HSF boarders riding success to nationals | TahoeDailyTribune.com

HSF boarders riding success to nationals

Chad Sellmer, Tribune staff writer

Heavenly Ski and Snowboard Foundation head coach Ed McClain feels this might be the best year ever for his team’s riders, as so many have gone on to enjoy success on bigger stages.

“We have 16 athletes advancing to nationals and three kids named to the junior nationals team,” said McClain, who is in his sixth year of coaching the HSF team. “We’ve had several athletes beginning to step up to pro contests, including Elena Hight, David Bosson, Ari Giovenco and Wesley Klahn. One of our alums, Jimi Tomer, took the bronze at the X Games. I would call this by far our most successful season both locally and nationally.”

McClain noted that the 13-year-old Hight, who traveled to Colorado with hopes of becoming the youngest female ever to compete in the X Games but received a concussion in an accident while practicing, is planning to compete at junior nationals March 24. The concussion suffered at the X Games was Hight’s third of the season and was expected to keep her sidelined for a while.

“She suffered three minor concussions within a month, so just as a precaution she took a break,” he said. “She has gone to see several specialists and she has been cleared with a clean bill of health.”

Some HSF athletes have very busy schedules this month.

“This week, Elena leaves for the Vans Triple Crown at Snow Summit (California) with Wesley and Dave from March 6-9,” McClain said. “At the same time, Ari is headed to Aspen, Colo., for Western Regionals. All four of them meet next week at Stratton, Vt., for the U.S. Open March 11-16 with four days in between for a break. Then basically they have a week off, but instead they are going straight out to Sunday River, Maine to begin training for nationals. Talk about March Madness! That’s quite a schedule for three 18- year-olds and one 13-year-old girl.”

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McClain says some HSF athletes to watch this year at nationals are the Bosson brothers (Dave and Ryan); Roger Carver; Greg Dupree, who won seven of 10 events this year; Hight; and Sammy Mason, the returning junior nationals champion in freestyle, Alpine and overall.

“We are peaking at just the right time as we’re headed to nationals,” McClain said. “Everybody is really excited. We have two more weeks and the conditions at the mountain are great for training.”

David Bosson, who qualified for his first appearance with the junior nationals team this year, will compete at nationals in halfpipe and slopestyle.

“It’s been good (riding with HSF),” Bosson said. “There hasn’t been a lot of snow, but everything’s been real good — the park, the riders. It’s like a close family because we spend so much time together. It’s a good team.”

Bosson is 18 years old and will compete in a new division at nationals.

“I went to open class this year, so it’s not like an age division,” he said. “So that’s new for me, but I should do pretty well.”

McClain said much of this year’s success has to be credited to the athletes themselves for their hard work and dedication, but he also credits the work of assistant coaches Travis Chatwin, Trevor Brown, Jonathon Hirschfield, Jimmy Halopoff and Nikki Warren.