Pair lead Muskie charge at meet

Joey Payeur

The future is now for the Muskie track-and-field team.
Head coach John Dutton got an eyeful of the vast potential his squad should carry forward for years to come after they garnered 28 medals at the Junior High Bronco Booster Invite at Falls High School on Friday.
“I was really pleased with the team and proud of all the athletes,” said Dutton, who threw the younger Muskies into the fire at the season-opening Bronco Booster Invite varsity meet April 14 against competitors ranging up to Grade 12.
“It was great to see how well they could perform in an ‘age group’ situation,” he noted.
“Everybody stepped up today,” Dutton added. “There were lots of best performances and the result was a number of first places and many top-three finishes.
“It should be a great confidence-builder for a very young and inexperienced team.”
Fort High captured second place overall in the women’s 8th & 9th Grade division with 127.5 points, trailing only the host Broncos (213).
The Muskies also landed in third place in the girls’ 7th Grade category with 76 points–just behind runner-up Northome/Kelliher/Blackduck (78).
The Broncos topped the division (98).
It also was a noteworthy day for the Muskies in the boys’ 8th & 9th Grade division, who wound up tied for third with Bigfork at 70 points.
The Falls (154) and Eveleth-Gilbert (87) finished 1-2.
Grace Petsnick led the black-and-gold charge with four individual medals, including three golds–although she wasn’t exactly the most willing of participants.
Wanting to save her energy for the following day, when she was to take part in the Lake of the Woods Judo Championships in Kenora, Petsnick had to be cajoled by her assistant coach and persistent mother, Angela, into signing up for some of Friday’s events.
The rest of the field would have preferred she had sat out as originally planned.
Petsnick was tops in the girls’ Grade 8-9 100m (14.65 seconds), 200m (30.65), and high jump (4’8″) while also earning silver in the long jump (12’5.75″).
She also anchored one of the two Muskie teams in the girls’ 4x200m relay, leading the rest of the quartet of Angie Redford, Tori Toriseva, and Katrina Slomke to gold in a time of 2:06.98.
The other Muskie crew in the event–featuring Jill Calder, Alacea Yerxa, Samantha Hammond, and anchor Kamryn Sandelovich–took the bronze (2:11.26).
When it came to comebacks and courage, nobody wearing an ‘M’ on their chest could outdo Kianna Antonick on Friday.
The Grade 7 athlete missed all three of her high jump attempts during the season-opening varsity meet in the Falls the previous week and was left in teary-eyed frustration.
She then was struck with a puck on the top of her foot during 3-on-3 hockey at the Ice For Kids Arena that had her in a walking boot for several days.
Determined to not let the injury stop her, Antonick proceeded to put the boot to the field in the 400m with a golden run of 1:15.76.
It also led a Muskie sweep of the top four positions in the race, with Emma Toriseva getting silver (1:21.09), Jayla Krawchuk nabbing bronze (1:23.00), and Ava Dolyny landing in fourth (1:25.34).
Antonick didn’t stop there–getting silver in the 200m (33.00) and then claiming bronze in the girls’ high jump (3’8″).
Dolyny was the silver-medalist in that latter event, clearing 3’10” to come in behind only Malori Burmeister of Northome/Kelliher/Blackduck (4′).
Antonick also ran the lead leg of the Muskies’ 4x400m relay squad, along with Jayla and Cassie Krawchuk and anchor Emma Toriseva, that notched silver (5:34.59) behind International Falls (5:15.02).
Greta Fedoruk secured two individual medals Friday and nearly had a third–except for an unintentional error.
Fedoruk was unbeatable in taking gold in the girls’ 8th and 9th Grade 800m with a clocking of 2:55.57 to edge silver medal-winning teammate Grace Kowal (2:57.10), then picked up silver behind Petsnick in the 100m (14.89).
She seemed to have won the 400m by a landslide, as well, but changed lanes during the race.
That’s a no-no for any running event under 800m–something Fedoruk didn’t know beforehand and which led to her disqualification.
But she was able to latch onto a fourth medal, running the lead leg ahead of Toriseva, Petsnick, and Ashlyn Beck, in the girls’ 4x800m relay that yielded a silver for the Muskies (11:13.97).
Carson Noga, meanwhile, was a double gold winner in the boys’ 8th and 9th Grade 100m (12.86) and 400m (1:04.50).
Sean Huziak was victorious in the boys’ 8th and 9th Grade discus–recording a distance of 119’2″ to beat runner-up Ben Heinle of Bigfork by almost 22.5 feet.
Huziak also threw well enough in shot put to hang in for the bronze (36’10”).
Muskie teammate Aaron Schiebler took silver in that event (38’8″).
Sandelovich backed up her relay work with a silver in the 200m (30.76) behind Petsnick and a bronze in the high jump (4’2″).
Ben Olsen was in a class by himself in the boys’ 8th and 9th Grade high jump, surviving one test after another long after his opposition had fallen by the wayside.
In the end, Olsen topped out at a gold medal-winning height of 5’2″.
Other bronze medalists for the Muskies included Redford in the girls’ 8th and 9th Grade 300m hurdles (1:04.45), Cassie Krawchuk in the girls’ 7th Grade 100m (16.32), and Beck in the girls’ 8th and 9th Grade 1,600m (6:19.20).
Beck beat Kowal in a mad dash to the finish that saw Kowal settle for fourth by a mere .3 of a second (6:19.23).
Calder’s best individual result was in the girls’ 8th and 9th 200m (31.94) while Tori Toriseva’s top individual result was fifth in the girls’ 8th and 9th Grade 400m (1:17.58).
Taking sixth place was Emily Harp in the girls’ 7th Grade 400m (1:31.96), as did Aurora Hutton and Katrina Slomke, who tied in the girls’ 8th and 9th Grade high jump (3’10”).
Alacea Yerxa dashed to seventh in the girls’ 8th and 9th Grade 200m (34.19) while Morgan Vanderaa was ninth in girls’ Grade 8-9 shot put (23’10”), followed by Samantha Hammond in 11th (19’10”).
The Muskies’ entire squad was originally slated to be in the Falls yesterday for another varsity meet.
But Dutton made the decision late Monday that, due to the risk of injury possible from the wet and cold conditions present in the area, that he was pulling the team from the meet whether it ended up going ahead or not.
Fort High next travels to Dryden for a two-day meet hosted by the Eagles on May 12-13.