Marquette Peaks in D1 Final

February 26, 2013

By John Raffel
Special to Second Half

BOYNE FALLS – Marquette is back as MHSAA Division I Boys Skiing champions after the Upper Peninsula school ended competition Monday with a combined score of 57 points to finish ahead of defending champion Clarkston’s 74 at Boyne Mountain.

The championship was the Redmen’s first since 2009 and eighth since skiing became an MHSAA-sponsored sport in 1975.

Marquette had a score of 34 in the slalom to match 2012 champion Clarkston. But Marquette was superior with a 23 in the giant slalom compared to 40 for Clarkston.

“I was proud of the boys,” said Marquette coach Marty Paulsen, who finished his third season running the program. “We scored well as a team. They all skied as a team and all knew what had to be done.

“It marks a pretty long tradition of skiing excellence and top skiing performances in the state,” he added. “It's great to be a part of that tradition.”

Taylor Janssen of White Lake Lakeland was the giant slalom individual champ while Finley Clark of Traverse City West took first place in the slalom.

Traverse City Central was third among teams at 95 points, Traverse City West fourth at 127 and Lake Orion fifth at 143. Okemos took sixth at 237 followed by South Lyon at 240, Grand Blanc at 271 and Brighton at 279.

Monday’s meet was Marquette’s finest performance this season, Paulsen said.  

Luke Johnson, Nick Weber and Matt Anderson paced the Marquette attack in the giant slalom by placing fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively. Dylan Larson scored a 14th place for Marquette. In the slalom, Nick Weber was eighth, Joe Weber 10th, Johnson 13th, Larson 15th, Anderson 23rd and Kyle King 36th.

 “We had good results in giant slalom at Regionals,” Paulsen said. “All three top teams – Traverse City West, Traverse City Central and Marquette struggled in slalom a little bit. At Regionals, Traverse City West pulled it out. They had a great slalom performance. So today, we were able to put together our giant slalom with our slalom.”

Lakeland’s Janssen was the giant slalom individual champ with runs of 29.77 and 30.39 for a combined championship time of 1:00.16. Derek VanItallie of Clarkston was second at 1:00.49.

Also in the GS, Loan Stetsko of Lakeland was third at 1:00.50 while Johnson, Weber and Anderson had combined times of 1:00.55, 1:00.60 and 1:00.61, respectively.

Seth Thompson of Fenton/Linden was seventh at 1:00.63, Robbie Cort of Birmingham Brother Rice eighth at 1:00.71, Clark, the slalom champ, finished ninth at 1:00.80, and Ryan Callahan of Clarkston 10th at 1:00.88.

Janssen's family has a place in the area and he considers Boyne as his home hill.

“I grew up on this hill so it's kind of nice to win it my senior year,” he said. “I was really happy with my results. It's my senior year and I'm trying to get it done. The results speak for themselves. I had a really good day and I was happy.”

Fifth in the slalom was Janssen's previous best finish at an MHSAA Final.

“I knew I was going to ski well today,” he added. “I took kind of a conservative first run and had not my best run. I kind of got angry after my first run and was in seventh. I went into my second run saying 'it's do or die here. I went in with complete confidence that whatever I do on this run will be my high school legacy. I went after it and it all worked out.”

Clark, a senior at Traverse City West, took first in the slalom with runs of 31.44 and 32.85 for a 1:04.29. John Merchant of Walled Lake Northern was second at 31.65 and 32.67 for 1:04.32, and Ryan Callahan of Clarkston was third in 32.28 and 32.96 for 1:05.34.

“Last year, I was going in and one of my skis popped off, and I was sitting second after the first round, Clark said. “I changed bindings in skis, and I matured a little more so I knew what I was doing a little bit more.”

Also in the slalom, Janssen, the GS champ, was fourth in 1:06.05, followed by Cort at 1:06.58,  VanItallie at 1:06.81, Kalvis Hornburg of TC Central at 1:07.49,  Nick Weber at 1:07.59, Alex McIntosh at 1:07.79 and Joe Weber at 1:07.86.

Click for full results. 

PHOTOS: (Top) Marquette celebrates its eighth MHSAA team championship. (Middle) Traverse City Central's Kurt Frick races down the mountain during Monday's competition. (Click to see more at

Galbraith Sets Pace as Petoskey Continues Magnificent Finals Run

By Jordan Puente
Special for

February 27, 2024

HARBOR SPRINGS — The Petoskey boys ski team remains in a class of its own.

Petoskey crushed the slopes at Nub’s Nob in Harbor Springs on Monday by collecting its fifth-straight Division 2 championship with a combined score of 68 points. Monday’s title run marks the program’s 12th D2 title in 13 years, and the Northmen show no signs of slowing down.

Coach Ben Crockett credited his entire coaching staff and parents for the team’s success since he began guiding the Northmen in 2019.

“The boys came together after a Regional event where we had some strong competition,” Crockett said. “When they realized it was a foregone conclusion they were going to win another state championship, they rallied and came together to execute a plan.”

Houghton’s Eli Heathman speeds down the hill on the way to winning the giant slalom.With Petoskey coming in first place, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s finished runner-up (102), and Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (134) finished third. Great North Alpine placed fourth (134), and Harbor Springs finished fifth with a team score of 155.

Northmen junior Gavin Galbraith finished with an individual title in the slalom and third-place finish in giant slalom.

Galbraith finished the slalom with a combined time of 1:08.53 and the giant slalom with a combined time of 50.85. Teammates Taylor Keiswetter and McClure Galbraith placed in the top 10 in the giant slalom.

Keiswetter finished fifth with a combined time of 50.98, and McClure placed eighth with a combined time of 52.21.

"It's great that all of my hard work has paid off this season. Thanks to all my coaches and the Nub's Nob staff," Gavin said.

Gavin’s journey to get to where he is today started freshman year when he was named the 16th skier on the varsity roster. After waiting for his turn, he didn't shy away from the moment.

Last season, Galbraith watched the Northmen capture the team title, and the junior sensation was motivated to continue that streak Monday.

"All my coaches and family have been pushing me to keep this streak going," he said. "If we didn't win today, it would've been a bummer. But we tried our best, and that's all that matters."

Houghton’s Eli Heathman won the giant slalom with a combined time of 50.09, followed by Cadillac’s Brady Koenig in 50.74 and Galbraith in third. Gaylord’s Keaton Abraham was fourth (50.96) and Pontiac Notre Dame Prep’s CJ Studt was fifth (50.98).

Onekama’s Braydon Sorenson finished runner-up in the slalom with a combined time of 1:09.07, East Grand Rapids' Quinn Irwin finished third (1:09.42), Harbor Springs’ Jackson Deegan finished fourth with a combined time of 1:10.10, and St. Mary’s Pierson Kuhn finished fifth with a combined time of 1:10.93.

Click for full results.

PHOTOS (Top) Petoskey’s Gavin Galbraith races to the Division 2 slalom championship Monday. (Middle) Houghton’s Eli Heathman speeds down the hill on the way to winning the giant slalom. (Photos by Sarah Shepherd. Click for all photos.)