Fort Kent girls take state alpine skiing crown
FORT KENT, Maine — High school athletes from Aroostook County dominated the Maine Class B state alpine ski championships with the Fort Kent girls racing to victory and Caribou boys bringing home their first title in nearly half a century.
The event consisted of slalom races at Lonesome Pine Trails in Fort Kent on Monday and giant slalom runs at Mars Hill on Tuesday.
Caribou coach Neal Sleeper said his team knew they had something special brewing with only two first-place podium misses at regular meets this year, but were not certain of capturing the championship crown.
“We had a really strong team this year right from the beginning of the season,” Sleeper said. “We were kind of confident but being a little bit reserved as far as waiting to see what kind of depth the other teams have.”
Sleeper said his team experienced a “sense of elation” at having brought the championship title to Caribou for the first time since 1974.
“I think the thought of winning it was really intriguing, but the reality of winning it was beyond our expectations as far as the excitement,” Sleeper said. “That they did it had a real sensation of community pride and school pride and realization that they were as good as everybody was hoping they would be; they were able to deliver.”
Fort Kent head coach Leslie Marquis praised her teams for their work ethic.
“When the weather wasn’t cooperating or we didn’t have enough snow we were training strength indoors at the gym. It was definitely a team effort,” Marquis said.
“We also are super proud of our neighbors to the south,” she added of the Caribou win.
The Warriors and Vikings train together at Lonesome Pine Trails in Fort Kent, about an hour’s drive north of Caribou.
Sleeper, in his eighth year as head coach, said the arrangement came about two years ago, and has had a positive impact on the Caribou skiers.
“None of this success would be possible without the partnership we formed with Fort Kent over the past couple of years, It’s upped our game and given our kids an unprecedented opportunity to be confident in doing what they do,” Sleeper said.
The Vikings coach noted the t-bar in operation at the Fort Kent ski hill in particular enhances training sessions for his athletes by allowing the athletes to get more ski runs in rather than eating up practice time with lengthy chair lift rides.
The top three girls teams with combined slalom and giant slalom scores are: Fort Kent Community High School, 1,486 points; Lake Region High School, 1,422 points; and Maranacook Community High School, 1,413 points.
The top three boys teams with combined slalom and giant slalom scores are: Caribou High School, 1,519 points; Cape Elizabeth High School, 1,479 points; and Fort Kent Community High School, 1,476 points.
The top 10 combined run individual results for Tuesday’s boys’ slalom races are: Logan Schwartz, Cape Elizabeth, 1:08.37; Thatcher Riley, Maranacook, 1:10.89; Max Bois, Fort Kent, 1:12.01; Edison Sleeper, Caribou, 1:12.06; Keegan Lathrop, Cape Elizabeth, 1:12.51; Jaden Picard, Caribou, 1:12.57; Elliot Sleeper, Caribou, 1:13.36; Zach Vogel, Lake Region, 1:13.39; Adam Ellis, Maranacook, 1:13.44; and Charlie Pye, Mt. Abram, 1:13.92.
The top 10 combined run individual results for Tuesday’s girls’ slalom races are: Jaden Boulanger, Mountain View, 1:20.52; Lily Belanger, Mountain View, 1:21.59; Breezy Quimby, Rangeley Lakes, 1:21.85; Shelby Theriault, Fort Kent, 1:22.20; Ashley Pelletier, Lake Region, 1:22.80; Anya Monson, Cape Elizabeth, 1:23.16; Amelia Stokes, Rangeley Lakes, 1:23.57; Ava Beaudin, Gray, 1:24.01; Phoebe Bell, Maranacook, 1:24.35; and Gabrielle Miner, Wells, 1:24.93.
The top 10 combined run individual results for Wednesday’s boys giant slalom races are: Logan Schwartz, Cape Elizabeth, 1:20.77; Max Bois, Fort Kent, 1:25.64; Keegan Lathrop, Cape Elizabeth, 1:25.82; Charlie Pye, Mt. Abram, 1:26.72; Killian Marsh, Yarmouth, 1:28.24; Zach Vogel, Lake Region, 1:28.65; Joshua Schupbach, Fort Fairfield, 1:29.53; Edison Sleeper, Caribou, 1:29.79; Fletcher Marquis, Fort Kent, 1:30.16; and Elliot Sleeper, Caribou, 1:30.34.
The top 10 combined run individual results for Wednesday’s girls giant slalom races are: Lily Boulanger, Mountain View, 1:28.01; Jaden Boulanger, Mountain View, 1:28.11; Anya Monson, Cape Elizabeth, 1:29.30; Brook Boone, Yarmouth, 1:29.65; Ashley Pelletier, Lake Region, 1:29.97; Breezy Quimby, Rangeley Lakes, 1:32.08; Ava Beaudin, Gray, 1:32.54; Gabrielle Miner, Wells, 1:32.76; Phoebe Bell, Maranacook, 1:33.27; and Amelia Stokes, Rangeley Lakes, 1:34.25.