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Kombi Kids: Steadman Clinic Vail Cup Kombi event brings in over 100 athletes

Young racers enjoy the Steadman Clinic Vail Cup Kombi event on Golden Peak last Saturday.
SSCV/Courtesy photo

Over 100 youngsters raced in the Kombi at the second day of the Steadman Clinic Vail Cup hosted by Ski & Snowboard Club Vail on Golden Peak on Feb 12. Full results can be found at VailCup.com/Results.

Steadman Clinic Vail Cup Kombi age group champions

U6 girls – Erika Engle

U6 boys – Sidney Wall

U8 girls – Valentina Kawamura

U8 boys – Barrett Groff

U10 girls – River Gorsuch

U10 boys – Michael Max Major

U12 girls – Gabriela Loizides

U12 boys – Braxton Bodziak

U14 girls – Charley Ladd

Kombi Results – Sheet1.pdf

Prep Notebook: State skiing starts Thursday and basketball wraps up regular season

Branden Vigil lets fly from 3-point land Tuesday against Rifle.
Connie Melzer/Courtesy photo

Eagle Valley took down Rifle 67-53 Tuesday, a senior night victory which moved them to 17-5 on the season, setting up a pivotal date with league-leading Steamboat Springs on Thursday. Claiming the conference crown was a goal from the beginning for Justin Brandt and company.

“Our number one goal this season was to win conference. We’ve given ourselves a chance to win it, which is great,” Brandt said.

If the Devils take care of business on the road, they will either share the league title with Palisade, provided the Bulldogs win their final game against red-hot Glenwood Springs, or have sole possession of the honor, something they haven’t done since 2012.

“These kids’ hard work has given them great opportunities to do something that hasn’t happened in a long time,” the coach said.

The Eagle Valley girls lost to Rifle 34-28 on Tuesday before earning a big 60-49 win against Steamboat Springs Thursday to keep their postseason hopes alive. The Sailors hold the 48th and final playoff spot in the CHSSA RPI rankings, with the Devils sitting at 49th.

“It’s up to the basketball gods now to see if our win tonight gets us into that final spot,” wrote coach Vinny Cisneros after the win.

Jasmine Fontana led the way with 22 points with Josie Fitzsimmons and Anna Gill adding 15 apiece. The defensive play of Alyssa Jones, Alexa Alderete and Cedar Fitzsimmons helped blaze a 19-10 third quarter run that culminated in a Fontana halfcourt buzzer beater.

“That put us up by double digits, and we never looked back,” stated Cisneros about the team’s final regular season game.

Tuesday’s game against Rifle honored the seniors, including Matt Garvey, for their impact on the Eagle Valley basketball program.
Connie Melzer/Courtesy photo

In other prep basketball action this week, the Battle Mountain boys defeated Basalt 60-46 on Monday to improve to 6-15. They will travel to Rifle Thursday before finishing their regular season on the road against Palisade on Saturday.

Bryan Martinez skies for two against Rifle Tuesday in Gypsum.
Connie Melzer/Courtesy photo

Ski Notes: State gets underway in Winter Park and Granby

Seamus Farrell on his way to a 10th place finish earlier this season. Farrell is currently ranked no. 1 in the skimeister competition, which utilizes both Nordic and Alpine results to crown the best overall skier in Colorado.
Erik Gilbert/Courtesy photo

 

At the 2021 state meet, Aspen took girls and boys team titles on the Nordic side. With many athletes migrating over to the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club, the Skier’s have been thinner than normal in the discipline this season. Eagle Valley placed second last year, with Vail Mountain School coming in third and Battle Mountain placing sixth. On the girls side, the Gore Rangers were fifth, Battle Mountain was eighth, and Eagle Valley placed 10th.

Boys Nordic CHSSL Team Scores for League Awards (prior to state meet)
Summit InviteMaloit classicMaloit skateLeadville RelaySteamboat InviteTotal
Battle Mountain168155146335157961
Eagle Valley 171162159310159961
Poudre145130127320142864
Middle Park117158154165162756
Vail Mountain School15014315515584687
Lake County106127125140135633
Summit1451611650153624
Steamboat 121108113145118605
Colorado Rocky Mountain1139710512039474
Evergreen109697313577463
Clear Creek80836011562400
Aspen262627030109

Based upon their cumulative team point totals, all of the area teams had good reason for optimism going into the two day affair.

Senior Ferguson St. John led the favorite Eagle Valley team in Thursday’s opening event, continuing his undefeated streak in individual races by taking the classic crown in style. He finished 41 seconds in front of Battle Mountain’s Sullivan Middaugh, who gapped Vail Mountain School’s Cyrus Creasy by 20 seconds. Jake Drever utilized his strong aerobic engine to place fourth for the Devils, with Brody Nielsen finishing fifth overall to round out the ever important third and final scoring slot. Miles McKenzie also secured a top ten finish for the Huskies, who entered the state meet perfectly matched in total season points with the Devils at 961.

Friday’s individual races will have skinny ski enthusiasts salivating. St. John and Middaugh will go at it one more time in their final chances at state supremacy. In the all-state rankings, St. John is ranked no. 1, Middaugh is no. 2, and Eagle Valley’s Lukas Bergsten is no. 4. Will Brunner of Vail Mountain School is the other area athlete in the top 10, sitting in ninth. Meanwhile, Seamus Farrelll is ranked 12th, but he is currently the no. 1 ranked skimeister (combined Alpine and Nordic season long competition).

CHSSL Nordic All-State Rankings (prior to state meet)

Boys

1. Ferguson St. John, Eagle Valley – 380

2. Sullivan Middaugh, Battle Mountain – 320

3. Jace Peters, Lake County – 185

4. Lukas Bergsten, Eagle Valley – 168

5. Gray Barker, Middle Park, 150

Girls

1. Sylvia Brower, Middle Park – 210

2. Rose Horning, Lake County – 200

3. Ella Bullock, Lake County – 195

4. Ella Hagen, Summit – 182

5. Michaela Kenny, Aspen, 156

On the girl’s side, Lake County entered the meet with the potential to be dominant, depending on who showed up. Lake County’s defending state champion Rose Horning, who has won most of her Ski and Snowboard Club Vail races this year, is priming for U.S. Junior Nationals in March. Fortunately for the Panthers, Thursday’s skate race fit into her peaking plan, where she demonstrated her dominance with a 71-second victory over teammate Ella Bullock, who finished second. Sophia Bertonneau and Ella Hagen paired up behind the Lake County duo for third and fourth, and Sam Blair was the top Eagle Valley skier in eighth.

Battle Mountain relied on its depth with Lindsey Whitton —ranked no. 1 in the girls skimeister standings — finishing in ninth and Addison Beuche and Haley McKenzie finishing 14th and 15th, respectively.

Girls Nordic CHSSL Team Scores for League Awards (prior to state meet)
SummitMaloit classicMaloit SkateLeadville RelaySteamboatTotal
Battle Mountain159144145350157955
Poudre139155126295144859
Steamboat 158116134305125838
Eagle Valley148114109280134785
Lake County130162174150166782
Middle Park139160145175162781
Nederland 131108111145111606
Summit941601670132553
Colorado Rocky Mountain9612011912058513
Aspen 981211310137487
Clear Creek59787611087410
Vail Mountain School67606113034352

Heading into Friday’s classic, Bullock has momentum stored up in the discipline, having won last weekend’s 5-kilometer classic in Steamboat Springs by nine seconds.

The girls 5k classic takes off Friday at 3:00 p.m., with the boys following at 4:00 p.m. in the same discipline and distance. Results will be available at www.kandutiming.com/results.

CHSSL State Nordic Ski Meet Top 10 – 5k Individual start skate – Thursday

Boys

1. St John, Ferguson EVHS 14:33.0

2. Middaugh, Sullivan BMHS 15:14.9

3. Creasy, Cyrus VMS 15:34.3

4. Drever, Jake EVHS 16:07.6

5. Nielsen, Brody EVHS 16:43.8

6. Jensen, Dane MPHS 16:47.8

7. Skowron, Christian SUM 16:56.1

8. Gallagher, Ewan MPHS 16:56.5

9. McKenzie, Miles BMHS 17:01.3

10. Sowers, James SUM 17:15.3

Girls

1. Horning, Rose LCHS 16:59.1

2. Bullock, Ella LCHS 18:10.4

3. Bertonneau, Sophia SUM 18:11.0

4. Hagen, Ella SUM 18:21.3

5. Brower, Sylvia MPHS 18:45.8

6. Zygulski, Liliane SUM 18:55.6

7. Kenny, Michaela ASP 19:11.3

8. Blair, Samantha EVHS 19:31.4

9. Whitton, Lindsey BMHS 19:39.3

10. Diaz, Julia ASP 19:44.8

In Winter Park, Alpine skiers took to the nearby slopes for the state giant slalom competition on Thursday. A slalom will follow on Friday. Team scores from those competitions go towards an overall team title, which was swept by Aspen last year.

Will Bettenhausen, who came into state brimming with confidence after a second place finish last Friday at Beaver Creek, was the highest placing Battle Mountain skier, finishing in fourth. Andrew Conley finished ninth as six Huskies skied into the top 15. Toby Scarpella of Durango won the overall title, with Aspen’s David Conners and Summit’s Dylan Smith rounding out the podium.

Though he is perhaps more known for his basketball prowess, Vail Mountain’s Cole Pattison produced from the fifth bib position, placing 10th for the Gore Rangers.

Consistency was key on the girls side, where Paige Petersen, who sat in fourth after the first run, moved into first for Summit with a blazing 1:06.21 second, 1.76 seconds faster than the second-best run, which belonged to Battle Mountain’s Robin Pavelich. The Husky senior finished in the silver medal position, with Ava Crowley of Vail Mountain School in sixth as the only two local skiers to crack the top 10.

CHSSL State Alpine Giant Slalom Top 10 – Thursday

Boys

1. Toby Scarpella, DUR, 2:02.20

2. David Conners, ASP, 2:04.39

3. Dylan Smith, SUM, 2:04.89

4. Will Bettenhausen, BMH, 2:07.07

5. Zackary Niedzwiecki, MID, 2:08.07

6. Turner Estock, ASP, 2:08.16

6. Michael Cheek, SUM, 2:08.16

8. Micah Byrum, MID, 2:08.66

9. Andrew Conley, BMH, 2:09.01

10. Cole Pattison, VMS, 2:09.60

Girls

1. Paige Petersen, SUM, 2:12.66

2. Robin Pavelich, BMH, 2:13.96

3. Lexi Ornstein, EVG, 2:16.48

4. Gwen Ramsey, LCO, 2:17.04

5. Hannah Search, PCH, 2:17.26

6. Ava Crowley, VMS, 2:18.12

7. Luci Brady, SUm, 2:18.44

8. Audra Gowdy, SSP, 2:18.81

9. Marley Farrior, NED, 2:18.97

10. Keira Horvath, SUM, 2:19.02

 

Nordic Town Series race has over 50 competitors take to the snow

Another successful Ski & Snowboard Club Vail Nordic Town Series took place on Feb. 9 at Maloit Park in Minturn with over 50 Nordic skiers gathering to take part in either the 1k, 3k or 5k race. Save the date for the final event of the series with a 3k, 5k and 20k option (location TBD at either Maloit Park in Minturn or the Vail Nordic Center).
SSCV/Courtesy photo
Nordic Town Series 1k results
Last NameFirst NameGenderAgeFinish Time
MoserAddisonF1213:27:00
CurrentOliviaF813:41:00
WallOwenM714:13:00
KentJoannaF1114:15:00
WallSidM515:06:00
PearsonCashM915:40:00
O’BrieanViviF815:42:00
PearsonLolaF717:52:00
SterlingOskarM621:10:00
HayesHartleyF821:52:00
LandersBeauM922:46:00
BeckDuncanM822:57:00
SwansonSophieF523:20:00
HayesBellamy F615:09:00
EllefsonRyderM515:13:00
PearsonBrielleF516:10:00
EllefsonAkselM320:31:00
Nordic Town Series 2.5k results
Last NameFirst NameGenderAgeFinish Time
BennettFreedomM138:52:00
KanPeterM128:53:00
SypniewskiKeiraF139:12:00
Cruz-AbramsOwenM139:42:00
LombardiKatieF129:47:00
SypniewskiKoltM119:48:00
BoydTysonM119:50:00
RobisonGrahamM1110:21:00
Pyke ElizaF1210:34:00
CurrentEthanM1110:47:00
MooreTuckerM1010:51:00
EltonIslaF1210:53:00
ProvencherCarolineF1211:03:00
RobisonGeorgiaF811:41:00
KanovaIsabellaF811:59:00
MooreTylerM1012:08:00
MoserFlynnM812:09:00
HoodGavinM912:10:00
FossLandonM1012:17:00
McGinleyBergenF1112:30:00
FossBradyM813:25:00
GrosRemiM1013:55:00
GrosGageM815:29:00
Nordic Town Series 5k Results
Last NameFirst NameGenderFinish Time
BennettTRUEM14:30:00
EllefsonSylvanM14:31:00
LombardiAndrewM14:50:00
McGinleyLeifM16:46:00
HurstPatrickM17:28:00
Boyd BreckM19:57:00
RippethGradyM19:57:00
RippethCooperM19:57:00
StrazanLiamM19:57:00
BlairTylerM20:20:00
JohnsonMattM21:53:00
FossJohnM22:22:00
ChimileskiClaireF25:15:00
TedstrumJohnM25:37:00

 

Olympic minute: Jacobellis and Tierney hunt for a bike thief, Schleper poses with a ‘panda’ and more

  • Sarah Schleper, who wrote the first “Postcards from Beijing,” published in the Vail Daily on Feb. 10, sent home more pictures of her Olympic experience on Thursday as well.
Schleper poses with the Beijing mascot at the 2022 Olympics.
Sarah Schleper/Courtesy photo
  • Sarah Schleper can’t stop yet, though. While there is no local connection to Brazilian cross-country skier Jaqueline Mourao — other than age if we really want to stretch the connection with Schleper — her story is one of those fascinating Olympic odysseys that everyone should know about. Mourao, the flagbearer for Brazil at the 2014 Sochi Games, is 46-years-young and competing in her eighth Olympic Games in China. The professional cyclist mountain biked in three summer Games, starting with Athens in 2004. A year after that first Games, she was introduced to the diagonal striding sport, entering her first cross-country ski race at the age of 29. Just a year later, she was in Torino, competing in Nordic skiing. Since then, she has won a Pan American bronze from 2019 and earned three NorAm Cup podium. She looked spry finishing Thursday’s 10-kilometer classic.
  • Meghan Tierney spent her remaining days in Beijing soaking up views of the Great Wall, playing Phase 10, cheering on the male snowboardcross athletes and testing the weight of Lindsey Jacobellis’s gold medal. An Instagram story photo showing her gratitude for Team USA in supplying athletes with bikes is followed by a picture of her and Jacobellis looking for the perpetrator who apparently stole it.
Jacobellis and Tierney on the hunt for a bike thief Thursday afternoon in Beijing.
Meghan Tierney/Instagram
  • Zoe Kalapos showed love to roommate Chloe Kim after the 21-year-old repeated as the Olympic snowboarding halfpipe champion this week.
Kalapos showers roommate Chloe Kim with praise after Kim dominated the women’s halfpipe to win her second consecutive gold medal.
Zoe Kalapos/Instagram
  • After a 15th-place finish in the super-G, River Radamus is centering his mind on the giant slalom, which goes down Feb. 13 in Beijing (Feb. 12 in Colorado). The date is significant, as Radamus will celebrate his 24th birthday on the 12th. On Thursday night, he posted pictures of his training as well as an epic VR battle between Alpine teammates Tricia Mangan and A.J. Hurt.
Radamus sharpening up before the men’s giant slalom on Feb. 12.
River Radamus/Instagram

 

Admiring the journey: Snowboarder Zoe Kalapos finally gets to Olympic Games

Zoe Kalapos contemplates a run during a recent training session.
Mike Dawsy/Courtesy photo

January 24, 2022 is a bluebird Colorado day at Copper Mountain. After gazing downhill at a busy Interstate 70, Zoe Kalapos peers down the halfpipe at gawking tourists with their phones ready, and turns up her music. Future’s “Never Stop” starts blasting as she tilts her Giro helmet towards the horizon line and prepares to thrust off the lip of the icy pipe’s wall.

Meanwhile, somewhere east of the Eisenhower Tunnel, Maria Kalapos isn’t worried about the trick being landed. Her biggest concern is whether or not her husband, Steve, will have one of his rotating meals — tacos, hamburgers, homemade pizza, or Thai fried rice – ready when the busy Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy sophomore, and her brother, Ian, get back to their Avon home.

As the setting Sunday sun reminds her of another week’s burdens, Maria wipes away a tear or two and pulls into Denver International Airport. After reminding herself why she was sacrificing so much — “for the greater good” — the Detroit, Michigan K-5 teacher boarded a Spirit flight back to her family’s home in the midwest. She’d be back next Friday.

At this point, followers of 24-year-old Zoe Kalapos are likely aware of her family’s temporary split when she was 13, a necessary life decision that allowed the Kalapos kids to pursue their snowboarding dreams at Ski and Snowboard Club Vail. You’ve heard of how Maria remained at her Michigan teaching post while Steve ran the Colorado home, which she visited every weekend for the final five years of her public education career.

“It was grueling but I just got into the routine,” Maria described.

The immense sacrifices are relatively unique. What makes Kalapos a local treasure has more to do with her open recognition and deep appreciation for who made those sacrifices and how they’ve shaped her character.

Snowboarding pre-requisites: Skiing

Zoe Kalapos stands next to the snowboard she received on her first birthday.
Steve Kalapos/Courtesy photo

On Zoe’s first birthday, her dad gave her the gift that would change her life: her first snowboard. “My main inspiration started with my dad – trying to ride like him,” the 2022 Olympian stated.

“And she’s been snowboarding ever since,” Steve declared.

Before she was admiring pictures of Hannah Teter and Kelly Clark on her math and science binders, Zoe’s main snowboarding inspiration was her dad.
Steve Kalapos/Courtesy photo

Between running a start-up during the day and bartending at Hockey Town at night, the Ferris State University alumnus also operated the family’s snow guns set up in the backyard. “Mt. Kalapos” allowed Zoe and Ian to hit a rail under the homemade spotlights before and after school.

“My dad worked so hard. I think that’s probably where I got my work ethic and the ‘follow your dreams,’” she explained about her father’s entrepreneurial, driven spirit. Maximizing one’s potential was a desire he successfully handed down to his kids.

“Our feeling was (of) setting a goal and a dream and then going after it and then working really hard to get there,” he said of the greater purpose he and his wife sought to ingrain in their kids. “The things you would be instilled with along the way made the sacrifices worth it even if you don’t make it to the Olympics.”

Maria echoed the sentiment. “We had structure, we had goals. I think that was just instilled in me at a young age and I knew that’s how I wanted to raise my children.”

Even though some of that ‘raising’ occurred over a cell phone connection while one party flew down a road and the other flew into the air, there was never any regret about the arrangement.

“Never once did we say this is not going to work,” Maria said, crediting her support system for helping the family along the way. “But what was really important to me were all my neighbors and close friends and family kept us going. Everyone believed in Zoe and Ian and embraced us and did everything within their power to help us create this dream come true for the kids.”

Zoe, who would receive multiple calls each day from her mom as well as handwritten notes on those dreaded Sundays where she would have to leave, quickly comprehended the immense sacrifice being made.

“I’m not the only one who made sacrifices, so I wanted to put in that extra work to make sure that my family’s sacrifices paid off,” she said. “I just gave up a normal life that a teenager would live and that was kind of hard for me in the beginning, but then I just realized you have so many opportunities that people would kill for. When I realized how grateful I am, it was easier to ride my best. (I) realized how lucky I am – where the sacrifices don’t really feel like sacrifices.”

About her mom’s epic weekly commute during those formative years, Kalapos said, “She was a saint for doing that.” During rough stretches on the board, when she would sometimes see competitors’ parents being congratulated, she’d think of her own mom and dad.

“That would just fuel me. I’d be like, my parents deserve to have people come up to them and be like ‘congratulations, your daughter did so good,’” she remembers.

The low moments — often spent without the physical support of her mom, who would watch the European competitions between preps or during a lunch break at Jane Addams Elementary — built her mental fortitude and revealed a true love for her craft.

“There were definitely hard points,” Kalapos recalled. “When I would get really sad or cry after contests, I did that because I cared. Because I cared so much about snowboarding and knew I had more to give than what I showed everyone that day.”

“I was always the hardest on myself,” the self-described perfectionist admitted.

“My drive to keep one-upping myself is what keeps me going.”

“Doing other tricks that are just as hard but more unique – switch tricks, switch-airs, air-to-fakies, stuff that other girls aren’t really doing in their runs but that I’ve been doing from a young age,” Kalapos said in describing what sets her apart from her competition.
Mike Dawsy/Courtesy photo

Early influences

When her dad’s sufficiency as a snowboarding role model tapped out, Kalapos turned to Hannah Teter, Kelly Clark and Jamie Anderson. At Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy, the covers of her binders contained Snowboard Magazine photos of the trio. “I’d be in school looking at the photos of them and just wanted to be exactly like them when I grew up,” Kalapos said.

A few years later, she was competing against them.

“It’s just wild to have your childhood idols become your friends,” she said.

Every Olympian is perpetually driven, and Kalapos was no different.

“I think I valued a lot of different things and grew up really quick compared to the kids I was in school with,” she said. Despite the temptation, she eschewed the regular parties and potential distractions.

“I remember at the time, it was really hard, being a young kid and like, ‘I really want to go to this,’ but I have been putting myself in a ‘you can do more than this,’ place. I kind of understood that if I follow this path and I really wanted my dream as bad as I knew I did, you can make something of this.”

Those habits continued through her college years, where she balanced 12-18 credits a semester as a full-time student and full-time professional athlete.

Her parents see many of their daughter’s core values in the accomplishment of acquiring a degree. “Zoe’s always had a strong work ethic and I think she proved herself when she graduated this past spring with her bachelor’s degree in business,” her mom said. “It’s very difficult to be a professional athlete and solely focus on your sport, but to be able to go to college full time as well as train in the gym, on snow, travel, compete, is something to say about her character.”

The balance actually zeroed in her athletic focus to an even higher degree.

“I didn’t want to jeopardize that one extra workout or miss that one trampoline session or that one time riding where I could have learned a new trick,” she said about her monastic five-year collegiate career. “So, it really helped me focus on school and snowboarding.”

Of course, a zeal for being on snow is another ingredient to Olympic success, and she had that, too. Though he rarely traveled to her early events, Steve once went to Laax, Switzerland for one of the then 15-year-old’s competitions. He distinctly remembers a viciously windy and brutally cold practice day. Despite the conditions, one athlete forced the event staff to keep the entire halfpipe open because she just refused to leave: Zoe Kalapos.

“She’s still like that to this day,” he said. “Whether its’ a good day to practice, a cold day to practice — I’m trying to peel her off the mountain by the end of the day.”

“Whether its’ a good day to practice, a cold day to practice — I’m trying to peel her off the mountain by the end of the day,” Steve Kalapos said of her daughter’s passion for snowboarding.
Mike Dawsy/Courtesy photo

The passion is something Zoe has always felt.

“I feel like it’s a deep internal drive I’ve had since I was young to just keep going,” she said.

“It’s momentum from a very young age. Where it’s like you hop on this train — and I’ve been on this train for so long now – and I just have something inside of me where I’m like, ‘I need to keep going, I know I have more to give than where I’m at now.’ That was a big thing for me.”

The long road to Beijing

As fireworks rocketed over Mammoth Mountain during the 2018 team announcement, Zoe vowed to never again experience the feeling of being left out.

“I don’t want to be an onlooker at the next Olympics,” she remembered saying to herself.

“I’m going to work my butt off to make sure that I’m there next time.”

Being so close was a big push.

“You can do this, just work hard these next four years and that can be you,” she told herself.

“Well, it’s been a long road to get to this point,” Maria stated about her daughter’s nomination to the Olympic team. “We’re just over the top thrilled and couldn’t be happier. Just really happy to see that all of her hard work and dedication and perseverance has paid off for her.”

With the dream realized, her parents, friends, and family will congregate in Avon for a watch party. Considering the immense sacrifice they’ve made, the daughter knows they deserve more.

“I think it is hard because everybody’s parents have given so much to allow them to do this sport,” she said about not having family present in China. “The parents do deserve some of their own limelight, which they can get at the Olympics. It’s hard that they don’t get any of the recognition.”

With her focus now on Beijing, Zoe will rely on her amplitude and personal style to wow the judges. “Doing other tricks that are just as hard but more unique – switch tricks, switch-airs, air-to-fakies, stuff that other girls aren’t really doing in their runs but that I’ve been doing from a young age,” she said.

When asked what will be swirling through her mind as she stands at the top of the pipe in China, she provides a predictable answer: “I’ll just be trying to think about doing my best.”

A writer can’t help but wonder if she’ll look out at the horizon and let her mind fly back to the top of Copper. Perhaps she’ll imagine looking down at that interstate, remembering her own road, and thanking those who made her journey possible.

The Beijing Olympic halfpipe competition gets underway with qualifications on Feb. 9.
Mike Dawsy/Courtesy photo

 

Salomone: As summer wanes, it’s terrestrial time

Bob DeMott holds up a brown trout. Grasshoppers are the No. 1 terrestrial fly that anglers adore. Hoppers elicit ferocious strikes along undercut banks with overhanging willows. Trout do not like anything in their gullet that can struggle, kick, grab or otherwise injure their sensitive gills.
Special to the Daily

You’ve seen the name taped to drawers and labeled on cups in fly shops. But what exactly is a terrestrial?

Terrestrials encompass a huge variety of insects that live around land, either on land or underground but not in or on the water. Anglers who study and speak eloquently about the wide variety of aquatic insects from caddis and stoneflies to midges and mayflies may stumble when it comes time to discuss terrestrials. Let that not overshadow the fact that as summer wanes and nights turn cool, the time for fly-fishing terrestrials begins to shine.

Grasshoppers are the No. 1 terrestrial fly that anglers adore. Hoppers elicit ferocious strikes along undercut banks with overhanging willows. Trout do not like anything in their gullet that can struggle, kick, grab or otherwise injure their sensitive gills.

A rainbow trout recently caught in Gore Creek.
Special to the Daily

Trout hit grasshoppers with the same stunning or killing strength as a crayfish or mouse. And just like mouse flies, they often smack their prey and come back and eat it. A trout that hits your hopper but doesn’t get hooked will often come back and hit the fly again so take a quick second cast if you have a swing and a miss.

Chubby Chernobyl is a rubber leggy, foam-bodied dry fly with a tall silhouette that is often fished for a hopper, while a panty dropper hopper is a life-like foam grasshopper pattern that seems to kick with life. Both ride high and can support the weight of a dropper easily.

A trout that hits your hopper but doesn’t get hooked will often come back and hit the fly again so take a quick second cast if you have a swing and a miss.
Special to the Daily

Ants become increasingly prevalent throughout summer and inadvertently end up in the water. From foam patterns on the surface to traditional string and feather patterns in the surface film, and sunken ants made from epoxy or hot glue, trout love ants. Large trout, small trout, all trout will sip a slow-drifted dry fly ant under any overhanging tree.

Shade has a cooling effect over late summer warm water. Trout will gravitate to shaded areas and be more apt to eat a dry fly with the direct sunlight obscured by the tree. Sunken ants fished as a dropper off a dry fly are easy prey for late summer trout. Hot glue or epoxy formed bodies sink with the weight of a real ant and drift along in swirling currents drawing quick strikes.

Amy’s Ant is a popular dry fly pattern for late summer. However, the fly resembles an ant much in the same way a winged unicorn looks like a horse. Foam ant patterns are resilient, able to handle getting eaten by multiple fish. Epoxy ants are the best choice for a sunken ant pattern.

This brown trout is a beauty. Shade has a cooling effect over late summer warm water. Trout will gravitate to shaded areas and be more apt to eat a dry fly with the direct sunlight obscured by the tree.
Special to the Daily

Beetles are the often-overlooked terrestrial. Fly anglers would be better off having a few different choices in their fly box. Foam is an incredibly versatile material for creating beetle flies. Foam beetles hold their shape well, float without sinking and taste delicious based on the response trout make. Most beetle flies are black in general, making the fly difficult to recognize or track on busy water.

The big three, ants, beetles and grasshoppers shine brightly in the late summer sun. Grasshopper flies command some of the fiercest strikes of the year, pulling trout out of their hiding lairs and up to the surface. Ants floating or sunken draw quick reaction strikes from hungry trout. Beetles, the often-overlooked bug, float like wine corks and provide a big bite of protein. So whatever your choice — grasshopper, ant or beetle — the time for terrestrials is upon us.

Eagle Valley lax sweeps Huskies for first time

Eagle Valley's Jensen Rawlings pushes forward against Battle Mountain Tuesday in Gypsum. The Devils beat the Huskies, 9-5, and now need Battle Mountain to beat the Vail Mountain School today to win the Western Conference. (Chris Dillmann
cdillmann@vaildaily.com)

GYPSUM — Eagle Valley lacrosse did its part to earn a share of the 2021 Western Conference title by beating Battle Mountain, 9-5, on Tuesday evening, earning the school’s first season sweep over their archrivals.

Now comes the tricky part in many ways: Eagle Valley needs Battle Mountain to win today against the Vail Mountain School for the Devils to take the conference. Not only will this require the Huskies to beat a team that’s gotten their number already this season — the Gore Rangers won the earlier meeting in East Vail — but for Devils fans to root for their archrivals.

Battle Mountain celebrates an early goal against Eagle Valley on Tuesday in Gypsum. With the Devils winning, 9-5, the Huskies need to bounce back against Vail Mountain School today. (Chris Dillmann
cdillmann@vaildaily.com)

But first, since Battle Mountain and Eagle Valley have been playing each other twice annually since 2009, the Devils have their first season sweep over the Huskies … ever.

“Oh, yeah, definitely,” said Erich Petersen, who did a lot of the damage on Tuesday with his brother Julius. “It’s so sick. It’s the first time in our history. It’s sweet.”

The Petersens

Yes, victory has a 1,000 fathers, but the Petersen boys really did a number on the Huskies. Erich and Julius combined on four of Eagle Valley’s goals during the second and third quarters that saw their team going from trailing 3-2 to a 6-3 lead after 36 minutes.

“It’s really cool chemistry-wise,” Julius said. “We’re on the same page, most of the time. Sometimes, were not, but it’s always his fault.”

“I don’t know what he’s talking about,” Erich said.

It’s a jump ball and Eagle Valley’s Conal Miner comes down with it against Battle Mountain. The Devils beat the Huskies to sweep their archrivals for the first time in the program’s history. (Chris Dillmann
cdillmann@vaildaily.com)

After Nate Bishop staked the Huskies to 1 -0 lead, Julius to Erich tied it. Declan Miner scored the first of his two for a Devils 2-1 lead after one quarter.

Cal Hill and Blu Barnett started the second quarter for Battle Mountain, giving the visitors as 3-2 lead. And then it was Erich and Julius just playing like they were in their own backyard. Erich to Julius tied it at three. Julius to Erich gave the Devils the lead at 4-3 with 2:33 left in the half.

In the third quarter, Peterson — Erich, unassisted — scored and Eric Hasley became the first Devil not from the Petersen clan to find the net in two quarters.

Hunter Davis, Miner and Will Geiman scored in the fourth to ice it.

The race

The West is tied going into the final days of the race. Vail Mountain can clinch with a win at Battle Mountain today. Were Battle Mountain to win, Eagle Valley can take the title with a win at Summit on Saturday. (Special to the Daily, Maxpreps.com)

Vail Mountain and Eagle Valley are tied at 7-2 atop the West. For VMS, the equation is simple: Win today at Battle Mountain and win the West.

Were Battle Mountain to pull the upset, Eagle Valley would control its own destiny and win the West with a victory at Summit on Saturday.

Eagle Valley's Julius Petersen fights off Battle Mountain defenders Tuesday in Gypsum. (Chris Dillmann
cdillmann@vaildaily.com)

So do Devils fans try to root for the Huskies under the general principal of, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend?”

“Right now, I think we hate VMS more than we do Battle Mountain, so yeah,” Julius said. (Gore Rangers fans, please take this as a compliment.)

In the meantime, Battle Mountain needs to win today just to stay in the playoff race. The Huskies have VMS today and close the season at Steamboat on Saturday.

Tuesday was also a festive Senior Night for Eagle Valley. The Devils lacrosse Class of 2021 is Davis, Declan Miner, Sebastian Witt, Drake Berg, Jensen Rawlings, Conal Miner, Tyler Morrison and Blake Blizzard.