Local squads compete in ski state finals
By Christian Davis
C & G Staff Writer
Bloomfield Hills Andover’s JT Stewart heads down the hill in a recent ski competition. The state finals took place Feb. 25, and a handful of local teams and individuals had strong showings, including Stewart. He led the Barons to a second-place finish and was All-State in giant slalom.
The best ski teams in the state took to the slopes Feb. 25.
For each race, the teams competed in slalom in the morning and giant slalom in the afternoon. The combined scores determine the final standings.
Here’s a look at how the races played out, along with the local skiers who qualified for All-State honors. The top six in each race received first-team honors, and the next six were second team.
Division 1 girls at Boyne Mountain
Traverse City Central returned to the top of the standings and won a state title in the girls competition. The Trojans finished with 81 total points, winning their first championship since 2005. Central had been runner-up the previous five seasons.
Walled Lake Central was second with 92; Marquette High finished third with 113; and Bloomfield Hills Marian was fourth with 116.
Traverse City West (128), Rochester Adams (170), Fenton-Linden (203), Walled Lake Northern (273) and Brighton High (283) made up the rest of the field.
Marian was second after the slalom event, but finished fifth in the giant slalom for their overall fourth-place finish.
“In the afternoon, we had some great performances from our top racers, but we weren’t able to put it all together,” Marian coach Robert Rhodes said. “They did give it a good shot, though.”
Rhodes added that slalom has traditionally been the Mustangs’ best event.
“I think it’s the training and the technique in how we train them. I think we kind of key in on that event,” he said. “To me, you have to win slalom to win the big races. That’s how things stack up.”
Individually, Walled Lake Central’s Mallory Slicker won the giant slalom in 1 minute, 2.81 seconds.
Marian’s Haley Goeckel was seventh (1:04.65) and teammate Kathryn Streng was eighth (1:04.67).
Walled Lake Central’s Taylor Krumm placed 10th (1:05.01), while teammate Hannah Brassell was 12th (1:05.61).
In slalom, Traverse City West’s Monica Hessler won in 1:05.69. Slicker was fourth (1:09.03); Goeckel was sixth (1:10.57); Brassell (1:10.65) came in seventh; Streng (1:12.59) finished in eighth place and Rochester Adams’ Lauren Henry (1:13.56) was 10th.
Division 1 boys at Boyne Mountain
After finishing second last season, Marquette reclaimed the title, winning its first since 2009.
The Redmen finished with 57 points. Defending champion Clarkston High was second with 74, and Traverse City Central placed third with 95.
Traverse City West (127), Lake Orion High (143), Okemos High (237), South Lyon High (240), Grand Blanc High (271) and Brighton High (279) made up the rest of the field.
White Lake Lakeland’s Taylor Janssen won the giant slalom 1:00.16.
Birmingham Brother Rice’s Robbie Cort qualified for the final as an individual and placed eighth (1:00.71).
In slalom, Traverse City West’s Fiinley Clark won the event with a 1:04.29.
Walled Lake Northern’s John Merchant was second with 1:04.32 and Cort finished fifth (1:06.58).
Division 2 girls at Marquette Mountain
Petoskey High won the title after finishing second last season.
Harbor Springs High was second with 91.5 and Bloomfield Hills Andover finished third with 99.
Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (111.5), Cadillac High (174), Maple City Glen Lake (185), Elk Rapids/Traverse City St. Francis (192), Bloomfield Hills Lahser (250.5) and Grand Rapids Northview (254.5) made up the rest of the field.
In giant slalom, Elk Rapids/Traverse City St. Francis’ Carlee McCardel was first with 1:02.24.
Andover’s Jean Klochko-Bull finished third (1:03.79); Lahser’s Jordan Paige was fifth (1:04.05); and Prep’s Rachel Dawson was eighth (1:04.58).
In slalom, Kingsford High’s Mandy Haferkorn was tops with 1:24.20.
Klochko-Bull placed fifth (1:27.39); Andover’s Sammy Swiss was eighth (1:29.79); Dawson was ninth (1:29.81); Andover’s Elli Thomas was 11th (1:30.65) and Prep’s Caroline Grubbs was 12th (1:31.46).
Andover was the top team in slalom, but finished fourth in giant slalom.
“I was very pleased with their performances,” Andover coach Rob Brown said. “They finished and did their best.”
Division 2 boys at Marquette Mountain
Petoskey dominated its way to the title, winning the slalom and giant slalom handedly for a total of 39 points.
Andover came in second with 119 and Houghton/Hancock was third with 129.
Cadillac (160), Clare High (191), Maple City Glen Lake (193.5), Spring Lake High (197), Grand Rapids Christian (205.5) and Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood (218) also competed.
Petoskey’s Gunner Lundteigen won the giant slalom with a time of 59.76.
Andover’s JT Stewart was the only local All-State finisher, placing third (1:00.23).
In slalom, Lundteigen was again champion, finishing with 1:19.22.
Stewart finished in third place (1:20.03), while Cranbrook’s Gregory Aikens placed 11th (1:25.29).