Pierz was right in the thick of things in both team races at Tuesday’s Section 7A true team meet in Pillager, with the Pioneers boys taking second and the girls finishing third.
Moose Lake-Willow River won the boys competition with 369 points, with Pierz placing second with 327.
Pierz was in a neck-and-neck battle for the runner-up spot in the girls competition, finishing just 3.5 back of Pillager with 339 points, while Mesabi East (381) placed first.
Junior Robbie Skiba picked up a sizeable chunk of those points for the Pierz boys, capturing first place in the 400-meter (52.13), second place in the 110 hurdles (16.71) and the 300 hurdles (42.41) and fourth place in the long jump (18-feet, 10.5-inches).
The Pioneers also received wins in the field from sophomore Jonny Kasper in the high jump (5-feet, 10-inches) and sophomore Karl Kohler in the triple jump (39-feet, 10-inches).
Senior Chris Ortman was the runner-up in the high jump (5-feet, 10-inches), with third-place finishes for Pierz coming from senior Tyler Millner in the 100 (11.85), the 200 (24.07) and the 300 hurdles (42.68), senior Curtis Brisk in the shot put (42-feet, 2-inches), the 4×200 relay team of freshman Christopher Marshik, sophomore Jordan Boser, Ortman and Kohler (1:40.33) and the 4×400 relay team of Ortman, junior Kyle Becker, eighth-grader Vitaly Dahmen and Kohler (3:50.81).
Adding a fourth-place finish was seventh-grader Jake Andres in the 3,200 (11:25.42).
Senior Bridget Bednar helped lead the Pioneers girls by winning the high jump (5-feet), second in the 100 hurdles (18.56) and third in the long jump (15-feet, 6-inches), while freshman Taryn Becker won the triple jump (32-feet, 9.5-inches) and took third in the 100 hurdles (18.76) and fifth in the 300 hurdles (53.95).
Junior Raychel Virnig added a runner-up throw of 101-feet, 9-inches in the discus and placed fifth in the shot put (29-feet, 10-inches).
Adding a third-place finish was the 4×200 relay team of sophomore Marissa Bauer, Bednar, junior Macy Hennen and eighth-grader Chelsie Kurtz (2:01.82), with fourth-place marks turned in by senior Gabriella Kroska in the long jump (15-feet, 0.75-inches), Kurtz in the high jump (4-feet, 8-inches) and the 4×400 relay team of juniors Tyler Dembouski and Beth Oldakowski, freshman Tori Fleischhacker and Kroska (4:40.29)
Pierz boys, girls both finish in top five at Pillager Invite
Pierz also competed in the John Reimer Invite in Pillager, May 1, where the Pioneers boys took third and the girls earned fifth.
Taking first for the Pierz boys were Skiba in the 400 (52.63), Millner in the 300 hurdles (42.62) and Brisk in the shot put (43-feet, 0.5-inches), with Bednar clearing 5-foot-2 inches to win the high jump in the girls competition.