South Tahoe Nordic ski team finishes season |

South Tahoe Nordic ski team finishes season

J.P. Kelsey
The 2016-2017 South Lake Tahoe High School Nordic ski team.
Courtesy / Mark Hoefer |

The South Lake Tahoe High School Nordic ski team completed its 2016-17 season at the California-Nevada Interscholastic Ski and Snowboard Federation State Classic last month.

The classic competition, hosted at the Auburn Ski Club, consisted of skiers taking on a hilly course that required two 2.6-kilometer laps. Overall, the boys team placed fourth out of six and the girls team placed fifth out of five in the competition.

“I think the athletes performed very well,” said Vikings head coach Mark Hoefer. “There are some really strong schools out there that basically ski out their back door. We do our best to compete with them.”

The Viking boys were able to achieve a total of 99 points at the competition to secure their spot ahead of Placer High School. It was the North Tahoe boys team that took first with their score of 27. Points are based on what place you finish, so lower scores mean a higher finish. South Tahoe’s Ryan Newberger was the top finisher for the Vikings, with his 22nd place out of 50 time of 13:14.8. Not far behind Newberger was Freeman Geroge, with a 24th place finish of 13:35.9. Christopher Hoefer finished, 26th, with 13: 46.4; David Holmes, 27th, with 13:50.8; Kyle Ferguson, 31st ,with 15:32.6; and Max Morgan, 32nd, with 15:33.1.

With a total of 33 points, Truckee High School took the top spot in the girls competition. South Tahoe’s Theresa Sandborn finished the competition 24th out of 42, with a time of 19:12.0. The Lady Vikings were able to come away with a total of 123 points. Moorea Davidson placed 30th, with 20:15.9; Nicole Morgan, 34th, with 21:47.0; Fabienne Ebner, 35th, with 21:53.6; Melanie Maher, 36th, with 21:55.6; and Briyona Ziegler, 38th, with 22:04.6. For the regular season, the South Tahoe boys finished fourth, while the girls finished sixth.

The team typically has six regular season events, but due to the winter weather that pounded northeast California this year, only two of the events commenced. Hoefer says that schools and venues are looking into scheduling alternatives to try and prevent a similar situation from occurring in the future.

To adjust the regular season standings, the league scored post-season, state events as regular season events.

Although the team didn’t get to compete as it normally does, Hoefer says he is pleased with how everyone performed.

“I could see some improvements, but I could definitely tell we were lacking time on the snow,” said Hoefer. “We hit it hard when we could.”

Hoefer said that the superfluous amounts of snow did have a benefit in that the team was able to train closer to home instead of always having to make the trip to their normal site at Kirkwood.

“We’ll start focusing on training and getting prepared for next season, and come about the first of November, that’s when we start things up and get ready to go,” said Hoefer.

Correction: The original version of this story indicated that the competition consisted of two, 2.6-kilometer laps. The competition actually had two racing events. Both boys and girls first completed a 3.5-kilometer classic race that had a mass start. A second, 4.5-kilometer skate race followed where start times were based on where the athlete placed in the first race. The finishing times for the second race changed overall standings for the state title. For the boys team, Christopher Hoefer finished 21st out of 50 with a time of 28:41.2; Freeman George, 23rd, with 28:53.6; and Ryan Newberger, 24th, with 29:12.2. For the girls, Theresa Sandborn finished 20th out of 41 with her time of 39:12.3; Moorea Davidson, 21st, with 39:22.8; and Nicole Morgan, 23rd, with 41:08.1.

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