Ski & Snowboard Club Vail U16s star in Winter Park
The U16 Rocky/Central Junior Championships at Winter Park proved to be a huge success for Ski & Snowboard Club Vail men and women this week.
The championship began with downhill. Starting the week off with the first of several podium finishes, Zoie Palmer flew down the course to take second place, with Noelle Edelman finishing among the top 15.
In the super-G the next day, SSCV athletes shined with their speed and strategic lines. On the boys side, the club took seven of the top 20 finishes. Nick Kirwood continued the recent success, with a bronze medal. Trailing three-hundredths of a second behind him and guarding the podium was teammate Sebastian Kohlhofer, ahead of Hunter Salani in seventh and William Wasserman in 10th.
Sweeping the top four spots out of 85 on the girls side were Liv Moritz in first, Kjersti Moritz in second, Kaitlin Keane in third and Zoie Palmer in fourth. Coming in 1.04 seconds off of Palmer was Avery Schaffler in ninth. In total, the SSCV girls had 11 of the top 20 finishes.
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The combined event took the athletes’ times from the super-G race with their times from a single slalom run. SSCV athletes capitalized on their lead and continued climbing up the ranks. The boys skied sharp and fast in their slalom run, with Kirwood jumping up to first place, Kohlhofer to second, Salani to third and Wasserman ending the event in fifth.
On the women’s side, Liv Moritz managed to hold on to the gold medal she received in the super-G. Palmer finished third, with teammate Keane in fourth.
The same racers continued to distance themselves from the rest of the field in the giant slalom. This time it was Kohlhofer who took the gold medal, followed by Kirwood with silver and then Salani with bronze. Wasserman remained competitive in sixth, and teammate Hunter Roach was eighth
SSCV’s girls had another strong day, with Kjersti Moritz taking second and sister Liv in third, Keane in fourth and Palmer in fifth. Teammates Phoebe Heaydon and Molly Roberts closed out the top ten in ninth and tenth.
The championship ended with the slalom. For the boys, Sebastian Kohlhofer came out on top once more.
Sixteen-year-old Kohlhofer ended the championship with three podium finishes, and edged out the competition as the overall male U16 Rocky Central champion.
Steamboat’s Tatum Grosdidier claimed first place in slalom, followed by SSCV’s Kjersti and Liv Moritz in second and third, respectively, and then Palmer and Keane in fourth and fifth.
When all was said and done, Liv Moritz ended the championship series as the second-place U16 female finisher.
For the boys, Kohlhofer, Kirwood, Salani, Hunter Roach and Wasserman qualified for U16 Nationals in Sugarloaf, Maine, starting April 1. SSCV’s Kjersti Moritz, Liv Moritz, Kaitlin Keane, Sydney Birtwhistle, Avery Schaffler, Frankie Marston, Phoebe Heaydon, and Zoie Palmer also qualified for U16 Nationals taking eight of the nineteen U16 Nationals spots for the women from the Rocky Central Division.
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