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The Park boys' cross-country team earned a top-half finish at the Rum River Invitational in Anoka on Thursday, Sept. 14. Park finished eighth out of 18 cross-country teams at the meet, hosted by Anoka High School. Justus Robinson finished in 37th place with a 5-kilometer time of 18 minutes, 28 seconds to lead the Wolfpack runners. Eighth-grader Parker Hahn was less than 10 seconds behind him, finishing 42nd with a time of 18:35
The Woodbury boys' soccer team is undefeated this season against teams not named East Ridge. The Royals finished 2-1 last week, with wins against Mounds View and North St. Paul. The only blemish of the season, however, came in a 5-0 loss to East Ridge on Sept. 12. After winning the first two games of the season, the Royals faltered for the first time this season against a state-ranked opponent.
The Academy Force football team made a late push in its home opener against St. Paul Johnson at East Ridge High School on Friday, Sept. 15. Although the three fourth-quarter touchdowns were not enough to come all the way back in the 46-32 loss, the Force were able to erase part of what was a 24-point deficit midway through the fourth quarter. St. Paul Johnson led 25-7 at halftime after a first half that included a 97-yard touchdown run by D'mearies Brooks. Academy Force's only first-half touchdown came from running back Sam Bissen on a 1-yard rush.
The East Ridge girls' tennis team had a dominant day in its home tournament on Saturday, Sept. 16. The Raptors finished first as a team as each individual singles player or doubles team finished third place or higher in their flight. Woodbury finished third after tying Champlin Park in team points but losing the tiebreaker on head-to-head wins. First place finishers from East Ridge included Regan Dolezal and Julia Travis at first doubles, and Megan Karrow at first singles.
The East Ridge football team is headed into its homecoming week with a 2-1 record after pulling away from White Bear Lake in a 31-15 road victory Friday, Sept. 15. Quarterback Riley Tuckner led the Raptors with three touchdown passes. He threw a 58-yard touchdown pass to Payton Johnson in the first quarter, followed by a 41-yard strike to Ty Johnson for seven points in the third quarter and an 8-yard touchdown pass to Ethan Curtis in the fourth. Tuckner also rushed for a 1-yard touchdown in the first quarter.
There is a big difference between the wins that the East Ridge boys' soccer team has earned this season and its two losses. The Raptors' two losses this season have come in a 3-2 overtime game to Minneapolis Washburn on Thursday, Aug. 31, and 4-1 on Saturday, Sept. 16, against Wayzata. Outside of those two games against state-ranked teams, East Ridge is 5-0 this season. The Raptors finished 1-1 last week, defeating Woodbury 5-0 on Tuesday, Sept. 12, and also losing against Wayzata.
The script was similar for the Woodbury football team on Friday to those in the first two games of the season. The Royals had their opportunities, but they fell one possession short in a 34-27 loss to Cretin-Derham Hall at Woodbury High School. After losses of 22-20 to Farmington and 25-22 to Roseville, it was another disappointment for the Royals.
Park cross-country and track and field coach Brad Narveson has been working with Wolfpack runners for more than a decade. But after undergoing heart surgery in late August, he will not have the chance to coach cross-country this fall. Instead, he will spend the next few months recovering.
Tiffany Holiday had an accomplished cross-country season last fall as a freshman. But until last week, she had never won a varsity cross-country race. Holiday crossed the finish line of the 5-kilometer race with a time of 19 minutes, 50 seconds for the first win of her career at the Dewey Minnaert cross-country meet Thursday, Sept. 7, at St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park. The first-place time gave her a 10-second gap between the second-place finisher, Red Wing's Grace Johnson who finished just over the 20-minute mark.
Practices are just a little bit easier when you have an experienced tennis team. With eight seniors listed on the varsity roster, this is one of the advantages the East Ridge girls' tennis team has this season. East Ridge head coach Jon Rydberg said practices have been smooth with the influx of seniors on one of the Suburban East Conference's most experienced teams. With most of the Raptors being varsity veterans, the team has been able to focus on more advanced drills than in other years.