MARQUETTE — The Marquette girls ski team won its first MHSAA team championship since 2009, pulling away in a close race Monday at familiar Marquette Mountain.
The Redettes scored 84 points to win the Division 1 championship and were followed by Bloomfield Hills Marian with 101 and Traverse City Central with 103. Central has finished runner-up the last two seasons.
Marquette sophomore Sadah Scheidt gained top honors in girls slalom with a time of 1:25.11, followed by senior teammate Hanna Johnson (1:29.88), Marian’s Olivia Weymouth (1:30.36) and Marquette’s Natalie Robinia (1:30.75).
“It was real windy at the top, but you had to have direction coming down,” said Scheidt, who will leave for Vail, Colo., on March 9 to compete in the Junior Olympics. “You needed to move forward at the top and bottom and just give it your all. Our team did super well. We really didn’t expect to do this well.”
Marquette coach Marty Paulsen said it was arguably his team’s strongest performance of the season. The Redettes took third in their Regional, but now own nine MHSAA championships.
“We know where the rolls and bumps are,” Scheidt said of competing on a local slope. “It’s real special to win it all here. Being from here and winning here is a great feeling.”
North Farmington/Harrison sophomore Amalie Perez finished first in the giant slalom in a time of 1:02.66. She was followed by South Lyon’s Anna Geyer (1:03.21), Weymouth (1:03.77) and Robinia (1:04.1).
Perez was the leader in both rounds of giant slalom, recording a 33.82 on her first run, followed by a 28.84 in the second.
“This was a real good experience,” said Perez, an exchange student from France. “I’m usually better in slalom, but I fell today. I just tried to relax and do my best in giant slalom and not worry about the wind.
“Coming to the United States has been a great experience. I’ve had a chance to meet new people and make new friends.”
PHOTOS: (Top) Marquette’s Sarah Scheidt skis the slalom course at Marquette Mountain on the way to a first-place finish. (Middle) North Farmington/Harrison’s Amalie Perez completes the giant slalom course; she finished first in that event. (Click for more from HighSchoolSportsScene.com.)
HARBOR SPRINGS — The Cadillac girls ski team knew it couldn’t sneak up on anyone at Monday’s Division 2 Final, and rose to the challenge.
Cadillac walked away from Nub's Nob Ski Area and Resort in Harbor Springs with its second championship in three years and fourth-straight top-three finish. The Vikings finished with a combined team score of 72. Harbor Springs finished runner-up with a combined team score of 91.
Mattawan and Paw Paw placed third (107), Bloomfield Hills Marian finished fourth (168) and Norway finished fifth (171).
"A couple of years ago, we snuck up and got a ski title, but this year, we had more of a target on our backs knowing we had a pretty good team to do something special," Cadillac head coach James Netzley said. "It was a little nervous feeling today because of the start."
Netzley said his skiers made it a goal to repeat what they did in 2022 after finishing third last year.
"We said last night that it was going to take a complete team effort if we wanted to do something special today," Netzley said. "That came true, and we relied on every kid on the team."
The Vikings started shaky at the slalom with a couple of falls, but in the end, several skiers pulled through. Senior Onalee Wallis led the Vikings with second-place finishes in the slalom and giant slalom. Wallis finished the slalom with a combined time of 1:12.63 and the giant slalom with a combined time of 51.67.
Wallis's teammate, senior Avery Meyer, finished third in the slalom with a combined time of 1:16.76. Great North Alpine's Grace Rowe finished fourth with a combined time of 1:17.46.
Rochester Adams' Katie Fodale finished third in the giant slalom (52.43), Meyer placed fourth (53.39), and Emma Borgula placed fifth in the giant slalom with a combined time of 53.97.
"They are pretty special kids," Netzley said about Meyer and Wallis. "Both have been first-team all-state for four years in a row, and gotten a top-10 finish since their freshmen year. Not many kids can do that by the time they come in as freshmen and cap off their senior year with outstanding performances."
Petoskey didn't have the outing it had hoped for, but senior Marley Spence stamped herself as one of the best high school athletes in the state after walking away with her fifth-straight D2 individual Finals medal after placing first in both the slalom and giant slalom. Spence finished the slalom with a combined time of 1:12.19 and giant slalom with a combined time of 51.17.
Northmen boys coach Ben Crockett, who leads the program alongside his sister and girls coach Jennifer Crockett, found no disagreement in naming Spence as one of the best individual athletes to come out of Petoskey, let alone the state.
"We've been trying to dig into the history books in Michigan, and she is definitely at the top of her group historically of anybody who has competed in a sport," Ben Crockett said. "She is the best in Michigan, and there is no question about it."
PHOTOS (Top) Petoskey’s Marley Spence races past a gate during the Division 2 giant slalom Monday. (Middle) Cadillac celebrates its second Finals team championship over the last three seasons. (Photos by Sarah Shepherd. Click for all photos; more will be added throughout this week.)