Wisconsin State High School Championships Recap

by John Burke
February 13, 2011
The Wisconsin State High School Championships took place this weekend in Wausau at the Nine Mile Recreation Area. The host Wausau East and West teams took full advantage of their home course winning the Boys team title and the Girls individual champion.

Ashlee Marshall started out the day showing her strength in the classic technique and bolting to a 24 second advantage that she basically maintained over her next closest competitor, Nicolette Amber of Northwestern HS, in the freestyle event. Felicia Gesior, Peak Nordic, Nichole Bathe, Verona HS, and Olivia Amber, Northwestern rounded out the top 5 for the girls.

The Girls team title was won by Hayward using their team depth despite not having a top five finisher. Chelsea Tremblay (7th), Jenny Parr (10th), and Katie Burger (11th) were the scoring trio to bring home the title for the Hurricanes. Peak Nordic took second and Wausau West took third to round out the team podium.

The Boys individual title was expected to be a tightly contested race, but Kevin Bolger of Lakeland put in a strong classic leg and held the lead all the way through the freestyle race to bring home the title. Adam Martin and Matt Nichols of Wausau East/West have traded spots all year in their races and this day was no different. Adam had the better classic leg while Matt was able to use a faster freestyle leg to place second in the overall pursuit. Adam was close behind in third. Dylan McGarthwaite of Hayward skied consistently in both the classic and skate legs to finish fourth.

One the strength of the 2-3 finish by the Nichols and Martin and the added strong finish by Mark Hugus in 5th propelled the Wausau East/West Boys team to their second straight team championship with 10 points. The Hayward boys had 5 finishers in the top 17 spots for 27 points to claim 2nd and Ashwaubenon rounded out the podium in 3rd place.

The State Meet was the largest in the history of the competition with 431 registered skiers taking part in both the High School and Middle School ranks. The meet was the second year it was held in Wausau as the event will now move to Minocqua Winter Park next year.