Ely Girls: First Place. Ely Boys: Second Place. Not a bad day's work skiing at minus 8 degrees at the meet in Cloquet today. We can't get too excited as not all the schools were present and not all the key skiers raced, but we'll take it. Next up: The Marshall Sprints next Saturday in Duluth. Stay tuned.
Great news folks. The Ely boys and girls Nordic Ski teams competed Saturday against over 1000 skiers from 66 schools from Minnesota and Wisconsin in the single largest high school Nordic ski event in North America. Seth Prigge took 2nd place in the boys classic race leading the boys to 7th place as a team, while Erin Bianco placed third in the girls classic race, leading the Ely girls to 3rd place overall as a team. The future of our program looks good too. The Junior varsity girls took second place while the JV boys took sixth place. All we need now is a little more snow. Congratulations to all our skiers.
How great is this. Both the boys and girls Ely Nordic Ski Teams won handily at the Korki ski area in Two Harbors on Tuesday. The full field of teams from Section 7 was there and most of the elite skiers competed, so this was a good ealy test of relative depth for Section 7. It certainly surprised a lot of folks who follow this sport closely that Ely was able to pull of dual wins against Duluth East, the perennial favorite.
On the boys side Cole Helms had a great day, finishing first by 47 seconds. That was an aoutstanding achiement. On the girls side Erin Bianco finished second but only by 4 seconds, and we had 4 skiers in the top 12. This bodes well for the rest of the season. There were some elite skiers who crashed into the woods on a very rugged course (due to poor snow conditions), so we can't read too much into this. It is just one race in a long season just getting underway. Stay tuned.
Oh how sad. I loved visiting Grand Marais for a race day. The January 2nd race has been canceled and will not be rescheduled because the race schedule is already so full. The next race will be on Tueday, January 5, 2016 in Two Harbors.
Due to lack of natural snow across the state, seven teams from Section 8 joined our area teams for a huge race on Tuesday at Mt. Itasca in Grand Rapids. 475 skiers from 16 schools participated in a great day for Nordic skiing in Minnesota. Ely boys placed 3rd overall while Ely girls were still able to hold sixth place even without their two top skiers who could not race that day. On the girls side, Mesabi East was just able to edge out Duluth East setting the stage for a long close competiton for the girls title all season.
It was great to see so many Ely Jr. High racers do so well. We had a hallf dozen Ely skiers in both boys and girls races, finish in the top 25. That is roughly 1 in 4 finishers in a field of 16 teams. That bodes well for the future of the program.