SoHi’s Boonstra, Kenai’s Fallon lead teams to Kardinal Klassic victories

Soldotna’s Tania Boonstra and Kenai Central’s Greg Fallon led their respective teams to Kardinal Klassic team victories Friday at Tsalteshi Trails just outside of Soldotna.

Boonstra won the 6-kilometer girls race in 19 minutes, 32 seconds, as the Stars put four in the top seven to win with a team time of 1:22:35. Colony was next at 1:28:50, while Kenai was third at 1:29:19, Seward was fourth at 1:47:12 and Grace Christian was fifth at 1:51:15.

Fallon won the 6-kilometer boys race in 16:37 as the Kardinals had the top three finishers and four of the top seven. Kenai won with a team time of 1:07:56, while SoHi was second at 1:12:13, Colony was third at 1:12:54, Homer was fourth at 1:16:13 and Grace was fifth at 1:30:15.

The Seward Invitational was also scheduled to be held at Tsalteshi as a 5-kilometer freestyle interval start Saturday, but that race was canceled due to cold temperatures.

Boonstra and teammate Ariana Cannava, who was second at 19:51, took control of the girls race early and skied together until Boonstra took the lead on the final uphill.

Cannava said her favorite part of the race was being able to ski with Boonstra nearly the whole time.

“It’s amazing to have someone to push me all the time,” Cannava said. “She makes me faster.”

With temperatures breaking into the single digits Friday, kick underneath the classic skis was easier to come by.

“It was a little too cold for me, but there was good kick and that made it not too hard,” Boonstra said.

Also in the top 10 for the Stars were Kathryn Cox in sixth at 21:35 and Kara Veihdeffer in seventh at 21:35.

Colony put three in the top 10 — Elliot Sensabaugh in third at 20:17, Adriana Ramirez in ninth at 21:56 and Breeze Buchanan in 10th at 23:17.

Isla Crouse led Kenai in fourth at 20:31, while Emily Moss was fifth at 21:30. Homer’s Daisy MossWalker was eighth in 21:50, while Katie Van Buskirk led Seward in 22nd at 25:07.

In the boys race, Fallon also was grateful for the teammates that push him on a daily basis. Jack Laker was second at 16:43, while Chase Laker was third at 16:53 and Zane Tews was seventh at 17:41.

“It’s really fun pushing each other at practice,” Fallon said. “We all make each other better. And it makes our team a lot better.”

Fallon is a standout runner for Kenai’s cross-country and track teams, and he used that to his advantage Friday.

“I really like classic races,” Fallon said. “I like them a lot better than skate.

“I feel like running transfers over to classic a lot better. It’s a lot more cardio for me.”

Jody Goodrich led Homer in fourth at 17:04, while Colony got a fifth from Weston Sensabaugh at 17:15 and a 10th from Tobias Buchanan at 18:04.

Soldotna got top 10s from Michael Davidson in sixth at 17:37 and Levi Mickelson in ninth at 17:56, while Grace’s Colton Merriner was eighth at 17:53. Ronan Bickling led Seward in 24th at 22:41.

Kardinal Klassic

Friday at Tsalteshi Trails


Team times: 1. Soldotna, 1 hour, 22 minutes, 35 seconds; 2. Colony, 1:28:50; 3. Kenai, 1:29:19; 4. Seward, 1:47:12; 5. Grace Christian, 1:51:15.

6-kilometer classic mass start results

1. Tania Boonstra, Sol, 19:32; 2. Ariana Cannava, Sol, 19:51; 3. Elliot Sensabaugh, Col, 20:17; 4. Isla Crouse, Ken, 20:31; 5. Emily Moss, Ken, 21:30; 6. Kathryn Cox, Sol, 21:35; 7. Kara Veihdeffer, Sol, 21:35; 8. Daisy MossWalker, Hom, 21:50; 9. Adriana Ramirez, Col, 21:56; 10. Breeze Buchanan, Col, 23:17; 11. Aubrey Virgin, Col, 23:18; 12. Alexis Schultz, Col, 23:20; 13. Teresa Fallon, Ken, 23:27; 14. Cassidy Carroll, Hom, 23:30; 15. Fox Coyle, Ken, 23:50; 16. Syndey Mondeel, Gra, 23:50; 17. Mya Taylor, Ken, 24:05; 18. Leanna Gordon, Sol, 24:16; 19. Sophia Kristich, Col, 24:29; 20. Avery Ciufo, Sol, 24:38; 21. Cate Marriner, Gra, 24:45; 22. Katie Van Buskirk, Sew, 25:07; 23. Emily Taylor, Ken, 25:45; 24. Indigo Leslie, Sew, 26:00; 25. Danika Winslow, Sol, 27:32.

26. Hailey Ingalls, Sew, 27:40; 27. Mckenna Black, Hom, 28:03; 28. Maren Bickling, Sew, 28:23; 29. Chelsea Eldridge, Gra, 28:57; 30. Grace Russel, Sew, 29:56; 31. Zara Chang, Gra, 33:40.


Team times: 1. Kenai, 1:07:56; 2. Soldotna, 1:12:13; 3. Colony, 1:12:54; 4. Homer, 1:16:13; 5. Grace Christian, 1:30:15.

6-kilometer classic mass start results

1. Greg Fallon, Ken, 16:37; 2. Jack Laker, Ken, 16:43; 3. Chase Laker, Ken, 16:53; 4. Jody Goodrich, Hom, 17:04; 5. Weston Sensabaugh, Col, 17:15; 6. Michael Davidson, Sol, 17:37; 7. Zane Tews, Ken, 17:41; 8. Colton Merriner, Gra, 17:53; 9. Levi Mickelson, Sol, 17:56; 10. Tobias Buchanan, Col, 18:04; 11. Noble Cassidy, Sol, 18:11; 12. Johannes Bynagle, Hom, 18:17; 13. Parker Richards, Sol, 18:27; 14. Isaac Kristich, Col, 18:40; 15. Chandon Lutz, Col, 18:55; 16. Logan Cartwright, Ken, 18:56; 17. Rockwell Bates, Hom, 19:46; 18. Levi Strong, Ken, 20:44; 19. Owen Smith, Ken, 20:48; 20. Caleb Wohlers, Sol, 20:49; 21. Nels Dahl, Sol, 20:53; 22. Tait Ostrom, Hom, 21:04; 23. London Ramirez, Col, 22:31; 24. Ronan Bickling, Sew, 22:41; 25. Andrew Pound, Gra, 22:48.

26. Grant Eldridge, Gra, 23:25; 27. Marty Fink, Sew, 25:52; 28. Cooper Martin, Gra, 26:08.

Soldotna’s Ariana Cannava and Tania Boonstra lead the pack at the Kardinal Klassic on Friday, Jan. 26, 2024, at Tsalteshi Trails just outside of Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Soldotna’s Ariana Cannava and Tania Boonstra lead the pack at the Kardinal Klassic on Friday, Jan. 26, 2024, at Tsalteshi Trails just outside of Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)