pazdernik was third at 17:29.3.

The Chieftain runners after McDonald had a big day. Carver Lundholm was fourth at 17:41, two seconds faster than teammate Mason Hancock. Ethan Hall was 11th (18:01.8) and Brayden Bradway took 12th (18:03.3). 

“Carver Lundholm had a big senior race,” Robinson said. “He looked like he was floating. Relaxed, determined, and fast for the entire 5,000 meters.”

McDonald, Lundholm and Hancock earned first team all-conference honors while Hall and Bradway were second team. 

Meanwhile, for the girls, Rachel Ulrich was the individual champion at 19:25.7, a minute faster than St. Croix Central’s Kaitlyn Carlson. 

Amery spoiled what would have been the perfect meet for Osceola, winning the team title with 35 points. Osceola was second with 55 as Central placed third with 68. 

Chloe Backlund then led a pack of Chieftains as she was 11th (21:45.7). Kya Krenz was 13th (22:04.2) with teammate Adelyn Ellefson one second behind. Merri Johnson finished 16th (22:15.5). 

“Chloe Backlund earned her third career all conference recognition,” Robinson said. “She’s the most experienced athlete on the girls team and she continues to help lead this team to the top.”

Backlund was joined on the second team by Krenz and Ellefson. Ulrich, of course, made the first team. 

“I am extremely impressed with both teams,” Robinson said. “To have nine athletes named all-conference and two individual champions is extraordinary.”

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