2017-01-26 / Sports

Lady Lakers finish second at Schuss in Grayling Invitational

By Jay Bushen
Of The Enterprise staff


MEMBERS OF the Glen Lake girls ski team gather between assistant coach Patti Yearn (far left) and head coach John Kasben (far right) Monday after placing second in the Grayling Invitational. 
Photo: Frank Skrocki MEMBERS OF the Glen Lake girls ski team gather between assistant coach Patti Yearn (far left) and head coach John Kasben (far right) Monday after placing second in the Grayling Invitational. Photo: Frank Skrocki It all comes down to this.

Members of the Glen Lake ski teams will lock in their Lake Michigan Ski Conference fate this week — and that’s no exaggeration. The first three conference races of the season were called off, which led to a decision to pack the league schedule into an eight-day span.

“It works,” coach John Kasben said. “We’ll get our races in as long as nothing changes in the forecast.”

The action was slated to start at Crystal Mountain last night, continue with a second race Friday and a third race Monday before Wednesday’s conference finals.

Kasben said fertilizer is being used on the slopes and expects them to be in decent shape, weather pending.


FOUR MEMBERS of the Glen Lake ski program gather for a photo at Monday’s Grayling Invitational. 
Photo: Jamie Jewell FOUR MEMBERS of the Glen Lake ski program gather for a photo at Monday’s Grayling Invitational. Photo: Jamie Jewell The Lakers have competed in just two events so far this season, including Monday’s Grayling Invitational at Schuss Mountain.

The Lady Lakers appeared to be in mid-season form, however, finishing second among eight teams.

Kasben wasn’t surprised.

“There’s quite a bit of talent there, but they were pretty excited during the award ceremony,” he said. “They know they can do it, but it’s always deceiving. There’s so many quality racers and it’s hard to keep track throughout the race with two different events. Their confidence is up. They just need to keep skiing the way they ski and the results will show how good they are.”

The Lady Lakers, the reigning Lake Michigan Ski Conference champions, took second in giant slalom with four top-20 finishers: Norah Johnson (12th), Annabel Skrocki (15th), Anna Cantrel (19th) and Stephanie Purifoy (20th).

The girls also placed third in slalom with a trio of top-20 performances from Skrocki (third), Johnson (12th) and Purifoy (20th).

“Jessica Pershinske was out sick,” Kasben said. “With her in that mix, it could have been real exciting for first and second place. If we’d have had her up there in the top five or 10, it would have changed the results up quite a bit. We were down three girls.”

The boys, meanwhile finished fifth overall among 10 teams.

Andrew Pershinske and Rolli Charpentier each turned in top-10 finishes in giant slalom, placing fifth and 10th, respectively.

Both standouts narrowly missed the top-10 cut in slalom, as Pershinske placed 11th and Charpentier finished 14th.

Kasben said the event was shortened due to conditions on the slopes.

“We called the race after the first run,” Kasben said. “Between the race officials, we decided it was safer not to run another one.”

Kasben liked what he saw from his teams despite those circumstances.

“They all skied really well,” he said. “We’ve skied there quite a bit in the past and, even with the challenging snow, they did what they do and it showed. There were a lot of girls and boys who were disqualified and lost equipment, but we skied smart and did what we had to do.”

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