Onekama ski team opens season at Grayling Invitational meet

 

Onekama skiing medalists Mallory Stefanski and Joe Buswinka after the team’s opening meet at Grayling on Monday. (Courtesy photo)

Onekama skiing medalists Mallory Stefanski and Joe Buswinka after the team’s opening meet at Grayling on Monday. (Courtesy photo)

BELLAIRE — The Onekama ski team had a strong start in some tough conditions in the first meet of the year Monday at the Grayling Invitational at Schuss Mountain.

“We had some problems, like with the conditions. Everybody skis the same conditions, but it was about an inch of snow on top of ice. The kids probably could have used hockey skates instead of skis and done just as well,” Onekama head coach Curt Mathieu said.

The boys team finished 6th overall, with the combination of finishing 7th in the giant slalom and 6th in the slalom.

In the giant slalom Keagan Thomas led his team by finishing 16th overall with a time of 31.03 in his first run and 32.16 in his second.

Joe Buswinka skied a 31.53 in his first run and 32.28 in his second for 20th overall.

Zach Davis skied a 32.77 in his first and 34.98 in his second to finish 32nd overall.

Johnathon Wertheimer was the final Portager to place in 41st with times of 37.34 and 36.30.

“ I was really pleased with Joe and Keagan. They were up against some really tough teams yesterday,” Mathieu said.

In the boys slalom Buswinka led the team with a solid run at 37.27 and 38.26 for 15th overall.

Thomas was right behind him at 37.17 and 39.35 to finish in 18th.

Erik Grimhusen finished at 45.44 and 45.55 to place in 33rd.

“I didn’t really know what to expect with (Erik). He’s a terrain park kid. He loves sitting around and playing on the jumps. I thought he did a wonderful job. I was very impressed with that,” Mathieu said.

Kyle Peterson finished in 36th at 46.88 and 49.56.

“Kyle has come so far this year. It’s been amazing,” Mathieu said.

The girls team also had a solid day by finishing in 8th overall by finishing 11th in the giant slalom and 5th in the slalom.

In the giant slalom Anna Buswinka led the team at 40.02 and 41.76 to finish in 18th.

Naomi Mason skied at 42.22 and 41.67 for 25th place.

Kiara Bromley skied at 44.51 and 46.76 for 37th place.

The team had an issue with disqualifications in the girl’s run, but a lot of that can be attributed to the conditions after the boys team had already skied down the slope.

“The girls has some troughs that they had to jump. I felt bad for them. It was like ‘oh my gosh’ to look at, and that was before everyone ran it,” Mathieu said. “If Mallory (Stefanski) would have had a run like she did in her first one, then she would have been in the 13th to 15th range,”

Stefanski skied a 39.38 on his first run, which would have helped the team out of 11th.

In the slalom Stefanski brought in a top 10 finish in 7th at 37.67 and 38.06.

“She had two really nice runs,” Mathieu said.

Buswinka finished in 17th at 38.73 and 42.43 for 17th.

“Finishing in 17th was really good for her,” Mathieu said.

Ashley Elo finished in 28th at 43.19 and 46.29.

Mason finished in 29th at 42.69 and 47.53.

“We were able to get the jitters out of the way,” Mathieu said.

The team will be back on the slopes today with its first conference meet at Crystal Mountain.

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Posted by Brian Fogg

Brian is the sports writer for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach him at (231) 398-3110 or bfogg@pioneergroup.com.

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