Vikings claim first at alpine opener |

Vikings claim first at alpine opener

Courtesy Harry Lefrak / Lefrak Photography Whittell skier Michael Gardner claimed first place among Class A girls at the Alpine Meadows race Thursday with an overall time of 1:09.91. See more photos from the race at

The Vikings and Warriors hit the slopes with top times to kick off the high school ski season.

The South Tahoe boys and girls teams both claimed first place overall at the Alpine Meadows opener Thursday hosted by Truckee High School. The lady Vikings boasted seven skiers in the top 20 with Annie Kate Genasci followed by Katie Sears leading the pack. The South Tahoe boys finished with six in the top 20, and Connor Mckeen took second place overall.

Whittell finished third among girls overall, and fifth among boys. The girls’ third place finish is especially impressive considering their small roster.

“For us not to have a fourth girl on the team, it’s hard to finish higher,” Whittell coach Patrick Kelly said. “We’re still looking for that fourth girl to help us get points. We have a couple girls who are injured, and we’re hoping they will come back mid year, but we just don’t know yet.”

Just three skiers deep, the lady Warriors snagged two top-five spots. Sophomore Michael Gardner led the way for the ladies with a smoking first-place finish overall (1:09.91) among Class A girls. She finished nearly a full second in front of her nearest competitor.

“Michael had two very good back-to-back runs. Her second run was a little bit faster than her first run,” Kelly said. “Between Michael and Danica Bunnett, we have two very solid racers. They both have been sking pretty much their whole lives. They just have really good technique and it makes it fun to watch.”

Danica Bunnett was not far behind Gardner, flying in at fourth place overall (1:11.76). Between the two Warriors was Hailey Perkins of Truckee in second (1:10.69) and Johanna Gur of North Tahoe in third (1:11.52).

The South Tahoe leading ladies were right on their heels.

Genasci snagged fifth (1:12.08), and Katie Sears sailed in at sixth (1:12.10).

The Vikings Kailey Killeen claimed ninth (1:15.13). Mikela Mangiaracin finished 11 (1:15.51), and teammate Natalie Allen was less than a second behind for 12 (1:15.66).

Abi Killebrew (16, 1:16.86), Cassidy McDonough (19, 1:1:18.39) and Teagan Grant (21, 1:21.67) rounded out the South Tahoe girls’ times.

The South Tahoe boys also turned in top results with Connor McKeen setting a blistering overall time of 1:04.62 for second place. Chad Kaassamani grabbed fourth (1:05.99), and Jake Krazczek turned in a seventh place overall (1:08.76)

Jason Elder (13, 1:09.82), Grant Fagen (14, 1:09.94), Connor Henderson (17, 1:11.30), Jared Lindner (21, 1:13.20) and Crewe Goralski (22, 1:14.18) completed the boys first-place team.

Senior Kody Dangtongdee held it down for the Whittell boys. He breezed into the top 10 among Class A boys at ninth place (1:09.37).

The Warrior boys were missing two of their top skiers Hughston Norton and Avery Laub, who were racing Far West and missed the opener.

“Our top skier is Hughston Norton hands down ,” Kelly said. “Since he’s been a freshman at Whittell he’s been one of the top racers in the league, and this being his senior year, we’re going to see big things.”

South Tahoe Girls – first place overall

Annie Kate Genasci 5 1:12:08

Katie Sears 6 1:12.10

Kailey Killeen 9 1:15.13

Mikela Mangiaracin 11 1:15.51

Natalie Allen 12 1:15.66

Abi Killebrew 16 1:16.86

Cassidy McDonough 19 1:1:18.39

Teagan Grant 21 1:21.67

South Tahoe Boys – first place overall

Connor McKeen 2 1:04.62

Chad Kaassamani 4 1:05.99

Jake Krazczek 7 1:08.76

Jason Elder 13 1:09.82

Grant Fagen 14 1:09.94

Connor Henderson 17 1:11.30

Jared Lindner 21 1:13.20

Crewe Goralski 22 1:14.18

Whittell Girls – third place overall

Michael Gardner 1 1:09.91

Danica Bunnett 4 1:11.76

Katherine Krolicki 20 1:19.99

Whittell Boys – fifth place overall

Kody Dangtongdee 9 1:09.37

Matt Davis 34 1:25.58

Logan Manchester 35 1:26.26

Gabe Rusk 39 1:30.68

Sean Noyes 40 1:32.16

Aubrey Felton 41 1:33.69

Hilton Atherton 42 1:48.33

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