Football

North Branch secured their first win of the season last Friday, collecting a 29-9 victory over the visiting Proctor Rails.

After North Branch jumped out to a 6-0 lead midway through the first quarter, Proctor cut the lead in half with a field goal on their first possession of the second half. However, the Vikings countered with a drive of their own, culminating on a fortunate bounce on a pass to the endzone that found its way into Gavyn Jensen-Schneider’s hands. The ensuing two-point conversion made the score 14-3.

A second touchdown pass of the game extended the lead to 22-3 early in the fourth quarter. North Branch would then pounce on a Proctor fumble on the 4-yard line, with the Vikings again scoring on the next play to make the score 29-3. 

It was on the extra point where a little history was made as Viking girls soccer goalie Emma Mohs entered the game as North Branch’s new kicker, scoring the extra point with ease.

A late Proctor touchdown concluded the scoring to make the 29-9 final.

Boys soccer

The Vikings collected a couple very satisfying wins last week – both coming in the form of shutouts.

The first victim was Cambridge-Isanti on Thursday, Sept. 5, where the Vikings collected a 2-0 victory. Both goals were scored by Isaac Johnson in the second half.

Two days later, the Vikings survived a nail-biter as North Branch topped Zimmerman 1-0. After Harrison Toussaint scored the lone goal of the game in the first half, the Viking defense came up big to preserve the win. Included in that defensive stand was a pair of key late-game saves by goalie Tanner Bollman.

Girls soccer

The Vikings had an up-and-down week, losing a lopsided game to Cambridge-Isanti 5-1, but sandwiching that loss with a pair of their own lopsided wins by scores of 5-1 against Richfield and 5-0 over Zimmerman. 

In the Richfield game Tuesday, Sept. 3, the Vikings spotted the Spartans a 1-0 lead in the first minute of the game, but responded with five unanswered goals to earn the win.

Against Zimmerman, Lilly Johnson and Sylvia Linkert each scored a pair of goals, with Paige Bauer adding the fifth. Meanwhile, goalie Emma Mohs, fresh off her debut for the football team the night before, had an easy time collecting the shutout win.

Volleyball

The Vikings collected a pair of easy, 3-0 wins last week, topping rivals Forest Lake and St. Francis.

The match against Forest Lake has turned into quite the friendly rivalry as both teams have taken to cheering each other on during the state tournament the previous two seasons. As such, the matches have also been close contests. However, Forest Lake is in a down year this year, so the #1 Class AA ranked Vikings made short work of the Rangers on Tuesday, Sept. 3 by scores of 25-10,25-21,26-24.

Two days later, North Branch topped St. Francis 25-18,25-22,25-14. For the two matches combined, senior Cianna Selbitschka had 29 kills, with four other players evenly spreading the wealth for the remaining attack points. 

Girls tennis

The Vikings saw action only once last week, hosting neighboring Cambridge-Isanti on Thursday, Sept. 5. The visiting Jackets came away with a 6-1 victory despite some tough play by North Branch.

The lone win for North Branch came at first doubles as the team of Sophie Smith and Hollie Ohnsorg overcame a 6-0 first-set loss to take the next two sets 6-4.

Cross country

For their first race of the season, the Vikings made the short trip to Pine City on Thursday, Sept. 5. The girls team finished in sixth place, while the boys team only ran three in the varsity race, so they weren’t eligible for a team placing.

For the girls, Alexia Russell had the top finish, coming in 20th with a time of 22:27.00. Alex Dick was the top finisher for the boys team, coming in 33rd.

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