Grand Haven ski team sends two to state finals

Tribune Staff • Feb 12, 2019 at 12:30 AM

The Grand Haven and Holland Black River co-op ski teams competed at Monday's' Division 1 regional meet at Crystal Mountain.

The Grand Haven boys finished fourth overall as a team, while the Buccaneer girls finished seventh.

"The boys started out with giant slalom and skied really well," said Grand Haven head coach Anna Braymer. "The boys finished in fourth after the giant slalom, just 2.5 points behind third place.

"The boys knew they had to go all out in slalom in order to earn a spot for State Finals and, as ski races go, we know slalom brings along a whole lot of variables. It was so fun to watch the boys come up with a gameplan and tactic to finish strong.

"They all skied their hearts out, but in the end, we came in fourth. Our region is the toughest in the state. The top three teams — Traverse City Central, Traverse City West and Marquette — are the top three teams in the state at the Division 1 level."

Juniors Mitchel Bosgraaf and Jack Hardebeck both made the cut as individuals, with Bosgraaf qualifying in both the slalom and giant slalom and Hardebeck in the giant slalom.

The Grand Haven girls were led by sophomore Eden Nykamp (Holland Black River) in both the slalom and giant slalom, followed by freshman Kate Kendall, and seniors Sarah Walker, Allison Vantrepott and Lexi Horton. Selma Vestby also raced in the slalom, while Macayla Cramer skied in the giant slalom.

Nykamp came in fifth place in both races, narrowly missing qualifying for state finals by only one spot. The top four skiers from non-qualifying teams advance to the state finals.

"Overall, it was a great day for the Buccaneers," added Braymer. "It is fun to watch all of these hard-working athletes ski their hearts out, support each other, and give it their best for the team. Another highlight of our trip, besides competing, was meeting former World Cup racer, Marco Sullivan. He shared great advice to our student-athletes."

The ski teams will continue to practice to finish out the conference strong. Their next race will be Feb. 19 at Cannonsburg for a make-up varsity race.

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