FRAMINGHAM – The Framingham High School Alpine Ski Team has been zooming on the slopes this Fall 2 season.
In its eighth season, the team started in 2013, the team is participating in the new MIAA Fall 2 season, created during the coronavirus pandemic.
With the official race season over since mid-February the Alpine Ski Team will not be competing but coach Roni Sue Bower and with the help of Assistant Athletic Director Ashley Paulsen they were able to set some ski time aside at Wachusett Mountain.
Eleven racers including the two seniors, Katie Knox and Jacquie Luria both 4 & 3 year (respectively) team members have hit the slopes.
“There hasn’t been any gate training but the team has been sharpening their skills with drills,” said the coach. “The team has been taking full advantage of the great snow conditions and the many long and challenging trails that are open at Wachusett.”
In the fall and winter seasons both coach Bower and assistant coach Parnell were involved in many meetings with the Mass Bay Ski League East (MBSLE), the EEA, CDC, MIAA, United States Ski Association (USSA) and the Ski Area Association and Blue Hills regarding COVID 19 Protocols and safety for our skiers, in which guidelines were set up to have a fun and successful season.
Unfortunately, Framingham was unable to participate in the actual abridged race season within the 12-team league as Framingham did not have a traditional winter sports season, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We are grateful that Framingham High Athletic Director Paul Spear included the ski team in the Fall 2 season as there is plenty of snow this season,” said Bower.
“We are working on skills while on the mountain. We are using terrain that we usually don’t get a chance to ski on during the regular season which is exciting to all of us,” said Bower.
“We are building relationships and camaraderie which will only have a positive influence when we get together next season,” said the head coach.
Bower noted one night the team met up with some of the Walsh Ski Club kids and she hopes that they will join the team in the future.
Although the team is not a club but a varsity sport for ski racing, Bower said “if you can ski the coaches can teach you to race.”
The team was definitely disappointed when they couldn’t compete but they have kept up their competitive edge as coach Bower could see and hear the friendly bantering back and forth about who could get down the hill the fastest.
The team is adhering to all of the safety protocols called upon them by the school, team and Wachusett. They must all wear masks, they must change into their ski boots and gear in the car as the lodge is not available are just a few examples.
Other members of the team include four juniors Qwynn Kobertz, Leland Bastow, Jordan Book, and Calvin Pool, along with sophomores, Myra Grossman, Madi Jones, Laila McIndoo. Freshmen onm the team include Sam Grossman, Lucas Poole and Madison Rieder (who is currently injured just prior to our start).
“For all of us when we are on the mountains skiing, we are all in our Happy Place. It feels good, said Coach Bower.
Photos courtesy of Coach Bower.