Battle Mountain Nordic wins opener in Steamboat |

Battle Mountain Nordic wins opener in Steamboat

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — One can be excused for thinking Saturday, Jan. 13’s classic Nordic race was a cross-country running meet during the fall.

Harding, Harding, Johnson, Fahrney, Piliero and Raichart and Battle Mountain wins.

Apps, McCabe and Reilly and the Huskies win.

Yes, they’re fast on dirt. They’re also fast on snow.

Battle Mountain Nordic swept the opening races of the season on Saturday with some darn familiar names.

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Lizzie Harding won the ladies race in a time of 19 minutes, 3 seconds, followed by Naomi Harding (19:21) in second. Where the heck is Elizabeth Constien, for crying out loud? (She’s was on college trip. She’ll be back.)

OK, Grace Johnson finished in sixth (19:47). That’s very cross-country-ish. Kaela Fahrney was eighth, Sofia Piliero 10th and Alex Raichart 12th, and none of those three scored. Huskies running coach Rob Parish had to be lurking somewhere in the snow, yelling out splits.

“Endurance athletes get better and better with more hours everyday,” Huskies Nordic coach Emily Landgraf said. “It’s great to have transition (among) cross-country, Nordic and track. Parish and I working together to have multisport athletes on track for success.”

Battle Mountain girls Nordic ran away with the race with 174 points to Steamboat Springs’ 161 and Aspen (148).

Gents have Depth

The boys’ race was a lot more of the same. Nick Apps won in 16:22. Connor McCabe nabbed bronze (17:06) and David Reilly was fifth (17:31). The Huskies boys rolled to a victory with 174 points over both Lake County and Steamboat (tied at 162).

And just like running during the fall, the Huskies gents have depth. Krueger Davis, Jason Macaluso, Parker Rodeen and Nick Williams, all packed into the top 25.

The season’s intrigue should continue on Saturday, Jan. 20, when the state convenes for the first skate of the season at Vail Nordic Center. The Vail Mountain School makes its high school debut and the Gore Rangers are generally a handful.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, and @cfreud.

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