Keystone and Frisco host high school state skiing championships
High school Nordic and Alpine skiers from across the state will take to the slopes and trails of Summit County this Thursday and Friday for the Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA) State Skiing Championships. Originally scheduled for Steamboat Springs, the competition was moved due to a scheduling conflict. Summit High School was scheduled to host state competition next winter.
Alpine races will be at Keystone Resort starting at 9:30 a.m. each morning, followed by Nordic races at the Frisco Nordic Center at 4 p.m. The competition kicks off Thursday with Alpine giant slalom followed by Nordic skate competition. Thursday’s Nordic races will be an individual race with athletes starting at intervals.
Friday will feature slalom in the morning and mass-start classic Nordic racing in the afternoon.
CHSAA awards team state championship accolades to the best combined results between Alpine and Nordic, with individuals also receiving state honors.
Summit High School will try to take full advantage of hosting championships with both the boys and girls teams once again looking like contenders.
The Summit girls will be out to defend their state title. The boys team finished third last year.
“It’s going to be awesome,” Summit Nordic skier Henry Trowbridge said after a practice run Wednesday. “When you get to sleep in your own bed the night before the competitions it brings an advantage to.”
The Nordic team also got a sneak peak at the course when they hosted a race at the Frisco Nordic Center for their final in-season competition.
Trowbridge said the European influenced nature of the course — with a number of tight turns and steep assents and descents — will also be an advantage for the Tiger skiers.
“For everybody on our team, it’s going to be awesome,” he explained. “It’s so technical.”
Trowbridge is the defending state Nordic skiing champion in classic. He came in second in skate in 2014, behind former teammate Cameron Bobb. This year he said he’s hoping to get both titles.
As for the overall titles, Nordic coach Jonathan Mocatta said both the girls and boys have the potential to contend.
“All the athletes are pumped up. They’re raring to go,” he said. “I think we have a great chance.”
For the Nordic boys Trowbridge and teammate’s Joel Sawyer and Derek Hill and Collin McGrew have been leading the charge all season with top podium finishes in a number of races, and will be eyeing some top results Thursday and Friday. The girls team’s Ezra Smith, Ruthie Boyd and Christa Gutzel will also be in contention for top finishes. All three are coming off strong seasons. Both Trowbridge and Smith won the regular season race on the Frisco Peninsula.
On the Alpine side, Ellie Brown-Wolf, Dani Moulton and Gisele Thompson all have multiple podium appearances and could contend for individual state wins. For the boys, Cameron Berget, Jack Farrell and Slav Uglyar each have top 10 finishes. The Alpine teams will have to contend with a strong Battle Mountain squad. The Husky boys have swept the podium on more than one occasion led by Sands Simonton. Battle Mountain’s Haley Frischholz, last year’s GS state champ, has also had a strong season for the Husky girls team.
The Tiger Alpine team will also have home field advantage with Keystone as their primary training ground. Summit last hosted states in 2010.
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