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Katie Gieseke cuts through the snow during a meet for the Lakes Area Alpine ski team recently. (Contributed)

Lakes Area Alpine competes at Powder Ridge Ski Area

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The Lakes Area Alpine boys’ team took third place and the girls team tied for fourth place in a race at Powder Ridge Ski Area near Kimball on January 14.

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The boys’ finish was only two points away from second place Brainerd, with St. Cloud taking the top spot 18 points ahead of Lakes Area. Head coach Matthew Brunkow was happy with the improvement the team has shown against St. Cloud this season.

“It was our third race of the year against St. Cloud, and the margin of victory keeps getting smaller every race,” Brunkow said. “It shows that we are making progress every race.”

Individual finishers for Lakes Area included Andrew Backman in fourth place, James Backman in sixth, Alec Donnelly in 11th and Russell Lindahl in 12th.

For the Lakes Area girls, a fourth place tie with Westonka put them only eight points behind Annandale for third. Brainerd won the girls competition with St. Cloud taking second.

“[This was] Only our second race with enough girls to score as a team, so to be able to finish tied with one team and only eight behind another shows promise for the future of the program,” Brunkow said.

Katie Gieseke finished highest for the Lakes Area girls with a ninth place finish. Other results included Madison Neulieb in 16th place, Stormy Hegg in 19th and Georgia Lussenhop in 22nd.

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