Cape girls win Alpine ski crown
The Cape Elizabeth girls' Alpine ski team raced to a Class B state title last week, bringing the curtain down on the 2013-14 season in dramatic fashion.
The Capers rode a strong showing in the giant slalom and finished with 63 points to hold off perennial powerhouse Yarmouth (76).
In the GS, Cape Elizabeth had three of the top five finishers and six girls among the top nine (although only four scored).
Sophie Hewitt placed third with a two-run combined time of 1 minute, 42.48 seconds. Emma Landes was right behind in fourth position (1:42.68). Emma Dvorozniak finished fifth (1:46.39). Caroline Paclat (seventh, 1:47.24) also scored, while Kinnon McGrath (eighth, 1:47.26) and Sara Paclat (ninth, 1:47.59) would have scored for any other team.
The Capers weren't quite as strong in the slalom, but still had enough to win the title.
Dvorozniak led the way with a fifth-place showing (1:26.37). McGrath (eighth, 1:29.70) was also in the top 10. Sara Paclat (14th, 1:34.10) and Caroline Paclat (17th, 1:35.06) also scored.
Dvorozniak also had a strong showing in the skimeister standings (Alpine and Nordic results combined), placing fourth.
Cape Elizabeth finished fourth combined behind Yarmouth, Maranacook and Freeport.
"The girls performed exceptionally well in the giant slalom," said Capers coach Jeff Davis. "That gave us a a good buffer going into Saturday's slalom. We had a few mishaps on Saturday, including a (did not finish) and a (disqualification), but we had four girls finish, which was key to give us the scores we needed to win the championship.
"We knew from the beginning of the season that the girls had the potential to do very well at states. The fact that the girls skied so well was not a surprise. Last year, we suffered several injuries, so staying healthy this year was key. We also had two freshmen, Caroline Paclat and Kinnon McGrath, that added depth to our team this year. Sara Paclat, our lone senior, was a great leader all year. It was nice to see her go out on top as she was the only girl on the team her freshmen year."
The Capers boys were eighth among the eight scoring Alpine teams and finished sixth in the combined standings.
Cape Elizabeth was led by Lucas Dvorozniak, who was 18th in the GS (1:39.34) and 19th in the slalom (1:27.07). Jon Fiutak placed 18th in the slalom (1:26.64) and 41st in the GS (1:52.13). Gustav Sonesson finished 30th in the slalom (1:43.40) and 32nd in the GS (1:46.98). Gavin Cottrell scored 32nd in the slalom (1:46.36). Thomas Rioux finished 45th in the GS (2:00.78).
"Luke skied very well," Davis said. "He put together two solid runs in the giant slalom. In the slalom, both Luke and freshmen Jon Fiutak skied well. It was a good way to go out for Luke and a good sign for the boys' future with Jon's success."
In Class A, Scarborough's girls finished sixth and the boys 12th in the Alpine standings.
The Red Storm girls were led by Abby Mills, who was fifth in the GS (1:41.01) and ninth in the slalom (1:48.13).
Mills qualified for the Maine School Team Shootout where her total of 16 points sent her on to the Eastern High School championships at Attitash Ski Resort in New Hampshire Saturday and Sunday.
May Callahan was 24th in the GS (2:02.51) and 40th in the slalom (2:05.54). Megan Thibault finished 35th in the GS (2:14.63) and 45th in the slalom (2:07.52). Sophia Zidow was 45th in the GS (2:24.33) and 50th in the slalom (2:14.25).
The boys' team was paced by Marc Gurette, who was 19th in the slalom (1:43.44) and 27th in the GS (1:50.16). Wyatt Tanner placed 33rd in the slalom (2:01.21) and 39th in the GS (2:01.10). Jack Hughes placed 45th in the GS (2:02.79). Matthew Hodgkins finished 48th in the slalom (2:17.83) and was 61st in the GS (2:24.61).
Andrew Mills, who was projected to lead the Red Storm, had some bad luck along the way.
"Andrew had a strong run, being fifth after the first run in the giant slalom, only to boot out in a rut after nailing the headwall," said Scarborough coach David Mills. He had a stellar first run in the slalom race, ending in seventh place, only to run out of luck and gas on the second run."
Hodgkins finished second to Mt. Blue's Miles Pelletier in the skimeister standings.
"The highlight of the meet was Matt finishing second overall in the skimeister," David Mills said. "The season offered many challenges, with weather being the main factor. The state meet brought cold weather and bright sunlight at Shawnee Peak. The course held up well with a firm surface, which was perfect for safe racing. Abigail led the way (for the girls) and was supported by Sarah Hassler, Megan Thibault, Mae Callahan, Emma Crovo and Sophia Zidow to end in sixth place out of 13 schools. The (boys) ran into problems with the surface and finished lower than anticipated."