The Ice Age Nordic ski team traveled to Cable on March 5 for the Wisconsin Nordic Championships, which had been rescheduled from mid-February because of the polar vortex induced frigid temperatures. In contrast, temps in Cable this weekend were warm and sunny with highs reaching 51 degrees by Sunday afternoon.

On Saturday, the high school teams competed in a 6.75 skate race and the girls team finished fifth.

“This is a World Cup level course with big uphills and fast downhills,” Ice Age coach Dale Fanney said. “Our Girls finished 21st, 23rd, 27th and 31st to give us the highest team finish at state in our 15-year history.”

Emily Whyte paced the girls team after finishing 21st, followed closely by Norah Lee (23rd) Amelia Heider (27th) and Anna Vanderhoef (31st).

The Ice Age boys team finished 15th with Todd Niles placing 58th, Nathan Ducat 81st, Sam Clepper 100th and Nolan Feasel 108th.

On Sunday, the girls team ran into warm melting slushy conditions by start time at 1:30 p.m.

“It was near impossible to wax for these conditions and the girls from all teams did their best, some using waxless skis,” Fanney said. “Some girls just had great skis and others did not.”

Emily Whyte still finished 22nd overall, Norah Lee 29th, Amelia Hider 39th and Anna Vanderhoef 54th. Newcomer Phoenix Peterson moved up from 75th in the skate race to 69th overall, rounding out the varsity girls team scoring. Freshmen Malia Niles and Audrey Bakken finished 77th and 85th, respectively, in their first state meet.

Sam Clepper was the lone boy skier for Ice Age on Sunday and he improved to a 92nd overall after the classical race.

In the Middle School races, Emily Berger stunned the elite skiers by finishing fifth in the 3k Classical race, moving up from 29th after the skate race to place 16th overall. Teammates Adrienne Bakken and Annabelle Niles placed 45th and 50th overall for a ninth-place team finish.

In the Boys middle School races, Troy Niles finished 73rd overall followed by Holden Ambord 82nd and Andrew Berger 83rd with to put the team in 13th place.

“This was a great racing experience for our middle schoolers who will be back next year with a much larger team,” Fanney said.

The ski season ends this weekend in Calumet, MI at the Great Bear Chase, where several varsity skiers will represent Ice Age Nordic in the 25 and 50 kilometer races.

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