The 2022 Border Battle held on Saturday, September 24, might sound like just another cross country meet, but it was a big deal. It was the first time over 1000 athletes from across North and South Dakota, Minnesota, and Manitoba, Canada, converged on Grand Forks to crown the most dominant runners and regions that surround the Red River of the North.
The aroma of tacos, doughnuts, and other gourmet grub emanated from food trucks and mingled in the air with frisbies and familiar running tunes like Jay Z’s “Run this Town” and Springsteen’s “Born to Run”. It was just like a festival, but with a finish line. Milbank runners did themselves proud!
The varsity boys and girls teams each brought home a second-place finish. Ashlynn Batchelor and Payton Brown each also placed second in their respective varsity divisions.
Varsity Boys 5K Race Milbank’s varsity boys took second place behind the team from Bowman County that entered five of the top-ten runners. Individually, Milbank’s Payton Brown, a junior, wedged in at No.2 with the second best time of the day of 16:30.3.James Batchelor (11) clocked in at 17:20.9 for 13th place. Bryan Meyer (10) took 16th at 17:32.4. Isaac Graham (11) came in at 18:17.52 for 37th place. Liam Keller (8), 43rd place at 18:27.5; Beckham Berry (8), 57th at 18:59.0; and Grant Van Peursem (11), 85th at 19:44.9.
The first 10 schools in the team standings included: (1) Bowman County (2) Milbank (3) Kindred (4) Greenway Nashwauk Keewatin; (5) Hollingford (6) Ottertail Central (7) Lac qui Parle-Dawson-Boyd; (8) Rugby (9) West Central Area (10) Wadena-Deer Creek
The South Dakota team made up of six Milbank Bulldogs and one runner from Roncalli took third place in the Border Battle race. North Dakota was first and Minnesota took second.
Varsity Girls 5K Race The Lady Bulldogs earned second place behind Rugby, North Dakota. Rugby accounted for four of the top-10 runners. Individually, Milbank’s Ashlynn Batchelor (9) won second-place honors at 19:22.21. Brynn Hanson from Des Lacs Burlington-Lewis and Clark took first place at 19:05.18.
Lady Bulldog Leah Meyer (9) crossed the line in 21st place with a time of 21:01.98.Maurina Street (12) took 26th with her time of 21:08.11. Bianca Berry (7), 30th at 21:33.33; Kynlee Speidel (11), 37th at 21:53.41; Ellie Neugebauer (12), 45th at 22:12.18; and Tyra Berry (10), 49th at 22:16.30.
The first 11 schools in the team standings included: (1) Rugby (2) Milbank (3) Bowman County (4) Wadena-Deer Creek (5) Kindred (6) Lac qui Parle Valley-Greenway-Dawson-Boyd (7) Killdeer (8) Greenway-Nashwauk-Keewatin (9) Hatton Northwood (10) Pembina County North (11) Long Prairie-Grey Eagle.
The Milbank girls plus one runner from Roncalli formed the South Dakota team. They took third in the Border Battle. North Dakota was first and Minnesota was second.
JV Boys 5K In the JV boys’ 5K race, the top teams were: (1) Williston (2) Red River and (3) Moorhead. Jack Howard was only runner from Milbank. He took 99th with his time of 20:46.50. In the Border Battle race, North Dakota came in first and Minnesota was second. South Dakota did not field a team.
JV Girls 5K In the JV girls’ 5K race, Milbank came in at eighth place. Stella Wendland was the first Lady Bulldog to finish. She received 23rd place. Aubrey Weisbeck of Mandan won the race with her time of 21:15.13.
The top-10 schools included: (1) Rugby (2) Williston (3) Shanley (4) Red River (5) Moorhead (6) Fargo North (7) Horace (8) Milbank (9) Devil’s Lake and (10) Detroit Lakes.
Lady Bulldog finishes included: Stella Wendland (11), 23rd place at 22:50.63; Elexia Quintanilla (9), 31st place at 23:18.96; Ashlynn O’Farrell (12), 45th place 23:56.54; Yanderyn Olivares (9), 81st place at 25:32.19; Sophia Gastineau (11), 85th place at 25:47.86; Jaclyn Wiik (11), 93rd place at 26:00.87; Camryn Sovell (9), 120th place at 27:25.43; Addie Farrell (12) 131st place at 28:28.50; and Jaiden Tillotsen (9), 170th place at 36:41.80.
The all-Milbank South Dakota team came in third in the Border Battle Race. North Dakota was first and Minnesota was second.
8th-Grade Girls 3K Race In the eighth-grade girls’ 3K race, West Central took first place and Moorhead took second. Jocelynne Hoefs of Red River, North Dakota was the winning runner with her time of 11:44.23. Macy Mueller, the top runner from Milbank, came in at 13:30.02 to take 10th place. Zayda Townsend was just behind her at 13:32.81 for a 14th-place finish. Ava Sichmeller came across the line at 15:06.36 for 41st place, and Reese Schuneman secured 56th place at 14:40.38.
North Dakota was first in the Border Battle race and Minnesota took second. South Dakota did not field a team.
7th-Grade Boys 3K Race Rylan Wendland of Milbank took 38th place for the Bulldogs in the seventh-grade 3K race. His time was 12:22.65. Travis Frise of Williston was the winner at 10:31.66.The top three teams were Century, Williston and Moorhead.
7th Grade Girls 3K Race Lady Bulldog Raina Untalan took 24th place in the seventh-grade girls’ 3K race. She clocked in at 13:50.43. Bree Townsend earned 65th place with her time of 16:26.91. The top schools included: (1) Shanley of Fargo (2) Moorhead (3) Fargo North and (4) Riverside Christian.
The South Dakota team, made up of three runners from Aberdeen Roncalli and Untalan and B. Townsend of Milbank, captured third place. North Dakota was first and Minnesota took second.