DULUTH— Warm conditions vexed Ely as the boys ski team slipped in team competition to Duluth East and Cloquet-Esko-Carlton and the girls fell to Duluth East here on Tuesday. “We had a …
DULUTH— Warm conditions vexed Ely as the boys ski team slipped in team competition to Duluth East and Cloquet-Esko-Carlton and the girls fell to Duluth East here on Tuesday.
“We had a rough day,” said Ely Head Coach Paula Anderson. “It was HOT and Ely kids had a hard time adapting. Plus, we struggled with the classic ski waxing, which wasn’t a fun experience for our skiers.”
The conditions didn’t prevent Ely standout senior Jasper Johnston from topping the boys field in the mixed classic and freestyle competition, held at Duluth’s Snowflake Ski Center. Johnston finished the 3.5 km classic portion in 10:22, two seconds ahead of senior Benjamin Bauer of C-E-C. But Johnston led Bauer by a full 20 seconds in the 4.5 km freestyle competition to take the overall by a comfortable 22 seconds, with a time of 22:03.
Jon Hakala had a strong outing for Ely as well, finishing sixth with a time of 24:14, while Gabe Pointer finished eighth with a time of 24:30. Micah Larson finished in 17th with a time of 26:04.
For the girls, sophomore Zoe Devine again led the Ely squad, finishing in third place with a combined time of 26:49.
“Zoe had a rough classic race but came back strong in the skate race,” said Anderson.
Sophomore Phoebe Helms took eighth with a time of 28:26, while freshman Ava Skustad finished at 16th, with a time of 29:41.
The Wolves weren’t helped by the strong competition they faced from Duluth East. “Duluth East is definitely back on form with many, many strong skiers,” said Anderson. “They went through a bit of a dip over the last few years but they are full force once again and are the team to beat in Section 7, for both boys and girls.”
Ely next heads to sectional competition at Giants Ridge, next Wednesday, March 3. Two teams and six individuals will advance to the state meet from each section. The state Nordic ski meet is set for Friday, March 12, also at Giants Ridge.