Battle Mountain’s Whitton and Krueger win state skimeister titles |

Battle Mountain’s Whitton and Krueger win state skimeister titles

Season-long competition determines best combined Alpine and Nordic athletes

Lindsey Whitton won her second-straight state skimeister title, a competition which combines an athlete's best Nordic and Alpine performances — in all four disciplines — throughout the season.
Rex Keep/Courtesy photo

Battle Mountain might be currently fighting for skiing supremacy at the state Alpine and Nordic ski meets this weekend, but they’ve already cemented their status as the skimeister school.

For the second-straight season, the Huskies swept the girls and boys Colorado State High School Ski League skimeister state titles. Lindsey Whitton and Theo Krueger won the season-long competition which takes athletes’ best performances in the four disciplines — giant slalom, slalom, skate and classic — to determine a final ranking of the best all-around Nordic and Alpine skiers.

Last year, a state skimeister championships was also held at season’s end, but there was no venue able to host the event in 2023, meaning the winners were crowned after the last regular-season races.

It’s the second-straight year Whitton, who attends Vail Christian but competes for the Huskies, has won the competition. While she recognized important improvements in her Nordic this year, she said being able to attend Alpine practices in the afternoon fostered a bigger jump in that discipline. Alpine coach Erik Gilbert agreed.

“Whitton has improved so much in her Alpine skiing,” he said adding that the junior surprised herself by qualifying for both slalom and giant slalom at state.

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“The last two weeks she has found a consistent technique that makes her actually look like a ski racer. Combine that with her fitness level and commitment to try, you have all the pieces for success.”

A typical afternoon consists of leaving her third-block class early to attend Gilbert’s practices for a couple of hours at Beaver Creek. Then, she sneaks into Nordic practice on the late side before going home to catch up on school.

“It’s a lot of work,” Nordic coach Jeff Apps aptly stated regarding the skimeister regimen. “We’re very fortunate to have a great relationship with Gilbert and the Battle Mountain teachers and counselors to create this opportunity for these kids to be able to train for both sports along with school.”

Time management — on and off-snow — is a huge element to the season-long grind.

“These kids are having a great time and working really hard to manage school, Alpine and Nordic along with other responsibilities of being a teenager,” Apps continued. “They need a great support system — their awesome parents, teachers and coaches — who help them deal with all of the logistics of this sport.” 

Apps has shepherded Whitton’s improvement on skinny skis, where he compares the athlete’s motor to Jessie Diggins.

“(She has) an awesome engine that knows how to climb and go fast when it counts,” he said. “Lindsey is an awesome athlete. Unbelievable training attitude. Also, she wants to consistently improve.”

At the first day of the state meet in Frisco on Thursday, those qualities were on full display. The junior powered through the course — which climbed for the first two-thirds of the 5-kilometer distance and saved its steepest ascents for the furthest (and most windy) points — to a second-place finish.

“This is made for our team just because of what we train every day,” Whitton said of the state venue.

“And especially being a runner, I can just grind through those hills and like, I think I’m trained for it because every day, all year long I do stuff like this.”

Whitton said it’s hard to choose a favorite between flying downhill around gates and climbing up in classic tracks, but appreciates how both sports uniquely push her.

“Alpine is different than anything I do and challenges me in a lot of different ways,” she said. “It’s honestly mentally harder because I’m trained for sports like Nordic, so I’m used to it. So, Alpine can be more frustrating just because it’s like, one small mistake can ruin your whole day.”

Theo Krueger was second in the state skimeister competition as a sophomore, right behind his teammate, Seamus Farrell. This year, Krueger took the overall crown as Battle Mountain swept the girls and boys titles for the second-straight season.
Rex Keep/Courtesy photo

Krueger placed second last year to his teammate Seamus Farrell, but came into the season once again with serious cross-country running fitness. “Our job was to get his upper body strong!” Apps said, adding that the junior, who finished 23rd in the opening day of state on Thursday, has made strength gains every year in the program.

“Theo is a strong, consistent skier,” Gilbert added. “He is truly a mountain kid and loves being outside playing. No surprise he is skimeister champion and will be hard to beat next year.”

The Huskies demonstrated depth in the multi-sport affair, taking the top three spots in the final girls rankings — freshman Ruthie DeMino finished second and junior Presley Smith was third — and three of the top four in the boys with Tyler Losa (second) and Gavin Brewster (fourth).

“The skimeister group has gotten stronger in the past three years,” said Apps, who credited the work of his assistant coach, Christian Apps (his son, also a Husky skimeister in 2016).

“He has focused on these athletes to have them fully understand what is required of them during the season. This season there were 12 kids that did skimeiester — which is a lot.”

Apps also pointed to the Nordic program at Homestake Peak, currently being run by Kari Korbin (Ruthie DeMino’s mom) as being a crucial piece in the pipeline.

“This is an awesome grassroots program,” he said of the group, which meets twice-a-week in the winter.

All of that is to say — with Whitton and Krueger both having another year of eligibility — the Huskies appear primed for a three-peat.

“But there are other athletes right there competing against them,” Apps pointed out.

“Presley Smith and Ruthie DeMino are both ready to compete for the skimeister title next year. On the boys side, there are several athletes that did the skimeister this past year and are focused on getting their name on the trophy.”

Full skimeister rankings for 2023, as well as historical winners can be found on

Colorado state skimeister – final rankings


1 Lindsey Whitton* BMHS 10.29
2 Ruthie Demino* BMHS 16.69
3 Presley Smith* BMHS 18.19
4 Keira King* LCHS 24.78
5 Susie Bullock* LCHS 25.06
6 Clara Kirr* LCHS 36.03
7 Elizabeth Matsen* BMHS 41.97
8 Aspen Bennett-Manke* SSHS 43.39
9 Addyson Scott* CC 44.63
10 Skylah Inman* CC 54.34
11 Freya Deike* CC 60.45
12 Kingsley Blair* BMHS 63.29
13 Sarah Lovette* CC 66.12


1 Theo Krueger* BMHS 17.54
2 Tyler Losa* BMHS 20.89
3 Luka Smalls* ASP 21.88
4 Gavin Brewster* BMHS 26.90
5 Parker Scott* CC 32.80
6 Griffiin Rillos* SSHS 36.58
7 Raymond Harvey* LCHS 40.45
8 Rennick Williams* BMHS 43.97
9 Albert Thuon* BMHS 52.73
10 Jacob Royer* CC 59.37
11 Flynn Reese* CC 60.14
12 Aiden Burke* VMS 61.10
13 Jaden Remirez* CC 62.80
14 Mason Loesch* CC 62.90
All-time skimeister state champions (boys)
THEO KRUEGER Battle Mountain 2023
SEAMUS FARRELL Battle Mountain 2022
MATTHEW CAIRNS Lake County 2020
MAX TIMM Battle Mountain 2019
HENRY BARTH Aspen 2018
ANDREW MCCAWLEY Steamboat Springs 2017
QUINTIN COOK Battle Mountain 2016
QUINTIN COOK Battle Mountain 2015
PETER WHITE Steamboat Springs 2014
PETER WHITE Steamboat Springs 2013
KYLE KNAEBLE Clear Creek 2012
IAN PARKER Summit 2011
IAN HAMINA Vail Christian 2010
ZACH PETRIK Evergreen 2009
SEAN WOODS Vail Mountain School 2008
MITCH HENDRIX Battle Mountain 2007
CHRIS WOODS Vail Mountain School 2006
GRANT STEVENSON Battle Mountain 2005
TAYLOR ROACH Battle Mountain 2004
SYLVAN ELLEFSON Vail Mountain School 2003
HENNIE KASHIWA Steamboat Springs 2002
RYAN CADENHEAD Clear Creek 2001
RYAN CADENHEAD Clear Creek 2000
KEVIN HOCHTL Battle Mountain 1998
TIM O’BRIAN Clear Creek 1997
KEVIN HOCHTL Battle Mountain 1996
KEVIN HOCHTL Battle Mountain 1995
GREG COFFIN Clear Creek 1994
GREG COFFIN Clear Creek 1993
KARL HOCHTL Battle Mountain 1992
MARK SYRENE Clear Creek 1989
MIKE GIBBS Clear Creek 1988
ERIC SYRENE Clear Creek 1987
CHRISTIAN THORSTAD Battle Mountain 1986
SEAN KERRIGAN Lake County 1983
SEAN KERRIGAN Lake County 1982*
SEAN KERRIGAN Lake County 1981*
SEAN KERRIGAN Lake County 1980*
CARL JORDAN Battle Mountain 1979*
BRUCE WIGTON Durango 1978*
LANCE WIGTON Durango 1977*
KERRY LYNCH Middle Park 1975*
KERRY LYNCH Middle Park 1974*
DANNY KEENAN Middle Park 1972*

*In the years before 1983, the competition also included ski jumping.

All-time skimeister state champions (girls)
2023 LINDSEY WHITTON Battle Mountain
2022 LINDSEY WHITTON Battle Mountain
2021 ZOE BENNETT MANKE Steamboat Springs
2020 KIANA BRAUSCH Battle Mountain
2018 KIANA BRAUSCH Battle Mountain
2017 HALEY FRISCHHOLZ Battle Mountain
2016 HALEY FRISCHHOLZ Battle Mountain
2015 LINDSEY ADLER Steamboat Springs
2011 EVA SPAEH Vail Mountain School
2010 DAYNA LARSEN Nederland
2009 SARAH DIXSON Steamboat Springs
2008 JAMIE LEE ROBERTS Battle Mountain
2007 JESSICA HADFORD Nederland
2006 JESSICA HADFORD Nederland
2005 AMBER MORAN Clear Creek
2004 AMBER MORAN Clear Creek
2003 COURTNEY ROBINSON Vail Mountain School
2002 HALEIGH ARMSTONG Vail Mountain School
2001 SANDI BETTERS Nederland
2000 SANDI BETTERS Nederland
1998 PARKE COGSWELL Vail Mountain School
1997 PARKE COGSWELL Vail Mountain School
1996 PARKE COGSWELL Vail Mountain School
1995 LISA KUMORO Clear Creek
1993 SHANNON BILLAU Clear Creek
1992 SHANNON BILLAU Clear Creek
1991 ERIN VANWINKLE Clear Creek
1990 ERIN VANWINKLE Clear Creek
1988 ERIN VANWINKLE Clear Creek
1987 KELLI ANTHONY Battle Mountain
1986 AARON McCLELLAN Pagosa Springs
1982* KIM FEISTNER Lake County
1981* BETSY BREWER Summit
1976* SHERRY KUSS Durango
1975* WENDY ENGEL Middle Park
1974* WENDY ENGEL Middle Park
1973* JANET ENGEL Middle Park


*In the years before 1983, the competition also included ski jumping.

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