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Stevenson, Ewings lead the way

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NEDERLAND – Sure, winning last weekend’s freestyle Nordic race is a nice thing for Battle Mountain’s Grant Stevenson.But, there are bigger goals.”It’s nice, but it’s not anything too, too special,” Stevenson said. “Winning feels good, but it’s only for that short time before you get back to work. The eyes are still on the prize of Skimeister.”It’s important to understand that the Skimeister has been an eight-year obsession for the Stevenson family. James Stevenson, Grant’s older brother, never won it, finishing as the runner-up twice. Grant, now a senior and a runner-up last year, is in his fourth year of pursuing high school skiing’s holy grail.

“It would be something that my brother never got,” Stevenson said. “It would be a great feeling.”Speaking of great feeling the House of Ewing is in great spirits after last week’s race. Jill finished second in the girls’ race. Twin brother, James, took sixth in his competition. We’ll just assume that Eagle Valley head Nordic Coach Glen Ewing, aka Dad, was pretty pleased with that.”It definitely feels good,” Jill said. “To tell you the truth, I didn’t feel very good that morning. I didn’t know if I was going to race. My muscles weren’t feeling that strong.”That sentiment seemed to run in the family.”Along with Jill, I didn’t feel like I had a good race because I had Grant behind me and he eventually won the race,” said James, who recorded the highest finish ever by an Eagle Valley male. “I felt like was slow. When the results came in, I was very surprised and happy.”

There was a twin thing going on for the Devils. Brad and Alex Gamble also qualified for state.Back to the head coach motif, Vail Mountain’s Dan Weiland has got to be liking the way his girls performed. The Gore Rangers had seven girls – Janelle Kibler-Silengo (eighth), Lani Bruntz (16th), Elsie Macsata (17th), Z Warren (19th), Karlie Moore (21st), Maddie Sullivan (24th) and Lauren Biegler (25th) – qualify for state. Battle Mountain’s other Nordic qualifiers were Tyler Cole, Andy Given, Molly McGee, Whitney Allard and Michelle Hiland.Alpine



The Battle Mountain girls flexed their muscles at Eldora in slalom last weekend, led by Heidi Moore in third.Kelly Van Hee (seventh), Jane Lettovska (10th), Natalie Baldwin (15th), Jordan L’Heureux (26th), Julia Burnett (30th) and Paige Bennett (34th) all punched their ticket to state. For VMS, it was Kenzie Grant (31st) and Bryonny Hiland qualified for Eagle Valley.Eagle Valley hosts a slalom today at Beaver Creek on Bear Trap. First run is at 9:15 a.m., with the second approximately at 1 p.m. Nordic is at Leadville Saturday for a combined freestyle/classic race.Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 614 or cfreud@vaildaily.com.Vail Colorado


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