Over the weekend, the Wausau Night Gliders, Wausau Nordic United, and the Wausau East/West ski teams took part in the Wisconsin Nordic Ski League State Meet held at the Birkie Start Area near Cable, featuring two days of skiing.
There were several outstanding performances by skiers from all the teams. The first day was a classic race using an interval start. Then on Sunday, the technique changed to freestyle and the start order was determined by Saturday’s results using a pursuit style event.
The overall champion is the skier with the best combined time of both events.
One of the best races of the day was the High School Girls race. The Wausau United girls were a bit disappointed even though they stood in second place after the first day. Olivia Draeger was in 5th place to start the day on Sunday. She was 22 seconds back from the leader and had a little ground to make up.
In an incredibly gutsy performance, Olivia skied a strong, steady race, making up time and skiing with the leaders until she dropped them on the return to the stadium. She won by six seconds taking first in both the freestyle race and the overall pursuit and is the Girls High School Champion.
Draeger was quickly followed in by Lauren Lackman in 3rd place, Anna Buchberger in 10th and Ally Swenson in 11th, resulting in four local finishers in the top 11.
That concentration at the top thrust them into first place as a team and took home the team gold edging out Lakeland by 2 points.
The Wausau Night Gliders Middle School Boys team had raced earlier in the morning on Sunday. Led by Alek Zavadoski who finished 5th and followed by Cole Lozon in 11th and Luke Brown in 12th, the team took second place. The girls team finished 6th in the team standings led by Eleanor Bennett in 19th.
The Wausau East/West team also had a nice performance with the boys ending up fourth as a team, just four points from a podium place.
Mark Raasch led the East/West boys with strong 4th place finish in the Classic race and a overall 9th place finish over the two days. Teagan Maier also skied consistently over two days to for an 18th place finish. The girls had two top 20 finishers, Mariah Haight in 12th and Hanna Mork in 18th.
Congratulations to all the athletes from the Wausau area who participated. More than 40 athletes from the three teams participated in the races.
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