Abby McAlindon’s first place finish leads girls varsity ski team to highest placement of the season; boys finish 7th out of 11 teams

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Junior captain Abby McAlindon led the Lady Rangers’ varsity ski team by clinching first place overall in the giant slalom.

She was also the fastest skier in the slalom for FHC placing 5th overall. Placing within the top 25 in both events, senior captain Sam Werkema led the boys in both the giant slalom and slalom. This was the 4th conference meet for the Rangers, in which a total of 11 teams competed for both the boys and girls team. The girls placed 8th in the GS and 10th in the SL; the boys placed 7th in both the GS and SL. 

“I was super excited when I found out that I won,” Abby said. “It always feels really good when you feel good and are able to place at the top.”

Due to the warmer and wetter weather recently, the slopes were easily torn up by the skiers leaving ruts and holes that ranged from 1 to 2 feet deep. Ideally, the skiers are competing in conditions below freezing; the weather Tuesday night provided far from ideal conditions. 

“Both the boys and girls teams battled hard to have 4 finishers in each event. The snow rutted very easily making the course challenging at almost every turn,” head coach Thomas Sabin said. 

After a disqualification in the last meet in the GS, Abby fought back this week and won the race by a total of .34 seconds. Her combined time was a short time of 56.34. Senior Cakki Mehney was the second-fastest skier in GS for the Rangers. She placed 43rd overall with a time of 1:11.80. Junior Autumn Shook was the third-fastest Ranger with a time of 1:13.13, she placed 44th overall. In the Slalom, Abby placed 5th overall with a time of 1:11.80. She had a bobble on her second run which caused her to lose a couple of seconds. Junior Sina Korb came in second for the Rangers and 47th overall with a time of 1:31.75. The third fastest skier was Cakki, who placed 49th overall with a time of 1:33.44. 

Sam Werkema led the Rangers in the Giant Slalom placing 23rd with a time of 53.80. Junior Ben Taylor was the second-fastest skier in the GS for FHC. Ben placed 29th overall with a combined time of 55.19 seconds. Coming in third for the Rangers was junior captain Aidan O’Meara. Aidan placed 39th overall with a time of 58.08. Sam also leads the boys in the slalom placing 16th with a time of 1:09.95. Aidan placed second for the Rangers and 31st overall with a time of 1:17.94. Ben was the third-fastest skier in the SL for FHC. He placed 35th overall with a time of 1:19.42. 

“I’m relatively happy with my placement overall in the meet, but not with my performance. At practice last week, I felt like I had really hit my stride in slalom. However, the poor snow conditions led to poor performance,” Sam said. 

The Rangers head next to an invitational  this week on Friday, January 31 at Caberfae with high hopes to have some individual qualifiers for states.

“I am really proud of the team with how they handled battling through the course conditions,” Abby said. “With every race, we are improving tremendously as a team.”