On Wednesday, February 15, 2012, the Berkshire boys’ and girls’ alpine ski teams travelled to Berkshire East Ski Area in Charlemont, MA, for the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council (NEPSAC) Class B Ski Championships, hosted by Salisbury School and Trinity Pawling. The NEPSAC championship—which represents the pinnacle of the ski season throughout New England and features 29 teams—is based on two runs each of giant slalom (GS) and slalom (SL). Both Berkshire teams performed very well in the GS and SL races, with the girls’ team in its inaugural year mastering the SL half, and the boys’ team reprising its dominant performance from last year in both races, thereby capturing the NEPSAC championship. Several Individual performances were similarly strong.
For the boys, who began with the GS race in the morning, strong finishes on both first and second runs led to V-former and captain Jackson Borwick’s taking second, VI-former and captain Bray Wilcock’s finishing third, and V-former Nate MacKenzie’s taking fourth. All of these boys skied strong and hard but just behind an admirable performance by Suffield Academy’s Colin Dowd (PG), a skier who has frequently skied at the same high level as our strong boys’ team. Berkshire IV-former George Frick and V-former David Eagan also skied very well, rounding out our boys’ side on the GS; as a result, Berkshire boys easily won the race. In the afternoon, the boys raced SL, in a race that challenged all skiers on the hill. Boys from each team fell and /or lost a ski in this dramatic race, which hampered all teams’ chances, since at least three of five boys must finish in order for a team to qualify for the championship. Despite strong and aggressive skiing, Bray Wilcock and David Eagan did not quite finish (DNF’ed), leaving all three other boys to finish well. Jackson Borwick ended in first place—thereby capturing the title of individual champion—Nate MacKenzie took second, and George Frick overcame falls by “hiking” up the hill to make respectable finishes. Thus, although the SL race was far more challenging, the boys finished very admirably, well enough to win (over perennial rival Suffield) the NEPSAC championship as a whole for the second time in a row. Congrats, boys!
For the girls, the day began well. Aware of the challenges last year’s team faced on the SL course, all five of our skiers finished strong, with notable finishes by IV-former Julia Slyer taking fifth, III-former Krissy Goversten taking seventh, and V-former Swetha Kodali finishing sixteenth. IV-formers Emily Hubbard and Eloise Morrow also finished well, leading to a second-place team finish just behind Middlesex School of Concord, MA. The afternoon GS course proved more challenging, and though all of our girls finished (when many others did not), they did not quite place in the top three teams for the combined score, instead taking a very respectable fourth place. Still, Julia and Krissy took home medals for SL, and all the girls in this young, new team performed in such a way as to suggest even greater success in the near future.
Though for the first (but certainly not last) time Berkshire School has fielded both boys’ and girls’ sides this year, all of our skiers consider themselves part of the same team, one which trains with, challenges, and supports every person on it. Thus, today’s victory is for every member of Berkshire skiing. Congratulations to all of our skiers on fantastic results.
This Friday, the JV boys’ team will travel to Sundown in New Hartford, CT, for its SL championship to cap a hitherto undefeated season, and next Wednesday (2/22), the boys’ and girls’ varsity teams will return to Sundown to close out the Berkshire Ski League season with the Carl Williams Memorial SL Championship. Given the tremendous success thus far, coaches Brigham, Borwick, MacKenzie, and Clary have high hopes for all teams.
Click here to learn more about the Boys' Alpine Ski Racing program at Berkshire.
Click here to learn more about the Girls' Alpine Ski Racing program at Berkshire.
Click here to view the Championship slideshow from a mobile device.
Article and photos from Berkshire School website