February 29, 2012 - The Oxford boys varsity ski team continued their strong ski season by capturing the Southeast Michigan Ski League Championship on Tuesday, February 21.
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Racing at Alpine Ski Resort, the boys won the event with 73 total points, finishing first in the giant slalom and second in the slalom.
"I think they all were pretty disappointed after regionals, they didn't ski their best that day and then came out and were looking for some redemption and went and laid down some of the best runs they've had all year long," varsity head coach Phil Nimmo said.
In the slalom, Oxford freshman Lars Joergens-Kokate paced the field in his first run, finishing in 19.63 seconds. His second run of 22.75 seconds was fourth fastest. Overall, he finished third in the league event with a time of 42.38.
Wildcat senior Alex Schultz finished 11th, two seconds behind Joergens-Kokate. Holly senior Spencer McKay was 14th fastest (45.55) while Holly senior Dalton Sink was 21st.
The boys ran away with the giant slalom, finishing 14 points ahead of Grand Blanc for first.
Sink won the event with a time of 35.20, while Joergens-Kokate finished in fourth, .39 seconds behind Sink. Schultz finished sixth in 36.23 and sophomore Greg Schultz finished 18th in 37 seconds flat.
Meanwhile, the girls finished in sixth place with 230 points.
Marion won the league crown, followed by Walled Lake Central and Fenton.
Nimmo added the girls achieved their preseason goal of qualifying for SEMSL and was thrilled they came away with a sixth place finish.
The girls finished sixth in the slalom, with Holly senior Rachel Wallington placing 14th in a time of 50.25. Finishing second for Holly/Oxford was Wildcat Iida Mantyla, who ran a 56.81, placing her 30th. Oxford junior Aylssa Wysocki finished 34th in 58.39, while fellow Wildcat junior Abby Wrobel finished 35th in 58.83.
Holly/Oxford also finished sixth in the giant slalom. Harrington again paced the club, finishing 13th in 38.11, while Wrobel finished in 29th (41.28).
Wysocki was 37th (42.66) and Mantyla was 38th (43.06).
In addition to the teams success during the league championship, Joergens-Kokate and Wallington also qualified for the state finals, which take place on Feb. 27 at Nub's Nob in Harbor Springs, MI.
Wallington placed in both the slalom (seventh; 50.20) and giant slalom (fifth; 37.17), while Joergens-Kokate placed in the giant slalom (fifth; 35.64) during regionals on Feb. 16.
"It's exciting," Nimmo said. "For Lars to go as a freshmen is awesome. He is an awesome skier and to come out as a freshmen and take fifth at regionals is amazing."
Nimmo said he saw lots of "big improvements" from the boys and girls this year.
"Their skiing really impressed me, and a lot of the other parents too couldn't believe how well and how much they improved since last year," he said.
"It was tough with the weather conditions (that) we didn't get a whole lot of practice days like we normally do, but they fought through it and worked hard and skied well."
Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.