By Lloyd Jones
CONWAY — The high school cross-country ski season wrapped with a number of Kennett High boys and girls turning in outstanding performances on the state and regional stage. Eleven Eagles suited up for the Eastern High School Championships.
Fryeburg Academy also had three girls in the championships.
"Kennett continues to show its strength in depth," said Steve Vosburgh, Eagles' head coach.
Andrew Doherty, Darren Piotrow, Aidan Hagerty and Wilder Byrne for KHS boys, and Zoe McKinney, Eilidh McKinnon, Nina Badger, Helen Badger; Ellory Kearns, Hannah Thelemarck and Riley Steward for KHS girls, were chosen to represent New Hampshire and ski in the Eastern High School Championships at the Mountain Top Inn and Resort in Chittenden, Vt., March 17-19.
Skiing for Maine were Raiders Emily Carty, Zoe Maguire and Irina Norkin.
They raced over three days against the top skiers from Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont and New York in individual races along with a team relay.
Team Vermont found the home snow to its liking and skied away with team honors with 16,283 points. New Hampshire was second with 12,903, while Mass. was third, 12,211, followed by Maine, 11,659, and New York, 6,346.
Racing action started on Mach 17, with a 5K freestyle (skate) race for the boys.
Elliot Ketchel of Warren, Vt., won the race in 12:24.6, topping a field of 112 skiers. He was joined on the podium by Scott Schultz of Lake Placid, N.Y., and Walker Bean of Montpelier, Vt., who finished second and third, respectively, in 12:27.2 and 12:31.7.
Doherty was 10th in the race in 13:06.6. He was the third Granite Stater to finish, coming in right behind Dublin's Calvin Bates, who was seventh in 12:58.6, and Gilford's Joshua Valentine, who was ninth in 13:02.8.
Hagerty was 40th in 14:03.3, while Piotrow finished 44th in 14:11.3, and Bryne, 95th, 15:31.7.
In the girls' 5K, Vermont swept the top five spots and took seven of the top 10 finishes. Rena Schwartz of Middlesex won the race in 14:35.8. She was joined on the podium by Norwich's Kirsten Miller and Burke's Alexandra Lawson, who finished second and third, respectively, in 14:39.9 and 14:45.9.
McKinney was 17th overall and the third skier from New Hampshire, finishing in 15:52.2.
Wolfeboro's Mary Kretchmer was eighth, 15:21.6, and Lilly Bates of Dublin took 12th in 15:32.4
Other KHS skiers were McKinnon, who was 34th, 16:51.4; Nina Badger, 38th, 16:57.3; Helen Badger, 48th, 17:17.1; Kearns, 58th, 17:39; and Thelemarck, 60th, 17:42.3; and Steward, 84th, 18:45.1.
Fryeburg was ledCarty, who was 43rd in 17:02.8, and teammate Maguire, who finished 94th in 19:46.7
On March 18, the racers put on their classical skis with a 7.5K race for the boys and the girls.
For the girls, Schwartz won the race by 15 seconds in 22:31.8. She was joined on the podium by Lawson and Kretchmer, who were second and third, respectively, in 22:46.8 and 23:03.5.
McKinney led the Eagles, placing 17th in the 100-skier field in 25:14.7. She was followed by McKinnon, 22nd, 25:37.4; Nina Badger, 29th, 26:08.6; Thelemarck, 32nd, 26:11.9; Helen Badger, 37th, 26:21.5; Steward, 71st, 28:28.5; and Kearns, 73rd, 28:38.7.
Carty was 54th, 27:35.9; and Norkin, 77th, 29:03.
The athletes had a busy day on March 18. Following the classical race they took part in 1.2K freestyle sprint races.
For the girls, Lawson took top honors in 2:48.9. Also on the podium were Kretchmer in second, 2:51.9, and Kirsten Miller of Vermont in third in 2:52.03.
McKinney was 22nd in 3:07.63, followed by McKinnon, 32nd, 3:14.04; Nina Badger, 51st, 3:19.53; Helen Badger, 57th, 3:20.4; Kearns, 67th, 3:25.81; Thelemarck, 84th, 3:35.0; and Steward, 96th, 3:42.76.
Carty again led the Fryeburg girls, finishing 46th in 3:17.70. She was followed by Norkin, 93rd, 3:41.81.
For the boys, also over 1.2K, Schultz won the race for New York in 2:18.79. He was joined on the podium by Greg Burt of Vermont, second, 2:20.89, and Bates of the Granite State, third, 2:21.89.
Doherty was eighth in 2:25.95, followed by Hagerty, 55th, 2:42.90; Piotrow, 56th, 2:42.91; and Byrne, 90th, 2:51.15.
The championships culminated on March 19 with a mixed 4X2.5K relay. There were 50 teams in the race.
Massachusetts No. 21 (Gabrielle Vandendries, Laura Appleby, Jacob Jampel and James Kitch) took first in 20:24.8
Vermont took the next four places.
Piotrow teamed with Mary Kretchmer, Lilly Bates and Calvin Bates on N.H. 11 to finish in eighth in 21:59.6.
McKinney, McKinnon and Doherty teamed with Joshua Valentine on N.H. 12, finishing 14th in 22:28.7.
Thelemarck was teamed with Hallie Chancey, Cameron Brochu and James Wilkes on N.H. 14, placing 15th in 22:30.2.
Helen Badger was on N.H. 15 with Leah Dutkewych, Nathaniel Nichols and Michael Geraldi, finishing 20th in 22:59.
Hagerty was on N.H. 16 with Sare Campbell, Caroline Fischer and Zachary Ennis, finishing 24th in 23:19.1.
Carty, on Maine 35 with Jennifer Wilbraham, Bennett Hight and Ben Alford, finished 28th, 23:41.
Kearns, on N.H. 20, with Alexandra Paluszek, Matt Manwaring and Samuel Seeley, was 39th, 24:44.1.
Norkin, on Maine 39 with Grace Andrews, David Roy and Cameron Bancroft was 42nd in 25:01.3.
Steward and Byrne teamed with Grace Cisler and Jake Willeman on N.H. 53 to finish 43rd in 25:01.3.
- Category: High School