HUNTER, N.Y. – After a long season of delays and cancellations, the Yorktown ski team made the most of its trip to Hunter Mountain for the Section 1 championships on Feb. 11.
A total of 11 Yorktown skiers earned a trip to Hunter with six girls and five boys earning all-league honors to advance to sectionals. The Yorktown girls competing at Hunter included senior captains Gillian Rosh and Lauren Manning, along with Marlee Georger, Emma Georger, Olivia Cicinelli and Vanessa VanTongeren. For the Husker boys, it was senior captain Thomas Donatelli, Matt Ryan, Sam Arno, Mike Ryan and Kevin Terhune.
“My racers overall performance this season was great and I couldn’t be more proud of them,” Yorktown coach Wendy Nufer said. “After losing nine boys and seven girls to graduation or injuries, this year we had a much younger and smaller team, with several athletes who were fairly new to the sport of skiing. This year’s scheduling and weather complications meant that we really had to plan well and budget our time efficiently. It was a real challenge, and yet my athletes stayed focused and steady, and they all made some incredible improvements this season.”
At Hunter, it was Matt Ryan leading the way with an impressive performance as he earned a trip to compete in the state championships as a member of the Section 1 team. Ryan was fourth overall in the skimeister standings as he finished fourth in both the slalom and giant slalom events. He started the day in the giant slalom with a time of 26.69 on his first run and 26.57 on his second. On the slalom course he turned in times of 30.13 and 31.32.
Donatelli suffered a fall on his first run of the day in giant slalom, but bounced back with three strong runs. In the afternoon slalom races he finished with times of 32.98 and 32.32 as he improved with each run.
Leading the way for the Yorktown girls was Rosh as she was consistent on all four runs. In the morning she turned in times of 33.07 and 33.43 on the slalom course, and in the afternoon she flew down the mountain with times of 30.46 and 31.44 in the giant slalom. Fellow senior captain Manning also had a good day in the giant slalom with times of 31.73 and 31.15 as she turned in four strong runs overall.
“As a junior, Matt Ryan was extremely pleased to finally make the state team, after having nearly qualified for the past two years,” Nufer said of Ryan. “His performance at sectionals was flawless — picture-perfect. Both his slalom and giant slalom runs were incredible, but his giant slalom technique looked like a World Cup racer on Thursday morning.”
“Our three seniors captains, Gillian Rosh, Lauren Manning, and Thomas Donatelli, are all three-year all-league athletes who have been on the varsity team for four years,” Nufer added. “They have worked incredibly hard and have really helped the team and we wish them well.”
Ryan will compete with the Section 1 team at the New York State Championships on Feb. 22-23, at Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid.