Communications-Kai freestle junior nationalsSki & Snowboard Club Vail’s Freestyle Team member Kai Owens at USSA Freeski Freestyle Junior Nationals last week in Sun Valley.

communications-Freeski Junior Nationals 3-14-16

Several of Ski & Snowboard Club Vail’s Freeski Team members and coaches at USSA Freeski Freestyle Junior Nationals in Sun Valley this past week.

Sun Valley, Idaho played host to the 2016 USSA Freestyle and Freeskiing Junior National Championships from March 10-13.  This event brought together the top junior competitors ages 11 to18 from each division across the nation to compete in moguls and dual moguls on the freestyle side and slopestyle, halfpipe and big air on the freeski side.  The top overall junior competitor in each of the above disciplines as well as the best competitor in each age class are determined at this event each season.

Taryn Baker, Lindsey Eckhoff, Tegan Large, Hannah Miles, Kai Owens and Emma Reeder represented Ski & Snowboard Club Vail for the women and Jesse Andringa, Teddy Kust, John Leseur and Trevor Wahl represented Ski & Snowboard Club Vail for the men in Moguls and Dual Moguls at Junior Nationals.

Ski & Snowboard Club Vail also sent eleven freeski athletes to Junior Nationals in Sun Valley-Pearson Black, Dylan Boyes, Felix Coudouy, Jack Ganley, Noah Gionfriddo, Izak Little, Aaron Milligan, Sammy Schuiling, Rory Swimm, Ari-Diamond Toppleson and Regan Wallis

Despite variable conditions ranging from pouring rain to intermittent snow throughout the competition, Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athletes thrived.

Notable results posted by Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athletes in the Freeski competitions included Sammy Schuiling qualifying for finals and finishing 1st in his U17 age class and 5th overall in the Men’s Slopestyle on March 11.  On March 12 in the Men’s Halfpipe both Sammy Schuling and Felix Coudouy qualified for finals with Sammy finishing 2nd in his U17 age class and 5th overall and Felix finishing 1st in his U17 age class and 2nd overall.  In the Men’s Big Air event on March 13 Pearson Black qualified for finals and finished 1st in his U17 age class and 7th overall with a new trick rodeo 720 Bow-Arrow.

Top three and SSCV results for Freeski athletes are available by clicking here.

Ski & Snowboard Club Vail Freeski Coach Dave Zweig commented, “We have had a big week, not just through podiums and event standings but individual progression. A lot of our athletes that have attended will come away from this week with new tricks and big progressions throughout slopestyle, halfpipe and big air. The SSCV Freeski Team put on an amazing show while in Sun Valley and we are looking ahead to Rev Tour for some and USASA Nationals as well.”

In the Men’s Moguls competition on March 10, Ski & Snowboard Club Vail’s Jesse Andringa took 3rd after qualifying in 1st. Trevor Wahl finished in 12th after qualifying in 4th. John Leseur finished 4th among U15s and (44th overall) and Teddy Kust finished 57th.  In Women’s Moguls’ competition on March 11 Hannah Miles finished 5th overall, Taryn Baker was 7th and Lindsey Eckhoff 10th. Emma Reeder took 4th overall in the U13s with Kai Owens and Tegan Large 6th and 7th, respectively.

Jesse Andringa skied strong with the highest turn marks of the first round for the Men’s Moguls and seemed on his way to a win. An error in the middle of his second run derailed his effort and he settled for 3rd.  Trevor Wahl also featured strong skiing and was poised for a top 10, but, like Andringa, suffered foibles in the bottom half of the run.   Hannah Miles’ 5th place Women’s Moguls finish signaled a return to competition form after 2 years out due to injury. She skied strong and competed with confidence. Baker skied fast with the second best time of the day.  Eckhoff finished strong despite dropping a pole in the middle of the course.  The U13 girls Reeder, Owens and Large all skied solid top to bottom competition runs

Jesse Andringa took silver in the Men’s Dual Moguls competition on March 13. The final came down to an 18/17 split with Killington’s Abe Studler erring the close call. Jesse advanced through a tough bracket and held off challenges from Winter Park’s Tanner Lyle and Telluride’s George McQuinn. In the final both Jesse and Abe skied strong runs. Jesse took the speed, but Abe edged Jesse out in turns. The difference seemed to come down to a couple of heavy pole plants just before the bottom air.

In the Women’s Dual Moguls competition on March 13 Taryn Baker took 5th. In the round of eight Baker lost a close split against eventual winner Hallee Ray of Winter Park. In that dual, Baker was slow out of the gate against the speedy Ray. Taryn then rallied to pick up wins against Telluride’s Trudy Mickel and Friday’s single mogul champ Olivia Giaccio.

Ski & Snowboard Club Vail Freestyle Head Coach John Dowling shared, “This was a terrific week for our athletes.  It has been fantastic watching them develop this season, on snow and off, and to see them compete among the best juniors in the nation.  It allows them so see where they stack up among their peers, which becomes a driving force for them in setting their goals for the upcoming season.”

For a complete list of Freeski and Freestyle results find the app known as Team App and then search for USSA which will bring up USSA Junior Nationals.