Summit skiers sweep ‘home’ meet |

Summit skiers sweep ‘home’ meet

summit daily news
Summit County, Colorado
Summit Daily/Mark Fox

COPPER MOUNTAIN – Even though her team was technically playing host Friday at Copper Mountain, Summit High junior skier Hannah Price didn’t think of the seven-team alpine ski race as a true home meet.

“We’ve only skied Copper once this year, and it was last Saturday,” Price said. “We’re focusing more on Keystone this year, because (the state meet) is there.”

Regardless, the Tigers looked right at home on Copper’s Bittersweet run.

With both Price and senior Doug McIsaac leading the way for the girls’ and boys’ squads, respectively, Summit earned a clean sweep in the meet.

“We had a great day overall,” SHS head coach David Ellena said. “(We) gained some confidence and are looking to build on this next week at Eldora.”

The resolve of his team was another thing Ellena was pleased with in the race. On a tricky, slippery slope at Copper, racers from all teams had a difficult time completing their two slalom runs without a fall. A large number of racers either crashed or missed gates.

Summit wasn’t immune to that, but the Tiger skiers showed determination by hiking back up the course to complete missed gates, allowing them to post a score to help their team.

“We had some falls today for boys and girls, and we still had good finishes because they went back up the hill to finish out,” Ellena said.

For Price, hiking wasn’t needed.

“The first run, the course was really hard,” she said. “It was set really tight and cutting across the hill. Everyone was having to fight for it.”

And that’s what she did. Price “held it together” on her first run for a time of 44.57 and then bombed the course in 40.7 on Run 2.

Price wound up third overall in the race, her best finish of the young season. Her finish helped the girls’ squad finish two points ahead of runner-up Middle Park High School, the defending state champion.

For Price, she couldn’t have picked a better time to do it.

“It’s my birthday,” said Price, who turned 17 Friday.

” … It’s probably one of the best birthday presents I could get. It’s kind of a self-present, but it’s really nice.”

Price’s teammates also had good days.

Haley Gage finished one spot behind Price in the standings, and Shelbee Wood was in seventh.

Maybe most impressive was Miranda Sheely, who after falling and hiking on Run 1, rebounded to post the third fastest single-run time of the day at 37.17. She finished 11th.

Katherine Werckman (14th), Stefanie Walters (15th) and Ellie Hartman (16th) all earned state qualifying finishes by ending up in the top-17 in the race.

“We had a full team together, and we showed we had some depth,” Ellena said of the girls.

With four skiers in the top-10, the boys’ team finished a slim five points above second-place Nederland High School.

McIsaac, with a combined two-run time of 1:12.32, finished third overall in his first race of the season.

“We had a really solid day today,” the senior said of his team. ” … I think we’re looking a lot better than we thought we’d be – exceeding expectations right now.”

Ian Parker in fourth was next for the Tigers.

To Ellena, the standout performance from the boys’ side came from Tiger skier Matthias Krainz. After a first run time of 26.13, Krainz looked poised to win the race, but a slight slip on Run 2 caused him to miss a gate. Not one to give up, Krainz hiked back up the slope and still finished the run in 42.82. He wound up in seventh place.

“He finished second in our first race in Steamboat (Springs),” Elena said. “And what he did today really shows just how good of a skier he is. To have to hike and still finish seventh was really good.”

Grant Peterson (ninth), Ridge Strickler (16th) and Matthew Goldstein (16th) all finished inside the top-20 to earn state-qualifying finishes.

The Tigers are back on the hill for a competition at Eldora next Friday, and Price feels that her team still has a lot more to prove – especially if they can keep from falling.

“I was impressed with our team,” she said. “If we can do well on the first run next time and not have to hike, instead of making it up on the second run, we’ll be really good.”

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