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Skiers battle weather: State meet threw a bit of everything at competitors

Posted: Sunday, February 27, 2011

After getting off to a slow start on Thursday, Kenai Peninsula skiers came back with some solid performances Friday and Saturday at the state ski meet in Fairbanks.

Eric Engman/News-Miner
Eric Engman/News-Miner
Soldotna anchor leg skier Bree Mucha goes hard out of the exchange zone after being tagged by teammate Jordann Nelson, not pictured, during the state ski meet Saturday at the Birch Hill Recreation Area in Fairbanks.

Soldotna's Bree Mucha led the Peninsula in Friday's freestyle mass starts. In the 7.5-kilometer girls event, Mucha finished 10th with a time of 28 minutes, 20 seconds. The winner of the race was Chugiak's Kinsey Loan in 26:36.

"She was definitely happy," said Kenai Central ski coach D'Anna Gibson, who also is Bree's mother. "She's just flying on cloud nine. The top-10 finish is definitely something she wanted to do."

With the finish, Mucha also boosted her standing in the skimeister rankings. Her two-day time of 47:18 was good for 14th place. West Valley's Hannah Boyer won the skimeister title at 44:25.

Skiers faced different, challenging conditions throughout the state meet. Thursday featured cold, slow snow. On Friday, snowfall the night before the race meant the conditions were a little soft. Then frigid temperatures set in on Fairbanks for Saturday's relay race.

"It was all those conditions, plus the wind blew debris just everywhere so that kind of changed the consistency of the trail, too," Soldotna coach Dan Harbison said. "I have to hand it to the Fairbanks groomers, they were able to get it up to race conditions every day.

"They must have been working 24 hours per day to get that to happen."

Soldotna was the top girls team from the Peninsula, finishing ninth. Chugiak won the team title.

The Stars, with Mucha joined by D.Anne Martin, Maranda Merkes and Jordann Nelson, also were ninth in Saturday's 4-by-3-kilometer relay. That relay was won by Chugiak.

On Friday, Merkes finished 32nd in the freestyle mass start, while Martin was 38th. Merkes was 31st in the skimeister rankings, while Martin was 34th.

Kenai Central's Michelle Klaben was right in that mix, finishing 33rd on Friday and 35th in the skimeister. Gibson said Klaben hit her goal of finishing in the 30s.

Klaben, along with Taylor Ostrander, Olivia Fair and Olivia Pfeifer, finished 11th in Saturday's relay. Kenai finished 12th in the team standings.

"The girls were looking for 10th in the relay and they ended up 11th but they beat Grace," Gibson said. "Their other goal was to be ahead of Grace."

The Skyview girls were led by Tamlyn Silva, who was 65th on Friday and 70th in the skimeister rankings. Silva, Elisha Hollers, Catherine Wolk and Chelsea Winter finished 16th in the relay.

The top skier for the Homer girls was Marie Schmidt, who was 37th on Friday and 56th in the skimeister. Schmidt, Alaine Miller, Mady Gerard and Cassidy Soistman were 15th in Saturday's relay.

The Homer boys had the Peninsula's best performance on Saturday, finishing sixth in the 4-by-5 relay. Service won the event and the team title, while Homer was seventh in the team race. Homer's relay was made up of Parker Sorensen, Kevin Rowe, Brian Rowe and Andre Lovett.

Homer also led the Peninsula in Friday's 10-kilometer freestyle race. Lovett was 23rd in 33:15, while Lathrop's Logan Hanneman won in 30:16. Brian Rowe was 30th while Sorensen was 31st.

Hanneman won the skimeister standings, while Lovett was 30th, Sorensen was 31st and Brian Rowe was 35th.

"Yesterday and today, they had awesome races," Skyview coach Kent Peterson said of the Mariners. "It's good to see because they only have one senior on that team."

The Kenai boys popped a solid 11th in the relay. The team was made up of Evan Atchley, Tyler Cooper, Fox Michaud and James Watkins. Kenai was 15th in the team standings.

"We finished ahead of SoHi in the relay, so we were pleased with that," Gibson said.

The coach also said James Watkins hit his goal of finishing in the 30s by taking 38th in the skimeister and 34th in Friday's race.

The Soldotna team of Luke Michael, Joseph Rife, Dillon Jensen and IntiMayo Harbison was 13th in the relay and 13th in the team standings.

Michael finished 37th in Friday's race and 37th in the skimeister. Harbison said Jensen had great races each day, and so did freshman Colton Diehl.

The Skyview boys team of Kade Cooper, Sam Werthmuller, Leif Danielson and Brayden Holt was 17th in the relay and 16th in the team standings.

Holt led the Panthers with a 32nd on Friday and a 39th in the skimeister. Peterson said Holt was happy to finish ahead of Michael in Friday's race. Overall, though, he said a lot of his team was dealing with some sickness, keeping them from optimum performance.

State ski meet

GIRLS

Final team rankings

1. Chugiak, 3 hours, 51 minutes, 37 seconds; 2. South, 3:53:30; 3. Service, 4:00:06; 4. Dimond, 4:00:55; 5. West Valley, 4:04:16; 6. West Anchorage, 4:08:08; 7. Lathrop, 4:10:37; 8. East, 4:15:24; 9. Soldotna, 4:19:53; 10. Eagle River, 4:27:50; 11. Grace Christian, 4:31:13; 12. Kenai Central, 4:39:23; 13. Colony, 4:43:04; 14. Palmer, 4:44:42; 15. Homer, 4:47:37; 16. Skyview, 4:55:26; 17. Bartlett, 5:26:34.

Saturday's relay

1. Chugiak, 46:56; 2. South, 47:03; 3. Dimond, 48:37; 4. Service, 48:50; 5. West, 50:21; 6. West Valley, 50:29; 7. Lathrop, 50:36; 8. East, 51:54; 9. Soldotna (D.Anne Martin, Maranda Merkes, Jordann Nelson, Bree Mucha), 52:47; 10. Eagle River, 53:23; 11. Kenai Central (Taylor Ostrander, Olivia Fair, Olivia Pfeifer, Michelle Klaben), 54:06; 12. Grace, 56:10; 13. Palmer, 56:39; 14. Colony, 57:19; 15. Homer (Alaine Miller, Mady Gerard, Cassidy Soistman, Marie Schmidt), 58:14; 16. Skyview (Elisha Hollers, Catherine Wolk, Chelsea Winter, Tamlyn Silva), 1:00:03; 17. Bartlett, 1:07:56.

Friday's 7.5-kilometer freestyle mass start

1. Kinsey Loan, Chu, 26:36; 2. Annie Liotta, Wes, 26:43; 3 (tie). Marion Woods, Dim, Kryston McPhetres, 26:51; 5. Hannah Boyer, WV, 26:55; 6. Tristan Ramey, Sou, 27:29; 7. Teagan Yutrzenka, Sou, 27:33; 8. Sarissa Lammers, Chu, 27:34; 9. Megan Edic, Lat, 28:08; 10. Bree Mucha, Sol, 28:20.

Other peninsula finishers

32. Maranda Merkes, Sol, Sol, 30:58; 33. Michelle Klaben, Ken, 31:14; 37. Marie Schmidt, Hom, 31:37; 38. D.Anne Martin, Sol, 31:46; 44. MacKenzie Barnwell, Sew, 32:06; 64. Alaine Miller, Hom, 33:56; 65. Tamlyn Silva, Sky, 37:07; 66. Olivia Pfeifer, Ken, 34:08; 69. Taylor Ostrander, Ken, 34:22; 71. Mady Gerard, Hom, 34:27; 73. Jordann Nelson, Sol, 34:32; 75. Cassidy Soistman, Hom, 34:50; 80. Chelsea Winter, Sky, 35:42; 83. Elisha Hollers, Sky, 36:19; 85. Olivia Fair, Ken, 36:30; 86. Kristin Hynne, Sol, 36:38; 87. Emily Schmidt, Hom, 36:41; 88. Emily Schmidt, Hom, 36:41; 90. Catherine Wolk, Sky, 37:17; 93. Eve Ferguson, Ken, 38:10; 94. Katie Clonan, Sky, 38:34; 98. Katie Schmidt, Hom, 40:12; 100. Maren Pfenning, Sol, 41:00; 104. Brittany Hollers, Sky, 45:46.

Skimeister rankings

1. Hannah Boyer, WV, 44:25; 2. Marion Woods, Dim, 44:46; 3. Kinsey Loan, Chu, 44:51; 4. Kryston McPhetres, Chu, 45:06; 5. Annie Liotta, Wes, 45:26; 6. Teagan Yutrzenka, Sou, 45:54; 7. Tristan Ramey, Sou, 46:00; 8. Sarissa Lammers, Chu, 46:01; 9. Megan Edic, Lat, 46:19; 10. Karina Packer, Sou, 46:58.

Peninsula finishers

14. Bree Mucha, Sol, 47:18; 31. Maranda Merkes, Sol, 50:59; 34. D.Anne Martin, Sol, 52:03; 35. Michelle Klaben, Ken, 52:13; 48. Mackenzie Barnwell, Sew, 53:27; 56. Marie Schmidt, Hom, 54:34; 67. Taylor Ostrander, Ken, 56:19; 70. Tamlyn Silva, Sky, 56:41; 72. Alaine Miller, Hom, 57:01; 73. Olivia Pfeifer, Ken, 57:05; 75. Jordann Nelson, Sol, 58:17; 76. Mady Gerard, Hom, 58:18; 79. Kristin Hynne, Sol, 58:50; 80. Chelsea Winter, Sky, 58:50; 82. Cassidy Soistman, Hom, 59:28; 83. Olivia Fair, Ken, 59:37; 84. Elisha Hollers, Sky, 59:39; 86. Catherine Wolk, Sky, 1:00:12; 90. Vanessa Anderson, Ken, 1:01:40; 92. Emily Schmidt, Hom, 1:01:48; 94. Eve Ferguson, Ken, 1:02:14; 98. Katie Clonan, Sky, 1:05:14; 99. Maren Pfenning, Sol, 1:05:33; 102. Katie Schmidt, Hom, 1:07:08; 104. Brittany Hollers, Sky, 1:12:19.

BOYS

Final team rankings

1. Service, 4:43:43; 2. South, 4:49:30; 3. Chugiak, 4:50:23; 4. Lathrop, 4:53:28; 5. West Valley, 5:03:52; 6. West, 5:18:39; 7. Homer, 5:19:32; 8. East, 5:22:02; 9. Palmer, 5:22:45; 10. Eagle River, 5:26:01; 11. Colony, 5:33:46; 12. Dimond, 5:33:53; 13. Soldotna, 5:34:05; 14. Grace, 5:35:35; 15. Kenai Central, 5:39:30; 16. Skyview, 5:44:51; 17. Wasilla, 5:51:14; 18. Valdez, 5:51:21; 19. Bartlett, 5:57:28.

Saturday's relay

1. Service, 1:01:57; 2. Chugiak, 1:03:10; 3. South, 1:03:26; 4. Lathrop, 1:03:36; 5. West Valley, 1:07:27; 6. Homer (Parker Sorensen, Kevin Rowe, Brian Rowe, Andre Lovett), 1:09:25; 7. Palmer, 1:09:46; 8. West Anchorage, 1:09:47; 9. East, 1:10:39; 10. Eagle River, 1:11:17; 11. Kenai Central (Evan Atchley, Tyler Cooper, Fox Michaud, James Watkins), 1:12:17; 12. Colony, 1:12:19; 13. Soldotna (Luke Michael, Joseph Rife, Dillon Jensen, IntiMayo Harbison), 1:12:25; 14. Dimond, 1:12:56; 15. Grace, 1:14:23; 16. Valdez, 1:14:49; 17. Skyview (Kade Cooper, Sam Werthmuller, Leif Danielson, Brayden Holt), 1:15:10; 18. Wasilla, 1:17:24; 19. Bartlett, 1:18:50.

Friday's 10-kilometer freestyle mass start

1. Logan Hanneman, Lat, 30:16; 2. Forrest Mahlen, Sou, 30:20; 3. Peter Mamrol, Ser, 30:20; 4. Silas Talbot, Ser, 30:24; 5. Jack Novak, Sou, 30:32; 6. Vanya Rybkin, WV, 30:42; 7. Isaac Lammers, Chu, 30:52; 8. Kyle Hanson, Lat, 30:56; 9. Alex Loan, Chu, 31:56; 10. Austin Hess, Ser, 31:58.

Peninsula finishers

23. Andre Lovett, Hom, 33:15; 30. Brian Rowe, Hom, 33:55; 31. Parker Sorensen, Hom, 34:13; 32. Brayden Holt, Sky, 34:21; 34. James Watkins, Ken, 34:35; 37. Luke Michael, Sol, 34:54; 45. Dillon Jensen, Sol, 35:34; 49. Brett Chase, Sew, 36:05; 55. IntiMayo Harbison, Sol, 36:35; 60. Austin Gillespie, Sew, 36:57; 63. Kyle Wentz, Hom, 37:04; 69. Leif Danielson, Sky, 37:32; 75. Kevin Rowe, Hom, 37:53; 81. Evan Atchley, Ken, 38:19; 82. Fox Michaud, Ken, 38:33; 89. Kade Cooper, Sky, 39:09; 90. Joe Bressler, Ken, 39:20; 94. Colton Diehl, Sol, 39:52; 96. Joseph Rife, Sol, 39:59; 97. Olen Danielson, Sky, 40:37; 98. Sam Werthmuller, Sky, 41:14; 99. Tyler Cooper, Ken, 41:15; 101. Joey Bishop, Sky, 41:34; 109. Ben Gilman, Ken, 43:17; 112. Dan Adickes, Hom, 44:16; 113. Ehren Rickman, Sol, 44:51.

Skimeister rankings

1. Logan Hanneman, Lat, 53:12; 2. Silas Talbot, Ser, 53:50; 3. Peter Mamrol, Ser, 54:33; 4. Jack Novak, Sou, 54:53; 5. Vanya Rybkin, WV, 54:57; 6. Isaac Lammers, Chu, 55:03; 7. Forrest Mahlen, Sou, 55:28; 8. Kyle Hanson, Lat, 56:03; 9. Austin Hess, Ser, 56:30; 10. Alex Loan, Chu, 56:49.

Peninsula finishers

30. Andre Lovett, Hom, 1:01:03; 31. Parker Sorensen, Hom, 1:01:16; 35. Brian Rowe, Hom, 1:01:45; 37. Luke Michael, Sol, 1:01:50; 38. James Watkins, Ken, 1:02:09; 39. Brayden Holt, Sky, 1:02:40; 49. Dillon Jensen, Sol, 1:04:29; 56. IntiMayo Harbison, Sol, 1:05:03; 67. Evan Atchley, Ken, 1:06:39; 71. Kevin Rowe, Hom, 1:06:50; 72. Kyle Wentz, Hom, 1:06:57; 79. Kade Cooper, Sky, 1:07:41; 81. Brett Chase, Sew, 1:07:49; 83. Austin Gillespie, Sew, 1:08:02; 85. Leif Danielson, Sky, 1:08:09; 91. Fox Michaud, Ken, 1:09:46; 93. Joe Bressler, Ken, 1:10:05; 94. Joseph Rife, Sol, 1:10:23; 95. Colton Diehl, Sol, 1:10:28; 96. Tyler Cooper, Ken, 1:11:00; 97. Sam Werthmuller, Sky, 1:11:47; 99. Olen Danielson, Sky, 1:12:13; 102. Joey Bishop, Sky, 1:12:36; 107. Ben Gilman, Ken, 1:14:51; 108. Dan Adickes, Hom, 1:15:02; 111. Ehren Rickman, Sol, 1:18:05.



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