Armstrong heads up all-state team |

Armstrong heads up all-state team

The Vail Mountain School sophomore captured all-state honors in both Nordic classic and freestyle.

“She’s definitely come a long way,” said Karl Hochtl, who coaches the VMS Nordic team with Dan Weiland. “She’s starting to figure out what it takes to be a top-level Nordic skier. She’s really focused on improving her technique, especially in classic.”

All-state awards are based on season-long performance. Racers accumulate points for top-10 finishes during the regular season and the points double for the four, state-meet races.

The Gore Rangers didn’t stop there when it comes to all-state. Duncan Robinson made all-state first team in slalom and added second-team honors in giant slalom. And all of this came on top of finishing second in the Skimeister to teammate Sylvan Ellefson.

Sister Courtney Robinson made it a family affair for all-state. She won first-team honors in slalom.

“Both Courtney and Duncan very determined and hard-working,” VMS alpine coach Gusty Swift said. “It’s great how they get along and support each other.”

Erika Ghent and Lauren Arnold represent Battle Mountain. Ghent is first-team, all-state in GS.

“Erika has an unbelievable understanding of the sport of ski racing,” Huskies alpine coach Mike Brown said. “She holds herself exceptionally well in competition. She has such a bright future. As a freshman, she’s unreal.”

Arnold picked up all-state in slalom and added second-team acknowledgement in the GS.

“Lauren is so consistent,” Brown said. “Every single race, we could count on her. And she contributed something at every race.”

Eagle Valley just missed out having some Nordic racers on the all-state team. The Devils had a breakout year finishing second as a team in both classic and freestyle. Though the team loses Kim Smith and Aubrey Powell to graduation, coach Glen Ewing will have Jill Ewing, Katie Wick and Ellie Comerford among others back next winter.

“It’s been a great year,” Glen Ewing said. “I think the kids are pumped up enough to do summer training and that’s what it will take to get to the next level.”

Chris Freud is the sports editor for the Vail Daily. Contact him at (970) 949-0555, ext. 614 or by e-mail at

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