Anja Maijala had a simple goal at the 2013 Swain Invitational, a race besieged by rain and wind.

“Last year it was just surviving the race - that was my goal,” Maijala said Saturday.

The Cloquet sophomore had loftier expectations this time around and entered the 64th Swain at Enger Park Golf Course with visions of a top-10 finish. Grinding through the mud and muck of a saturated course, Maijala made good on her pre-race goal, covering the hilly 4-kilometer course in 15 minutes, 50.9 seconds to finish seventh in the Class AA girls race.

Rachel King of St. Michael-Albertville was first in 15:03.3 on a day that was tropical compared to a year ago.

“This year was way better for racing,” Maijala said of the modest breeze and temperatures in the mid-40s. “This is prime racing weather.”

Maijala said the Swain, with its penchant for attracting fast runners, is the perfect tune-up for conference and section meets. There were 67 teams and more than 2,200 runners Saturday.

“This is perfect,” Maijala said. “It gets you going really fast, and it gets you in the right mindset for the big races coming up.”

Three spots behind Maijala was Phoebe Koski of Duluth East, who ran a 16:05.9 to pace the Greyhounds to a third-place team showing. Koski’s teammates, Kelly Canavan (16:12) and Molly Weberg (16:31.5), were 12th and 15th, respectively.

Forest Lake was a runaway team winner. The Rangers had 35 points, well ahead of runner-up St. Michael-Albertville (82).

In the Class A girls race, Esko’s Kailee Kiminski finished fourth after expending just about every ounce of energy she had. Almost literally.

Her legs gave out upon crossing the finish line in 16:21.8 and Kiminski collapsed to the ground. She admits she hit a wall about midway through the race before managing a closing kick that kept her near the front of the pack.

Kiminski says this wasn’t the first time she felt like that at the end of a meet.

“I don’t like doing it like that, but I’m learning how to run faster and longer,” the senior said. “I’m getting there, and hopefully at the end of the season it will all come together.”

Theresa Mueller ran a 15:47.8 to win the race and lead Trinity School at River Ridge to the team title.

Saturday’s slop didn’t bode well for fast times as runners were about a minute off their normal paces. Nor was the mud good for running shoes, especially Kiminski’s. She had worn the same shoes every race since her freshman year before buying a new pair earlier in the week.

They didn’t look new afterward.

“I’ll just let them dry out,” Kiminski joked. “I’ll put them in the garage and let them air out.”

On the boys side, East was third in Class AA behind Keaton Long’s 5K time of 17:08 that resulted in a ninth-place finish. St. Michael-Albertville’s Chase Cayo was the overall winner in 16:12.8 to help the Knights finish second behind Wayzata in the team standings.

Isaac Boedigheimer of Cloquet came in fourth at 16:50.5.

In addition to the conditions, runners were quick to lament - or laud - the challenging course.

“There’s only one other course that I can think of that would compare to this, and that’d be the Roy Griak at the University of Minnesota,” said Mesabi East’s Danny Radtke, who was ninth in Class A boys with a mark of 17:03.8. “Other than that, I’ve never raced on a course as hard as this.”

Ephraim Bird was first in Class A boys at 16:26.9, while Glencoe-Silver Lake won the team crown via a tiebreaker over Holy Family Catholic.


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At Enger Park Golf Course

Saturday’s Results


Boys 5K


1. Wayzata, 58; 2. St. Michael-Albertville, 67; 3. Duluth East, 106; 4. Totino-Grace, 173; 5. St. Anthony Village, 186; 6. Cloquet, 189; 7. Osseo, 199; 8. Blake, 201; 9. Duluth Denfeld, 247; 10. Tartan, 264.


1. Chase Cayo, STMA, 16:12.8; 2. Michael Mitchell, Blake, 16:41.3; 3. Samuel Nofziger, Tartan, 16:48.7; 4. Isaac Boedigheimer, Clo, 16:40.5; 5. Nicholas Lawson, St. Anthony, 16:53.2; 6. Kyle Brandt, Way, 16:59.9; 7. Mitch Cramer, Osseo, 17:03.9; 8. Kevin Dado, TG, 17:06.8; 9. Keaton Long, DE, 17:08; 10. Josh Halverson, Way, 17:11.7.

Girls 4K


1. Forest Lake, 35; 2. St. Michael-Albertville, 82; 3. Duluth East, 90; 4. Totino-Grace, 137; 5. Osseo, 178; 6. South St. Paul, 199; 7. Grand Rapids, 216; 8. Visitation, 221; 9. Blake, 266; 10. Chisago Lakes Area, 278.


1. Rachel King, STMA, 15:03.3; 2. Emma Benner, FL, 15:11.2; 3. Lizzy Heil, STMA, 15:43.3; 4. Rhianna Rinke, North Branch, 15:45.4; 5. Caroline Schoessow, FL, 15:48.8; 6. Allison Bartlett, FL, 15:50.5; 7. Anja Maijala, Clo, 15:50.9; 8. Regan Duffy, FL, 15:59.6; 9. Maggie Louiselle, TG, 16:05.3; 10. Phoebe Koski, DE, 16:05.9.


Boys 5K


1. Glencoe-Silver Lake, 106 (won sixth-man tiebreak); 2. Holy Family Catholic, 106; 3. Mora, 111; 4. Holdingford, 152; 5. Lake City, 177 (won sixth-man tiebreak); 6. Minnehaha Academy, 177; 7. Trinity School at River Ridge, 205; 8. Proctor, 270; 9. Belle Plaine, 272; 10. Norwood-Young America, 326.


1. Ephraim Bird, MA, 16:26.9; 2. Andrew Zachman, Hold, 16:33; 3. Mike Destache, St. Paul Academy and Summit, 16:35.4; 4. Timmy Heikkila, Northwestern, 16:40.1; 5. Carl Kozlowski, LC, 16:56.6; 6. Danny Mahota, HFC, 16:57.7; 7. Brandon Books, Chetek-Weyerhaeuser, 17:00.6; 8. Abe Skwira, Hold, 17:03.4; 9. Danny Radtke, Mesabi East, 17:03.8; 10. Noah Moravec, Mora, 17:04.8.

Girls 4K


1. Trinity School at River Ridge, 48; 2. St. Paul Academy and Summit School, 116; 3. Holdingford, 167; 4. Belle Plaine, 191; 5. Lake City, 199; 6. Norwood-Young America, 212; 7. Northwestern, 225; 8. Esko, 263; 9. Minnehaha Academy, 305; 10. Pine City, 324.


1. Theresa Mueller, Trinity, 15:47.8; 2. Mary Naas, SPA, 15:56.6; 3. Janessa Meuleners, BP, 16:09.3; 4. Kailee Kiminski, Esko, 16:21.8; 5. Erika Fox, Carlton, 16:23.1; 6. Hannah Bettendorf, Proctor, 16:23.2; 7. Annika Voss, Proctor, 16:30.5; 8. Grace Ennis, Trinity, 16:33.8; 9. Lotus Schifsky, Trinity, 16:36.4; 10. Judy Larson, NYA, 16:39.7.