MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Farmington features a formidable girls cross country team — and two of the Tiger’s top contenders come from the same family.

She’s finished first, second and third in the last three state cross country meets. To say that Anna Fenske is among the best is saying the obvious. And as she enters her junior year at Farmington once again a favorite for a state title, one of the biggest obstacles in her way is her little sister, Mariah.

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“I feel like having her being more experienced than me is like helpful because she can just teach me more, and just push me to be better,” said Mariah.

Anna and Mariah Fenske (credit: CBS)

She placed 19th in the state meet last year as only a seventh grader. There’s clearly good genes here, and it’s no surprise to find out both their parents were college runners.

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The sisters have been competing since kindergarten, and perhaps there’s no more fierce competition than with each other.

“It’s not like a bad competitiveness … it’s like a healthy competitiveness. And, I mean, we know when to stop, for the most part,” Anna said. “But it’s fun.”

Anyone would want their sister to do well. But if she does too well, that’s a problem — like when Mariah actually beat Anna earlier this spring in a race.

“I was super happy for her. And of course, after that race, I was like, ‘I never want that to happen again [laughs]!’” Anna said,

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Turns out it’s actually a good problem to have, because they push each other to be better.