BILLINGS — Laurel's Levi Taylor and Billings Senior's Tiahna Vladic raced to victories at the season-opening Billings Invitational cross country meet at Amend Park on Friday.

Taylor crossed the finish line in 15:52.54. Porter Harman of Worland (Wyo.) was second in 16:07.74 and Sam Fulbright of Lewistown third in 16:20.58. Jonah Fisher of Helena was fourth in 16:20.96 and Owen Smith of Senior fifth in 16:30.74.

Taylor is the defending Class A state champion.

Vladic cruised to the girls' championship, winning by more than one minute. The Broncs senior had a time of 17:55.69, while Riley Smith of Cody (Wyo.) was second with 18:59.65. Laurel's Grace Timm placed third in 19:30.24.

Vladic was the State AA runner-up in 2017 and state champion in 2016.

Emberlyn Hoffman-Gaschk of Billings Skyview was fourth in 19:35.60 and Whitney Hanson of Colstrip fifth in 19:47.49.

Senior was the girls team champion on the strength of four runners in the top eight. Jaylyn Hallgrimson was sixth for the Broncs, while Elena Vandersloot was seventh and Jade Hallgrimson eighth. Senior finished with 54 points. Helena was second with 90 and Billings West third with 123. Hardin, the two-time defending State A champion, finished fourth with 123. West was third due to the tie-breaker, which is based on the best sixth place finisher for each team. 

Helena was the boys team champion with 102, Sheridan (Wyo.) second with 110 and Skyview third with 160.

The cross country season kicks into high gear this week with the Huntley Project Invite at 10 a.m. on Sept. 4, the Hardin Invite at 4 p.m. on Sept. 7 and the Bozeman Invite at 3 p.m. on Sept. 8.

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